Contributed by:

Musostudy

Intended Learning Outcome:

To help groups bond by learning about each other

Tool:

Helping groups to bond through ice-breakers is an important part of setting up the group. The more opportunities they have to get to know each other the more likely they are to form relationships and for the group to bond.

Activity:

Create 2 groups and form 2 circles, one inside the other, so one person in the outer circle is facing one person in the inner circle. They now work in pairs to quickly tell each other their answer to a given question. Once they have answered a question and talked for 30 seconds each, the inner circle steps clockwise to go to the next person and you start with another question. Questions could include:

1. What sport do you play?

2. What was the last book you read? What did you think? (A good one for journalists)

3. What was the last gig you went to? What did you think?

4. What was the last film you saw? What did you think?

5. What is the best song of all time?

6. Describe a perfect meal.

7. How would you spend a million pounds?

8. Describe something you’re good at.

How:

Ask students to generate the list of questions – what things would they like to know about each other? Or make the questions related to your module. E.g. If I could run a festival it would be…

You will need a large space to do this. You could also do it by hot-desking or moving chairs around. If you can’t clear a space.

Examples:

Large Group Teaching:

This will work well with all group sizes. For larger groups, you may need to run 2 groups at once.

Online Teaching:

One way to facilitate this online may be to have everyone share their answer (one sentence only) in the whole group, then put people randomly into Zoom breakout rooms to discuss. You may need to scaffold their discussions to keep conversation flowing, by adding supplementary questions (such as Five Whys TLA or READ Backwards TLA). This may be especially useful If the original question links to the module and it will help with critical thinking skills.

Success:

Students learn something about their classmates and start to feel more bonded.

Next Steps:

Links to other activities:

Further reading:

Acknowledgements:

This is based on an activity by Jennifer Gonzalez ( see https://www.cultofpedagogy.com/classroom-icebreakers/)

Resources:

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