Friday , 23 February 2018

Teach, Train, Transform

  • Curriculum
  • Exercise
  • Teambuilding
Living in fundamentals every day (LIFE) is a total body, mind, and spirit concept that takes all aspects of life and places Christ at the center. In this portion of teach,train, and transform we provide tools, videos, and resources to help steward your God given body well.

Teambuilding exercises break down personal barriers giving participants the opportunity to set goals, practice effective communication, overcome difficult obstacles, and learn to effectively solve difficult problems. As groups move through scenarios, challenges can often cause a group to move from physical problem solving to emotional problem solving; which involves learning to identify emotional stress through both verbal and non-verbal cues and, learn to effectively lead and support one another in an emotionally stressful environment. Teambuilding exercises bring actions, behaviors, and communication styles to the surface, which allows the group to confront growth areas immediately and learn from their mistakes in a non-critical environment. For further information on team building exercises contact us at
Teambuilding Activities
  • Mountains Speak
  • Bomb Sweep
  • Pipeline
  • Hear No, See no, Speak no
Mountains Speak
Set up: Mountains speak is a similar concept to bomb sweep that takes a rather large concept and shrinks it down to string rubber bands and plastic cups. The group uses an already constructed crane made of string/yarn and a rubber band and manipulates it to stack plastic cups in the shape of a pyramid. Each participant must hold the very end of their string to simulate a boundary that may or may not actually exist. It is important that participants know they must not touch the cups with their bodies at any time.

Construct your crane by tying 8-10 pieces of yarn, about 3-5 feet long, to a rubber band. Use six plastic drinking cups. If you are planning on a large group activity, plastic solo cups are cheap and come in a large quantity.

Set Up: It can be a race for time, another team, or a leisurely activity to construct a pyramid or mountain out of at least 6 plastic cups. The group must develop a strategy including how they will work together and manipulate the crane to pick up and stack the cups. Use a hula hoop or a square rug as a boundary to ensure participants do not touch the cups with their hand. They must not touch the cups at any time even if they drag the cups out of the boundary.

Super size this game by using a bike inner tube, buckets, and rope (8-12 feet long). The concept is the same but it moves participants back further which can create communication problems.
Write numbers on one side of the cup and letters on the other. Chances are it will take some time before everyone realizes that there are numbers and letters which could cause confusion and create some frustration. Be sure to debrief this variation. Discuss what it’s like to have a different perspective and how effective communication helped solve the problem.

Bomb Sweep
Setup/Briefing: Gather materials. This activity can include a lot of extra props or just a few depending on how you set it up. We’ll look at bomb sweep first. You’ll need a coffee can type cylinder, bucket, a few random objects or balls that will fit inside the coffee cans, a used bicycle inner tube, 8-14 pieces of rope or webbing ranging in length from 5’ to 10’ and something to create a boundary zone in the shape of a circle. A large rope or the center circle on a playing field works nicely.
The setup can vary but the idea is the same. The objects in the coffee can have been contaminated by a deadly toxin that needs to be placed into a transportable container (bucket) The existing coffee can that the objects are in has malfunctioned and needs to be replaced. The team must construct a device out of the random supplies to pick up the coffee can containing the objects and dump the objects into the bucket. The circle represents a radiation zone from the coffee can so the can must stay very close to the center of the boundary circle and no one can enter the radiation zone for any reason. The game is completed once the can is dumped into the bucket.

Participants must stay out of the contamination zone
Participants can use materials they have been given to construct a crane device
At no point can toxic material be touched by a participant

Safety: The biggest issue with this activity is people mentally checking out that don’t have an active role. It can be hard to address that issue if the group is productive because they may not see why leaving people out is a problem.

Possible Ideas:
There are multiple ways to accomplish this activity.
One way is to use the bike inner tube as a giant rubber band. Connect the ropes to the inner tube in multiple locations and have participants stretch the band around the bucket so they can pick it up.
Using large ropes the group may be able to wrap the rope around the bucket or tie a slip knot around the bucket so they can pick it up.

