relationship skills group activities
Things like tone of voice, facial expressions, body posture, and hand gestures are all non-verbal, but they are hugely important in our communication with others. Build a Bridge is a game you can use with teams of 4-6 people. This useful framework comes from Alice Stott at Edutopia (2018): Once you have a good framework for understanding communication, try these 8 ways to foster effective communication in your children or students: If you’re looking for some concrete ways to build communication skills in adults, you’ve come to the right place. Read on to learn about how important communication is in a relationship and how you can work on improving your communication skills. Share this observation with your group and lead a discussion on how body language can influence our understanding and our reactions. Inform your participants that they must keep their eyes and mouths closed as they follow instructions; they are not allowed to look at the paper or ask any clarifying questions. To make the game a bit more challenging and really emphasize the importance of active listening, incorporate these three variations to the game: Group stories are a great way to practice active listening with the whole family. To make sure your family is a safe space for everyone to share their thoughts and feelings, give the “Expressing Individuality” activity a try. All of these relationship building activities will help you build a positive classroom community. You can find this exercise at this link (Activity #3). Continue until all students have had a chance to go  (and you could keep going, if you have time). Talk using the future and present tense, not the past tense. For added engagement, decide in advance on what the finished product is supposed to represent (e.g., a spiderweb, a tree). The challenge here is for the non-blindfolded partner to guide the blindfolded partner through the obstacle course using only verbal communication. That makes it a great game for car rides, waiting in restaurants, or standing in a long line. This activity comes from the folks at and offers participants a chance to communicate their feelings and provide a recap or rephrasing of another person’s feelings on a subject. Give each participant one piece of information—and only one—from this list: All team members are blindfolded and must remain so for the duration of the activity. Have the team members sit down in their pairs. Use these 6 activities to practice reading and “speaking” effective nonverbal messages. You can offer a prize to the winner if you think the group would be motivated by it. The rope you are holding is approximately ___ feet in length. The couple should agree to try this exercise together and follow these instructions: Another great exercise from Racheal Tasker is focused on using positive language with one another. If you have a competitive group, you may want to bring a prize to ensure active engagement with the exercise. Make the point that each paper looks different even though you have given the same instructions to everybody. The team can ask as many questions as they need to figure it out, but remind them that they’re in competition with the other team. Mix all the pieces together and put equal numbers of cards into as many envelopes as you have teams. Open-ended questions are an excellent way to save time and energy and help you get to the information you need fast, however, closed questions can also be very useful in some instances to confirm your understanding or to help you control the conversation with an overly talkative person/customer. You could even carry on the discussion as the program continues.”. Share with your partner! What do you feel like specifically, when you are upset? Instruct the participants to keep their cards a secret; no one should see the suit or color of another participant’s card. The Inspired Educator participates in affiliate advertising, which means we may get a small bonus at no cost to you. How did listeners feel about not being able to speak about their own views on the topic? The Aggressive Alligator is a great tool from Kristina Marcelli-Sargent, for teaching assertiveness over-aggressiveness or passiveness. Talk about the problems that hurt your or your partner’s feelings, then move on to problems about differences in opinions. Each player should take turns sharing their opinion on each snack. In a relatively short amount of time. During the Activity, what communication skills did you use effectively? This nonverbal communication activity is available from Sue Simmons at Equinox Family Consulting. When this person returns, their teammates will try to guess what the object is by asking only “Yes or No” questions (i.e., questions that can only be answered with “yes” or “no”). Fold the strips of paper so you can’t see what is written on it and place them in a bowl or jar. Tell them that they are instructed to stop listening to their partner after about 30 seconds, and to be open in showing their disinterest. Respect yourself—your wants and needs are as important as everyone else’s. The couple should take turns picking the activity and try to surprise their partner with something new. Are they really that important or impactful? What key points have you learned about communication from this activity, that you wish to apply in the workplace? Instead of trying to avoid or