TIP: Click on the highlighted links below to get more information (instructions, recipes, or pictures) to assist with completing the activity.
"Six More Weeks of Winter" Week
(Week of January 29)
Crafts: Snow Pins
In anticipation of Punxsutawney Phil seeing its shadow on Groundhog Day – leading to six more weeks of winter – provide fun indoor activities to help residents escape the winter blues. As a craft, for example, assist residents with making snow pins using paint, paper, small wooden squares, hot glue, and pin backs.
Reminiscing: Knitting Circle
Reminisce with residents about their former knitting clubs as you demonstrate how to knit to the newbies in the group. Supply everyone with yarn and knitting needles and ask the more seasoned knitters for a few pointers to share with the group.
Physical: Keeping in Shape
Use this time to keep your residents physically fit by playing a game of circle volleyball, in which residents sit in a large circle and hit either a large balloon or a small beach ball back and forth. Encourage residents to try to keep the ball in the air without letting it hitting the floor.
One-on-One: Brain Games
Challenge your resident to a series of brain games to keep her on her toes this winter.
Lower-Functioning: Tracing Shadows
Since Punxsutawney Phil will probably see his shadow if it's sunny, provide residents with colored pencils to trace shadows. Set up a table near a sunny window and set up large objects on paper for residents to trace. If sunshine is not available, use a large light or flashlight for the activity.
Bedside: Book Club
Encourage your resident to do more reading this winter by hosting a small Book Club in her room that includes a few of her friends who enjoy listening to stories. Select a different short story each week to read to the residents. If, however, your resident prefers a traditional book club, contact your local library to check-out multiple copies of the same book for the members of the club to read before discussing it in your resident's room during a club meeting.
Outing: Trip to Bowling Alley
Take residents to your local bowling alley to enjoy a winter afternoon of pizza and bowling.
Sensory Stimulation: Winter Comfort Food
Assist residents with making a winter comfort dessert, like a ginger cinnamon apple crisp, on this wintry day. Use ginger, flour, cinnamon, walnuts, pecans, apples, and sugar for the recipe.
Men's: Winter Paper Houses
Recruit the men to help you decorate for six more weeks of winter by making tea light paper houses. Provide the men with craft knives to cut out the template, and tea lights to illuminate the finished houses. Consider attaching pieces of colored tissue paper to some of the windows for added color.
Special Event: Antarctic Adventure
In celebrating six more weeks of winter, take your residents on a fun Antarctic adventure as you host a special matinee featuring the popular 2004 documentary March of the Penguins. (Please note that Groundhog Day is Thursday, February 2.)
Back to Activity Calendar
Super Bowl LI Week
(Week of February 5)
Crafts: Who Ya Got?
Get residents ready for game day by planning fun Super Bowl events for your residents. For instance, supply residents with crepe paper and masking tape and assist them with making pom-poms that they can use to cheer on their team during the Super Bowl. Use crepe paper that matches the colors of the two football teams. Ask each resident to pick the team that they want to root for during the game so that they can make a matching pom-pom.
Reminiscing: Pee-Wee Football
Reminisce with residents about taking their kids to sporting practices and games. Ask residents whether they ever removed their child from a particular sport because their child was no good at it. Tally the residents to see whether it is better to have kids participate in sports that they love or to participate in sports that they are good at playing.
Physical: Sports Charades
Get residents up and moving to play a game of sports charades as you encourage them to gesture to get the other residents to guess the sports term or football term that they are acting out. (If you have a resident who enjoys a good joke, consider letting the other residents in on a fun football charades prank to play on him.)
One-on-One: Marking the Balloons
Recruit your resident to help you decorate balloons for the big game. Use white paint markers to write team names and football terms on each of the balloons. Hang the finished balloons throughout your Activity Room for the big game.
Lower-Functioning: Bag Decorators
Supply brown paper bags and white duct tape to residents to help you make football seams on each of the paper bags that can be used as snack bags during your football party.
Bedside: Super Bowl Commercial Bingo
Help your resident enjoy the big game by playing a round of Super Bowl commercial bingo with him. Use the bingo cards and mark them whenever you view a commercial that contains one of the items listed on the bingo cards.
