A friendly team is everyone’s dream. And for schoolchildren it is not just a dream, but a vital necessity: in childhood and adolescence the personality is just being formed, so the need for communication and mutual understanding with peers is felt more acutely by them. 7 exercises that will help unite the class.
Looking for ideas on how to bring students together, teach them to work together and see the best in each other? We offer several effective exercises that will be useful to every class teacher.
Exercise 1 “What we are like and what distinguishes us”
Principle of execution: Combine the class into two teams with the same number of students. Each team must form a circle: the first team becomes a circle inside, and the second – forms an outer circle.
Participants in both teams stand face to face with a representative of the other team. At first, the members of the inner circle say to their partner: “We are similar to you in that …”. After that, the participants of the outer circle answer “We are different in that…”. After that, all students of the inner or outer circle together take a step in a certain direction. After that, the dialogue of each student is repeated, but with another student.
The exercise continues until the students, having passed everyone in a circle, find themselves in front of the classmates with whom they began to perform the exercise.
Reflection: This exercise teaches students to understand, although they are all different, but they all have something in common with each classmate.
Exercise 2 “What are you the best at”
Principle of execution: Beforehand, each student should write his / her name on the sheet, after which the teacher collects all the papers, puts them in a box and mixes them thoroughly.
Students take turns pulling out pieces of paper at random and reading the classmate’s name. After some thought, students should remember and name what good character traits are inherent in this child, what he or she does best, or what others can learn from him or her.
Reflection: This exercise teaches to see the good in others and focus on the best character traits of classmates. If certain students do not make friends with each other under normal circumstances, they may not notice it. Doing the exercise makes you think and, perhaps, look at your classmates differently.
Exercise 3 “My among my own”
How it works: Invite students to form teams based on certain characteristics or preferences. This exercise can be performed in several formats.
Rubaka in the yard or in the gym: The teacher draws a line on the floor and asks students to quickly take a seat to the right or left of it, depending on their preferences. After that he calls a certain unifying sign: “Let those who love computer games stand on the right, and fans of catching up on the left”, “Let those who love popsicles on the left, and white and chocolate on the right”, etc. Students must run quickly to one side of the line and not collide with each other, otherwise they risk dropping out of the game.
Rubaka in the classroom: Children sit in their seats at desks. After the teacher names a certain unifying sign, schoolboys who have it, should change places, others do not move. For example, “Let those who have a cat’s house change places,” and so on.
Group presentation: Invite students to form teams with their namesakes, or, if they do not have them, to form a “Diversity” team and create a short presentation about who they are – Sasha, Kristen or Rose.
Reflection: The exercise allows children to feel that they can always be a part of the community in terms of preferences or unification.
Exercise 4 “Advertising”
Principle of execution: Combine students in pairs and arrange a kind of team competition. Within 5-7 minutes, each couple should learn about their partner’s hobbies, hobbies, personal successes and other interests.
Students should then promote their teammates to the class, sharing their best character traits, special skills, and the value of the student as part of the class team.
Time for advertising 2-3 minutes. The winner is the team whose members were more convincing for the audience.
Reflection: This exercise helps students learn more about each other’s hobbies and develop the skill of focusing on the best traits of peers, and also helps to understand that the class is a team and each student is a part of it.
Exercise 5 “Our class”
Principle of execution: Combine the class into teams of 5-6 students, hand out sheets of paper and colored markers. Invite students within the team to pick together a metaphorical association of how they represent the class and create an appropriate picture (for example, the solar system, the starry sky, the bird market, etc.).
After that, each team presents its drawing and justifies why such a metaphor was chosen.
Reflection: This exercise makes you think that the class is first and foremost a team that has its own characteristics, thanks to each student who is part of this community.
Exercise 6 “Puzzles”
Principle of execution: Unite students in teams of 4-5 people and offer to put together a puzzle faster than rival teams.
Reflection: Doing this helps to develop the skill of teamwork to achieve a common goal. After completing the exercise, discuss with the students whether it was difficult for them to work together, whether it would be possible to speed up the achievement of the goal and how exactly, and also think together about how to succeed faster – alone or in a team.
Exercise 7 “I forgive you …”
Principle of execution: Invite students to sit in a circle and give each other a gift in the form of positive emotions. For example, here’s how: touch a neighbor’s shoulder with your hand and say “I give you a smile / good mood / self-confidence / a sense of uniqueness” and so on.
Reflection: Explain to students that words have exceptional power, both bad and good. With good words we can encourage each other, improve our mood, and with bad words we can even cripple each other (probably you have seen the documentary “Water” or some meaningful excerpts from it?).
This exercise will be a positive end to the lesson-educational hour, during which students performed exercises to unite the team.