Meeting a group of children for the first time can be daunting for you and for them as well. Having a range of “Ice Breaker” activities allows everyone to relax, get to know each other and provides a fun, positive start to the day
- Name chains – similar to “I went to the shops and I bought a….” Everyone sits in a circle, the first child says their name and their favourite game/toy/colour/pop group/object starting with the first letter of their name etc (age dependant), and then the next child says their name and favourite, and then the previous child’s name and favourite. This continues around the circle with everyone naming their favourite. It’s great to learn names of the class and you’ll be amazed at how good the children’s memory will be!
- Name that Person – give each child a plain piece of paper, ask them to write two facts about themselves, but not their name. Collect the papers and re-distribute, allow the class 5 minutes to find the person who wrote the facts. Report to the class their findings (Alternatives can be to make this a “snowball” flight, ask the children to scrunch up their paper and launch it into the air, then they collect the closest snowball and find the person who wrote this, but be careful that this does not become too boisterous)
- Would you rather – again in a circle, model the question “Would you rather eat pizza for the rest of your life or chocolate?”, “Would you rather have a crocodile or zebra as a pet?” Ask them to ask the person next to them and move around the circle.
- I’m cool because…….Have all of the children seated in a circle and you as a teacher stand in the middle. To start off the activity, you will say “I’m cool because…” and then finish that sentence with something that’s true about you, for example, you’re wearing blue jeans, you speak 3 languages, etc… Then, every student who shares that fact in common with you must stand up and find a new seat. You also will need to find a seat meaning that one student will be stranded in the middle. This game is great for finding commonalities and getting in some good laughs!
- Teacher True/False Quiz – I have 10 statements about yourself, which deal with things you would like the students to know about you, and some random true facts that they always think are false. Once the students have silently taken the quiz, go through the statements together. Ask them to raise their hand if they think a statement is true, and if they think it is false. This part is fun as you get to see what impressions they already have of you. Then tell them the correct answer.
- Alphabetize Me – Sort themselves in alphabetical order by first name within four minutes. If you want to be really hard on them, have them use their last names only. After their initial shock, you will be surprised how quickly they will work together while getting to know one another.