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Clare 16th Apr 2019 Retired
I want to do a reminiscence session on jobs, that group members did and about how jobs have changed The group is large and consists of carers and their relatives with Dementia and varied in understanding, so activities have to be varied!. I will bring items such as a tool box, and various hats and hopefully we will end up with appropriate songs. The laughing policeman goes down well. I am looking for other resources and game ideas to fill a 2 hour session. Any ideas?
Susan 17th Apr 2019 Activity Director
This is very ambitious of you
I do not know how well those with dementia will be able to stay focused for that long of a period of time
I would think about splitting the group up and talking to the Carers and how their job has changed as I assume it's their loved ones have a declined
You could give out handouts about dementia such is this
https://www.goldencarers.com/what-is-dementia-alzheimers-disease-vs-dementia/4054/
Have a discussion for about an hour with just the caregivers
Then you can invite the residents into the group

Here are some ways to conduct a reminiscing group
https://www.goldencarers.com/how-to-conduct-a-reminiscing-session/4452/

You can demonstrate how to best engage those up with dementia
Using hatsis a great idea because this can evoke many memories
This article may help
https://www.goldencarers.com/hats-headgear-game/4928/
Here is an article about hat trivia
https://www.goldencarers.com/hats-quiz/4927/
You could also do a simple craft making an easy hat or something else fairly easy where the carer and the persons with dementia work together
I hope this helps
Kelly 17th Apr 2019 Activities Co-ordinator
Why dont you instead of it all being reminisence ,get the residents using there imagination aswell. Make some cards with different professions on them put them in seperate envelopes and get 1 resident at a time to open 1 then have a group disscussion on what they would wear for that job, what they would do, times they worked. like an imaginative work placement.
I plan a few different activities to do in the session that would take about 20mins each, if we do them all great but sometimes we spend longer on those that they are enjoying more.
I havent tried it with jobs as such but I do something similar called ARM CHAIR Holiday.

Where its imagination but reminisence can play a part if the residents choose.
We pretended to fly out to france and looked at loads of pictures/photos of landmarks and spoke about what we would do there. we listened to traditional french music and made a collage of the flag and places we had spoke about. The kitchen did a french inspired menu for the day and we had flags up and music on. At the end of the session we wrote a post card back to everyone with the group telling me what to write, they all picked different things up from what we did and part off the post card said that we had danced the can can in the moulin rouge. The visitors and families thought it was great. Our next trip is to india in a few weeks hopefully we will be featuring in our own Bollywood film, riding elephants and shopping for spices.
Susan 18th Apr 2019 Activity Director
Great ideas Kelly clearly you put a lot of thought into this
I am hoping Clare Will use some of these ideas because they seem great
Solange 18th Apr 2019 Diversional Therapist
Hi Kelly, thank you for your excellent ideas! That's what we all need, innovative ideas to make our jobs even more satisfying.
Kelly 19th Apr 2019 Activities Co-ordinator
thanks you I have been told some of my ideas seem abit crazy at times, by my manager and relatives but I seem to pull it of most of the time.
I always have a little note book with me because I seem to get ideas and inspiration in the strangest places but I can jot them down and explore them later.
The home I am at is middle to end stage dementia so focus and concentration is not really the residents strengths. Years ago I attended a work shop that said try to get reminiscence into every activity, But I find that sometimes it can upset the residents trying to remember or remembering what live used to be like so like I said I try to focus more on imagination and if the residents would like to tell a story of their life that is linked to the theme/ activity then so be it, they are much more relaxed that way and dont feel like they are put on the spot/pressured to remember something.
An ex manager of mine always said "to get into their bubble with them instead of trying to pop it."

I do a few theme sessions through the month like the arm chair holiday, we do a thirsty Thursday club where we try different types of drinks (fruit teas, cordials, pop, milkshake etc)
this is to try and increase hydration
Fruity Friday club different types of fruit seasonal and tropical some of the tropical fruits available now my residents have never seen or heard of.
I do word search, tasting session with rating and discussion, drawing or colouring session, poem on our favorite exploring the 5 senses one sentence for each. singalong with actions
on each of these club groups.

I also do a chit chat club at the beginning of each month, for which I put together a mini news paper about 4/5 pages explaining if there is any significant days that month, celeb birthdays, resident and staff birthdays, a small quiz, song lyrics with words missing a small reminiscence coloum with a picture of an old brand or film poster. I also include the homes news on the back page with whats going to be happening a message from the manager and any information that relatives and visitors should know. We use them in our session and I leave them around the home. Relatives and visitors use them when visiting to spark conversations with the residents. The today in history on this site are great for looking for things to put in my paper.
Susan 20th Apr 2019 Activity Director
Wow Kellly
I can tell you do a great job the residents are lucky to have you
Carrying a notebook around is a great idea because I agree with you you can get inspiration in the strangest places I also have a notebook by my bed because it seems I have dreams about activities
One thing is that it is OK for residents to feel sad as you know feelings are the last thing to go
Having them feel happy is better
Another thing is instead of saying do you remember say tell me about about
Anyway great work keep it up
Clare 8th May 2019 Retired
Thankyou so much for these ideas! I do admire those of you who are working to put together activities every day. I only lead a Dementia group for about 26 Carers and their relatives once a fortnight for 2 hours, but I am always panicking at the last minute trying to get things together. Sometimes my ideas are way too ambitious! I find that I want to enjoy them as well and then the enthusiasm seems to be infectious and we do have slot of fun together, which is my aim. It is going well I think and everyone says they enjoy it. I do separate the Carers at times and arrange a talk or just a coffee break for the Carers, but many of them say they enjoy staying in the group. I find role play, singing and exercises go down particularly well and suits such a broad range of understanding.
Susan 8th May 2019 Activity Director
I am glad so many people were able to help you thank you for your input

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