Being part of a team is a basic human need. We would all like to be part of a great family, circle of friends, or workgroup. Only it’s not always that easy to break the ice for the first time. Neither is solving the conflicts which often emerge. Even if you are not a leader, it is always good to have some ideas handy. So here are some tips for employees, teachers, parents, and really anyone to try.
First of all, it is important to lay down some rules so nobody’s feelings get hurt. These, of course, should always fit the situation, but there are the basic ones like: Do not laugh at others’ opinions; Do not criticize others; Always show acceptance and friendliness; Never force anybody to do anything they don’t feel comfortable doing.
Put each person’s cell phone together on a plate. Have someone pass out the phones so that no one winds up with their own. Now it is the participants’ turn to find out who has their phone and to tell three random facts about themselves to get it back. This game is a great way to start a meeting.
Draw the Owner
People say dogs are like their owners. Or is it the other way around? To play this game you are only going to need a few pictures of different types of dogs, paper, and enough pens for everyone. Separate into small groups (2-3 people) and divide the pictures so that each group has one. Now every group should draw the person they imagine would own the dog in their picture. To consider aspects like hair, shape of face, ears, and accessories is recommended. Once the drawings are finished, every group can introduce their owner, including name, age, job, hobbies, etc.
Worst Cook Ever
Separate into small groups. You write down random cooking ingredients on small pieces of paper and divide them randomly to the small groups. Of course, it is very unlikely that any group will get the ingredients necessary for real food they would really eat. That’s where they need to get creative. The group should try and invent something they could cook and give an interesting name to their foodlike “Chocolate-glazed lamb in a soda bisque”. The funnier the better. This game is definitely going to make everyone laugh as they explain how to prepare the imaginary food meal.
Place different types of clothes and jewelry cut out from magazines on a desk. Once you are ready, separate into small groups and give each group a list of human characteristics. Now the groups have to style an imaginary person whose description matches the one they received and glue everything they choose to a transparency or sheet of paper. At the end it is good to provide time for some brief presentations.
First, find a funny text or write one by yourself (which I encourage you to do, as it can be fun). Then choose 6-7 volunteers. Link a move that makes noise (like scuffling, clapping hands, or whistling) and a word which appears in the text often to each person. What they have to do is stand around and make that noise every time they hear their own word while you read the text out loud. Every time one of them forgets to react to their word, the ones not playing should stick a note to their back with one nice word written on it. This game can be very fun and lively; it takes some practice, though, so a few sentences to practice at the beginning are recommended.
+ One Christian game
Write down the names of biblical figures on small pieces of paper and give one to each person in the group. Now they should introduce themselves one by one(“Hello, I’m David. To me, friendship is very important. I love writing music and playing the harp. I encourage you not to be afraid and to trust God.”) The next player is the one whose story can be directly linked to the previous player (an example, in this case, would be Jonathan Once the first player has finished introducing themselves, the next player should take his or her hand and go on by introducing themselves. At the end there will be small groups of people holding each other’s hands. You should encourage them to build one big circle and pray together for the group.
Games like these can also help strengthen a team whose members have already developed friendships and bonds. You may feel that, depending on your particular group or situation, small changes may be needed. In this case, don’t be afraid to get creative and to develop them to suit your needs. Most importantly, though: have fun!
Zsofia Schindler is a freelance writer. To contact her email her at [email protected] or visit her blog at bakingfootprints.blogspot.com.