You’ve got ice breaker questions. We’ve got ice shattering answers!
The first question will likely be – What is an ice breaker?
The term “Ice breaker” comes from a special-purpose ship or boat designed to move and navigate through ice-covered waters. This makes sense when you think of it as an analogy in the context of a workplace meeting with new members being the ice-covered waters and the ice breaker activity being the special purpose ship!
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Below is some more information about how ice breakers work in the real world including one of my all time favorite icebreaker games!
The M&M’s Game
First up in our meeting ice breakers is the M&M’s game. This is an easy way for people to introduce themselves and share some fun facts. Here’s how it works:
1. Pour a bag of M&M’s into a bowl – plain or peanut, your choice!
2. Pass the bowl around and have each person select 3-5 pieces.
3. After the group has their M&M’s, have them go around the room and answer a question based on the color of the candies they selected. For instance, the question for a red M&M might be “What is your favorite movie?” A blue candy could be “What is your favorite hobby?” Go around the room, with each person answering a single question, and continue until each person has gone through all their colors.
Be creative with your questions and tailor them to the people in your group. And for bonus points, you can eat the M&M’s when your finished!
Finish the Story
Finish the Story is a fun and creative way to get your group talking. Here’s how it works:
1. The facilitator starts the exercise by beginning a story. For example, you might say, “This morning when I woke up, I looked outside, and I couldn’t believe my eyes!”
2. Next go around the room and have each person add on to the story. For example, the next person might say, “My lawn was covered in frogs, and they were all pink!”
As the game progresses, watch how crazy your story turns out!
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Meeting ice breakers
Icebreakers for meetings can help make everything run smooth. There are many times that co-workers in companies have never met or might only know each other in passing. Meeting leaders need a way to bring the group together and help them interact with each other. Meeting ice breakers are like pre dinner cocktails when friends get together for dinner. They help relax people and make them feel comfortable enough to talk with each other. It is also a perfect time to set some of the groundwork for the meeting.
One of the great aspects about icebreakers for meetings is that participants do not even have to know that they are engaged in a meeting ice breaker. A well-designed meeting that is run by a talented facilitator can be a seamless event. It is easy to build meeting ice breakers that continue forward progress among the participants. The question always has to be; What will the participants have learned when they have finished the icebreaker?
There are times that a team has to learn how to collaborate on a project that will challenge preconceived ideas. In this situation all members of the team have to learn how to challenge each other without being confrontational. Team members who would normally be non challenging or just allow other people to have their way would have to learn how to assert their own ideas. These are excellent chances to build meeting ice breakers that address different issues that have to be addressed for a team to function properly.
Trainers want their meetings to be powerful and the attendees to walk away with information that they can put to use. LiveStrong make some great Icebreakers for meetings can help them achieve that goal. The icebreakers allow workers to experience knowledge and ideas in a way that they might not have previously thought of. NWLINK also give you great information. A well thought out meeting might even present a way for people to network with each other while solving a problem on a grand scale. The tone of a meeting can be more easily controlled by how the trainers structure the flow of the icebreakers.
Icebreakers that require a lot of physical movement could be scheduled for the beginning of the meeting. A little physical activity can help the blood flow and get the brain revved up for what is to come. If they get involved in the beginning, they might not drop out in the middle or toward the end. People are less likely to turn away from an established community. If conversations are going well and everybody knows each others name, the group becomes much tighter and makes the trainer’s job much easier.
Motivational Games: Fun, Easy, And Engaging
For a company or an organization, employees are of vital importance not only because they contribute in the labor force but also because they are the source of creative and intellectual ideas that somehow propel the company or the organization to success. With possibility of burn-out and stress related hindrances, it is vital that the people considered as the backbone of the organization are kept motivated to reach the goals set. In a school setting, same holds true- with the stress teachers are subjected to, they may lose the drive to pursue higher goals. That is why it is very important to refresh and reenergize them through seminars, outings, incentives, and the like. Managers and facilitators should also find a way to ignite that drive within them again. One good way is by conducting motivational games during seminars or outings. The motivational games should be different from their daily routines and should be an activity they could have fun doing with each other.
Obstacle exercises are good motivational games that fuse fun with a leadership and motivational approach. The facilitator should have an obstacle readied and all materials set. The group should be divided into 2 smaller groups. All participants but one will be blindfolded and the one with no blindfold will be the leader that will guide them. Each participant will cross the obstacle as guided by the leader. All blindfolded participants should be able to cross the obstacle course and the team that completes the race with the lesser time wins. This activity fosters unity among each member and causes them to work towards a common goal, which is to win. Cash or gifts could be given as incentives for the winning team. Another motivational game could be the Spot the Lie exercise. Each person will be asked to write 4 truths and 1 lie about them. Have each of them read their list aloud. Then, the rest will write down the thing they think is a lie. This exercise strengthens trust between co-workers and lets them discover something interesting about their peers. By building trust, the participants also become confident with each other, making goal achieving easier and doable.
