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Thread: Need An Ice Breaker 'Get Acquainted' Game

  1. #1
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    Need An Ice Breaker 'Get Acquainted' Game

    I'm hosting a cookie swap next weekend that's going to include groups of ladies who won't all know each other: Work friends, church friends, neighbors and a former cookie swap hostess is also inviting a few of her friends who've attended our swaps in the past (3 of us have hosted this event over the past few years). I'm thinking I'd like to do a little ice breaker, get acquainted game but I stink at thinking up creative stuff like this! I googled 'get acquainted' games and didn't find anything that I thought fit the bill. Has anybody entertained a varied group of people and done something like this that was well-received? There's a possibility of 25-30 people so it could be a little crowded to be moving around very much (in my googling I found one musical chairs type game that everyone would probably kill me for doing if I was crazy enough to try).

    TIA!
    Linda

    When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and I could say “I used everything you gave me.”

    Erma Bombeck

  2. #2
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    I usually HATE these types of games. There is one that I don't mind. It does involve a bit of milling about though. Make a list that includes trivia tidbits that you know about each person. The guests have to find out which item applies to whom and get them to sign the page.

    The list might include:
    This person has a pet bird.
    This person enjoys quilting.
    ...refuses to write in cursive.
    ...has never eaten a traditional Thanksgiving Meal.
    ...likes bacon for breakfast
    etc
    etc

    Good conversations starters for later too
    Silly is you in a natural state, and serious is something you have to do until you can get silly again.
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    Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color...choosing your socks by their character makes no sense and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable. anon

  3. #3
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    I hate these too, but I did one last year that went over very well. It's similar to the PP's idea, but with a slight twist.

    Give everyone an index card and ask them to write one interesting fact about themselves and return the card to you. Shuffle the cards and deal them back out to the group (obviously making sure nobody got his/her own).

    Your assignment is to find the person who wrote that fact, but the twist is you can't ask them directly. For example, if the fact on your card says "I swam the English Channel" you can't go around asking everyone right out if they swam the English Channel. Instead, you'd ask if they've ever been out of the country, then do they enjoy water sports, etc. until you narrow it down.

    When you've found your person (and someone has found you from the fact you filled out), you sit down. The game continues until you're left with the one weirdo who crochets lady's hats from her hamster fur and the poor person who has been asking everybody about their hairy pets and millinery to no avail.

    It's a little more open ended, because even if you don't find the "right" person right away, you learn a little about everyone you do talk to. Plus it's interesting to see what people think about you as they try to see which fact may fit you. Do I really look like the type that has a Harley or am I more of a chess champion?
    I don't need time. What I need is a deadline.
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  4. #4
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    Oskie - LOVE it!
    Silly is you in a natural state, and serious is something you have to do until you can get silly again.
    Mike Myers

    Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color...choosing your socks by their character makes no sense and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable. anon

  5. #5
    How about just having everyone introduce themselves one at a time, say what kind of cookie they brought and maybe why they chose that particular cookie and, if they want, share an interesting tid bit about themselves.

  6. #6
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    I did the game Oskie described at a work event and it was by far the least painful of such games I've had to play. It's nice because it gets people to have an actual conversation and you learn more than just one fact about them. I have a friend who gives people name tags and has those colored dot stickers to correspond to their relationship to the hostess: green=college, yellow=work, red=church, etc. It allows people to introduce themselves with a statement rather than just, "I'm Mary, how do you know Sue?" Instead they might say, "Yellow - are you an architect, too?" or such.
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  7. #7
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    For the record, I'm the first person to groan or roll my eyes when someone suggests we play a shower game (what I liken this to). I was hoping to find something fun, light and amusing that wouldn't take much time or be much effort for the guests, just something that would get them mingling, talking and laughing together because you know what happens: All the little groups who know each other tend to stick together. Good ideas so far! Keep 'em coming and thanks!
    Linda

    When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and I could say “I used everything you gave me.”

