21 or Collaborative Counting

21 or Collaborative Counting:


21 is a good way to reset students into a state of concentration and listening. Gather the students and have them sit in a circle. Depending on the group you can then turn off the lights or have them sit with the backs to each other. The main concept of the game is simple count to 21 as a group. The rules of the game are where things get complicated. One by one the students need to say a number in order and get all the way to 21. If two people speak at the same time the group must start back at 1. Since the students are sitting so they can’t see each other or in the dark they must rely on their intuition and listening with things other than their ears. As students settle in to listening and concentration they will get higher each time. The more the group gets to know each other the better their intuition will become.


This is a good tool to use to transition from a high energy activity to a low energy activity. This game requires listening skills, patience and a little bit of intuition. The more the group gets to know each other the better their intuition will become. This is a good way to bring students out of a high energy activity and bring them down to a lower level. It can also serve as a good team building tool. The stronger the relationship of the group counting the higher the likelihood that they will do well. The more they play 21 the more they are going to learn to trust their intuition and to work together.


  • You can add to the challenge by not giving a limit to the counting
  • You can keep track or time or highest number and continually challenge them to increase their number or decrease their time



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