This icebreaker is specifically for teaching Situational Leadership and the four Development Levels. However, it can be used with workshops on coaching, mentoring or general leadership skills. You will teach the participants to sing a simple song at an expert level.
o PowerPoint slide with the lyrics of your simple song, LCD projector and screen
o (Alternative) Flipchart and marker to write and post the lyrics
o Flipchart and marker to keep track of the participants’ progress
o This icebreaker assumes that you have already taught the group about the four Development Levels of Situational Leadership. If you have not, leave out any references to Development Level and just talk about Beginning Skill, Medium Skill and Expert Skill.
o Select a song (with motions if possible) that they don’t know. Pick a song that it very easy to learn with repetitive lyrics, e.g., “Jesus Loves Me,” “B-I-B-L-E,” “Mercy Is Falling,” “River of Life” or “This Is the Day” would work. It’s okay if different participants are more familiar with the song, but most should not know the words and/or motions. If you have some D4’s (experts) in the group, get them to teach the song to everyone else, or if you have a significant number of D4s, have them teach smaller groups. This activity can work especially well for teaching a group that doesn’t have English as its first language.
o Create a PowerPoint slide or flipchart with the lyrics of a simple song
o Create a flipchart with four columns, labeled, “D1,” “D2,” “D3” and “D4”
o Practice the script
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):
- “How many of you recognize this melody?” (Hum the song for the group, or play it instrumentally. Don’t sing the words yet.)
- “Now, I’m not going to embarrass you in any way, but I’m curious to find out. How many of you feel like you have the skills and knowledge to sing this song?” (Look for a show of hands.)
- “How many of you would be confident and motivated to sing this song in the privacy of your own home with no one else listening?” (Look for a show of hands.)
- “How many of you would still be confident and motivated to sing this song here in this room?” (Look for a show of hands. If you have several hands up, ask how many would STILL be confident and motivated to sing this song alone in front of the class. If they are willing and wouldn’t be embarrassed, let them come up and perform the song. Otherwise, you should sing it for the class with the motions – if there are any.)
- “I am going to teach you how to sing this song (and do the motions).”
- “My goal is to help you all become either D3 – Cautious Performers – or D4 – Self-Reliant Achievers – before I am done.”
- “But I want to track my progress, so I would like to get a count of how many people we have at each level.”
- Ask each group to assign a table leader. You can add energy to this and make it quicker if you tell everyone to point their fingers toward the ceiling and then point to the person they think should be the leader on the count of three.
- Ask the table leaders to talk to their teams and get a count for each development level.
- Then, ask each leader for a count, and write it on the chart.
- “How many at your table would you say are a D1 – confident and motivated but lacking skills and/or knowledge?” (Get the counts from each table leader, and post them on a flipchart.)
- “How many at your table would you say are a D2 – lacking confidence and/or motivation and lacking skills and/or knowledge?” (Get the counts from each table leader, and post them on a flipchart.)
- “How many at your table would you say are a D3 – lacking confidence and/or motivation but having both skills and knowledge?” (Get the counts from each table leader, and post them on a flipchart.)
- “many at your table would you say are a D4 – having confidence, motivation, skills AND knowledge?” (Get the counts from each table leader, and post them on a flipchart. You might want to tally the number of each Development Level and turn it into a percentage to track progress.)
- “Great, let’s learn the song!”
- Teach the song one line at a time along with any motions (one word at a time if your participants do not know the English words).
- Have them repeat after you each time until they get it.
- After several times through the entire song, ask table leaders to count the number of people in their group at each level, and write these new numbers on the chart.
- Then, ask your brave D4s to come and teach to the whole group (if the D4s are willing).
- Let them go through the song twice at a moderate pace so that others can learn.
- If some in the larger group are still struggling, ask someone who has moved to D3 or D4 in each group to help the rest of the group, or have your D4 experts go to those tables to coach them.
- Give them a few minutes to work through it, and then ask the table leaders to find out what development level their team members are at. (You won’t always be able to motivate everyone to D4, but you can at least give them the skills and knowledge to reach D3.)
- Write these totals on the chart, and talk about the progress that has been made.
- Finally, ask all your D4s (old and new) to lead everyone two more times through the entire song (with the motions).
