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Team Building

by Kim Honea of Mt. Magazine Council

This was a fun session for most of us, with the class divided into groups as needed to make each of the games work.

First game was a tabletop game, with each group having a table with 5 loops of rope on it. Each loop was a different color, and four of them had been tied through the fifth. Our job was to look at the pile, and decide as a group which rope went through all of the others.

This was intended as a communications exercise, and we flunked! The group I was in thought we had agreement, but it turned out we didn't when called upon to explain how we had arrived at our choice. (We DID eventually pick the right rope.)

Lesson learned -- make sure EVERYONE is on board when a decision has been "agreed" to!

Next task was to line up by first initial of our middle name -- without saying anything or making any hand gestures.

One woman had her middle initial on her nametag, but no one noticed! My group eventually had people drawing capital letters on the rug with their feet, with the woman with an "A" middle name running to one end of the room. Task was complicated by the fact that several people had no middle names -- and they could correctly have been on either end!

The next ask (we were getting into it now!) was "board over the Amazon". A narrow ribbon had been placed across the floor of the room, and we were told to line up on the ribbon. The group was divided in half, and we had to get the group at one end of the ribbon past the other group, without touching the floor (except on the ribbon).
We then tried egg passing (using little plastic eggs) through PVC pipe. We were given pieces of PVC pipe, a few with an elbow at one end, and one with an elbow at both ends. (Most had no elbows.) We had to pass small oval eggs through them, without dropping the eggs or using our hands to keep the eggs from rolling out the end and dropping on the floor.
Again in groups, we tried turning a plastic tablecloth over -- while standing on it!
Our final task was to see which group could build the tallest tower using only plastic straws.