"It's the little conversations that build the relationships and make an impact on each student." - Robert John Meehan
We can transform our physical and virtual classrooms into active learning communities, where students support each other. The best communities allow students to contribute, collaborate, create, and get to know each other. Students need to build relationships with their peers in order to prevent issues with bullying and ensure the support of one another in succeeding in learning goals. We can encourage this by implementing team building activities, icebreakers, getting-to-know you activities, and collaborative tasks. Below are slide presentations and posts with a list of icebreakers for children, teens, and adults. Some you can do with mobile devices, others on learning management systems, and others in your classroom.
If you like these ideas, take one of my courses or check out my books. Ask me about training your teachers, ShellyTerrell@gmail.com
Ideas & Resources
- Epic Selfie Adventures– Send students on an epic selfie adventure. Download the free slide presentation students you can adapt here.
- Mobile Show and Tell- Divide students into small groups (3 to 5 students). Each student spends about 30 seconds sharing a personal photo from a mobile device and the anecdote behind the photo.
- My post for Buncee, Get Learners Pumped Up with Back to School Buncee Icebreakers.
- My post for ESL Library, Let’s Learn Each Other’s Names.
- Digital Bingo– Click to download your copy. Use Buncee or Nearpod (accessible on any device) to get students to fill them out digitally.
- Recreate a Photo- Students choose one of the Mobile Show and Tell images to recreate as a group. They share the original then the newly created photo.
- Draw and Dash- Each student will need to use a piece of paper or a drawing app like Tackk, Educreations, Magic Paintbrush, or Sketchbook Express. Name a category like favorite dessert, cartoon, sports team and so forth for students to draw the answers to on their tablets. Give them 30 seconds. When the time is up they should lift up their drawings and run to a peer they believe drew a similar choice. Give them 1 minute to talk about their drawings and exchange one fact or experience related to the choice. Find the Knowledge Swap handout that accompanies this activity in Learning to Go.
- Mobile Me Pictionary- Give each student 3 notecards. Students write on one side a category like a talent, hobby, dream job, or favorite place. On the other side they write down an answer but show no one. Divide students into small groups. Each group will need to use a drawing app like Tackk, Educreations, Magic Paintbrush, or Sketchbook Express. Students stack all the cards with the categories facing up. When you start the timer, one student chooses a card and draws the word(s) on the app. The group tries to guess the answer and who it describes before the time runs out.
- Avatar Bucket Lists- Students write down 3 activities they want to complete within their lifetime. They get into pairs and discuss their lists. They choose one bucket list activity to animate in a short video or comic strip. Useful web tools include GoAnimate, Powtoons, Little Bird Tales, ToonDoo, and Makebeliefs Comix. Useful apps include BuddyPoke 3D Avatar Creator, Tellagami, Drawing Cartoons, Comics Head, and Friendstrip. Find more activities and ideas in this lesson plan I wrote, A Visual Bucket List.
- Vision Boards- Students can use digital poster and scrapbook tools and apps to create goal collages and vision boards. Try any of these tools: Buncee, Tackk, Biteslides, Smore, Pinterest, Glogster, or Pic-Collage.
- 3, 2,1 Introduction- Students use a web tool or app to create a video, comic strip, poster, book, or slideshow that includes the following: 3 things we should know about you, 2 hobbies, 1 dream job. This idea came from Nicky Hockly.
- Avatar Introductions- Students can introduce themselves with a Voki avatar or try one of these free avatar creators! Find several student examples here.
- Name Poems- Use a word cloud tool like Tagxedo or the Image Chef app. They can also do this as a digital poster using tools like Buncee, Tackk, Biteslides, Smore, ThingLink, or Pic-Collage.
- My Timeline- Students create multimedia timelines highlighting significant moments using a tool like Capzles or Popplet which both have free apps for i-devices.
- Icebreaker Mingle- Find my lesson plan that uses the Icebreaker question app here.
- If you have icebreaker handouts like Human Bingo, use Nearpod (accessible on any device) to get students to fill them out digitally. Download my Human Bingo handout here.