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Icebreaker games - Love em or hate em?


kristof65
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So, what exactly qualifies as an icebreaker game anyway?  I don't generally find myself in a lot of social situations I didn't elect to be in.  Are these for things that you don't want to be at but have to show up to for some reason?  Are these for meeting people you don't know but are likely to have to interact with semi-frequently? 

 

I get wanting to be an introverted weirdo, but I don't see why you'd do that while attending your mandatory Elder Gods Cultist Recruitment Drive or inaugural Slam Poetry Meetup group session.  How are you supposed to discover if someone is a compatible-friendship-introvert, apart from your shared love of Nyarlathotep and/or sick beats, if you don't know them and don't talk to them?  :;,;:   ::P:

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I really like the idea of breaking out Cards Against Humanity for your next conference. 

 

I would purposefully go and buy the game just for that reason alone.  The actual people I would play it with are few, and not really in the same social circles, so I'd never get a chance to play it, but the opportunity to tweak someone's misguided notion of what constitutes "fun" is too great to ignore.

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So, what exactly qualifies as an icebreaker game anyway?  I don't generally find myself in a lot of social situations I didn't elect to be in.  Are these for things that you don't want to be at but have to show up to for some reason?  Are these for meeting people you don't know but are likely to have to interact with semi-frequently?

 

I get wanting to be an introverted weirdo, but I don't see why you'd do that while attending your mandatory Elder Gods Cultist Recruitment Drive or inaugural Slam Poetry Meetup group session.  How are you supposed to discover if someone is a compatible-friendship-introvert, apart from your shared love of Nyarlathotep and/or sick beats, if you don't know them and don't talk to them?  :;,;:   ::P:

Last nights game was at my daughter's school for what are called APTT (academic parent teacher team) conferences, something new our school is trying. See my separate thread on those. The game in question was the teacher had a ball of yarn, and we all stood in a circle, and we had to throw the yarn across to someone else, while holding on to it as it unwound (so it would make a big tangle in the middle). When the ball was thrown to you, you were supposed to tell the group a little something about yourself, and your kid. Then after the yarn ran out, there was a little speech about how the tangle of yarn represented how we're all connected together and if just a couple of us let our portion drop, everything became a big mess.

 

The idea behind doing it was so us parents would get to know each other, since our kids go to school together. I get the purpose of it, but the fact is that most of these kids will be at this same school with my daughter for the next 6.5 years, and I have plenty of time to get to know them. I don't need any sort of forced activity to "help" me. My son just spent 7 years at the same school, and I didn't need this sort of thing to get to know his classmates parents - I knew most of them by the time he was halfway through 1st grade - and I met them at my own pace, at our mutual comfort levels, and I'm still pretty good friends with several of them, even though our kids don't necessarily go to school together anymore.

 

I was there to learn how my daughter was doing in school. No, I wasn't forced into being there, but I wasn't there to be social, either.

 

 

EDITED: Yes, I do know the difference between there and their - I was typing fast.

Edited by kristof65
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I'm a shy wilting flower, so I don't....bwahaha! I love 'em. I double down, try to get people laughing and lowering their guard. People are too uptight, life is short and you should just have fun. If it's awkward and everyone knows it, just play off that. Of course, if someone wants to be a sourpuss and get all rules-lawyery (cough), I can be the opposite of fun, too. I don't have much time for people who don't want to have fun.

 

MM, I'm my fiancee's icebreaker, too. Oddly, she's great at small talk and also important questions. We make a great team, I can break ice and keep people relaxed and she actually makes sense and sticks to the script.

I tend do get pretty outgoing during these as well, but it is more to make the best of a situation. They rarely seem to actually work effectively and when they do, they are cut short IMO. 

 

As a teacher, they do these things with us frequently  (read as multiple times a month). 

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Oh, I wouldn't suggest a teacher do it.  Except on his/her last day.  I've heard you can do pretty much anything you want to on your last day.

 

I was thinking of one of the parents bringing it in.  "Your game lacks a certain flair, not to mention it's not really a game.  I've got a better one."

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Oh, I wouldn't suggest a teacher do it.  Except on his/her last day.  I've heard you can do pretty much anything you want to on your last day.

 

I was thinking of one of the parents bringing it in.  "Your game lacks a certain flair, not to mention it's not really a game.  I've got a better one."

as long as I'm bringing my own game, we're gonna bust out some D&D...

 

I'll "get to know" your dwarf barbarian

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Honestly, the teacher handing out decks of cards and telling each table to play crazy eights for 30 minutes would have been a better icebreaker. CAH would have been awesome, but as Bryan pointed out, probably not appropriate for a Kindergarten teacher to introduce her student's parents to, especially not in front an observing school administrator.

 

I remember more about my fellow parents from what was discussed at our table in the few minutes before the teacher got organized, than I do from the entire icebreaker activity. And that's always been the case - like Slendertroll, for me the exercise becomes more about the anxiety than the information being shared.

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