deny anger, it’s vital that families learn how to manage their anger and communicate it to others in a healthy way. First, ask your kids how people might feel when they are bullied. Don’t judge. If they can’t think of things people might do when they feel upset, angry, or sad, mention that they might yell, throw something, hit something, hide, cry, or do something else to make another person feel as bad as they feel. Did everyone think the non-verbal message meant the same thing? This exercise will show how difficult it is to communicate without words, but it will also show your participants that it is not only possible, it gets easier as they start to pick up on one another’s nonverbal cues. Finally, although verbal communication is generally the focus of skill-building exercises and activities, nonverbal communication is also a vital skill to develop. They should minimize the chances of distraction (turn off the TV, put their phones on silent, etc.) There’s nothing like traveling with someone to work on your communication skills! This exercise is a fun way to see who is paying attention and who is skipping the most vital instruction—to read everything before acting. I agree that building relationships is great for kids. When they feel ready, they will use their remaining blank postcard to craft a response to their partner’s message. It’s vital to keep your own body language in mind, just as it’s vital to notice and understand others’ body language. How important do you think the non-verbal messages are in helping you to enjoy the movie and understand what was going on in the movie? What were the non-verbal messages that you observed? My boyfriend and I are having huge problems with communicating. But improve we must because those who identify as having a poor work-life balance are more likely to experience problems in their relationships, health and overall happiness. Courtney Ackerman, MSc., is a graduate of the positive organizational psychology and evaluation program at Claremont Graduate University. Talk about what is happening and how it affects you. This will harden the clay hard so that it maintains its shape. Give one sheet of standard-sized paper (8.5 x 11 inches) to each participant. Heitler, S. (2010). They sit in two chairs facing one another, near to one another but not touching. Use these instructions to conduct the activity: After each participant has played both roles, end the activity and guide a discussion with the following questions: You will find this activity at this link, exercise #4. Stand up and say, “We’re the greatest team in the World!”. Place on a table (or put in a box) a packet of cards, each of which has a particular emotion typed on it. Each partner looks directly into the other partner’s eyes. Use one of the recipes below to make your own play dough as a family. The most important ingredient we put into any relationship is not what we say or what we do, but what we are. You could draw pictures using plain white paper and colored pencils/crayons. The one you borrowed. Why did the questions and answers get funnier after several rounds? The listener partner must try to build the same structure based on the speaker partner’s instructions. Repeat each of the following words slowly, pausing briefly between each word: When you finish reading the list of words, distract your participants by talking about something else for at least one full minute. Facilitate a group discussion on the importance of listening, how to use active listening, and what indicates that someone is truly listening. Another great exercise from Grace Fleming (2018) is called “We Have to Move Now!” and it will help your participants learn how to express and detect several different emotions. Defeating Divorce shares the following three games aimed at improving communication in a romantic relationship. I can’t remember where I put it. If the emotion is guessed correctly by Group A, they receive ten points. tell you their answer as they walk out for dismissal). To start, separate the group into two teams of equal (or roughly equal) size. Follow these instructions to give it a try: It’s a simple activity, but an effective one! Have a participant from Group A take the top card from the table and act out (pantomime) the emotion for his/her group. (2018). Boundaries are the limits and rules that people set for themselves in relationships. Playdates are not just for kids or puppies—they are a great idea for couples as well! If you’re a teacher, you have probably have heard of “turn and talk”, a strategy where students turn to each other and answer a question or discuss a topic. Many people find this game uncomfortable at first, but with practice, it can greatly enhance your sense of intimacy with your partner. The “Listener and Talker” activity is another good activity for showing the importance of active listening and giving participants a chance to practice their skills. Relationship Building Activities: 30 Minutes. The talker’s job is to describe what he or she wants from a vacation without specifying a destination. Stakeholder Mapping is a graphical illustration of how your stakeholders feel towards your change project or program. The high-low activity also aims to help couples feel more connected and in touch with one another, which requires measured and thoughtful communication.


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