Elephants In Denmark
Get the group's attention and emphasizes listening to directions. Also a fun riddle.
Tell the group you can read their minds. Then follow the steps to prove it.
- 1: ask each person to think of a number from 1 to 10.
- 2: take that number and multiply by 9
- 3: take the result and add the number together (i.e. 72 = 7+2, 9 = 0+9).
- 4: take that number and subtract 5
- 5: take that result and equate it to the corresponding letter of the alphabet (i.e., 4 = D).
- 6: think of a country beginning with that letter.
- 7: Ask them to think of an animal that begins with the second letter of the country name.
- 8: Ask the group: "How many people are thinking of elephants in Denmark?"
This exercise works because any number they think of for step 1, will result in the answer of 9 for step 3. From that point on, the country will begin with D (there are only 4 countries that start with D - Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic and Djibouti - and the majority of the group is likely to think of Denmark). There are many animals that start with E but Elephants are the most likely guess.
Know your audience. If your are leading this at a conference on Africa, or you suspect that your group is more likely to think of Djibouti than Denmark - then don't guess Denmark.