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A Guide to More Fun

Junkyard Sports by Bernie DeKoven
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Sample chapters (pdf):

Chapter One - Introduction

Chapter Six - Junkyard Basketball




Teachers and recreation leaders who are looking to get away from the ?same-old same-old? in their approach to games and sport will find Junkyard Sports a valuable tool. Part of that value comes from the more than 75 sport-specific demonstration games that Junkyard Sports provides. A demonstration game is a starting point for teachers and students?it provides not only a complete game description but also ideas for spawning new games from the original. These demonstration games pave the way for an exciting, nontraditional approach to a sport, and they also engender creativity, ingenuity, community, leadership skills, and other social skills as teachers and students consider further innovations to the sports.

The beauty of junkyard sports is that they work in any environment, with any group. They are fresh because they are ever-changing as their rules, equipment, and environments are adapted. They are also budget-friendly because they call for found or nontraditional equipment?brooms, rolled-up socks, beach balls, whatever is around and not nailed down. They are also easy to implement?a brand new activity can be under way in five minutes or less.

Comments about the book

In Junkyard Sports, Bernie DeKoven has brought us a wonderful gift that has been cleverly disguised. When you first look through the pages, you'll think it's a collection of zany things you can do with junk that you find. And, of course, it is that. However, if you're really ready to think about the nature of play and fun, it's very much more. It's like singing along with a song that you realize you've never heard before. Once you begin singing along with Junkyard Sports, it will begin to seem like your own. What was it that you really liked about scout camp or wrestling with your dog or junior high basketball or playing in the waves? What didn't you like? In Junkyard Sports, Bernie gives us permission to simply HAVE FUN, no more, no less. In doing so, he provides some profound observations about sports, games and life. Listen for the tune and like me, you'll soon be humming along, delighted with where the song is taking you.

Dan (Stork) Roddick, executive director, World Flying Disc Federation


Everytime I tell someone about Bernie DeKoven's brilliant new concept of Junkyard Sports, the other person's eyes light up, and he invariably says, "What a great idea!" And then he looks at me as if I've just given him a gift. And Benie DeKoven's book is just that--- a gift of creativity and team building and joyful celebration. This is a revolutionary new book, and a must-read for anyone interested in a profound new way to look at the ideas of "play" and "community" and "fun." One word of caution: don't expect to read this book all the way through at one sitting--- you'll be too excited to sit still. At some point I guarantee you'll have to put the book down and run right outside and round up some new friends... and start teaching them to play Junkyard Sports!

Matt Weinstein, Emperor, Playfair Inc., author, Managing To Have Fun


Junkyard Sports! What a seemingly innocent sounding subject. But the truth is that you hold in your hands a very subversive manifesto.

Nowadays most forms of play are owned by powerful franchises. The idea that people can not only play on their own but can in fact make up their own sports is radical in the extreme. Even more disruptive is the notion that folks can change the rules of the game so that everybody has fun. I remember watching a game of jump rope with six fourth grade girls, two of whom where recent immigrants to San Francisco from Taiwan. The poor newcomers just couldn’t understand when the other girls changed the rules. Indeed their game was totally about changing the rules. This taking charge of the game was most unsettling to children who had been educated that they had to “play by the rules.” We tend to think that we live in a “free” society but in fact most of the fun things in life have become businesses. What we are loosing when we allow all the fun to be owned by others is the ability to be spontaneous, to be able to think on our feet and engage life in the moment. This book is a roadmap for anyone who would like to reintroduce spontaneous games into their lives, their classrooms, their business environment, and in so doing reawaken the spark of life that comes when people are having fun.

Jay Beckwith, president, BOLDR


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