- Congratulate the group on their expertise!
- Reward your D4 volunteers for their bravery.
- If you want to debrief the exercise, you can ask the following.
- “What helped you move from D1 or D2 to D3 or D4?”
- “What techniques did you notice me using in order to help you improve your skills and knowledge?”
“What techniques did you notice me using in order to help you improve your confidence and motivation?”
- “What else might have been helpful?”
- “Why didn’t everyone make it to D4?” (If this was the case)
- “What did you learn from this activity that you could apply to your leadership?”
This activity explores the root causes behind why it is often difficult to create lasting behavioral change. It focuses on efforts to encourage the adoption of latrines for sanitary reasons in developing nations. Participants will understand some common root causes that prevent behavioral change and be able to apply this method of root cause analysis to other changes they would like to help bring about.
- Give each group a sheet of flipchart paper and some markers.
- Have one flipchart and stand available at the front so that you can write down “KNOW, GROW, WHOA and MO” as you describe them.
- You might want to have a prize available for the team with the most unique ideas. (OPTIONAL)
Explaining the Exercise and the Background: 5 minutes.
Activity: 10 minutes
Debrief: 15 minutes.
Use the following script, or modify it to meet your needs:
- “Each year, two million children die of diarrheal diseases (WHO 1998).”
- “The main source of diarrheal infection is contact with human excrement (Caincross, 1999), so improving hygiene practices in this area will have a significant impact in increasing child survival rates.”
- “Unfortunately, 40% of the world’s population still doesn’t have adequate sanitation. 80% of this group lives in rural areas (WHO 2000).”
- “Promotion of improved sanitation practices has had very little impact over the past 20 years.”
- “There are many reasons for this, but it’s important to know the right reason for each context before we try to implement a solution.”
- “There are four types of root causes for why people don’t implement changes. These are Know, Grow, Whoa and Mo causes.
- KNOW – they don’t know what is expected, why it would be good for them or how to do it. For example,
- GROW – they lack the skills necessary to do it and need to grow and develop.
- WHOA – there is something out of their control that stops them (“whoa” means stop).
- MO – they don’t want to. They lack the MOtivation.
- “In your groups, I would like you to create a flipchart with four quadrants. Label them Know (top-left), Grow (top-right), Whoa (bottom-right), Mo (bottom-left).”
- “Brainstorm reasons that fit into each of the four types of root causes for why a community might not install sanitary latrines and use them regularly.” (Allow ten minutes for brainstorming. There are some examples below for each category if you need them to help the groups get started. When they have finished their brainstorm, have each team present. (If you want to increase the energy level of the brainstorm, give a prize for the team with the most unique ideas.) After the presentations, have them discuss the debrief questions below.)
- They don’t know how to install latrines.
- Concepts of dirt and clean are different in different cultures. In some places, children’s feces are considered harmless, so there seems to be no need to dispose of them properly.
- Latrines are sometimes viewed as dirty and even evil places.
- They don’t have the skills to install latrines.
- Latrines may be seen as difficult to operate and maintain (especially when it comes to emptying them).
- They cannot afford to install latrines.
- There may not be enough space to construct one.
- Community leaders may be hostile to foreigners, pocket funds or sabotage efforts, because they fear loss of authority or face or see an opportunity to profit. (This is Mo for the community leaders, but it’s a Whoa for the rest of the community.
- Religious beliefs influence adoption of new practices. For example, in India, latrines we’re installed in the northeast corner of a lot. In Hindu beliefs, this is an inauspicious place to put the latrine, so no one used them.
- Women may feel they don’t have enough privacy in a public latrine.
- The community may be distrustful or afraid of foreigners’ strange ideas.
- Men may not want to use a latrine because it becomes “unclean” after a menstruating woman uses it.
(The source document for this information is “How to Promote the Use of Latrines in Developing Countries,” by Jennifer McConville in April 2003 at Michigan Technological University. http://www.cee.mtu.edu/sustainable_engineering/resources/technical/latrine_promotion_FINAL.pdf)
- How important do you think it is to know the true root cause that someone (or a group) isn’t implementing a behavioral change?
