The Octaband® motivates participants to work together to solve problems.
Set an intention to work together cooperatively, provide the group with an Octaband® and a problem to be solved. and let them play.
As the problems facing us in today’s world become more dire and people become increasingly divided, the beauty of the Octaband® as a tool for greater unity becomes clearer. If we can’t learn to live together, our planet may not survive. . . or it may survive, but without humans, and numerous other species.
Maybe I am being melodramatic, but it seems clear to me that setting an intention to work together is of supreme importance. Our reluctance to accept differences blocks our flow of energy and the ability to manifest our greatest gifts, our human resources. Because of its separate legs, the Octaband® invites people of all ages and abilities to express themselves as individuals and work together as a group. When everyone has the opportunity to contribute to the larger whole, there is a much greater likelihood of buy-in.
In this photo essay, we see groups of individuals using the Octaband® to resolve problems, where every person is engaged in solving those problems.
Give them a problem and watch them solve it.
My favorite activity is asking each person to show us, one at a time, how they want to use the Octaband® and everyone follows that person. This has worked with children with autism, older adults with dementia, and in team building with adults.
Below preschoolers are concentrating on their task with Music Together teacher, Julia Priest.
How does everyone tug on the Octaband® and yet ensure that they don’t tear it? Below, expressive therapist Adam Riccio is teaching the children to be responsible for their own actions.
In this high school classroom, students are working together, thanks to dance/movement therapist Emma Barton.
Rachel Federman-Morales choreographed a dance with this group of children with Cerebral Palsy from HMS and a junior pre-professional company. Above they are focusing on getting the loops over each child’s wrist.
Grace Ho and fellow Laban students are practice their Laban scales with the Octaband® below.
Many people’s favorite activity, regardless of age, is bouncing an object on top of the Octaband®. Senior dance/movement therapist Mimi Berger tells me that she loves the Octaband®. She uses both the large and small sizes for her Movement Disorders class (Parkinsons, MS, etc). “One activity they love… we put a small bean bag ball in the center and bounce (to music) and count how many times we can do it… have gotten up to 400!” While we don’t have a photo of that, we do have one of a Diversionary Therapy group led by Takako Serizawa using the Octaband® with people with dementia in Japan. Takako told me that they usually don’t all engage, but they did with the Octaband.
In a training in Japan, participants are using the Octaband® to help them explore and see their different movement levels (low, medium, high), making sure all levels are represented.
People of all ages and families in family therapy like to get all knotted up and get themselves untangled.
Or you can ask a cat to find the center, as I did Mo’.
What is the point of humans having developed reason if we don’t use it at critical moments such as this?