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To be used at any point that the facilitator thinks the group needs to change focus or to refocus or to be reacquainted if there has been a break in between sessions.

• Tick Tock

Participants sit in a circle. The facilitator takes two markers and hands one to the person on their right saying, “this is a tock”. The person who takes it from the trainer says, ”A what?”. The trainer replies, ”a tock”. The person then continues the process to their right. Then the trainer turns to their left and hands the second marker to that person, saying “this is a tick”, etc. Continue until a tick meets a tock and see what happens!

• I like people who…

One person stands in the middle of a circle of chairs. The person standing says, “I like people who like…” e.g., “I like people who like chocolate.” Everybody who likes chocolate then has to move across the circle to another chair. The person who is left standing then chooses their own like.

• Something new

For groups who know each other. Get participants to speak to as many people in the group as possible, finding something new about each person. Keep the time quite tight (e.g., five minutes) and make sure people keep moving.

• Fruit salad

This exercise is an excellent energiser. Form all the participants in a circle and ask each to sit on their chair or cushion. Make sure that there are no extra cushions or chairs. Starting with yourself (standing in the middle of the circle with no chair or cushion), allocate the name of a fruit to each person in turn. There should be four fruit names, for example, mango, apple, pineapple, orange.

Explain that when you call out the name of a fruit (for example, mango), all the mangoes should stand up and change places. They are not allowed to sit back in the same chair. However, the caller in the middle should also try to sit down on a vacant chair. Because there is one fewer chair than people, this means that one person will end up without a chair. That person must stand in the middle and call out the name of a fruit. Again, all the people with that fruit name must change places, and so on.

At any time, the caller can shout “fruit salad”. Then everyone must change places!

Continue for a few rounds or until everyone is exhausted!

• Elephants and giraffes

Everyone stands in a circle. One person calls out the name of a participant followed by ”elephant”’ or ”giraffe”. For ”elephant”, the named person holds out their arm like a trunk. The people on each side make the ears using their outside arms. For ”giraffe”,’ the named person raises both arms above their head with the hands clasped to make the giraffe’s head. The two people on either side extend their outside legs forwards to make the giraffe’s legs. Anyone who is slow or does the wrong thing has to call out the next name and animal.

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