There's one really big reason to plan icebreaker games for small groups of people when planning a party or event: Ice Exists! People who do not know each other tend to be a little icy and uncomfortable around strangers. Sometimes people in a different social status may be uncomfortable with others that they perceive to be in a different class. Or people from different cultures may be awkward together until they get to know each other better. Heck, even if 15 people in a room are all the same kind of people, with the same kinds of backgrounds or the same kinds of jobs, there's always a bit of awkwardness while they get to know each other. It's a natural thing.
Any time you are having a small group gathering where the people are all new and do not know each other well, one of the best ways to start your party or meeting off right is with some easy and fun icebreaker games for small groups. Playing an icebreaker or two is a great way to help everyone relax, get comfortable, and get a feel for each other. Especially for casual events and parties, it's a great way to set the tone for the whole evening.
Two Easy and Fun Icebreaker Games for Small Groups
"Say the Name" Icebreaker Game. Name a famous person (first and last name). The next person has to name another famous person whose first name starts with the first letter of the last name of the person you just named.
Here's an example of game play. The first person says "John Wayne" as his or her famous character. The second person chooses "Will Smith," which first name begins with the "W" of John Wayne's last name. The third person could then say "Samuel Adams" … and so on and so on and so on.
This is a great game to play because it's not one of those icebreaker games that requires a lot of rules and explanation. Thirty seconds of explanation should be enough to get people playing. And though it's simple, it can be a lot of fun!
"Name the Framed" Icebreaker Game. The second of my icebreaker games for small groups takes a bit more time and preparation, but it's well worth it. This game is a blast!
Prep: To get this game ready, make up a different poster board with about 25 pictures of famous people on them, ranging from easy recognizable people to more obscure ones. Tape a number on each picture.
Game Play: You can decide however long you want to give the group members to try to name as many of the famous people on the poster boards as possible. Make sure you have given each person a paper and pencil. When they are named as many as possible, have them all individually identify the famous people in the photographs. You can also choose to group your guests into teams and give the winning team a prize.
Choosing Icebreaker Games for Small Groups
There are lots of icebreaker games out there, and having a successful party can just be a matter of choosing the right one. Can not decide what kind of icebreaker game to play with your small group? One of the most important steps in planning you event is to consider:
What's the Purpose of the Gathering?
You'll need to determine what the group is meeting for before you decide on the icebreaker games you'd like to play. Most of the different types of icebreaker games for small groups are better used for certain types of group gatherings– while the two games above are more "one size fits all," most games are not. To help determine what kinds of games are most appropriate, ask yourself a few simple questions first like:
- Is this going to be a casual party or gathering? (Think: meeting new neighbors, a book club, etc.)
- Are you getting together to brainstorm ideas for charity or business?
- Is the group discussion going to be about a new or completed project?
You get the idea. Asking yourself what the purpose of your group meeting is will help you pinpoint what type of games would be best to help you set the mood. Icebreaker games for small groups of any kind are a great idea. But the right one will set a relaxed and pleasant tone for the rest of gathering.