There are so many ways to bring out a positive attitude among participants. Having these entertaining, interesting, physically and mentally engaging exercises could be the beginning. When conducting motivational activities, remember to take into consideration the kind of group you are handling- their background, their jobs, their age, and similar factors. These factors will help you come up with more effective games appropriate for them, thus, lessening the chances of nonparticipation and boredom. Also, do not hesitate to creatively gear your motivational games towards things that are relevant to your profession or area of expertise. Lastly, make sure that your games and exercises are doable, fun, interesting, and safe. After all, the goal is to ignite the drive and revive the motivation in each one of them so that they have a better attitude towards achieving a company’s or an organization’s goal.
Ice breakers for teens: How to break the boredom
Generally, they say a normal adult’s attention span lasts around 20 minutes. But according to child development researchers, a child’s attention span is equivalent to his or her age. That means when under monotonous activities like seminars, long classes, or group activities, teenagers eventually lose interest and get bored within 15-20 minutes. Let us say, the topic is interesting enough, the teens might focus longer and be attentive for 20 minutes longer. Sometimes this is not enough, and to get them to refocus, a good facilitator or teacher takes notice of this statistic and adds more interesting things to break the ice. This is where ice breakers for teenagers come in handy.
In a seminar for instance, one could make use of this fun and interesting ice breaker for teenagers- the autograph collector exercise. This ice breaker will need prior material preparation. The facilitator should make lists of interesting things like “has long black hair”, “likes ice cream”, “hates milk”, “writes poetry”, and such. Blanks should be placed right next to the interesting thing. Each participant will be given a copy of the list. Then everyone will be asked to walk around the room and ask for the autograph of the person they think fits the description. The first person who gathers all autographs wins. This activity allows the teens to mingle and have fun in the process of getting to know each other.
You could also try an exercise that involves food- after all, teens do like nibbling candies. This is appropriate for a smaller group. You will need packs of colored candies and a bunch of bored teens for this ice breaker. The facilitator will have to make interesting questions that correspond to each color. The questions could be relevant to the topic of the class or seminar or it could be any interesting random question. Begin the ice breaker by giving each a small packet of colored candies. Ask them to nibble on the colored treats except for one color. So a participant may choose to eat the reds, yellows, and greens, but leaves out the browns. The facilitator then asks the teen the question that corresponds to the color he or she has left out. This activity will help energize the participants and initiate creativity and thought flow.
Another fun and encouraging exercise is the jellybean bag activity. This is appropriate for smaller groups of 10-15 participants. Have them sit in a circle. Each will be given 10 jellybeans. A teen goes in the middle and tells a thing that they have never tried or done before. Anyone from the circle who has never done it too will give one jellybean to the person in the center. The teen with most jellybeans wins. If one says I have never gone out of the country and many around him or her hasn’t too, it makes him feel normal and gives him a sense of belongingness. If a few can relate to him, it gives an interesting point of discussion. The moderator should be sensitive enough to turn this exercise into a meaningful and interesting one.
These are just but a few of the ice breakers for teens. Remember to make it as interesting as possible. Involve everyone in the process and keep in short and fun.
Tips On Doing Team Building Exercises Right
Team building exercises have been playing a vital part in forming cohesiveness and cooperation between members that imbibe different principles, come from varied walks of life, and have diverse personalities. To make a united team that works toward one common goal requires hard work and a meticulous eye for details that matter. Wikipedia has some great ideas for team building. A well-organized and coordinated team does not come to life over night. There will be conflicting personalities and battling of countless ideas. It will take a constant building-up and not just one or two-shot team building exercises. It takes more than just the fun and games in order to have a good team. Below is a list of some things to keep in mind when doing team building exercises.
1. Impart values that are essential to the team. Team building starts from having a set of values that each member live by- values that each of them believe in and not merely imposed by someone else. Whenever team building exercises are undertaken, these values will be honed and strengthened.
2. Choose exercises that are relevant and meaningful. Sometimes, the downfall of a team building exercise is the irrelevance of the activity because people tend to improvise. Make sure that your exercises have valuable learning at the end of it. Do not compromise learning for fun. Otherwise, ice breakers may just serve the purpose if you just want to be entertained or to be saved from boredom.
3. Plan. Plan ahead and plan carefully. Prepare everything you need and avoid last minute decisions. Part of planning is also making sure that you do not force the activity if everybody is not quite ready. For instance, just because you do your team building activities in May doesn’t mean you have to stick to it. If a company is on a tight deadline, you could give leeway and wait until at least everybody is good to participate.
4. Prioritize activities that have a positive and constructive outcome. Do away with activities that promote too much competition between groups. This might have a rebound effect on the team and make prior competition issues between members even worse. If you choose a competition-based activity, be sure to have a sensitive facilitator who knows how and when to push the right buttons.
5. Add the element of fun. A good team building exercise does not only have valuable learning as an end product but should also have a sense of enjoyment after it is done. A good facilitator knows how to creatively incorporate fun without making it all about entertainment.
These are just a few tips to remember when doing or planning team building activities. The success of every activity does not only lie in the facilitator’s hands but also on the willingness of the members to cooperate. Make sure that everybody is relaxed, settled, willing before starting any team building exercise. Otherwise, all efforts will go down the drain and everybody will fail in realizing the objectives of doing a team building activity. Realize too that a team building exercise is more than just a game, it could be a catalyst for positive change in your team when done the right way.