Leadership Inspirations Activities

Build-a-(Team)-Bear

Show appreciation by creating a bear that represents the group

Duration

10-20 minutes

Team Stage

Norming, Performing, Adjourning

Type Of Activity

Bonding Activity

Materials

Paper, markers

 

SUMMARY

Create a “bear“ that represents the qualities that you appreciate about your group.

 

SET UP

  • Provide paper and markers for each group member.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Describe Build-a-Bear Workshop to your participants. If you are unfamiliar, visit their website at www.buildabear.com.
  • Have each member of the group depict their own personal Build-a-(Team)-Bear that represents particular qualities of the team. Use the following prompts:
    • What would the bear look like? At a Build-a-Bear Workshop you can choose from a variety of different animals and characters, so give your participants creative freedom!
    • What would the bear be stuffed with? Figuratively or literally, what is your group made of?
    • What would the bear’s heart be?  What does your group care about?  What do they give to others?
    • What would the bear wear? What represents your team on the outside? What do others see?
    • What would the bear smell like? Figuratively or literally, what smells are connected with your team? As an example, “Smells like success“ or “Smells of pizza and ice cream“.
    • What sound would the bear make? What is your team motto or cheer? 
  • Give participants approximately ten minutes to create their bears and play appropriate music while they build.
  • After participants have created their Build-a-(Team)-Bears, have each group member share and explain what they created. 

VARIATIONS

  • Have participants represent your team with whatever you wish – as a TV show, as a shopping mall, as any animal they wish, etc. 
  • Large Group: To facilitate this activity for a large group, split participants into several smaller groups and have each group create one Build-a-(Team)-Bear together.
  • Small Group: To facilitate this activity for a small group, have the group collaborate on creating one Build-a-(Team)-Bear that represent them as a whole.

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?

Alignment

  • Are we the only ones that define our purpose? What or who influences our purpose?
  • How do we communicate our purpose to new members or people outside of our group?
  • Why is it important that we all understand the purpose of our group/activity/etc.?

Group Dynamics

  • What are the traits that make someone successful on this team? What are the traits that make someone unsuccessful on this team?
  • What motivates our group?
  • How does our group dynamic affect the way we get work done?
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?