Outing: Stadium Visit
In anticipation of game day, take residents on a scenic drive to a local football field to reminisce about attending sporting events.
Sensory Stimulation: Touchdown Brownies
Assist residents with making football brownies to serve during the game. Provide residents with icing and piping bags to create the mini footballs.
Men's: We're #1!
Invite the men to make their own foam fingers for the upcoming Super Bowl game. Use craft foam, hot glue, and the finger template for the project.
Special Event: Halftime Show
Just in case your residents are not wild about Lady Gaga performing during the Super Bowl Halftime Show, recruit a few staff members to host your own show during halftime featuring dancing music from a few of their favorite musicians. Set up a dance floor and encourage staff members to get residents up and dancing to music by Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, and Artie Shaw. (Please note that Super Bowl LI in Houston, Texas is on Sunday, February 5.)
Back to Activity Calendar
Be My Valentine Week
(Week of February 12)
Crafts: Valentine Pencils
Help residents enjoy the week by scheduling fun Valentine's Day themed activities. For instance, assist residents with an easy Valentine craft, like turning plain pencils into Valentine's pencils by using just paint and pipe cleaners.
Reminiscing: Remember These?
Reminisce about holiday chocolates as you pass around a box of chocolates for each resident to pick and sample one of the pieces of candy. Even though no one knows the content of the pieces of candy, ask each resident to try to pick the one that they think that they will enjoy the most. Next, ask residents to reveal the type of candy that they sampled and whether they enjoyed it.
Physical: Heart-Healthy Exercise
Get the blood pumping for your residents by leading them in heart-healthy exercises. (On the website, scroll down to view the exercises listed under "Strength Training" and "Stretches.")
One-on-One: Valentine's Cards
Encourage your resident to assist you with cutting out Valentine's Day cards that can be signed by staff and placed at all of your residents' place settings in the Dining Room on the morning of Valentine's Day. (Cut out the cards with your resident after printing out the cards onto cardstock.)
Lower-Functioning: Valentine Minute-to-Win-It
Invite residents to see how many conversation hearts they can stack in one minute. Afterwards, encourage residents to begin sorting their conversation hearts by color.
Bedside: Heart-Shaped Bookmarks
Surprise your book-reading resident with a few heart-shaped bookmarks for her to use on this Valentine's Day. Simply use pink or white paper clips for the project.
Outing: Trip to Hallmark
Use this holiday to plan a fun reminiscing activity at a local card store (or at your local Target) for residents to find and read funny greeting cards.
Sensory Stimulation: Heart Treats
Provide residents with ingredients to make heart dog treats to give out to visitors who are dog owners. Just use five ingredients for the dog treats: milk, eggs, peanut butter, flour, and baking soda. Place the finished treats into baggies to keep at the front desk for dog-owning visitors to take home with them.
Men's: The Unwrap Challenge
Invite the men to participate in a fun candy-unwrap challenge to see who can unwrap the most pieces of Valentine's candy – using mittens. Supply the men with mittens to play the game. If multiple pairs of mittens are hard to come by, simply have the men participate one at a time to see how many pieces of candy they can unwrap in one minute while using the mittens.
Special Event: Valentine's Day Match
For a fun large-group activity, adhere the name of a popular Old Hollywood movie couple to the back of each resident for them to find their match by asking "yes or no" questions of the others. Award a Valentine's Day prize to the first duo to find their match. Serve Valentine's Day ice cream (vanilla ice cream, berries, sprinkles, and heart candies) as a fun snack after the game. (Please note that Valentine's Day falls on a Tuesday this year.)
Back to Activity Calendar
(Week of February 19)
Crafts: Patriotic Flower Pots
Use this week to schedule fun activities for residents that honor our nation's presidents. As a craft, provide residents with star stickers and red, white, and blue paint to turn old flower pots into patriotic pots. After the holiday, save the finished flower pots for your upcoming Memorial Day, Flag Day, and Fourth of July festivities.
Reminiscing: American Symbols
Reminisce with residents about American symbols as you pass around photos of these symbols for residents to identify. Afterwards, share a little history about each of the symbols. (On the website, click on each of the photos to reveal the history of the symbol.)
