Training icebreakers: 20 ways to start your class right
Training icebreakers not only help relax everyone in the room, they help instructors get to know their students better. Trainees—even if they are already acquainted—get to know each other better, too.
Everyone likes to talk about himself or herself, and everyone likes to laugh. These training icebreakers are intended to be be quick, not too personal, and, in most cases, easy for people to answer with little forethought. They also should spur you to think of many other training icebreakers appropriate to your situation.
- What person, living or dead, would you most like to share a meal with? (Promise to deduct “points” for the usuals: Lincoln, Gandhi, etc.)
- What crazy job have you had in the past that would surprise everyone?
- What scares you most? (spiders, clowns, overcooked pasta, etc.)
- What sound do you find most annoying?
- What was the first thing anyone said to you this morning? (Besides Good Morning or Did you make coffee?)
- What event in your life would make an interesting movie?
- Would a movie about you appear on Netflix, Lifetime or Hallmark?
- Who would play you in a movie?
- What book have you re-read the most times?
- What famous person is your doppelgänger?
- What was your favorite toy as a child?
- What was the best birthday gift you ever received?
- What was the best gift you ever gave someone?
- What was your favorite home-cooked meal as a child?
- What food would you be happy to never eat, see, or smell again?
- What place have you never visited that you’re dying to experience?
- What color would friends and family say best describes your personality?
- If you were a car, what kind would best fit your personality?
- When parking, do you circle until you find a spot close to the door or park as soon as you find a spot? Why?
- What is your dream job regardless of ability, age, time, and education?
To add an extra layer to training icebreakers, make it a fun contest in which the “winner” receives a cheap, silly prize that will make everyone laugh.
If you’re already using a registration process like Learning Stream, you may be asking registrants what they expect to get out of training. Additionally, ask one or two training icebreaker questions on the registration form. If the trainees already know each other, generate a list of responses and then ask everyone to guess which student provided which answer.
Have other training icebreakers to share? Just use the comment box below.