Throw out the ice breakers, these games will get your students up and moving while learning about each other!
The foundation for friendship is built upon shared interests.
Yes, trust and empathy are all part of it but at it's core, if you have nothing in common, you are probably not going to have anything to talk about, do together or bond over.
That's why it's so important for our students to share their interests and be aware of what their peers are interested in. They are not typically going to go around announcing random things about themselves so here's 3 ways to help them out!
1. SWITCH SIDES
Divide your class into 2 groups. Half the group is at the end of a cleared space and half on the other side. You, (or rotate with he students), call out, "Switch Sides if you.... (interest, attribute or experience)" Mix it up! "Switch sides if you love dinosaurs! have blue eyes! have a brother! Play with transformers!"
When the students hear something that is true to them they then run across to the other side of the room. This motivates them to listen closely too because they really want to see if it's time to run!
2. ME TOO!
In this game, you can have the students in a circle, on the rug, or even just at their desks if that's easiest. Have each student say something about themselves or you can make up different interests. After the original student shares something (e.g. "I play basketball"), all the students who also share that activity, shout "Me too!" You can also have them stand up and shout "me too!"
3. HIGH 5 If YOU...
Circle up your students and similar
to the other games, you are going to say certain interests, attributes or experiences but this time the instruction is, "Come to the middle and high five everyone who.... (speaks Spanish, watches Mr. Beast, has a summer birthday, etc.). Since I use this one with the older kiddos, a lot of times I ask them after who can remember some of the scenarios. It's not a test so don't get too serious with them. Just for fun, try it out and they'll surprise you.