I have a feeling that I’ve mentioned this before, but I absolutely LOVE playing icebreaker games. Maybe it’s because I love meeting new people, maybe it’s because I was an RA for so long (I feel like that answers a lot of things) or maybe I’m just weird.
I’ll admit that there are a lot of cheesy icebreaker games out there – like having to take as many pieces of toilet paper that you would need on a camping trip and needing to tell one interesting fact about you for every sheet you take, or putting animal names on everybody’s back and having everybody guess which animal they are – but I promise you there are some good ones out there. Here are what I would consider the top 5…
#5 The Candy Game
I learned this game from my boss Emily. Here’s how you play. The instructions got lost in an e-mail somewhere, but I do remember the basic gist. You get a bowl of candy of various types – some suggestions include Hershey Kisses, Kit Kat Bars, Smarties, Butterfingers and Milky Way Bars. Everybody chooses a piece of candy. After they choose you tell them the candy they chose corresponds with a question. For example, if you chose hershey’s kisses you would have to tell about your first kiss, kit kat bars – your first pet, smarties – your biggest accomplishment, butterfingers – most embarassing moment, milk way bars – your biggest dream. Now, I know it’s kind of corny, but you get a candy bar AND you only have to answer one question. Because it’s only one question, it’s not as much pressure on the person answering the question and there’s a better chance other people will remember that fact about the person.
#4 Ask a Question
This game is based on the “go around the room, say your name and tell us an interesting fact about yourself”. This is also direct and to the point, which is awesome – but I think that “tell us an interesting fact” is very vague. Some people don’t say anything useful and other people reuse the same one over and over again. When you’re choosing your question, base it on something that you want other people to know about you or something that you actually know about them – otherwise it’s not worth it. My personal favorite is what would you want to be when you grow up if money didn’t matter. I love to tell people that I want to own a greeting card shop and I find it interesting to find out who wants to be a professional dancer or a Broadway singer or a housewife.
#3 Two Truths and a Lie
An oldie but a goodie. I’m not sure if I like it more because I think it’s interesting to guess what other people are lying about or because I get to try to come up with a lie. The only problem with this one is that it takes a long time to get around a circle of people, recommended for 10 or less.
#2 Never Have I Ever
Never Have I Ever is a great drinking game, yes. Probably my favorite drinking game of all time. However, it can definitely be used for many other things. I used to hang “Never Have I Evers” on the wall when I was an RA and I would have people go around and sign the sheets of the things that they had done. It was a great way to get people out of their rooms and learning more exciting things about each other. At my 21st Birthday Party (which there will DEFINITELY be a post about) we played the game with 100 people (yes, 100 people). I pre-wrote out Never Have I Evers and made a circle of construction paper. I got on a microphone and read the Never Have I Evers as people moved around the circle. Everybody got to meet people as they moved around the circle. Granted, people pretty much stayed next to the people they started to, but everybody still seemed excited to see what happened next.
#1 Go Move Your Car
This was inspired by literally the phrase “go move your car”. My driveway in Connecticut is really long, with not a lot of places to park at the top. Every time I have a party we always get too many cars at the top and we end up blocking people in. What I finally ended up doing was sending four different people down with their cars and sending them back up in one car. These four people never seemed to be four that knew each other though, so it was a great excuse for everybody to have to talk, at least for a little while. And it’s always easier to talk to people that you don’t know when there’s a reason for talking. This doesn’t only work with cars – it works with asking groups of people to make salads, set the table, open the bags of chips and put them on the table, finish making the cookies or slicing the bread as well!