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Creative Thinking Icebreakers and Energisers

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The modules in this section provide creative exercises to help your participants understand creativity and how to nurture it.

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100 Uses - Brainstorming

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 20 minutes.

Aims:
• To explain what brainstorming involves.
• To identify some key 'rules' for effective brainstorming

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 20 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To explain what brainstorming involves.
• To identify some key 'rules' for effective brainstorming

Group Size:
Suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
• A selection of household items like a toothbrush or coat hanger.
• Flipchart paper and pens.
A selection of Mr Sketch Scented Flipchart Markers can be purchased from Trainers' Market.

Notes:
A small prize for the winning team would be a nice touch.

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Balloon Chase - Creative Problem Solving

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 10 minutes.

Aims:
• To illustrate how assumptions about the nature of a task or problem can get in the way of finding solutions.
• To explore how creativity can help solve problems and encourage continuous improvement.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 5 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 10 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To illustrate how assumptions about the nature of a task or problem can get in the way of finding solutions.
• To explore how creativity can help solve problems and encourage continuous improvement.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
One inflated balloon. (We recommend having a couple of spares.)

Notes:
We’d like to thank Resli Costabell for inspiring this icebreaker.

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Brain Power Quiz

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To provide further information about the capacity of the human brain.
• To challenge some of the myths surrounding intelligence.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To provide further information about the capacity of the human brain.
• To challenge some of the myths surrounding intelligence.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of any size.

You'll Need:
• A small prize for the winning team.
• A stopwatch to time the quiz accurately.
(Stopwatches are available to purchase from Trainers' Market.)

Downloads
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Trainer Notes
Quiz
Answer Sheet

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Course Introduction - A Basic Introduction to Training Events

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 30 minutes.

Aims:
• To welcome the participants.
• To introduce the facilitator(s) and participants to each other.
• To introduce the facilities.
• To agree the course objectives and timetable.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 25 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 30 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To welcome the participants.
• To introduce the facilitator(s) and participants to each other.
• To introduce the facilities.
• To agree the course objectives and timetable.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
Nothing, other than the materials provided.

Downloads
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Handout

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Creative Thinking Word Search

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To help participants identify some of the key themes they’ll be exploring in the forthcoming training around creative thinking.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To help participants identify some of the key themes they’ll be exploring in the forthcoming training around creative thinking.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

Useful For:
Anyone attending a course or workshop that focuses on creative thinking.

You'll Need:
• A printed copy of the large (A3) Trainer version of the Word Search grid provided, affixed to a flipchart.

Notes:
A small prize for the winning team would be nice, though not essential.

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Feelings Cards - Icebreakers

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 20 minutes.

Aims:
• To introduce participants to one another.
• To encourage participants to share their perceptions of the organisation they work for.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 5 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 20 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To introduce participants to one another.
• To encourage participants to share their perceptions of the organisation they work for.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing, other than the materials provided.

Notes:
You will need to create a set of Feelings Cards for each person.

The Feelings Cards can be used in many different ways and for many different situations. These notes explain three ways of using them in a simple icebreaker. Two slightly more complex training exercises are explained in Course Modules.

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Feelings Cards

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Goal! - Teamwork and Lateral Thinking

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 20 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think laterally about a problem.
• To encourage participants to work together in order to simplify a task and achieve a better result.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 20 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think laterally about a problem.
• To encourage participants to work together in order to simplify a task and achieve a better result.

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of up to 25 participants.

You'll Need:
• Soft balls (4-6 will do).
• A bucket.
• 2 large large newspapers (rolled up).
• 2 blindfolds.
Stress Balls and Blindfolds can be purchased from Trainers' Market.

Notes:
You can run this outside, or inside if you’ve sufficient space.

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If I Were... - An Exercise in Creative Thinking

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think differently.
• To encourage participants to consider the uses of sense other than sight.
• To enable participants to describe themselves and each other using creative analogies.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think differently.
• To encourage participants to consider the uses of sense other than sight.
• To enable participants to describe themselves and each other using creative analogies.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

You'll Need:
• A pre-prepared flipchart with the questions written on it.

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Inspired Rhymes

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think creatively.
• To help participants feel more confident in their ability to think creatively.
• To recognise the positive impact another person’s ideas can have on our own thoughts.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think creatively.
• To help participants feel more confident in their ability to think creatively.
• To recognise the positive impact another person’s ideas can have on our own thoughts.

Group Size:
Suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
• Enough cards for 1 for every pair of participants.

Notes:
A great exercise to energise a group at the start of a creative thinking or problem solving workshop, or to re-energise them after a break. Larger groups may require duplicate cards and a longer running time.

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Seeing Things Differently - Different Perspectives

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To introduce different styles of information gathering.
• To understand that we all have a different viewpoint or perspective.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To introduce different styles of information gathering.
• To understand that we all have a different viewpoint or perspective.

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
• A single apple (or other type of fruit) for your participants to see.

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Handout

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Talking in Riddles - How Assumptions Get in the Way

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To explore how assumptions and previous experiences can prevent us from thinking clearly about a challenge.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To explore how assumptions and previous experiences can prevent us from thinking clearly about a challenge.

Group Size:
Suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
• We have provided a PowerPoint slide for the riddle, alternatively you can write it up in advance on a flipchart.

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Trainer Notes
PowerPoint


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The Chicken and the Fox - Clever Problem Solving

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 10 minutes.

Aims:
• To help participants understand the benefits of working with others when tackling problems and challenges.
• To explain why taking time to nurture ideas helps us to tell the good ideas from the bad ones.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to run. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To help participants understand the benefits of working with others when tackling problems and challenges.
• To explain why taking time to nurture ideas helps us to tell the good ideas from the bad ones.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
Nothing, other than the materials provided.

Downloads
Available to Light
Trainer Notes
Handout
PowerPoint

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Handout (Word)

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PowerPoint (With Images)

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The Thinking Brain - Preferred Thinking Styles

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 15 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about their preferred thinking style.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 10 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 15 minutes for completion.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about their preferred thinking style.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size.

You'll Need:
• Nothing other than the materials provided.

Downloads
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Trainer Notes
Handout

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