Many high school students face exclusion by cliques, bullying and peer pressure. These distractions often disrupt academic studies and make kids dislike or dread going to school. High school bonding activities bring students together to build trust and new friendships, enhance their academic performance and make them like school. They may even help reduce behavioral problems. Schools can hold bonding activities in the classroom or assemblies.
To Be or Knot to Be
Help your high school students bond by performing the To Be or Not to Be activities. Break your students into groups comprised of an even number of students. The groups shouldn't be larger than 12 people. Students forms circles so that they're facing each other. They close their eyes and reach across the circle with their right hand to take hold of the right hand of someone else. Students open their eyes and reach across the circle with their left hand to grab a hold of someone's else hand. It can't be the same person they're already holding hands with. Next, the students must untangle themselves while continuing to hold hands. This activities brings kids together who might not normally interact. They must work together and communicate to get untangled. If no one cheats, the students should end up in one big circle or as a circle of intertwining circles.
Ball of String
The Ball of String activity allows students to share their feelings while revealing how their words and actions affect their other classmates and the entire school. It also teaches them teamwork. Have students stand in a circle. Pass a ball of string from one student to the next. Only the person holding the string is allowed to speak. Each student holds onto a piece of string before passing the ball to the next person. This creates a web of string inside the circle of students. The web represents how all the students are connected and how their actions affect those around them. Toss a balloon in the middle of the web. The students must keep it afloat by working together.
School Scavenger Hunt
After school, arrange a school scavenger hunt for the students. Break the students into small groups of five or six. Students should not be in groups with their friends, but with other kids they don't normally socialize with. Give them a list of items they can find around the school such as a globe, yearbook or chalkboard eraser. The kids will bond as they socialize and work together as a team towards a common goal. The school scavenger hunt also helps students become more familiar and comfortable in their school.
You can conduct a blindfold hunt in a gymnasium or outside in an open area such as a soccer field. Scatter various objects such as baseballs, erasers or books around the room or field. Next, pair students together and blindfold one of the students. The student that can see must guide his partner to the objects using verbal instructions. The kids bond as they must reply and trust one another.
- Photo Credit high school senior image by Kathy Burns from Fotolia.com
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