Quick and Easy Icebreaker #17

An icebreaker can be a great way to start off any project meeting, training session, or company retreat. Contrary to what you might think, these do not have to be elaborate, or complicated, in order to be fun and effective. Here's an easy one we call Comic Chaos.

  1. Find the comic section from your local Sunday paper. (If your local Sunday paper is the New York Times... then find your almost-local paper.)
  2. Cut out a few of the multi-panel comics. You will want to cut out enough strips so that you will have roughly 1 panel per person who will be in attendance at the meeting. Most comics have 6 to 8 panels, some of the longer comics are made up of 10 or more.
  3. When you're back in the office on Monday, photocopy each of the comics. You'll need these photocopies to help verify team answers at the end of the icebreaker.
  4. Now take some scissors and cut up the comics into panels. You will want roughly one panel per person in attendance. It's OK if two or more panels are left connected. Each comic strip will end up being a team, so this is where you can decide on how many people will be in each team. If you want teams of 3 cut each comic strip into three sections. If you want teams of 6 then cut them into 6 parts.
  5. Once you have all of the comics cut, put the pieces into a brown paper bag, or hat, ermine bag, etc.
  6. And... you're done with prep. (It's that easy.)
  7. At the meeting have everyone reach into the hat and take one of the comic sections.
  8. Once everyone has their panel, go over the rules: 1) find the team members who have the other panels to your same comic strip, then 2) as a team put the strip back together in its correct order, and 3) the first team to complete their strip wins.
  9. Use those photocopies you made at step 3 to verify the team answers and declare the winner.

This is a fun and easy way to break large groups up into smaller teams for breakout sessions, small discussion groups, etc. It's a simple activity, but challenging, especially if you have a main group of 30 or more.




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