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BRAIN TEASERS

Salt and Pepper


Pour some salt and pepper on the table. Line up the salt and pepper shaker. Ask
the campers to try to separate the salt and pepper. (The answer is to separate the
shakers heh heh heh)
Toothpick balancing trick
Have the campers try to balance a toothpick on another one at a 90 degree angle,
with the tips touching. They can use 2 forks and a salt or pepper shaker. (The
answer is to intertwine the forks, stick a tooth pick in them, stick the other one in
the salt or pepper shaker, and balance the one with the forks on the other one.)
I spy
I spy with my little eye something that begins with a <insert first letter of
something you see here>
The person doing the spying may only answer yes/no questions until everybody
figures out what was spied (similar to 20 questions).
Riddle: Burning rope
Q: You have 2 ropes of unknown density. Each will burn for an hour, but not
necessarily a certain amount of rope in a certain amount of time (for example, half
the rope in 30 minutes). You are given a book of matches. How can you measure
15 minutes?
A: Burn two ends of one rope (rope A) and one end of the other rope (rope B).
When the fire meets in the middle of rope A, then rope B has a half hour left on its
rope. Then burn B from both sides, and the time that it takes to meet in the middle
will be 15 minutes.
Think outside the box game
Quickly introduce the game as the think outside the box game. Then do a lot of
nonsense with some forks and knives and napkins and whatever else is in the area.
Inconspicuously place a certain number of fingers on the table 0-5. Then ask the
camper what number is represented. The answer is how many fingers on the table,
but the camper will be so entrenched by the fork, knife, and napkin nonsense.
Cross your arms and try to move a finger
First, stick your arms out straight. Face your right palm to the right and your left
palm to the left. Cross your arms over each other and intertwine your fingers.
Bring your folded hands down and around towards your chin. Now have someone
point to a finger to move. Be sure not to touch the finger, just point. The person
will be confused because the hands are all crossed, and wont be able to move the
right fingers. Do it faster if it doesnt work.

Zero, one, or two


This game only works at a table. The leader says that we will go around the table
and you have to say one of three things: zero, one, or two. They can only guess
once for their turn, and the leader will tell them yes or no, depending on whether or
not they got it right. The number represents the number or arms you have up with
the elbows rested on the table. For example, if a boy is resting his chin in his two
hands with his elbows on the table, that equals two. If he is holding his head up with
one hand and has his elbows on the table that equals one. If no arms are up then
that equals zero. Keep going around in a circle until the group can figure it out.
Guess which one
Take nine sugar packets and place them on the table in a 3 x 3 square pattern (this
works even better if you have cards and you reshuffle after each time). Tell one
person who is working with you to turn their back while someone who is watching
chooses one of the nine sugar packets. The person turns back around and you point
to different packets asking, Is this it? When you point to the correct one, the
person working with you gets it right every time. The trick is to point to the place
on the packet that represents the correct sugar packet once while you are asking,
Is this it? The placement of your finger represents which packet is the correct
packet. If you think of one sugar packet as a nine smaller squares that represent
the larger arrangement of the nine packets it all makes sense. The bottom right
corner represents the bottom right packet; the upper right corner represents the
upper right packet; the center of the packet represents the center packet, etc.
Pile of sticks
This game is most effective when you are squatting so that you can use your fingers
to support your weight. Place a few sticks on the ground and tell them that you are
going to arrange the sticks in a fashion that represents a number 0-10. Meticulously
place the sticks in a certain way and ask what number it represents. The answer is
always the number of fingers you are using to support your weight.
Stick dance
Tell everyone that you are going to do a stick dance and you want to see if anyone
else can do it. They have to get it just right in order for them to be able to do it.
You grab a stick off the floor (this is the distraction) then pull your ear and say
Listen. Pause for a second to act like youre thinking hard about how the dance
goes, then wave around the stick while singing I can do the stick dance, I can do
the stick dance, I can do the stick dance, can you? They can dance all they want in
any fashion, but they can only get it right if they pull their ear and say, Listen
before they do the dance.
This is one, this is two

Hold out your hand with two fingers and say, This is one, then three fingers and
say, This is two, then four fingers and say, This is three, then all five fingers and
say, This is four, and lastly make a fist and say, This is five. Then hold up any
number of fingers that you wish and ask what it is. The answer will be zero in this
case. The trick is that the number of fingers you hold up from the previous hand
always represents the number for the next hand.
Black magic
Two people work together on this. One leaves the room, while the group chooses an
object. The person that left returns and the leader asks, Is it the ___?
continuously, until the person who had left gets it right. The trick is to ask, Is it the
___ for something inarguably black before asking about the correct object.
Bang, bang, click
One person leads and points random people while saying Bang, bang, click
repeatedly until you wish to stop. When you finish, ask, Who died? The first
person to speak is the one who died.
Transmission
Ask someone who doesnt know the game to tell you the name of someone famous.
It must be someone that the sender and receiver both know and are knowledgeable
about. The sender then transmits a clue to the receiver regarding the person. For
example, if the person is Saddam Hussein, the sender could transmit Iraq or Iraq
leader. To transmit, use claps to represent vowels 1 clap is A, 2 is E, 3 is I, 4 is O, 5
is U. To send consonants, make a statement such as Carefully consider my words
in order to receive my transmission. The first letter of the statement is the
consonant to be used. Transmitting a clue is the secret to this game; otherwise, it is
too easy to figure out.
Worm, Toad, Dog, Goat
What is this?
Tell me this one?
Do you know which this is?
Guess this one.
Single knot trick
Give one person in the group an arms length of string and tell them they have to
hold on to the two ends of the string without ever letting go and tie a knot in the
string. The trick is to have your arms crossed when you begin, then all you have to
do is uncross them and you end up tying a knot in the string.
Can I come to the party?
Tell everyone that you are going to have a party and that you can only come if you
bring something. Not only that, but if you bring something that I dont want at my

party, you cant come at all. You can only come if you bring the correct thing. You
go first and say, Im going to bring drinks. If what you bring begins with the first
letter of your first name, then you can come. To be sneaky, you could use the last
name instead of the first name. People then ask Im bringing chips. Can I come?
You then tell them whether or not they can come, until all have figured it out. Note:
People can be kicked out of the party once they are in if they get lucky bringing
something and then bring something incorrect.

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