ICEBREAKERS by wulinqing


									                                 ICEBREAKERS – GAMES

Mollie Herman, Towson University
I may have even gotten this idea from another ACCTOID, and if so I'm sorry I can't credit you
b/c I don't remember who! But on the first day, the interns and I do this structured discussion of
our names which proves to be very interesting and is a wonderful way to start to get to know
each other.


       What ethnicity is your family name and what other ethnicities are parts of you?
       Were you named after anyone? Why?
       Are there any funny stories about how you got (or didn't get) a certain name?
       Do you like your given name?
       Any frustrations with chronic misspellings or mispronunciations or nicknames?
       Have you/would you ever change any parts of your names?
       For those who have named a child, what kind of process was that for you?
       For those who don't really know the story behind their own name, what kinds of feelings
       does this bring up for you?

Carla Bradley, University of Colorado
We usually play "Two Lies and One Truth". Our large staff each have a 3x5 card on file with
me, and the card has two lies and one truth about themselves written on it. Only a few staff
members are at the first day meeting so we assign the intern cohort the task of doing a bit of
research throughout the day, then at the end of the day guessing which card belongs to which
staff member. They also write out cards on themselves and staff guess about them. We learn
interesting personal facts as well as have some anxiety-reducing first day laughs in the process.

Some examples are things like:

*      Once dated someone famous
*      Knows more about local geography than any staff member
*      Intended to go into politics before discovering psychology/social work/medicine

Brooks Morse, University of Oregon
We do a couple of events that focus on relationships. We have an all staff breakfast the first
couple of days with clinical and administrative staff. We usually play a game - different each
year. One year our nametags had a word that described us and when we introduced ourselves we
expanded on why that word. Food always eases the first awkward moments of meeting new
Then the interns come over to my house for a full day retreat their first week - a less formal place
with casual attire. I provide low budget lunch and do a combination of overview and getting to
know you activities. We start out with less intimate group questions like what brought you to
choose psychology and move later into group dynamics discussions and then later into some
culture sharing.

Cassandra Nichols, Washington State University
I have the interns at my house for a retreat of sorts during their first week. My partner cooks
breakfast and the focus is on the interns and me getting to know one another. I take them on a
very easy hike (being mindful first of any physical or allergy concerns), and then we have lunch
at our local Co-op. We walk around town and stop for coffee. The interns always seem to really
appreciate this. During the first 2-3 weeks, the interns are scheduled to have breakfast or lunch
with each faculty member. Some of my colleagues take them to lunch, others order in, others
bring a home cooked meal, others brown bag, others suggest a small potluck. This gives the
interns an opportunity to have some informal time with each faculty member. On Wednesdays
over the summer, we have a soup and salad potluck and everyone signs up to bring either a soup,
a salad, bread, or a dessert (4 food sign-ups each week.) There is also a sign-up for clean-up and
we eat family style with real plates and flatware so clean-up sort of seems like a big family
holiday clean up. Obviously all of our "get-to-know yous" involve food!

Karen Lese-Fowler, University of San Diego
Here's a fun icebreaker that has been received well most years. Each staff member and
prospective intern sends two "fun facts" to a staff member coordinating the icebreaker. The task
during about 45 minutes is for each person to figure out which fun fact applies to whom. Usually
there are some guidelines (like you can only ask each person one question at a time, then move
on to someone else). We expanded this another year to make it a scavenger hunt that each staff
member did over a period of days rather than an hour, to give interns a chance to talk to staff
informally and vice versa.

Fiona Vajik, Claermont Colleges
We have done "two truths and a lie" -- each person, in turn, makes three statements about
him/herself -- one of these three is false and the other two are true. The group then votes as to
which one is the lie -- statement 1, 2 or 3? The person who fools the highest number of people
(i.e., the fewest people voted correctly for the lie) wins -- but it ends up feeling much more about
getting to know the person in terms of the truths (there are always some follow-up questions,
e.g., "Did you REALLY climb Mt. Kilimanjaro?") as well as laughing at how well some people
were fooled, etc.

Jan Wheaton, Cleveland State University Counseling Center
I gather fun facts about the staff and glean fun facts about the interns from their vitae. These are
placed on a "bingo card." Then, everyone must go around the room and find the people who
match each fun fact and get their initials. I always make sure to add some facts that will apply to
more than one person (e.g., has a dog, has traveled to another country in the past year, etc.). The
first person to get all of the squares filled in with initials wins a prize.

Rhandi Chow, University of North Dakota
OK, I'm sure you will think we've all stepped over a line here but we have an orientation
tradition that interns, pracs, and staff all love. I'm not recommending it because it's risky, so
caveat emptor ;-) We do this about halfway through orientation. We pair folks off with a
"driver"-"rider" countoff. Line up rolling desk chairs, 1 per pair. Rider sits in the chair. Driver
gets blindfolded and pushes the chair. Each rider gets a checklist of typical "breaktime activities"
ie, go to the bathroom, check your schedule, check your e-mail, get coffee, etc. Each station has
a representative item that needs to be collected. They have 3 minutes to get back to the meeting.
The rider holds the list and directs the driver. The driver's body is protected from impact by the
rider's body and the chair. IT IS HILARIOUS! Great to watch the cleverness unfold as they work
together to be the first back to the conference room. Every year we get feedback that this activity
brought the team together in a fun way and really broke the ice.
Counseling Center Charades (Jessica Provines, Wichita State University)

Confidentiality                                      Refer out

No call. No show.                                    Personality disorder

Three Faces of Eve                                   Psychotic break

Group therapy                                        Substance abuse

Marriage counseling                                  Helicopter parents

Late cancel                                          My roommate stole by belt

Scoring IQ tests                                     No weapons in the dorms

ADHD                                                 Medication-seeking behavior

Crisis in the residence halls                        Paper jam in the copier

Schedule a standing appointment                      I love filing paperwork

Outreach presentation                                Ran into my client at the gym

The pager is beeping                                 Histrionic personality

Session Limits                                       Manic depressive

Moldy food in the fridge                             Borderline personality

Student Affairs

The Division of Campus Life & University Relations

You’ve double booked your clients again

I need another cup of coffee

We are out of bottled water

Where is the cute UPS delivery man?

Spring Break gone wild

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