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Control surface cargo

Get stuck in to this team game as you learn about aircraft control surfaces.
Plan a session with this activity

You will need

  • Blindfolds
  • Bean bag or similar
  1. The person leading the game should mark out an area to be the playing area. They should put an item of cargo somewhere in the area – near the middle’s usually best.
  1. Everyone should split into groups of three or four people.
  2. The person leading the activity should explain that aircraft can move freely in three directions:
    • Rotating around the axis that goes from the front to the back is a ‘roll’.
    • Moving around the axis that goes from one side to another is the ‘pitch’.
    • Moving around the vertical axis is the ‘yaw’.
  1. The person leading the activity should introduce the basic actions, and everyone should practise following them.
  1. Each group should choose one person to be the first aircraft. The aircraft should hold their arms out like aircraft wings.
  2. Everyone should help their aircraft put on a blindfold.
  3. The person leading the game should call ‘Go!’ The teams should begin to direct their aircraft to the cargo, using the words and actions they practised in step four. The people directing should stay outside of the playing area at all times.
  1. The first aircraft to reach the cargo should pick it up. They should take it back to their team, who should wait outside the playing area.
  2. Everyone should repeat steps five to eight to play again, until everyone’s had a turn at being the aircraft. The person leading the game could move the cargo a bit each time.
  3. The person leading the activity should explain that there are three primary control surfaces on an aircraft. The elevators on the wings control the roll.
  4. Everyone should practise the new advanced actions.
  1. Everyone should repeat steps five to nine until everyone’s played using the advanced actions.


This activity was all about being a team player. Did everyone work well together? Did people find it easier to be the aircraft or the people giving directions? How did people feel when they couldn’t see where they were going and they had to rely on their teammates? Did it feel easier to trust them the second time?

This activity also needed everyone to communicate. Was it tricky to get used to the new words and terms? Which words were easiest to use? Did people try different techniques in the teams? Perhaps some people tried getting one person to speak at a time, for example. What made instructions easier to follow? People might think about speaking slowly and clearly (instead of shouting) or using names to get people’s attention.


Active games

The game area should be free of hazards. Explain the rules of the game clearly and have a clear way to communicate that the game must stop when needed.

All activities must be safely managed. Do a risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Always get approval for the activity and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.