In this video lesson I touched briefly on Mirror Neurons and how they are an incredible part our nervous system that allow us to socialize and connect with other people in ways that animals cannot. In this weeks activity you are going to be engaging your mirror neurons in an activity that is going to test how good you are at reading emotions!

Here are the rules: So here is how you do the activity: First find 1 to 4 people who are willing to do this activity with you. There are only 2 roles in this activity: The actor and the audience. You can imagine this activity like a game of charades. Now read the rules below:

  1. Actor: If you are the actor look at the emotion wheel below. The emotion wheel below is an info graph full of all the different emotions that a person can feel. It is organized into groups with primary and generalized emotions being in the middle, and more specific emotions being around the edges. Emotions of the same color hue are similar kinds of emotions, which is only helpful for giving you reference. After looking over the emotion wheel pick one emotion to act out to your audience.  You can talk, act and use your body language to help your audience guess but you cannot use the name of the emotion to act it out. Your audience can interact with you by asking you questions about what you are feeling. When the actor is asked a question the actor can talk, use their body language and do anything else to help their audience guess the feeling they are acting, they just can’t use the name of the emotion. The audience is encouraged to interact with the actor like a real person whose emotion they are trying to guess.
  2. Audience: The rest of the group not acting are the audience and they only gets two chances to guess the emotion being acted by the actor/actress. If the group doesn’t guess the emotion within those number of tries they must move on to a new feeling and a new actor and they must mark with an “X”  the feeling they guessed wrong. You cannot retry a feeling you got wrong. Asking questions about how the actor feels doesn’t count as a guess, only when the audience makes a formal guess about the feeling they are feeling does it count as a guess.
  3. Score: The group keeps score of how many emotions the group guessed correctly by putting a check mark next to those they guessed correctly and an X next to those they did not guess correctly.

Play this activity for 15-30 minutes and see how many you get right. After you are done the activity, answer the following questions and post your answers on the discussion board.

1. How many did you get right and how many did you get wrong?

2. Which was the hardest emotion to guess and to act?

3. Which emotional words did you not recognize and have to look up?

4. Pick one of the emotions you guessed correctly. How did you know your actor/actress was acting that emotion and not another?