What is A Great Wind Blows?
The Great Wind Blows icebreaker game is a fun and engaging activity that helps people get to know each other better while breaking the ice. The purpose of this game is to encourage movement, interaction, and communication among participants. It involves arranging chairs in a circle and having one person in the middle who starts the round by saying “Great wind blows for everyone who…” followed by a characteristic that applies to them. Players who share that characteristic must then quickly find a new seat that is more than two chairs away from their original spot. If they cannot find a vacant seat, they become the new person in the middle. This game is an excellent way for teachers, youth group leaders, and camp counselors to help participants move around, create a lively atmosphere, and learn interesting things about each other at the beginning of classes, youth groups, or camps.
Rules for A Great Wind Blows
- Arrange chairs in a circle, with one less chair than the number of players.
- The person in the middle starts the round by saying “Great wind blows for everyone who…” followed by a characteristic that applies to them.
- Players who share the stated characteristic must stand and quickly find a new seat that is more than 2 chairs away from their original seat.
- If a player cannot find a vacant seat, they become the new person in the middle.
- Be creative with the characteristics used to keep the game engaging and fun.
Materials needed for A Great Wind Blows
- Chairs: You will need several chairs, one fewer than the total number of players.
- Players: This icebreaker game requires multiple participants. The more people playing, the more fun the game!
Setting up for A Great Wind Blows
To set up for the “A Great Wind Blows” icebreaker activity, you will need a space large enough to accommodate all players in a circle of chairs. Arrange chairs in a circle, one fewer than the total number of players, with all chairs facing inward toward the middle. One player should be chosen to start in the middle of the circle and stand up. That’s it for the setup! No materials are needed, only a suitable space and chairs.
How to play A Great Wind Blows
- Set up the chairs in a circle: I arrange all the chairs to form a circle, with each chair facing inward toward the middle.
- Choose the first person to be in the middle: I select one player to start in the middle of the circle, standing up.
- Begin the round: The person in the middle starts by saying “Great wind blows for everyone who…” and follows it with a characteristic that is true for them. For example, they might say “Great wind blows for everyone who has been to Canada.”
- Find a new seat: All players who share the stated characteristic must stand and quickly find a new seat that is more than 2 chairs away from their original seat. If they are unable to find an empty seat, they become the new person in the middle.
- Continue playing: The game continues with each new person in the middle starting a new round by stating a characteristic that applies to them and all players who share that characteristic must stand and quickly find a new seat.
Benefits of A Great Wind Blows
- Encourages Movement: The game involves physical movement, which can help keep players engaged and active.
- Fosters Social Interaction: By requiring players to find new seats based on shared characteristics, the game encourages interaction and communication between participants.
- Promotes Creativity: With a wide range of potential characteristics to choose from, the game encourages creativity in coming up with new and interesting traits.
- Breaks the Ice: The game is specifically designed as an icebreaker activity, making it an effective way to help people get to know each other and feel more comfortable in social situations.
- Reinforces Positive Behavior: By rewarding players who have certain characteristics or experiences, the game can help reinforce positive behaviors and attitudes.
- Provides Entertaining Gameplay: With its simple rules and fast-paced action, the Great Wind Blows icebreaker is a fun and engaging way to spend time with others.
Skills built with A Great Wind Blows
- Communication skills: Playing A Great Wind Blows requires participants to clearly and concisely communicate the characteristic they have chosen, helping to improve their communication skills.
- Active listening skills: In order to find a new seat when the “great wind blows,” players must actively listen to the characteristic being called out and determine if it applies to them. This helps build active listening skills.
- Social awareness: By sharing personal characteristics or experiences, participants can gain a better understanding of their peers and improve their social awareness.
- Physical movement: The game involves standing up, finding a new seat, and moving around the room, providing an opportunity for physical movement and exercise.
- Creativity: Coming up with unique and interesting characteristics for the game encourages creativity and out-of-the-box thinking.
- Inclusion and empathy: By calling out characteristics that apply to various groups of people, A Great Wind Blows promotes a sense of inclusion and helps build empathy towards others’ experiences.
Why I like A Great Wind Blows
I like the Great Wind Blows icebreaker because it is an engaging and interactive way to help people get to know each other. The game encourages movement and social interaction, making it a great activity for breaking the ice at the beginning of class, youth group, or camp. I appreciate how the game’s structure allows for creative and varied prompts, keeping things interesting and ensuring that there is something for everyone.
Furthermore, I find that Great Wind Blows is an effective way to learn unique and fun facts about others, making it a valuable tool for building connections and fostering a sense of community. The game’s fast-paced nature also keeps players on their toes, ensuring that they remain engaged and attentive throughout the activity. Overall, I believe that Great Wind Blows is a valuable addition to any icebreaker repertoire, providing a fun and dynamic way to encourage social interaction and build connections among group members.
Tips for making A Great Wind Blows more inclusive
- Tip: Use positive characteristics or interests. Instead of using negative traits or experiences as criteria for the great wind blows, focus on positive attributes or shared interests to ensure that everyone feels included. For example, “Great wind blows for everyone who loves reading,” or “Great wind blows for people who enjoy hiking.”
- Tip: Make sure the statements are inclusive. Avoid using statements that may unintentionally exclude certain individuals, such as those related to physical ability, family status, or cultural background. Instead, use criteria that can apply to anyone, like “Great wind blows for everyone who enjoys trying new foods,” or “Great wind blows for people who have pets.”
- Tip: Encourage self-expression. Allow participants to share their own unique qualities as a way of introducing themselves and connecting with others. This could be through statements such as, “Great wind blows for everyone who wants to share something about their favorite hobby,” or “Great wind blows for those who’d like to tell us about their hometown.”
- Tip: Be mindful of the environment. Create a welcoming atmosphere by paying attention to factors like room temperature, seating arrangements, and noise levels. This can help ensure that everyone feels comfortable participating in the activity.
- Tip: Offer alternative activities. If some participants are not able or willing to join the Great Wind Blows game, have alternative icebreakers available so they can still engage with the group. Consider offering options such as conversation starters, team-building games, or creative projects that cater to different interests and comfort levels.
Reflection questions for A Great Wind Blows
- What was one thing you learned about another participant that surprised you? This question can help participants reflect on the interesting facts they learned about their peers during the game, promoting a sense of curiosity and open-mindedness towards others.
- How did you feel when you had to quickly find a new seat? This question allows participants to share their emotions and experiences, promoting empathy and understanding among the group members.
- Did you discover any shared interests or experiences with other participants? This question can help participants connect on a deeper level and foster a sense of community within the group.
- What was your favorite characteristic that the person in the middle announced? Why? This question encourages participants to think about what they value in others, promoting positive social interactions and relationships.
- How did you feel when you were the person in the middle? What strategies did you use to find a new seat? This question can help participants reflect on their own emotions and behaviors during the game, promoting self-awareness and problem-solving skills.
- Did anyone choose not to stand up for a characteristic even though they could have? Why do you think that was? This question can lead to a discussion about individual choices and social norms, promoting critical thinking and inclusivity.
About the author
Founder & Chief Icebreaker
I started Icebreaker Spot because I truly believe that strong connections are the foundation of successful teams. I wanted to create a platform that would make it easy for people to find and share icebreakers and team building activities, empowering them to build trust, foster collaboration, and ultimately, achieve greatness together.
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