- How can you use the four types of root causes (Know, Grow, Whoa, Mo) to plan implementing changes better?
- How will you apply what you’ve learned in your work?
This object lesson looks at the different clothing Joseph wore and asks the question, “do clothes really make the man?” The old adage means that how you dress says a lot about you, but in Joseph’s case, he was the same person in any costume. However, no matter how good Joseph was, he couldn’t be good enough to impress God just through his good works. God isn’t interested in what we DO until He changes WHO we are, and that only happens when we accept Jesus as our Savior.
- Genesis 37-50
- Isaiah 64:5-6
- Isaiah 61:10
- Several smocks (Loose-fitting fabrics that simply have a hole in the middle to fit over the head (for quick changing during the lesson) and a belt to tie them off. You can do more elaborate costumes if you want, but these simple outfits will work.)
- One plain white smock (to start the story)
- One “coat of many colors”
- Two dingy-colored or burlap smocks (for slavery before being sold and for prison)
- One nicer white smock (for serving Potiphar)
- Two even nicer smocks (for when Potiphar put Joseph in charge of his entire estate and for when Joseph comes up from prison)
- One even nicer, nicer smock (for when Joseph was put in charge of Egypt – “robes of fine linen”)
- One “filthy rags” smock (to represent our “righteousness”)
- One “golden” smock (to represent the righteousness of Christ)
- Gold chains costume jewelry
- Ring costume jewelry
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):
- “There is famous saying that ‘Clothes make the man.’”
- “It means that what you wear says a lot about you and that people will judge you based on the clothes that you wear.”
- “I think we ought to be careful about judging people based on the clothes that they wear.”
- “They could be a great person inside of terrible clothes.”
- “For example, Joseph wore many clothes in his lifetime, but for most of his life, Joseph was the same person underneath those clothes.” (Ask for volunteer to come to the front, and put the plain, white smock on him or her.)
- “Here’s Joseph, a young man of 17 years.”
- “Look closely at him. I want you to tell me if he changes when he gets his new clothes.”
- “Joseph had 11 brothers, ten older than him.”
- “In Hebrew culture, the oldest son was supposed to get the best treatment, but Joseph’s father loved him more than all the others, because he was the firstborn son of Rachel, Jacob’s favorite wife.)
- “To show his love for Joseph, Jacob gave him a fancy coat to wear.” (Put coat of many colors on volunteer.)
- “Look closely; is it the same person or a different person underneath?” (Acknowledge responses. Hopefully, the participants will agree that Joseph was the same person no matter what he was wearing.)
- “This made Joseph’s brothers really jealous and angry with him, and they got even angrier when Joseph started having dreams about ruling over his brothers.”
- “The next time the brothers were out shepherding their sheep, Joseph’s father sent him to check on them.”
- “He made the mistake of wearing his fancy robe to go and find them.”
- “The brothers were all wearing the clothes of smelly, dirty shepherds, and here came Joseph, wearing the clothes of someone who didn’t have to work because he was so special.”
- “When they saw Joseph with his fancy coat, they were furious with him and talked about killing him.”
- “In the end, they decided to sell him to a passing group of slave traders.” (Put the dingy-colored smock on the volunteer.)
- “What do you think now? Is it the same Joseph, or did the clothes change him?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “The slave traders took Joseph to Egypt and sold him to an Egyptian, named Potiphar. There, he was given the clothes of a servant.” (Put nicer white smock on volunteer.)
- “Same Joseph or different?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “Joseph served Potiphar so well that Potiphar soon promoted him and put him in charge of everything in his household.” (Put even nicer white smock on volunteer.)
- “Is he different yet, or is he the same Joseph he was when we started the story?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “But then a terrible and unfair thing happened! Potiphar’s wife accused Joseph of doing something he didn’t do, and Potiphar was so angry that he threw Joseph into prison.” (Put second dingy smock on volunteer.)
- “Do these clothes make him someone different?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “Joseph was in prison for years, but he served the prison warden so well that the warden put him in charge of everything in the prison.”
- “There came a day when Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) had a few dreams that bothered him.”
- “No one could interpret the dreams for him, but he learned from one of his servants that Joseph had the power to interpret dreams.”