    Erma Bombeck

  8. #8
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    This is the icebreaker I use -
    *Come up with a list of pairs of things (i.e. Laurel & Hardy, Fred & Ginger, cat & mouse, cheese & crackers, sugar & spice, rhythm & blues, etc.) Come up with one set of three in case of an uneven number of people (Snap, Crackle, & Pop; Earth, Wind, & Fire, etc.)
    *Write each of the words on your list on its own index card. There should be one card allotted per person.
    *Shuffle the cards and give each person one card.
    *Don't share the list with the participants, but ask them to figure out who their 'partner(s)' is (are).
    *Have them learn one unusual thing about their partner and then introduce their partner to the group, sharing the unusual thing.

    Here's another one -
    *Ask each person to share his or her name with the group and then tell 3 things about him or herself, two of them true and one of them made up.
    *Have the group guess which thing is untrue.

    My Dad has done this one a few times before, and his 3 things about himself are -
    1 - I have three daughters.
    2 - I have worn a beard since I was in my mid-forties.
    3 - I once had Thanksgiving dinner with the Miss World contestants.

    Nobody ever guesses that the false one is actually the second one.
    And I actually had dinner with the Miss World contestants, too.
    Connie

  9. #9
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    In a large group, I've done the 'stand if you' game

    Stand if you have lived out of the country (then everyone sits back down)
    Stand if you like chocolate
    Stand if you have grandchildren
    etc

    It gives people an idea about you and other people that share the same circumstances.

    I also did one where you introduced the person sitting next to you ... but the trick is you can't ask them any questions. So, you would say "this is Mary" and she would say "actually my name is Sue". Sue lives in NY and she would say 'actually I live in NJ'. All based on your first impression of her visually.
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  10. #10
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    One game I've played is where each person has a tag on their person that contains 3 facts about themselves. One fact is absolutely true, one is absolutely false, and the other is iffy. The object is to learn enough about the person to decide which fact is which.

    Ex:

    1. I was born in Japan (true)
    2. I used to raise chinchillas. (true, but unlikely)
    3. I know Michail Baryshinikov personally. (false)
    Just another Susan

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbb113 View Post

    I also did one where you introduced the person sitting next to you ... but the trick is you can't ask them any questions. So, you would say "this is Mary" and she would say "actually my name is Sue". Sue lives in NY and she would say 'actually I live in NJ'. All based on your first impression of her visually.
    I love this, Tyra!
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  12. #12
    When I host a meeting where people don't know each other, I ask them to talk about their names--who named them, what nationality their name is, do they know what their name means, are they named after someone.

    People are more likely to remember other people's names with this game.

  13. #13
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    Thanks a million everybody! These are all great suggestions and I now have a lot of ideas to consider for my icebreaker! The board to the rescue again!
    Linda

    When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and I could say “I used everything you gave me.”

    Erma Bombeck

  14. #14
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    Another variation like the one listed above is to Have each person introduce themselves and say something that they have done that they doubt anyone else has. If someone else speaks up and can honestly say that they have done that too, then the person has to keep trying until they find something no one else has done.

    Or in the holiday theme, you could have everyone share their favorite holiday tradition.

    If you don't have enough time to go around to everyone individually, you could do a game with small groups, like a Purse Scavenger Hunt. Divide the guests into teams of three. Provide each team a list of items to be found in their purses. Each item is assigned a certain number of points. The most likely found item such as lipstick is assigned 20 points. Whereas an item such as a rock is assigned 75 points. Examples: Grocery List, Mint, Matches, Money clip, rock, hair scrunchie, dry cleaner receipt, etc.
    Amy

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by sparrowgrass View Post
    When I host a meeting where people don't know each other, I ask them to talk about their names--who named them, what nationality their name is, do they know what their name means, are they named after someone.

    People are more likely to remember other people's names with this game.
    Ugh, please don't make me do it again!
    (Sorry, 'tis the season for me to have all that pre-printed on business cards. Yes, I know a lot about my name )
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

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