Examples of team building. Here are some great ideas for your team building
Cat's Cradle,Examples of team building
String, yarn, thin rope, or a shoe lace Set Up
Cut string into pieces that are ~ 6' long and tie a knot so they form a loop. Draw a cat's cradle on a piece of paper. Directions
Please help improve these directions. This is the rough idea. Have partners sit back to back. Give one person the handout with images of cat's cradle (attached) and the other person the string. The partner with the handout should do their best to explain step-by-step how to make the string into the image, but can't turn around and look at the other persons hands to actually see what they are doing. Debrief
What was difficult about this task? What worked well? How is this like other times you are giving or receiving directions? How is this different? Alternatives
If they are really struggling, you can give them hints (see full instructions here: http://www.ifyoulovetoread.com/book/chten_cats1105.htm) If it is too easy, you can blindfold the partner with the string, or tell them to try again, this time without using the words, "string" "finger" or "hand."
Another option would be to have groups of three people. With the same piece of string, one person uses their right hand, another person uses their left hand, and they can't talk, but have to take directions from the third person about what to do.
Another option is to do this on a large scale with a big piece of rope and each participant acts as finger on one of the hands (this would require at least 10 people).
Back-2-Back Drawing, Examples of team building
Clipboards w/Blank Paper Pencils Drawing Templates Set Up
Have group divide into pairs (or groups of three with one person as an observer) and sit on the floor back to back. Give one person the clipboard and a pencil. Give the other part of the pair the template of the shape to be drawn. Directions
The individual with the template has to get their partner to draw an exact duplicate of the shape drawn on their sheet using only verbal directions. After they are done, the partners should compare the provided shape with what was drawn.
Have the group perform the activity twice with two different templates. The first time through the exercise the "drawing" person is not allowed to speak to the "direction giver." The second time they are allowed to ask only yes/no questions. A third time, the drawer can ask any question they like. Another variation would be to allow the pairs to sit face-to-face, however, the "direction giver" is not allowed to speak. They must get the person to draw the shape using only visual cues. Of course you would have to make sure that the direction giver doesn't just hand over the template. In a large group setting, one person could be the direction giver for the rest of the group. No one else is allowed to speak and everyone must try to draw the shape the direction giver is describing. Afterwards, have everyone compare their drawings. Print out a "7 errors" game. Give one illustration to one player and the second to the other player. The goal for the team is to compare drawings and find the 7 errors while sitting back to back. Debrief
What was it like to give directions? before they could ask questions, then after. What was it like to receive directions? Was it difficult not being allowed to ask questions? Once you could ask questions, did that make the job easier? Why? Why are all the pictures different???? Everyone heard the same message. Do you think people communicate differently? Do you think people receive or perceive the same instructions the same? What should/would you do to clarify? What's stopping you from simply asking? Do you know your teammates enough in order to communicate effectively to get the same results? If person x said to the group "ABC" would it be perceived the same if person y said the exact same thing?
Human Spring, Examples of team building
In pairs, ask participants to stand facing one another with arms positioned elbows in, palms facing partner (like patty cake). Participants should start standing approximately 1 foot apart. With hands out, partners lean forward so that hands meet flat against one another with no interlocking fingers (keeping elbows in) and push against one another creating a springboard. Partners then take small steps back, repeating the activity at increasingly further distances apart. The objective is for partners to complete the activity, standing as far apart as possible while maintaining safety and a sense of trust.
Facilitator Notes about Trust Activities
Safety Check: All Trust Activities require the facilitator to pay extra close attention to physical and emotional safety. Introduce safety before starting any activities in this series. Challenge by Choice is especially important for Trust Activities: Each participant has the right to decide his or her own level of participation. It is recommendd that you re-introduce Challenge by Choice before starting any Trust Activities. Variations
Can you help make this activity better? Do you know an alternate way to lead this activity? Click "edit" above and help improve this site for everyone!
Mouse traps, Examples of team building
Wooden spring-loaded, snap-type mouse traps - I use 'Victory' brand. Try to have one for each pair of participants in your group. Set Up
It is probably best if you load the traps yourself, rather than having your participants load the traps. Directions
Participants will pair up, and select one person to be the coach, and the other person to wear a blindfold (or have their eyes closed). The sighted partner will tell their blindfolded partner how to slowly lower their hand down to one inch above the loaded mouse trap. The 'coach' will make sure that their blindfolded partners hand is fully extended, and is positioned directly over the mousetrap, hovering an inch above it. When the coach decides the hand is in position, they will count down "three...two...one..." and the blindfolded partner will slam their hand down onto the trap. The trap will not snap, because the fully extended hand is keeping it open. Then, (after breathing a sigh of relief) the blindfolded partner will quickly pull their hand away, and the trap will snap harmlessly, with the hand far away from danger. This is a trust-building activity that can be very rewarding for participants, and can open up a great dialogue between participants. Naturally there is an element of risk, and the activity should be practiced on yourself, before you practice it on others... Before you do any trust activity, you must decide whether or not the group is ready, and whether or not this is an appropriate activity for the group, the individual, and the sequence of your teambuilding activities. Debrief
What was hard about this activity? What would have made it easier for you to trust your partner? Alternatives
Facilitator Notes about Trust Activities
Safety Check: All Trust Activities require the facilitator to pay extra close attention to physical and emotional safety. Introduce safety before starting any activities in this series. Challenge by Choice is especially important for Trust Activities: Each participant has the right to decide his or her own level of participation. It is recommended that you re-introduce Challenge by Choice before starting any Trust Activities.