Pipeline initiative
Using half of a varied length of PVC pipe, participants must transport a marble from one location to another location much like an oil or gas pipeline. The marbles will start in a bowl or bucket and finish in a different bowl or bucket. Participants are responsible for handling only their piece of PVC and cannot move when their PVC contains a marble. Make sure to set the group up for earned success. 5-10 marbles in the bowl may be a good starting amount giving the facilitator the ability to add or subtract marbles for positive or negative behavior.

Create a fun story for the game such as moving giant orbs of a new form of energy from the mine to the powerplant; or perhaps, there was a power failure at the chocolate factory and the chocolate is beginning to pile up in one location and we have to move it without touching it (that causes it to melt). As quickly and efficiently as possible.

At no time should a human body part make contact with a marble
Participants can only touch the PVC pipe that belongs to them
When there is a marble in your piece of PVC you cannot move your feet
Everyone MUST engage in the movement of each marble in order for it to count(no one should sit back and let others do all the work)
Multiple marbles CAN move at once.
If a marble touches the floor or has human contact, it must go back to the bucket or count as a touch against the team. (see drop/touch rule below)
3-5 touches is usually more than enough. Touches should be based on group size, skill level, and distance between start and end point

Adaptations: These are NOT required and are only ideas for making challenge easier or harder depending on the needs of the group
If a marble is dropped the facilitator can decide whether it goes back to the start or continues on from that location. If they have MULTIPLE TOUCHES, they may be able to continue until they drop a specified amount of times which causes a restart.
Multiple touches: a set amount of drops or human to marble contact that when reached, requires the game to restart
Restart: The end bucket can be set up as a safe and as long as marbles make it to the bucket they do not go back to the start, even in the event of a multiple touch restart.
ADD/SUBTRACT rule: The facilitator should remind participants during the beginning that positive behavior may be rewarded and likewise negative behavior may cause a group consequence.

What was the task?(gets them talking) What was your plan? How was the plan carried out? Who was the most important person? Who was the Leader? what were some other roles people played? How can you support one another like you did in this game? or How can you improve how you support and encourage one another?(based on the outcome) Address failures as growth/learning opportunities. What are some obstacles you faced along the way? How did you overcome them?

Hear no, See no, Speak no

Setup/Briefing: This activity requires at least three people but can become more interactive and exciting by adding more groups of three. The group will work together to devise a plan on how to communicate with one another so that a blindfolded participant can retrieve an object or multiple objects such as a shoe, nametag, or other personal effect that can be identified.
One person will be blindfolded and will receive verbal directions from another participant they will be the seeker
One participant will be blindfolded and must give directions verbally to the first blindfolded individual, they will be the caller
One person will not be blindfolded but cannot speak. This person must develop a communication method (typically tapping shoulders or moving arms) with their blindfolded counterpart who can speak but can’t see. This person is the director
The director and the caller must stay in place. They are not allowed to follow the seeker
Establish a playing area that establishes boundaries and add or remove obstacles to change the difficulty level.

Safety: If there are multiple people it is important to let everyone know if they hear the word STOP or FREEZE yelled loudly that everyone should stop moving immediately. There could be a safety hazard.

Rules: Once the game begins, the director, who can see, can no longer talk. The blindfolded seeker must follow the callers instructions. If someone yells STOP, stop immediately because of a safety issue. Sometimes groups must improvise by creating new instructions they didn’t anticipate.

Adaptations: In a small group of three individuals try and switch locations for each participant or create new obstacles once blindfolds have been put on. Have participants get multiple objects

In large groups of people, have everyone place their shoes in a pile in the middle of the room. Have teams try and instruct their blindfolded seeker to retrieve their own shoe. You could have the seeker wear one of their own shoes to help the visual participant match the shoe to the person.

Fear of not being able to see what’s around you
Trusting in the person giving you directions
Developing an effective communication strategy
How to adapt when you did not plan for a specific instruction such as “bend down” or “pick up” or “try another object, that’s not yours”.