Stop!

Explore the differences in personal boundaries and talk about setting and respecting them during this accessible game.

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A step-by-step guide to play the game

1

Divide the players into two groups.

2

Both groups form a straight line and face each other, so each player of group 1 faces a player of group 2. The two groups have to be at least 4 metres apart.

3

When the game leader says "go", all players of group 1 start walking forwards, towards the player of group 2 that is facing them.

4

They continue walking until the player facing them says "stop!".

5

Switch groups. The players of group 2 will now walk towards the players of group 1, who in their turn will say "stop!" to set their boundaries.

6

Reflect on the game by asking questions such as:

  • How come not all players of group 1 are standing in the same place?
  • Does everybody feel comfortable with where they are standing right now?
  • How would it feel for the players of group 2 if the players of group 1 took one more step forwards? How do you feel if someone is standing too close/too far?
  • Would you say "stop" in the same place if the person walking towards you was your mother/father, sister/brother, friend, teacher, a stranger,...? Who can get close to you?
  • Is it easier/more difficult to set boundaries with friends or strangers?
  • ...

Extra game information

This activity is a part of the StreetSmart sexuality package. The package aims to give youth workers the tools they need to address the topic of sexuality in a playful way with the children and young people they work with, so they can learn to make conscious, healthy and respectful decisions.

 

Sexuality is a very broad term, encompassing various subtopics. Here, you can find a list of all activities included in our sexuality package to address these different topics:

  1. Sexuality in general: The Sex Alphabet, The Sexuality Goose Game, Yes or No Circle, Sexuality Statement Game
  2. Body (development): Anatomy fundamentals, Who has what?, Physical changes in puberty, Emotional changes in puberty, Life Cycle
  3. Boundaries: Stop!, People to People, Kiss the Teddy Bear, Body Carrousel, (Not) Okay?, Body Twister 
  4. Relationships: Choose Your Relationship, My Ideal Partner, In The Worst Way Possible
  5. Gender & sexual orientation: Labels, Sex Change, Who does what?
  6. Safe sex: The Synonym Game, Condom Smugglers, Goodie Bag, STD-Roulette, Can I get pregnant?
  7. Sex & media: Who is responsible?

Variations

  • From behind: In this game version, groups 1 and 2 do not face each other. Instead, group 1 forms a line behind group 2, looking at the backs of the players. Again, the players of group 1 walk towards the players of group 2 who need to say "stop" to set their boundaries. Reflect on the difference with the previous game, e.g.: Did you say stop sooner? Why (not)? Do you feel more/less/equally as comfortable? Why? ...
  • Roles: Before the game, always announce who the walking players are: e.g. a friend, your mother, a stranger,... The players standing still stop their partner where they would stop their friend, mother, a stranger,...
  • Getting attuned to other's boundaries: In this game version, the players standing still don't say stop. The players who walk towards them decide when they will stop walking themselves: when they feel they are close enough, still respecting the other's boundaries. When they have stopped, they ask their partner whether this is a good distance for them. The other player can then decide whether he/she can come closer or whether he/she needs to take one or more steps backwards. Reverse the roles and repeat the exercise.
  • Circles: The game leader draws different circles (e.g. 4) on the ground, inside of each other, starting with a big circle and finishing with a small one. Player 1 stands in the smallest circle, the circle in the middle. Player 2 walks towards player 1, always pausing in each circle.  When player 1 feels uncomfortable, he/she shouts: "Stop’". Reverse the roles. Afterwards, reflect on the game. You can, e.g., ask which person (mother/father, sister/brother, friend, teacher, stranger,...) they would stop in which circle and talk about how boundaries differ in different relationships.

Specific learning objectives

  • Learn to be attuned to your boundaries and the boundaries of others.
  • Get to know and learn to respect your boundaries and the boundaries of others.
  • Learn that everybody's boundaries are different.

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