Slice of Life: A Game of Hide the Water Bottle

(This is for the Slice of Life challenge, hosted by Two Writing Teachers. We write on Tuesdays about the small moments in the larger perspective … or is that the larger perspective in the smaller moments? You write, too.)

Sometimes, I just watch to see what my students will do in the time between learning. It’s always fascinating. In other years, this is how I first learned about Minecraft, and heard about Visco Girls, and watched students show me the Mannequin Challenge, and was taught in detail about dance moves on Tik Tok, and more.

This year, I’ve been observing a gaggle of my most energetic boys play a game in which they hide each other’s water bottles in the classroom. They play it voluntarily and I have not noticed them bothering anyone else’s water bottles. Here’s how they do it: one boy turns his back or goes into the hallway, and the others scheme inventive places to hide it. The owner returns and tries to find it, and the others give hints, if needed.

At this point, they are running out of new places to hide things in the classroom, but I’ve observed them put it behind books in the bookcase, inside a tube of rolled paper that I have, behind our class mailboxes, below the old mounted television set, buried in a box of colored pencils, stuffed under tables and desks, and more. They get very excited when they find a new hiding spot.

They tell me they have been playing versions of this game for years, which I find rather amusing, and as long as it doesn’t get out of hand and as long they are not bothering anyone else, I am content to keep them engaged in their playful game, and see where the water bottles will go next.

Peace (and play),

  1. Your post reminds me of how important it is to just watch! It also gives me hope, reading about how creative and playful kids naturally are. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Yes, like Sally said, watching kids and their attitude about what they are doing is very important, and I’m sure you keep a handle on them not bothering others. Here’s to them creating more innovative ideas for their game!

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