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Sometimes sharing ideas during a brainstorming session can feel intimidating. If some of your group members don’t know each other very well, don’t enjoy speaking in front of others, or just need help getting inspired and thinking creatively, you might want to complete an icebreaker. An icebreaker is an activity that helps people relax, get to know each other, and feel more comfortable talking in a group.

Icebreakers happen at the very beginning of a meeting or event. When done before a brainstorming session, these activities help your group feel more prepared and comfortable to share their thoughts and ideas.

There are many types of icebreaker activities.

Some of those include: Going around a circle and sharing hobbies Finding things you have in common with others, Sharing short stories of past vacations or proud moments, or Playing a quick game In this video, you will select an icebreaker activity from a list and spend 5 minutes practicing how to conduct it with a group. To begin, sign into Google Drive and open the Starter Project called Icebreaker Activities.

Make a copy of the document and add it to your drive.

Read through the various icebreaker activities and select the one you want to practice.

You will choose between: What is Another Name for…?, a group activity where you will discuss new names for objects Introduce Each Other, a partner activity where you will introduce another group member to everyone else, Or The Brick, a team or individual activity where you will think of other uses for an object.

Then, rename the document based on the activity you chose.

Delete the icebreaker activities you are not using.

Set a timer so you only spend 5 minutes on the activity. Icebreakers are meant to be fast-paced and fun. Use a clock, computer, or phone timer to keep time. When you are leading an icebreaker with a group, make sure to set clear expectations. Give your group a five minute timeframe, encourage everyone to participate and think creatively, and remind them to be respectful of others.

Once you’ve finished your icebreaker activity, everyone should feel excited and ready to begin brainstorming ideas! After you complete the activity, record all of your notes in a bulleted list. Now, it’s your turn: Open the Starter Project, make a copy, and add it to your Drive, Select one icebreaker activity to practice, Rename the Google doc, And take 5 minutes to practice and record your notes.

Choose an Extension
Build Your Brainstorming Team with Google Forms
Use Google Forms to build a diverse team and assign group roles.
Share Your Materials in Advance
Use Google Drive to share and organize ideas from a brainstorming session.
Conduct an Icebreaker
Use Google Docs to record ideas from your group brainstorming session.
Send a Calendar Invite for Your Meeting
Use Google Calendar to invite others to attend your group brainstorming session.
Put Your Ideas Into Action with a Google Spreadsheet
Use Google Sheets to organize action steps for members of a brainstorming group.
Use Checkboxes to Complete Tasks in a Google Spreadsheet
Use Google Sheets to keep track of tasks and goals for your brainstorming group.
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Choose an extension to learn more ways to brainstorm in a group.