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  1. Are we together?! - Every time you say "are we together" everyone responds with "yes we are together!" and puts their hands in the air. Do it a few times until they are loud, people love this and it has the added benefit of making them put their phones down.

     

  2. Good news! : Trainer ask the participants to share something good that has happened lately to them. Group clapping in between participant answers is a good way to keep the momentum going and also acknowledge the person's good news.

  3. Thunderstorm : Trainer starts by saying "rain" while simultaneously drumming on a table or chair imitating the sound of rain. Instructs participants to do the same, slowing increasing the speed of the drumming/raining. Suddenly, when it's pouring rain, training slaps their hands together and shouts "lightning!" multiple times for each hand clap. Participants are to do the same. Good, easy way to get everyone doing the same activity with some motion and sound stimulation. (you can translate 'rain' and 'lightning' into other languages that the participants speak)

  4. Coconut : Have all participants stand up, arms length away from walls, tables or other people. Write COCONUT on flipchart so all participants can see (good for when English is not their first language, explain in their language what coconut translates to). Trainer spells out each letter of the word with their body, instructs participants to follow. Body spell out coconut several times at varying speeds. Once participants get the idea and are getting into it, you can add some melody to the spelling of Coconut and when you complete the spelling do a shimmy in a circle repeating "coconut, coconut, coconut". Example: C-O-C-O-N-U-T, C-O-C-O-N-U-T, (shimmy) Coconut, coconut, coconut.  It's kind of silly, but is always a hit. 

  5. The shakeout : in a circle, everyone shakes out their left arm, right arm, left leg then right leg, starting with 16 times for each limb, then repeats all four limbs with 8, 4, 2, and then 1.  Count out loud for full effect – counting in other languages encouraged!

  6. Mirrors : in pairs people mirror each other, then switch leaders.

  7. Yes Let's! : walking around, trainers take turns calling out what they want people to do “Lets climb a tree” then everyone says “Yes let's!” and everyone pretends to climb a tree.

  8. Line-up! : Ask the group to line themselves up in the order of their birthday (or height, for example) without speaking.
  9. Superheros: Ask the group to stand up, write SUPERMAN on a piece of paper for everyone to see and ask them if they know who Superman is and what he does (in rural settings they might not know and it might take a bit of description on your part). He flies! Hold your arms out and fly like superman, have everyone imitate you. Do the same for: SPIDERMAN - he climbs!, NINJA - he runs! (run in place if space limited), HULK - flexes his muscles and growls!. Once you have gotten through the 4 superheroes call out the names in random order, repeating some at times, having participants act out the motions defined for each character. Can speed up the pace so that people really get moving!
  10. 10 second portrait: (music optional) Have each participant write their name at the top of a blank piece of paper (can be in a notebook) and then instruct everyone to stand up. You'll need a bit of space so that people can walk around freely. If you have music, start playing a popular song and instruct all participants to walk around in the open space, random directions, carrying their blank piece of paper and a pen/marker. When the music stops, they pair up with the person who is closest to them and they exchange pieces of paper. Instruct participants to look at their partner and in just 10 seconds (or less!) draw the person's eyes. When 10 seconds is up, have each person give the piece of paper back to the owner and start the music again for people to mingle again. Repeat this pattern, having participants pair up and exchange their pieces of paper to draw each other's nose, mouth, face outline/hair, ears, and body. The trick is really to limit the drawing to between 5-10 seconds and keep people moving. The result has never been anything short of hilarious (and some portraits actually quite accurate!) and we have always posted everyone's portrait on the wall for the rest of the training. Some participants insist on taking them home (smile) 

Splitting into groups

  1. Dancing  - Turn on some music, and dance with each person and drop them in a "random" seat. The great thing about this is that you can make it not random, and dance people to partners that pair stronger users with weaker users etc.

  2. Animals - Write down pairs of animals and have everyone choose from a hat/bowl. No one is aloud to talk, and they must find the person who has the same animal as they by acting like their animal and making animal noises

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