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Showing posts from July, 2011

Men's Connection with Activities

Yes, males are the minority in my retirement community and they probably are in yours too. Let's face it, as Activity Directors, they are a segment of the population that is easy to ignore when planning your monthly calendar each month. I find that the men who are part of a couple, usually are active with their spouse but I don't see them really get involved independently. And then the men who are single, be them widowers, forever bachelors, straight or guy, seldom want to participate in an activity that is marketed to men only.

I feel like there are men in my community that I really never have gotten to know very well because they are not involved in activities. This article says that men are happy when they go to programs that are cultural in nature, if they feel there is a health benefit for themselves and when they can volunteer to help others.  I don't know about you, but I do not see the men in our community signing up to go to the museum, or other programs that I t…

Game Night

Every so often I put on my calendar a program that I simply call Game Night. I advertise it as a night that the residents can come to the auditorium and play whatever game they want to. It is a place where they can find people who might be interested in learning their favorite game, so that in the future they can get together and play.

I ask the residents to sign up for the evening and list what game(s) they are interested in playing. This helps me because I know how many tables to set up and also which games I need to bring to the event. I invite the residents to bring their game and supplies also. I also made name tags for everyone on my list, and had blanks for those "last minute Marys" that like to show up.

I had about 30 people sign up and about 30 people attend..... but not the same people that signed up showed up.... but that is typical in my community. I provide a 6ft table full of games - some that the community owns and some that I personally own.  The games include…

In-House TV Channel

At my retirement community we went from having a daily flip-chart pad in the lobby to an in-house TV channel about 14 years ago. We have updated twice and we are getting ready to update it again in the next month.
Currently we use a system called DSI. It works very well for our community and I would encourage you to look into it as an option if you are looking for a system.  Click on the link to go to Display System Internationals website.
On the current channel, we run pages that show the daily activities, the menu in our casual dining area for breakfast, lunch and dinner, special activities, reoccurring activities such as monthly lectures or services, etc. We also live broadcast of our Town Hall and Ask the Director meetings when they take place.

I have two wonderful volunteers who work on this project with me. One lady only wants to add the calendar to the system. That means that she types a page per square of the calendar onto the system. Most of the time, as you can imagine, tha…

Dog Days of Summer

One of our most popular events is our annual dog show! I schedule it in August because it is the "Dog Days of Summer." I tried to find pictures of the event to show you, but I can't find them. I promise to take them and post them after this year's program. (Funny how having this blog makes me more responsible for my pictures these days.) I did however, find the newspaper article that was written about it. Feel free to check out this link for the Sun Sentinel article.

This activity is simple and brings so much fun to everyone! First, I promote the day and time of the show and ask anyone interested in participating to sign up. Once they've signed up, I send them a bio sheet for their dog. It asks the pet's name, age, breed, length of time owned, how long they've been residents at the community, their favorite trick, a cute story about them, and anything else that I can think of.  The more you know, the better it is while you are on stage with them!

After I…

Laughing Yoga

Next month we will be introducing a new class called Laughing Yoga to the community. We found a nice woman who is offering a free introductory class to us. She came and discussed it with our Fitness Director and me, and it sounds very interesting. I thought that I'd share it with you now and share a few links to sites on the Internet that tell you about it. I also included one that is an article about seniors using laughing yoga. I'd love to hear from you if you have had such a class in your community and if the residents like it or not. I will post more after we've had the class.