Team Building Activities?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by sweetlatina23, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Jul 19, 2011

    I'm trying to help the administration team come up with some team building activities we can use for our inservices. Are there any fun ones that you have enjoyed?

    I think we have all done, at least locally, getting in order by our birthday month, without talking. Anything a bit more engaging?
     
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  3. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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  4. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Jul 20, 2011

    Thanks. I should've checked online first, lol. I just found a bunch.
     
  5. Ron6103

    Ron6103 Habitué

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    Do people like those? Or are they to kill time during the in-service? Because personally, I hate team-building activities with a burning passion. If I know a session will contain one, I excuse myself for that moment. Ugh....
     
  6. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Its funny you mention it, I personally hate them. Although, we are such a small school I don't think it would be a problem, even for those that are introverted as myself. The two that I think we are doing are in smaller group settings and they only take a few minutes. I have worked at my school for 5 years now and I just see so many differences amonsgt the faculty and staff. I am hoping this will help reunite everyone, especially since we have three new faculty members.
     
  7. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Make it something quick and engaging...just to get everyone focused. I actually like our "team building" stuff that we do at inservices, but it only lasts a couple minutes. When something is going on for 20 minutes...people start thinking about everything they have to do and how they're going to be there so long "wasting time." We have different people that lead pd's and one of our big "rules" is to respect everyone's time (so no going over, no staying until the last minute if you really have nothing to say but just don't want to end early, no spending half the time on a teambuilding game, etc.)
     
  8. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    We did a team building 1/2 day PD last fall. It was run by the local university, my ds went there with his ROTC unit also. Even though I hate things like that it was fun. We had to walk across a narrow board (8" maybe), of course everyone had to be on the board with 1/2 going one way & the rest going the other. Then there was one were 4 of us had to "rescue" everyone else, but the 2 groups couldn't see each other & had different information.
     
  9. sjnkate

    sjnkate Rookie

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    I enjoy the more active team building activities, like the hula hoop lift.
    Split everyone into 2 or more groups. You want each group to have a hula hoop and everyone to be able to easily fit around the outside of the hoop. Everyone puts out their index fingers at shoulder level and the hula hoop is laid on them. The rules:
    You must keep your index fingers on the hoop at all time (if anyone's fingers come off you must start over at shoulder level).
    No hooking your fingers around the hoop, they must stay straight.
    If the hoop drops you start over.
    The first team to get the hoop to the ground wins.
    Usually it's best to have a spotter for each group to keep them honest. It's an interesting game because sometimes the hoop goes up due to people trying to keep their fingers on it, and you'll have different teams develop different strategies like chanting "down" in rhythm, and some groups spend most of their time trying to boss each other around. At the end it's good to tie it into teamwork, and talk about what strategies worked, and how it felt when you weren't listened to, etc.
     
  10. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Jul 20, 2011

    I help run training for staff at a summer camp where we do tons of team-building activities. The key is to start out with less invasive things and move into more personal things. I also like ones that also teach something about how we communicate. (Drawing on each other's backs and seeing how the picture changes, etc.)
     
  11. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    We've used exercises from the book Activities That Teach (both editions). They are useful and they actually tie in a communication lesson with them, so it's easier for people to see why you are doing it. They activities can be used with people of any age with just minor adjustments. :)
     
  12. Rox

    Rox Cohort

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    Teambuilding activities can be a real drag, but if they are led by someone who has actually had training in implementing them well, they can be both enjoyable and beneficial. I can't stand people who say "I saw this done one time, so let's do that", not knowing that there is so much more that the leader needs to be aware of while leading the activity.

    For me, safety is a top priority. Many activities are presented, and participants are left to be responsible for their own safety. When a leader has experience and training, many accidents and injuries can be prevented. sjnkate mentioned having spotters during an activity. When I lead an activity, my eyes are constantly on the group, watching for any possible falls or safety hazards. I've had to catch people more times than I can count, and no doubt this influences people's trust in each other.

    It's also important to keep the goals in mind. Are you presenting teambuilding activities to help people become familiar with each other? Then choose activities that fit that goal. If you'd like participants to develop trust in each other, then choose activities that build upon each other's trust, etc.

    sjnkate also mentioned having a discussion afterward about the activity. It wasn't until I went through training that I realized how important this was! Some people can benefit from the activity itself, while others need to discuss it to understand how the activity benefits them.

    MissCelia mentioned building up to more difficult activities, and I agree. This helps people develop the trust gradually. I'm sure you've experienced how frustrating it is to do an extremely difficult activity with a group you just met.

    This is something that is very dear to me. I did my Masters thesis on teambuilding in the classroom, and I am often asked to lead teambuilding events with different groups. I love when I have my students do a teambuilding event and the staff get so involved!!!
     
  13. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Devotee

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  14. GoldenPoppy

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    I hate team-building activities with a passion too. Teach me the content of the class. It sounds ugly, but if I wanted to do "fun" activities with a group of people I would arrange a get together outside of school. Otherwise, I'm not interested. I've left presentations that devoted the first part of the class to these things.
     
  15. MATgrad

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    Teambuilding? YUCK!! I have yet to attend one that was actually beneficial. They usually just end up everyone being in their usual group and that's pretty much it. Maybe if it was well-organized I might feel differently. My advice? Make sure that you have pre-determined your groups. Its no fun to be the odd-man out when you're supposed to be team building.
     
  16. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Jul 21, 2011

    This won't be helpful, but....

    I'm heading over to a teaching friend's house tomorrow with the rest of my team and hers and we're going to hang out by the pool and drink frozen drinks. She's calling it a "team building" activity.
     
  17. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Jul 21, 2011

    Have fun!
     
  18. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Jul 21, 2011

    That is my kind of team building. Organized happy hour after school. If schools want people to really work as a team, then they need to encourage happy hour off campus more. This gets people to relax and really get to know one another better.
     
  19. MzMooreTeaches

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    Jul 21, 2011

    Some good ideas up here!

    Recently during a training a large group of us went to karaoke after training! Good times, but of course I digress and it doesn't really help you any.
     
  20. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    I spoke to my principal, and she agreed we needed to at least do two activities. We choose two that will keep them seated and they can still have fun. I found some follow up questions to discuss communication, leadership, and our unique roles at the school.

    If at least one person leaves there happier, then it worked. I know I don't like them, but its only for a short period of time.
     
  21. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Jul 21, 2011

    I'm sure it will go smoothly, Sweetlatina!
     

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