- “Pharaoh called Joseph up from prison, and they dressed him in nicer clothes to prepare him to meet Pharaoh.” (Put second even nicer white smock on volunteer.)
- “Has he changed?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “Joseph interpreted Pharaoh’s dreams for him, and Pharaoh was so impressed that he promoted Joseph to the 2nd highest level within Egypt. Only Pharaoh was more powerful than Joseph.”
- “Pharaoh had Joseph dressed in robes of fine linen and put gold chains around his neck and an important ring on his finger.” (Put even nicer, nicer smock, gold chains and ring on volunteer.)
- “Even in this really nice set of clothes, isn’t Joseph still the same person underneath?” (Acknowledge responses.)
- “In this new role, Joseph did even better than he did in all his other roles.”
- “He helped the Egyptians to save some food during the good years when there was lots of food, and when the famine came, there was plenty of food for everyone in Egypt and in the surrounding nations.”
- “So, here we have Joseph with his eight different sets of clothes.” (Show all eight smocks.)
- “But the Joseph underneath is the same Joseph no matter what he is wearing.”
- “Joseph always did his best and served those in authority faithfully, and in the end, he was recognized as a great and wise leader by Pharaoh.”
- “Joseph was a pretty impressive guy!”
- “When we read about him, most of us think it would be pretty cool to be like Joseph.”
- “But you know what? No matter how impressive Joseph is to us, he doesn’t impress God just because he was a good person.”
- “The Bible tells us in Isaiah 64:5-6, ‘How then can we be saved? All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.’”
- “What that means is that even the ‘best’ person in the world – the one who does the most good things – looks like he is dressed in filthy rags to God.” (Put filthy rags smock on volunteer.)
- “We can’t save ourselves from Hell just by being good – not even if we are as a good as Joseph was.”
- “You see, God doesn’t care what you DO until you change WHO you are, and there is only one way to change WHO you are in God’s eyes…you have to accept Jesus (God’s Son) as your Savior.”
- “Two thousand years ago, Jesus died on a cross to save us from our sins.”
- “He had to do that because we sin.”
- “You sin, I sin…everyone who has ever lived sins.”
- “The Bible says that the penalty for sin is death. That means separation from God.”
- “But God loved us so much that he didn’t want us to be separate from Him.”
- “So He sent His Son, Jesus, to take the penalty of our sin for us.”
- “Jesus died on a cross to pay for our sins. Then He rose from the dead to give us new life!”
- “But you have to accept what Jesus did for you. It’s a gift, and He won’t make you take it.”
- “If you want to, you can still pay the penalty for your own sins, but that would be a terrible waste of the gift Jesus bought for you when He died on the cross.”
- “But here’s what’s cool about accepting Jesus’ gift!” (Have someone read Isaiah 61:10)
- “This Scripture is talking about two of the things Jesus did for us by dying on the cross.”
- “The first is that He clothed us with salvation. In other words, we get to go to heaven.”
- “The second is that He dressed us up in a robe of righteousness. In other words, He covered our unrighteousness (our filthy rags) with His righteousness.” (Put golden smock on volunteer.)
- “Now THIS impresses God!”
- “When we accept Jesus as our Savior, He covers our sinfulness with His perfection.”
- “Then, whenever God, the Father, looks at us, He sees the righteousness of His Son, Jesus.”
- “This is the only set of clothes that will ever change WHO you are, because it makes you a child of God.”
- “It has nothing to do with what you DO, because it’s a gift from Jesus.”
- “You can’t earn it. You can only accept it.”
- “So in a sense, clothes really do make the man, but in God’s eyes, there are only two types of clothes that say anything about WHO you are.”
- “Are you wearing the filthy rags of sinfulness? (Show the filthy rag smock.) ….or the righteous robe of a child of God?” (Show the golden smock.)
- “I hope you will accept the wonderful gift Jesus bought for you. He really wants you to have it!” (Thank and dismiss volunteer. At this point (depending on your tradition), you might want to make an invitation for the audience to accept the gift of salvation and the robe of righteousness that Jesus has purchased for each of us.)
