Icebreakers

Discussion in 'General Education' started by teacherator, Aug 3, 2014.

  1. teacherator

    teacherator Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2014

    Hi all,

    I was looking to find some icebreakers for my class. This Saturday will be our first weekly class, and I wanted to make sure to start it as well as I can.

    All of the students know each other, so I wanted some ideas to let me get to know them and vice versa. I suppose it would be nice to have them share information with each other that they might not already know.

    Any help offered would be greatly appreciated!

    Regards.
     
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  3. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Aug 3, 2014

    What's the age of your group, what's the class, and what is your time frame?
     
  4. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Aug 3, 2014

    My students always know each other, so I never do any icebreakers. Well, 80 % of them know each other very well (hang out all the time, grew up together) and the other 20 % knows sort of knows them (went to same school, but didn't hang out, have mutual friends, etc).
    Yes, I do need to know them, but the way a teacher gets to know the students is not the same as student-student. So in my opinion, an ice breaker among students who know each other wouldn't be a good idea, because I would still find out about them.
    I might be boring, or old fashioned, but I would just hand them a questionnaire that would ask about somewhat content oriented questions and other personal things.
    For example for math I would ask if they like math, what success did they have, for English ask about books they've read, if they like short stories or novels, what genre, etc, and then some personal things about their hobbies, or even if they have any questions or concerns about the class, the school. etc.
     
  5. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    A writing prompt regarding a quote (motivational) and presentation usually allows me to see where their heads are at during the first week. I want to get a feel for the type of person they are...compassion, empathy, kindness, etc... Great discussions always arise from this activity.
     
  6. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    I teach high school science. I use the "what is it" picture puzzles from Games magazine. They are extreme macro photos of things like strawberries, tennis balls, insects, etc. The kids love them, so it's a great combination team builder, observation exercise, and ice breaker.
     
  7. teacherator

    teacherator Rookie

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    Thanks all!

    Sorry, I should have clarified.

    Religious education. 8th grade. 2.5 hours. Once a week. This will only be for 4 weeks, as I head out of the country to study next month.

    I think I like Windy City's idea. Any others would, of course, be warmly received. ;)
     
  8. chitown

    chitown Companion

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    This may be a silly suggestion since I am going to be starting my first real year of teaching and haven't had the opportunity to try these ideas out for myself, but I like the idea of writing questions on a beachball and tossing it around the class. The person who catches the ball answers a question from under either one of their thumbs. Then they toss it to the next person. Of course, your kids would have to be old enough to read and you'd have to really lay down your expectations so things don't get out of hand, but I thought it sounded like a fun idea. Even if the students know each other, they may not know what their classmates would buy if they won a million dollars, or who they admire the most. You can have the students toss the ball back to you after they answer so you can answer questions also and make sure each person gets a turn. I understand that this won't work for every class or grade level for a variety of reasons, but I thought it was a fun idea and that I'd share. I hope you find something awesome, and I'll be reading up for other ideas!
     
  9. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Aug 4, 2014

    Love this!

    I'm the teacher who wants to run, screaming, from the room when I'm at a workshop or meeting and we need to do an ice-breaker, so I don't use them with my students. I do, however, love any activities where I can have students working together and solving problems.
     
  10. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Oh, me too. I have precious little patience for that sort of thing. I'm defining icebreaker as "ease into class" with something educationally relevant, fun, and hopefully not stressful for anybody.
     
  11. teacherator

    teacherator Rookie

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    RJC, I went to the site and link as you mentioned. It took me to a page that was selling a book on icebreakers.

    I agree with the angst that comes with being made to do icebreaker activities as a participant. I suppose I could simply create something that would allow me to memorize names and get their interests without the tedium of creating or having them fill out questionnaires...
     
  12. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Spent some time (okay, hours) on Pinterest today. Came across this. It will definitely find its way into my first couple of days.
     

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