Ice Breakers Archives - Group games, team games, ice breakers
Human Knot Icebreaker

Human Knot Icebreaker

Summary: A good icebreaker or teambuilding activity for new people to learn to work together – in close physical proximity! The goal is to figure out how to untangle the human knot without letting go of hands. Ages: 12 and up. Recommended number of people: 7-200 (group sizes of 10 are ideal). Messiness factor: Might break a sweat – (close proximity – hope you’re not claustrophobic!). Materials required: None. Recommended setting: Both indoors or outdoors. Human Knot Game Goals of the Human Knot Game: Team building and communication Problem solving Ice-breaker or get to know others better Setup for the Human Knot Game: This game is versatile in that multiple group sizes can play. Form groups of about 10 people each. Have each group standing, facing towards each other, in a circle. Each person should be standing shoulder to shoulder. First, instruct everyone to lift their left hand and reach across to take the hand of someone standing across the circle. Next, have everyone lift their right and reach across to take the hand of another person standing across the circle. Make sure that no one is holding hands with someone standing directly beside the person. How to Play the Human Knot Game To play, the groups must communicate and figure out how to untangle the knot (forming a circle of people) without ever letting go of any hands. If you wish, this icebreaker can be played competitively, in which the facilitator says “Ready.. Set.. Go!” and has all the groups race to become the first group to finish. If any group member lets go of a hand (breaks...

Sorts and Mingle Game

Summary: An icebreaker that gets the group to move towards various parts of the room and to find others with shared interests and preferences, based on various interesting categories. Ages: 10 and up. Recommended number of people: 25 and up. Messiness factor: No sweat. Materials required: None. Recommended setting: Indoors. Sorts and Mingle Instructions: The first part of the game is the “Sorts” game. You will throw out two contrasting choices and the group has to move either East or West of the room (e.g. “Do you prefer Target or Walmart?”). Then you throw out two more choices and have them move South and North. That way, they are all having to move somewhere and can’t get “lost” in the crowd. Sorts that work well include: movie/book; salty/sweet; dress up/casual; inside/outside; be on the stage performing/in the audience watching, etc. The second part, the Mingle game, is also interesting and effective as an icebreaker; You throw out a general category and the group has to mingle around to find others that have the same answer and they clump up. After about thirty seconds to one minute, you then have each group call out their answer. It’s okay if someone doesn’t have anyone else who has the same answer. Just try to avoid two groups with the same answer (means they didn’t mingle very well!) Some examples of mingles: your favorite dessert; the type of toothpaste you use; if you could attend one huge event (e.g. the Superbowl, Oscars, World Series, Nascar Opening Day, etc.) what would you choose; your least favorite chore growing up as a kid; if you could be the very...
Celebrity ID Game

Celebrity ID Game

Summary: An icebreaker where each person has a label with a famous celebrity or character name on their back. Everyone mingles, asking “yes” or “no” questions to gain clues about the name posted on their backs. Ages: All. Recommended # of People: 20 and over. Messiness Factor: No sweat. Materials Required: Several labels with famous names on them. Recommended Setting: Indoors. Celebrity ID Game Instructions: The Celebrity ID Game is a good way to get a large group to mingle and break the ice by interacting with lots of people rapidly. To set up, the moderator prepares several labels with famous celebrity or well-known names (e.g. Tom Hanks, Mickey Mouse, Barry Bonds, etc.) The moderator sticks a label on each person’s back. You can also stick labels or cards on a person’s forehead if you like. Then, the moderator announces it is time for the game to begin. At this point everybody mingles and introduces themselves to each other, and then each person asks yes or no questions to gain clues about the name. When a person correctly identifies the name, he or she removes the label and continues to mingle until a preset amount of...
Shoe ID Game

Shoe ID Game

Summary: An icebreaker where all players throw a shoe into a big pile. Grab a random shoe and find out three new facts about the person. Ages: All. Recommended # of People: 10 and over. Messiness Factor: Smelly. Materials Required: None. Recommended Setting: Indoors. Shoe ID Game The Shoe ID Game is a fun albeit smelly icebreaker game. Instructions Everybody takes off a shoe and throws them in a large pile on the floor. On the count of three, each person grabs a shoe from the pile, then find the person with the matching shoe in their other foot and find out their name and three things about them they didn’t already know. Works best with larger groups. After everyone has found their person and asked them the questions, then go around the circle and have everyone introduce the person they talked to and tell the three things about them. This game is a good large group game, though it can be somewhat...

First Impressions Game

Summary: An icebreaker (or party game) in which people write their first impressions of each other on a large paper taped to their backs. Ages: 13 and up. Recommended number of people: At least 10. Works with very large groups and meetings. Mesiness factor: No mess, no stress! Materials required: A large piece of paper or posterboard for each participant, pens/markers, sturdy tape. Recommended Setting: Indoors or outdoors. First Impressions Game This is a fun game that involves writing your first impression of someone you meet. If some people already know each other, that’s fine too — people can simply write some nice, encouraging words or adjectives to describe each other. This works well as an icebreaker for meetings, when there are new people present, or when people don’t know each other well. It can be entertaining as a party game, too. To set up First Impressions, pass out the large sheets of paper and writing utensils. Have each person write their name on the top of a sheet of paper. Tape each person’s sheet to their back so that they can’t see it. Instruct everyone to mingle with each other and to converse. Tell everyone to say hello and to introduce each other for a few moments. After a minute or so, ask each person to write an adjective (their “first impression” of the person they just spoke with) on each other’s papers. Then have each person continue mingling with new people, repeating the process. After 10-20 minutes (depending on how large your group is and how long you want this activity to run), each person should have...

Big Wind Blows Game

Summary: Big Wind Blows is a good icebreaker that helps people get to know each other better. Players sit in a circle, with one person in the center as “the big wind.” This person says identifies a characteristic that is true about themselves and then all players who share the same characteristic must find a new seat. Ages: All. Recommended # of people: At least 6 players. Messiness factor: Slight running. Materials required: Chairs for each player, minus one. Recommended setting: Indoors or Outdoors. The Big Wind Blows Game Big Wind Blows is an icebreaker game that combines aspects of musical chairs with a get-to-know-you task. It can be humorous and entertaining, especially when you discover interesting facts that you might not expect about people. How to Play Big Wind Blows To set up the game, arrange several chairs facing inward into a medium sized circle. There should be one chair for each player, minus one. One person starts as the “Big Wind” in the center of the circle, with everyone else seated. The Big Wind raises both arms and spins around, while saying the following: “The Big Wind blows _____”. The blank must be filled with a true statement about himself or herself, such as “The Big Wind blows everyone who has been to Canada” or any other true fact. At this point, any of the players who share this characteristic (including the person who is currently the Big Wind) must stand up and quickly find a new seat. For each statement, no player is allowed to sit in the same seat or a seat directly adjacent to...