Filed under acceptance, Agape Love, Belief, Character, Christianity, Eternity, faith, Jesus, Joseph, Object Lesson, Performance, salvation, sanctification, Transformation
This game helps participants to understand a simple problem-solving model and to remember that we should always look for the Sources of the problem before we try to implement Solutions.
o Symptoms-Sources-Solutions Cards (can be found at www.teachingthem.com on the Lesson and Material Downloads page in the file, “Symptoms-Sources-Solutions Cards.ppt” – you will need 6-10 sets (a set is made up of all three cards, Symptoms, Sources and Solutions) for every 3-5 participants.)
o Card stock paper (preferred – you will need one sheet per set of cards that you print. For example, if you have 20 participants and divide them into four groups of five, you will want to have at least 24 sets of the cards (this allows each group to have at least six sets of cards). This would require 24 sheets of paper.)
o Scissors or cutting tool
o Flipchart and markers
o Prizes for the winners (optional)
o Bible (optional)
o Print out the Symptoms-Sources-Solutions cards.
o Divide the number of sets (all three cards) you printed by the number of groups you will have in the class.
o Cut out the cards. (Each card should be cut out individually. In other words, each Sources card, each Symptoms card and each, Solutions card should be separate from the others. Make sure that you keep each group of cards separate from the others so that you don’t accidentally give one group an incomplete set. Each group should have 6-10 complete sets (all three cards).)
o Shuffle each group of cards so that they are in random order. (Keep the groups separate from each other, and set them aside to be used during your workshop.)
o Take the scrap pieces of paper or card stock, and divide them up evenly between the groups. Groups will use these as “dividers” to separate each complete set of cards as they play the game. Each team will need from 5-9 dividers, depending upon how many sets of cards you give them.
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):
- “I have a simple problem solving model that I would like to share with you.”
- “It’s called ‘Symptoms-Sources-Solutions.’” (Sketch the tree on a flip chart or whiteboard as you talk.)
- “Symptoms are the part of the problem that is obvious. They are above the ground like the branches of this unhealthy tree.” (Label the top of the tree, “Symptoms,” and make the tree look unhealthy, like the example on the Symptoms card.)
- “Symptoms are the first things you notice about the problem, like when you get sick – the first things you notice are the Symptoms – a rash or a scratchy throat or a fever.”
- “These things are not the real problem; they are just the evidence of the problem.”
- “To find the real problem, you need to look for the Sources – the root of the problem.” (Label the roots of the tree, “Sources,” and make them look unhealthy with skulls and crossbones (like the example on the Sources card) or in some other way.)
- “A good doctor won’t just solve your Symptoms by giving you a pain killer, some cream and a bandage.”
- “If that’s all he does, you might feel better for a little while, but your problem isn’t going to go away.”
- “As soon as the pain killer wears off, the pain will be back, because the pain is just the messenger that tells you that the problem exists.”
- “Symptoms are a messenger, and you don’t want to just hide the Symptoms.”
- “You want to listen to what they are trying to tell you – that something is wrong and needs your attention!”
- “A good doctor will look for the Source of the problem that the Symptoms point to, because he recognizes that Symptoms are a very helpful way of learning about a deeper problem.”
- “Once he understands where the Symptoms are coming from, the doctor can prescribe a Solution that will get rid of the Symptoms by removing the Sources.” (Write “Solutions” in big letters over the tree. Make the tree healthy by crossing out your skulls or other negative illustrations and drawing some fruit on the tree.)
- “I would like for you to remember this model (Symptoms-Sources-Solutions) and how important it is to do the steps in the right order, so we’re going to play a game that will accomplish that.” (Hand out the stacks of cards facedown to each group. Also, give each group a stack of 5-9 “dividers.”)
- “Please leave the cards facedown.”
- “The strips of paper that I gave you are ‘dividers’.”
- “Please give these to one person at the table.”
- “For the cards, one person should deal them out facedown to all remaining group members (other than the one who has the dividers).” (Allow a moment for them to deal out the cards.)
- “It’s okay if some people get more cards than others. You will be working together as a team in this game.”
- “There are three different types of cards that you have in front of you.”
- “Some are Symptoms cards; Some are Sources cards and some are Solutions cards.”
- “The objective of the game is to be the fastest team to assemble all your cards in the right order.”
- “For example, when I signal the start of the game, each person will pick up the top card on his/her deck and look at it.”
