Sometimes zombies (students) just need help discovering what they have in common in order to create friendships. Play the icebreaker, As the Wind Blows, to help your students build face-to-face connections.
An Icebreaker to Spark Friendships
Some days sound like my classes of seventh grade English learners and emerging readers socialize too much. But, even on these days, I sometimes notice my quieter students go from the chatty line outside my door to the rush to the cafeteria without saying a word unless it is part of the lesson. Sure, these quieter students help to balance out the chatty ones, but I worry that they have not yet made any friends in my class, where they spend ten hours a week.
If you play As the Wind Blows, please share on social media and use the hashtag #tvszed and/or tag @npriester or @tvszed, and I will share it with others. I also have a Facebook group at bit.ly/tvszFB for Teachers vs Zombies. Feel free to leave questions or suggestions below. Have fun!
How to Play As the Wind Blows
- Students will discover things they have in common
- Students sit in a circle with one student in the middle who says “The wind blows people who X.” The students who X applies to, find a new seat. The person left standing becomes the speaker.
- Avoid being the last person to find a seat
- Enough floor space for all students to sit in chairs in a circle. (Alternative: draw X’s on the ground using sidewalk chalk in place of chairs and play outside.)
- 5-8 minutes (Remember, “Stop while they’re having fun!”)
- All students, except one, sit in a circle in chairs.
- Remaining student (It) stands in the middle of the circle.
- It says, “The wind blows people who X.” The X can be filled in with something true about It. Here are some examples:
- The wind blows people who have been to Disneyland.
- The wind blows people who sleep in a bunk bed.
- The wind blows people who play on a soccer team.
- Students who X applies to, including It, must stand up and find a new chair (not the chair right next to him/her if possible).
- The remaining student becomes It.