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Here are 6 high energy ice breaker training exercises that will work well for intercultural facilitators wishing to get a group to interact together, explore their communication styles and to promote the process of self-refection.
They are mostly light on equipment and quick to set up (the last one requires a little more effort the first time you prepare it.)
Please feel free to try them out and tell us how you get on…
- Helium Stick – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXI-C4jQXVk
Thanks to The Works Manager for making and showing the film.
Equipment – A tent pole or flip chart sheet rolled up diagonally for maximum length.
- The Ball Game https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rva3wRvpS_4
Thanks to Rhema Resource Centre for filming and showing the film.
Equipment – Juggling balls, Stopwatch.
- Potato Icebreaker – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrWVqLzNywA
Thanks to Anna Sabramowicz for the demonstration and talking us through the debrief.
Equipment – Potatoes and strong drinking straws.
Originator; Ken Bellemare http://www.kenbellemare.com/
- Blindfold Team Pen https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eajjqotwsF4
Equipment – Blindfolds, Marker Pen, Duct Tape
Sample instruction – Draw “Unity + a Smiley”
- The Coin Game – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PaUzvtleCSU
Thanks to Rob Jackson at Magnovo for the talk through.
Equipment – Handful of coins handed out – one to each participant.
- Human Bingo / Diversity Bingo / Get to know you Bingo
Thanks to Paul Holdsworth – English for Asia for making and showing the film.
Equipment – 1 A4 sheet per participant with 4 X 4 box table containing questions.
Debrief – Here the facilitator can illicit observations, thoughts and feelings from the participants.
Fun – Who enjoyed the exercise? What was enjoyable? What appealed to you most? Were there any surprises? Who did NOT enjoy it? What were the negative aspects of this game for you?
Process – What was this exercise about? What do you think the inventor was trying to achieve? How did you do it? What was the biggest obstacle? How did you overcome the biggest obstacle? What helped you to succeed? What released the energy for you.
Motivation – What did you feel at the beginning? What was the low point of the exercise for you? Do you feel you have achieved something? Would you like to do this again? Do you know anyone who would like to do this exercise? And Why?
Reflection – People approach this task in different ways – Why do you think you did it the way that you did it? Did other participants do it a different way? Why did they do it that way? What part did diversity / culture play in your different approaches?
We wish you well in trying out these icebreakers. Good luck and do feel free to share your results and stories.