- “If it says, ‘Symptoms,’ that person will slap his or her card face-up in the center of the table.”
- “Then, someone with a card that says, ‘Sources,’ will slap his or her card face-up on top of the Symptoms card.”
- “Finally, someone with a ‘Solutions’ card will slap his or her card face-up on top of the Sources card.”
- “This completes a set, so the person with the dividers should now slap down a divider strip to separate the first set of cards from the next set.”
- “Once the divider slip is on top of the Solutions card, anyone who has a ‘Symptoms’ card can now slap it down face-up on the same pile.”
- “You continue like this until all of the cards in everyone’s stacks are played.”
- “Whenever you slap down a card, you can draw a new one off the top of your deck and look at it.”
- “If someone mistakenly slaps down a card in the wrong order (for example, slapping a Solutions card on top of a Symptoms card), then he or she has to pick it back up off the pile in the center and put it facedown underneath his or her stack of cards.”
- “If no one has the correct card in his or her hands, and no one can play, everyone must ‘burn’ their card (which means that they have to put it facedown underneath their stack of cards in front of them) and draw a new card.”
- “When everyone finishes, groups should inspect their cards to make sure they are all in the right order with dividers between each complete set of three cards (Symptoms-Sources-Solutions).”
- “Each set that is correctly laid is worth one point.”
- “If they slapped any cards in the wrong order and didn’t notice until the end of the game, they lose one point for each incorrect set.”
- “The team that has the highest points wins.”
- “If there is a tie for points, then the team that finished earliest with the highest points wins.”
- “What questions do you have?” (Answer any questions. Then let them play a round. Award a prize for the winning group if you like. You might want to let them play several times. Then have them answer the following debrief questions. NOTE: If you want to use the Scriptures linked to this game as a teaching point, have participants read Isaiah 5:20-25 and create a flipchart with a drawing of a tree. Then, have them label the parts of the tree with the Symptoms and Sources of the problem. They can also list God’s Solutions to the problem and brainstorm alternative Solutions that Jerusalem and Judah could have enacted that would have resolved the Sources and eliminated the Symptoms in a more positive way.)
- What was difficult about the game?
- What comparisons can you make between the challenges in the game and the challenges related to problem solving in real life?
- What do you think are some of the consequences of going straight from Symptoms to Solutions in real-life problem solving?
- How can you prevent this from happening?
- What lessons can you take away from the Symptoms-Sources-Solutions model and game?
As a group, read the following Scriptures, and use the form to do a needs analysis of the situation.
Matthew 17:14-20 Mark 9:14-29 Luke 9:37-43
- What are the main issues?
- What isn’t working well?
- What is obvious about the problem(s)?
- What pain is it causing?
- Who/what is impacted by the performance gap?
- What is it costing individuals, the team or the organization?
- What are the organizational goals that are being impacted by the lack of performance?
- (If possible, tie these in with the organization’s strategy, vision or mission.)
- What is the potential cost to the organization if the goals and outcomes aren’t achieved and the performance problem isn’t addressed?
- What is the desired performance?
- What does success look like?
- What are the expectations?
- How will we know when we get there?
- What is happening now?
- What level of performance is currently being achieved?
- What are the gaps between the desired performance and the current performance?
- Why is the gap happening?
- Who or what is responsible?
- 1. Suggest
- What do you recommend?
- Who should do what by when?
- 2. Select
- Typically done by key leaders or stakeholders.
- 3. Start
- Typically done by key leaders or stakeholders.
- 4. Status (Celebrate or Start Over)
- Return to the Status step to evaluate the effectiveness of the solution.
Filed under Apostles, demons, Devotion, Disciples, faith, Healing, Jesus, leadership, Management, Needs Analysis, Overcoming obstacles, Performance, Problem solving, spiritual disciplines, Spiritual Growth, test
This activity helps participants to challenge silo mentalities by forcing them to work collaboratively to complete a task. The task is a painting task, in which each team (or individual) will only receive some of the colors they need to finish. In order to meet all the requirements of the task, they will have to negotiate for resources from other teams or individuals.
- Give each team (or individual, depending upon the size of your group) several colors of paint (poster paints work well).