Physical: Presidential Physical Fitness Awards
After your daily Exercise Class, pass out certificates to residents to acknowledge their physical fitness efforts and to encourage them to continue in your exercise program. (Print out the awards onto cardstock.)
One-on-One: Presidential Bust
Encourage your artistic resident to attempt to make a presidential bust that can be used as decoration for the holiday. For the project, use an empty canister, plaster gauze, aluminum foil, paint, and Mod Podge.
Lower-Functioning: Cleaning Coins
Provide residents with several supplies, like ketchup, old toothbrushes, and pencil erasers, to help you clean coins. Pass out gloves to residents to help you shine up the presidential faces on several silver dollars, quarters, and pennies.
Bedside: Presidential Lap Book
In honor of this holiday, assist your resident with making a presidential lap book that he can give as a gift to a grandchild. To make the lap book, cut out photos of the presidents and glue them to cardstock.
Outing: Trip to Local History Museum
Take residents on a trip to a local history museum to learn about the establishment of your city. Along the ride, divide residents into teams and award points to the team who correctly guesses the president that you are describing.
Sensory Stimulation: Pretzel Log Cabins
Supply residents with graham crackers, pretzel sticks, Chex cereal, cinnamon sticks, powdered sugar, and water to make pretzel log cabins. Use the finished log cabins as table centerpieces in your Activity Room.
Men's: Presidential Match Game
Divide the men into teams to see which team can successfully identify the presidents. Seat each team at a table and provide each team with pictures of the presidents. Say a president's name and award a point to the first team who correctly raises that president's picture. Award a special prize to the team who has the most points at the end of the game. (Beforehand, recruit volunteers to cut out the pictures of the presidents for the game.)
Special Event: Official State Dinner
Coordinate with Dining Services to provide a special dinner for residents featuring the cuisine of your state. Encourage residents to dress-up for the meal. (Please note that Presidents' Day is Monday, February 20.)
Back to Activity Calendar
Academy Awards Week
(Week of February 26)
Crafts: Golden Statuettes
Celebrate Old Hollywood as you recognize the 89th annual Academy Awards this week. For a craft, assist residents with using scissors to cut out Oscar statuettes that can be used as decoration. Use black or gold cardstock for the project.
Reminiscing: Old Hollywood Award Shows
Reminisce with residents about past Academy Award shows as you pass around photos of Old Hollywood celebrities attending the annual event. (To print out the pictures, first scroll down to the bottom of the page before printing to avoid banners on the photos.)
Physical: Red Carpet Ready
Assist residents with getting ready for the red carpet by teaching them resistance band exercises to help build their muscles.
One-on-One: Name That Old Hollywood Actor
See how well your resident knows her movie actors and actresses during an Old Hollywood guessing game. To play, simply name a popular Old Hollywood movie and have your resident name the movie's leading actors.
Lower-Functioning: Sparkly Bottles
Provide residents with bottles of gold glitter to help you decorate champagne bottles for your Oscar festivities. Spray adhesive onto the bottom of the bottles, and have residents sprinkle gold glitter to stick to the bottles.
Bedside: Red Carpet Bingo
Invite your resident to play red carpet bingo with you as the two of you watch a pre-Oscars red carpet show on television.
Outing: Trip to the Movies
Take residents to a local movie theater for a fun afternoon at the movies.
Sensory Stimulation: Champagne Tasting
Host a fun champagne tasting for residents. Beforehand, recruit volunteers to turn your plastic champagne glasses into bow tie champagne glass using black felt, adhesive gemstones, hot glue, and glue dots.
Men's: Popcorn Bar
Set up a popcorn bar in your Activity Room for the men to sample a variety of popcorn. Encourage the men to vote on the best tasting popcorn so that you can serve that popcorn during your facility's Oscar Watch party.
Special Event: And the Award Goes to...
Host your own annual awards show and pass out inexpensive trophies to your resident superlatives, like "Friendliest Resident," "Best Participating Resident," and "Funniest Resident." Consider making this an annual brunch in which you pass out the awards at the end of the meal. (Please note that the 89th annual Academy Awards Presentation is on Sunday, February 26.)
Back to Activity Calendar