- Index cards
Distribute index cards to each participant. Ask the participant to write a little-known fact about himself in the index card and keep it hidden from the others. Collect all the cards and set them aside.
Ask the participants to stand up, walk around, meeting each other, and share two little known facts about themselves. One of these LKFs should be the one written on the card.
After a few minutes, ask the participants to return to their seats. Organize the participants into teams and distribute equal numbers of LKF cards to each team.
Ask the participants to remove and hide their name tags and then work with their teammates to match each LKF card with the person who wrote it. They should do this by sharing the information they collected earlier during the walkaround session. (Some LKF cards may belong to the members of the team itself, simplifying this task.)
After a suitable pause, randomly select one of the teams to present its report. This team should read the LKF cards, one at a time, and identify the writer. The team earns 1 point for pointing to the correct writer and 1 more point for correctly naming the writer. The team loses 1 point for pointing to an incorrect writer or incorrectly naming the writer. No points are earned or lost if the team confesses its ignorance.
Repeat the procedure with each of the remaining teams. The team with the most scores wins the game.
Usually, icebreakers of this type do not require any debriefing. However, since there is something intriguing about what facts people choose to reveal about themselves, I conduct a quick debriefing using these questions. Although the questions ask about people in general, they are designed to encourage the participants to reflect on their own individual behaviors:
- What facts do people reveal about themselves?
- What facts do they hide from others?
- Why do people choose to reveal some facts and hide others?
- What facts do people reveal to friends, to acquaintances, and to strangers?
- Which is easier: to write anonymous statements or to talk about them in a face-to-face situation?
- Would some people distort or make up facts about themselves? Why?
- How would the types of little known facts vary between extroverts and introverts? Between men and women? Between younger and older people?
Do you think that this icebreaker will produce similar results when used with people from other cultures?
Source: Thiagi Group - Shane Finlay