- Teams or individuals should get different color combinations so that no one group or individual has everything that he or she needs. Recommended color combinations are:
- Team #1 – Black, white, red and yellow
- Team #2 – Black, white, blue and yellow
- Team #3 – Black, white, green and yellow
- Team #4 – Black, white, red and blue
- Give each team or individual enough paintbrushes for each team member to participate in the painting, a large sheet of paper (a flipchart works well for groups), something to mix their paint on (a piece of cardboard or a paper plate) and several small cups with water in them for rinsing the paint brush.
Explaining the Exercise: 5 minutes.
Activity: 20 minutes
Debrief: 15 minutes.
- Tell participants that they are going to work in their teams to produce a work of art with the supplies that you have given them.
- To be judged successful, each team or individual must paint a picture of Noah’s Ark complete with the rainbow that was God’s promise never to flood the earth again. (You can choose another theme if you like; the only essential element is the rainbow, because it uses all the color combinations that will force the teams to break out of their silos.)
- The rainbow must be at least one-third of the picture, and it must contain all the colors of a rainbow (which can be remembered with the acronym ROYGBIV – Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet).
- The picture must fill the paper.
- They will have 20 minutes to complete their paintings.
- (After they begin, observe how they solve the problem of not having all the right color combinations for the rainbow. You may want to bring out your observations during the debrief. When the 20 minutes are up, have the groups answer the debrief questions below. Then, discuss their insights as a large group. Emphasize the need to share limited resources so that everyone could succeed. This is not a competitive activity.)
- How did you resolve the problem of not having enough colors to make all the colors of the rainbow?
- How willing were the other teams to share their paint with you?
- How willing were you to share your paint with them?
- Why was this difficult at times?
- How is this like sharing limited resources in the work environment?
- What could you do to make it more likely that individuals and groups would share their resources for the greater good of the organization?
Filed under Abundance, generosity, Overcoming obstacles, Performance, Problem solving, Productivity, Resources, Scarcity, team, teambuilding, teamwork
Teens and Adults
This game challenges team members to find ways to measure their progress towards a goal when the way to measure their progress is unclear.
2 Corinthians 10:12
- Graduated pitcher (or any container for liquid that shows measurements along the side)
- Unmarked pitcher or water bottle that holds 30 or more oz (one per team)
- Multiple containers for liquid of various sizes
- Water source or pitchers filled with water (one per team)
- Permanent marker
- Prizes for the winning team (optional)
- Find out how much water each of your various containers of different sizes can hold, and write it down somewhere.
- Place these containers around the room inconspicuously.
- Put the unmarked pitcher or water bottle and the pitcher of water at each table.
- Practice the script.
Use the following script (or modify to suit your needs):
- “We’re going to play a game that deals with measuring your progress.”
- “At each of your tables, I have place a pitcher of water and an empty water bottle (or pitcher).”
- “Your goal is to fill the empty container with exactly 29 oz of water.”
- “I have a graduated pitcher here at the front that I will use to test whether or not you have been successful.”
- “However, it’s not enough just to measure your final result.”
- “You also have to measure your progress at the following increments:
- “When you think you have measured out each of the increments, come to me, and I’ll test it with the graduated pitcher.”
- “You have to successfully measure out each increment before you can move on to the next one.”
- “The first team to successfully measure out all the increments and reach 29 oz wins.”
- “What questions do you have?” (Answer questions, but don’t answer any questions that deal with how much different containers in the room hold yet. You can let them know that they can use any containers they can find but only if they ask. Then, allow them to start the game. Provide no direction unless directly asked, and only tell how much the different containers hold to individuals. One of the lessons that you are trying to teach is the need for them to take initiative to determine their own way of measuring their success. When a team has successfully finished the challenge, stop the game and have teams answer the following debrief questions.)
Debrief Questions & Discussion
- What was challenging about the game?
- How did you solve the problem of measuring your progress?
- Were you guessing, or did you know for sure what your progress was?
- What about this game was similar to trying to find ways to measure your progress with your work or ministry?
- What lessons can you apply to your work or your ministry?
- (If you want to work in the Scripture from above: What happens when we try to measure our progress by comparing ourselves with others?)