Activity Coordinators (ACs) are often scorned for the activities they plan with their care home residents.
When I speak to other members of staff, I'm told of the extreme behaviour one might expect of an Activity Coordinator, such as; "They [the AC] don't actually do anything with the residents, they just sit around and drink tea, and eat biscuits." to "They're always larking about, they think it's a big joke and they don't offer anything of value to the wellbeing of the residents"
This can often happen because those members of staff don't understand the value of what is actually going on." A cup of tea and a chat can have real value for someone who just likes to be quiet, but appreciates a bit of company. There's far more added value to this activity, but that's a whole other blog. Having fun, is also very important for our wellbeing, so "larking about" is encouraged too.
In The Activity Coordinators Toolbox online membership, we often suggest themes which can cause a raised eyebrow, and next Friday 17th July is one of those days.
World Emoji Day.
Have you got activities planned around this theme?
Or are you left thinking “Emojis are a new thing - older people don’t understand new technology.” Maybe you think it's all a waste of time and there's no value to including World Emoji Day in your activities. Perhaps you even looked at the activities planning board and grimaced when you saw this added to the calendar?
Some ACs have found themselves having to explain why they included it in their activities plans.
If you’re thinking something along those lines, here are a few reasons why you might want to join in afterall:
Emoji faces are simple and fairly easy to read. Just looking at the different emojis available is interesting.
They’re really useful for sharing feelings, creating a simple way for someone to show if they’re not happy - or if they’re having the time of their life. This is really helpful for people with dementia, who may struggle with communication, but also for those who find emotions difficult to talk about.
Emoji faces only have a few lines, making them easy to copy. A great way to get people who think of themselves as ‘not arty’ to get involved in a drawing session. They may enjoy it and get involved in more complex ones later on.
We’ve created some emoji day activity sheets - available as previews in our July activities.
There are lots of different emojis available to share on your devices, these make a great subject for discussion - what do you think they all mean?
What’s your favourite fruit? sport? musical instrument? Lots to talk about here.
World Flags can be found in your emojis too - do your residents recognise any of them? How many can they identify? You might discover something that your residents have a keen interest in.
Learning new things is good for us, whatever our age. When we learn something new, it stimulates neurons in the brain, forming more neural pathways and electrical impulses travel faster across them as you attempt to process the new information. The more we learn, the more pathways are formed, the faster impulses can travel. Sounds like the sort of thing we should be encouraging.
I’m sure there are lots more advantages to joining in on Friday. Ask your residents to see if they would like to take part in some activities themed around emojis. Let's keep the conversations flowing.
Download your free activity sheets here https://www.brightcopperkettlesacademy.co.uk/courses/July
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