Icebreaker activities are used to welcome and warm up the conversation among students in a new class, meeting or new situation. Any event that requires students to comfortably interact with each other and a teacher is an opportunity to use an icebreaker to help students feel more comfortable. An effective icebreaker will warm up the conversation in your class or meeting, reinforce the topic of the session, and ensure that students enjoy their interaction and the session. When participants don’t know each other, the icebreaker will help them introduce themselves to the other students.

Kids Running

The Bends

Equipment: None

Description: In a pair you must stand facing your partner, holding their hand and standing on one leg. On the count of three, one partner will attempt to try and pull and push their partner off balance. When a student in the pair places their other foot down they lose. Try and pair students up who are of similar strength. Also keep an eye on students who may become overly aggressive. This is a great game with the right group.

Spectrum

Equipment: None

Description: This activity is completed without any verbal communication. The group leader will set the group a number of challenges to complete. For example, line up from lightest hair colour to darkest, lightest eye colour to darkest, surnames starting from A to Z, birthdays from January to December or tallest to smallest. You can use any of these or make up some of your own. The challenging task is for the group to do this without talking. They can use sign language or fingers to try and count or show a letter or number, but they are not allowed to talk.

Bumpity, Bump, Bump

Equipment: None

Description: Arrange all players in a circle; this can be inside or outside. Give them time to ask the names of the players on either side of them if they don’t know them. Once the names are known, the person in the middle goes up to a player and says “(name)___, bumpity bump bump bump.” That person then has to say the names of the people sitting/standing beside him/her before the middle person finishes saying “bumpity bump bump bump.” If the person completes this before the middle person says “bumpity bump bump bump”, then they stay where they are, but if they are too slow then they become the person in the middle. After a couple of minutes, get the group to change position in the circle so they have two new people either side of them.

Food for Thought

Equipment: None

Description: The class starts by standing or sitting in a circle. This can be inside or outside. The class will go round in a circle and say their name and an adjective and a food they like all starting with the same letter as their first name. Each time a member of the group takes a turn they must repeat what the previous people in the circle have said. For example, my name is Jamie, I am Jolly and I like Juice. Then the next person will say theirs, and then have to repeat Jamie’s.

What Animal Would You Be?

Equipment: None

Description: The class starts by standing in a circle. This game can be played inside or outside. The group leader will start by saying what animal they would be and why. For example, “Hi, I am Dale and I would be a dog because they get to sleep all day and run around after cats.” Then members of the group get to ask the person questions about the animal. For example, what colour would your fur be? What breed would you be? Then once the person has answered two questions you move on to the next person.