Leadership Inspirations Activities

Amoeba Race

Form an amoeba with your team and try to move together to a designated finish line

Duration

10-20 minutes

Team Stage

Forming, Storming, Norming

Type Of Activity

Energizer, Experiential Activity

Materials

None

 

SUMMARY

Amoeba Race is a fun game that uses the basic biology concept of a cell.  Teams form an amoeba and try to move together to a designated finish line.  The purpose of this activity is to practice cooperation, competition and close physical interaction. It can be useful as a simple activity to help a group get comfortable with one another.

 

SETUP

  • Explain how to create an amoeba. There are 3 parts:
    • A lot of protoplasm (people who gather closely together in a group).
    • A cell wall (people who surround the protoplasm, facing outward, linking elbows).
    • A nucleus (someone who is seated on the shoulders of some of the protoplasm).

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Once the amoeba is formed, try taking a walk through a field or around the block. A rhythmic chant might be helpful for coordinating movements. (What sort of sound does a one-celled creature make?)
  • Finally, try a little cell division. Split into two groups, create a second nucleus and have an Amoeba Race.
  • Safety: Because this is a physical activity, remind participants to be aware of each other and their surroundings.

VARIATIONS

  • Give the group new challenges: blindfold participants or tell them they can’t talk.
  • Have the amoeba complete an obstacle course together.
  • You can choose not to have the nucleus be a person and instead have the protoplasm balance an object in the middle of their group.
    • Have the group write goals/visions/ job roles/ to-do items/ etc. on inflated balloons. Tell them they must keep them afloat as they complete their challenge in formation. Whatever they drop they lose.

SAMPLE DEBRIEFING QUESTIONS

What?
  • What was the goal of this activity?
  • Did your group do well? What could have improved?
  • How did your group make decisions? Was it effective or ineffective?
  • How did your group manage conflict that arose?
So What?

Teambuilding

  • When has your group worked well together in the past? When have they not worked well together?
  • When has (something that happened in the activity) happened in the past with your group?
  • What habits or actions make a successful or effective team? What does your group do well as a team? What are your group’s opportunities for growth when working together?

Inclusion and Involvement

  • What does it mean to be inclusive or exclusive?
  • What did we do as a group that was inclusive? That was exclusive/not inclusive?
  • Why is inclusion and involvement important for our group?
Now What?
  • What does this activity tell you about the strengths of your group? The areas for improvement?
  • What’s one commitment each person can make?
  • What are three lessons the group has learned that they can continue to work on?
  • How can we implement these lessons in our school/organization?
  • What can you do differently moving forward?