IAF Methods

Wagon Wheel

by for . Last edit was about 2 years ago
2 + 12 - 50

A structured icebreaker

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Participants have an opportunity to introduce themselves one on one in a structured way.


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Setting: Space for a circle with one half of the participants.

Pre-Work Required: none



Ask the group to form a circle, count off by A, B, A, B, etc. until everyone is either A or B. Invite all the A's to take 3 steps into the circle, turn around and find a B to pair up with; there will now be a smaller inner circle formation (A's) facing an outer circle (B?s). If the group had an odd number, two A's can stick together throughout all rotations. With each rotation, only the outer circle of B's moves the designated number of spaces/people that the facilitator requests. A's stay put as the hub of the wheel in the center, and B?s rotate when asked to find their new partner.

Facilitator sets up the activity, keeps time, and asks the outer circle of B's to rotate a certain number of spots when it's time to move to the next question.

To use as an Opening Icebreaker at the start of a new session or workshop, include questions such as:

1. Introduce yourself to your partner and in 60 seconds each, say your name and where you work.

2. After rotating to a new partner, take 60 seconds each to tell your partner one hope/expectation you have for the workshop/session.

3. On your third rotation, tell your new partner (60 seconds) one working agreement that you think would be helpful to the group.

4. With your fourth partner, take 60 seconds each and describe one strength/skill/gift that you bring to this event.

5. If there's time for a fifth rotation, partners can describe one specific challenge in the workshop topic area that they face.

The facilitator can invite participants to share examples of answers from the questions either before the next rotation or at the end of all the questions, while the experience is still fresh. Since this is an extraverted oriented activity, it can be helpful to also allow time at the beginning or end for reflection, note-taking or journaling.

It's a good idea to have a whistle or noisemaker when it's time to rotate the Wagon Wheel, as this activity can get loud with larger groups.


Follow-Up Required: none

Usual or Expected Outcomes: Introductions


Source: Shoshanna Cogan

Derived from: The Wagon Wheel and HHHS Model are adaptations of activities funded through the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Comments (1) ( 5.0  avg / 1 ratings)

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  • A nice way to have introductions with some depth.

    about 3 years ago