Ice Breakers

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Ice Breakers

Ice Breakers

Ice breakers are great fun. They are the perfect activity for helping a new group get to know one another and they are also a fabulous way to start off a Chatterbooks session. They can be useful when the mood of your group changes and you need an activity to re-invigorate and re-focus everyone. Ice breakers are great for creating positive group dynamics as they help build confidence and develop good social skills.

This pack contains a selection of Ice breaker games and ideas to use with your Chatterbooks groups.
Things to Think About

  • How much time do you have? If you only have a short amount of time just use a couple of quick activities.

  • Match the activity to suit your group

  • How much space do you have? Have you got space to move about in or is your space limited?

  • Make sure it is fun

  • Keep it simple

  • How big is your group – choose ice breakers that suits the size of your group

  • Make sure the activity involve all your members

  • Be positive and enthusiastic

Energetic Ice Breakers

Stand Up Sit Down

Two members stand back to back locking their arms together. They have to sit down and stand up without letting go of each other’s arms. When they get to a standing position get another member to interlock their arms and with three people sit down and stand up. Keep adding people. The more members involved the harder it becomes.

Line Up

Ask everyone to stand in a line. Form a new line in order of:

  • Height - smallest to tallest

  • Birthday - Jan to December

  • Shoe size - smallest to largest

  • Alphabetical - first names A-Z

Pass the Orange

Stand in a circle pass a big orange around the circle using only chins and necks.


Form a circle. Extend right hand across the circle and hold left hand of person on the opposite side. Then extend left hand and hold right hand of person on the opposite side. Try and unravel this mass of interlocking arms without letting go of anyone’s hands.

Human Chair

Stand in a circle shoulder to shoulder. Everyone turns to the right to face the back of the person in front of them. Place a hand on the shoulder of the person in front. On a count of three slowly sit down on the person behind.

Books and Book Characters Ice Breakers
Which Book Character am I?

Write the name of a book character on a post-it note – put on someone’s forehead.  They can’t see it but everyone else can and everyone has to give them hints until they guess which book character they are.

You can also play this game with titles of books, names of animals, names of foods, etc.

Favourite Book Characters

Print out A4 pictures of Roald Dahl characters, a whole range of them, and get the children to choose a character and say why they would like to be that person.

You can use a broad range of characters or be more specific, for example you could use Roald Dahl characters , Jacqueline Wilson characters or Harry Potter characters.

Twenty questions

Play twenty questions using book characters or books.

Desert Island

You have been exiled to a desert island. You can only take three books. Which books would you take? Give everyone a few minutes to think about the books they would choose before sharing with the group.

Name that Book

Divide into two teams. Give everyone a piece of paper. Everyone writes down five things about a book but doesn’t give the title or the author. Collect the pieces of paper into two team piles. Hold a quiz. Each team has to guess the book from the clues written down.

Guess the Author

Print off photos of children’s authors. Put the pictures on a wall and number each picture. Give members a sheet of paper with numbers on and get them to write the name of the author beside the number

Story Telling Ice Breakers

Start a story with a sentence that ends in Suddenly. The next person has to add to the story ending with a sentence that ends in Suddenly. Continue the story till everyone has contributed. Create a crazy story.

Person Place Thing

Ask everyone to think of the name of a person, a place or a thing. Get everyone to say what they have chosen. Then someone starts a story. They must mention, within 10 seconds, the name of the person, the place or the thing they chose. After 10 seconds the story is passed on to the next person who must also mention the name of the person, the place or the thing they chose. Continue until everyone has a turn. Use a stopwatch to time the 10 seconds.

Object Stories

Collect together a number of items and place in a bag, e.g. keys, mobile phone, umbrella. Be creative. Pass the bag around the group and ask everyone to pick out an item without looking. Take turns telling a story that must include the chosen objects.

Ice Breakers – old favourites
Simon Says ‘Touch your Head’ ...or

Harry Potter Says or Horrid Henry Says or Judy Moody Says ‘touch your head’

Roll the die - Favourite Things

Think of six categories like ‘favourite food’, ‘favourite drink’, ‘favourite colour’, ‘favourite book’ ,‘favourite fairy tale’, ‘favourite TV programme’ and give each one a number (1-6).  Everyone rolls the die one by one and gives their answer for the category linked to the number they roll.

Memory Games Ice Breakers
All I want for Christmas is…. Or If I won a million pounds I would like ...

Everyone comes up with a different present idea or what they would buy with a million pounds with an action (silly ones are good and easier to remember!).  Each person has to recite all the presents or thing they would buy that came up before theirs, then say their own.  If you have a big group, this can be very challenging but fun!

Memory Game

Gather together about 20 small items and place on a tray. Let everybody look at the items for about 3 minutes. Cover the items. Can you remember the items? Or Remove one of the items and try and guess what has been removed.

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