Find out all the facts rather than guessing at motives. Point out which one(s) resulted in a positive outcome and which one(s) should probably be avoided. During the activity, what communication skills could you have used to improve performance? This will harden the clay hard so that it maintains its shape. Tell them you will test them later to see how many of the words they can remember. Talk about the problems that hurt your or your partner’s feelings, then move on to problems about differences in opinions. Finally, the partners switch roles and repeat the exercise. Have each participant take a prompt from the bowl or jar and read the exact same sentence to the class, but with the emotion the prompt specifies. Observe how many participants copied what you did instead of what you said. This is a version of the improv game called Silent Take. Whichever team has the most cards wins the round. I can’t remember where I put it. First, divide the training session attendees into pairs. The talker’s job is to describe what he or she wants from a vacation without specifying a destination. They’re fun, engaging, and good for all ages! After giving detailed instructions, see how accurately the pictures match up. Use the following questions to guide your discussion as a family: You can find this exercise in the Helping Youth Succeed PDF from Thomas R. Lee and Tami Pyfer at the Utah State University Extension. Teaching your students how to have a conversation. Discuss the importance of knowing when you are getting upset and might need to take a break and think. Silent movies tell a story without words. Have your kids practice speaking and listening in natural settings (e.g., outside of the home and classroom). 5. Did you observe any confusing non-verbal messages? Check out this quote from Stephen R. Covey and take a minute to think about how vital communication really is. Put out a few different snacks in individual bowls. Watch about 5 to 7 minutes of the program with the volume off. This useful framework comes from Alice Stott at Edutopia (2018): Once you have a good framework for understanding communication, try these 8 ways to foster effective communication in your children or students: If you’re looking for some concrete ways to build communication skills in adults, you’ve come to the right place. Each time a participant engages in the wrong activity, eliminate them from the game. Active listening is a vital part of communication and can greatly improve relationships between family members. Did face-to-face communication improve your ability to understand the other person’s feelings? Next, ask your kids what kinds of things people want to do when they feel this way. You will need an even number of groups — for example, a class of 20 is perfect because it breaks into 10 groups of 2. What do you think are the best ways to build, enhance, and maintain your communication skills? Some of these will also strengthen team members' problem solving, creative thinking and leadership skills. In the second half, the two groups will switch roles. At opposite ends of each line, whisper a phrase or short sentence to the person on the end and tell them to pass it on using only whispers, one person at a time. They will both read their partner’s message and take a few moments to process. State the following actions as you engage in them: Put your hand to your mouth (but while saying this one, put your hand to your nose). A play date is not your average, regularly scheduled programming sort of date, but something that is different, spontaneous, unique, and/or just plain fun! After doing this for a few minutes, the two should turn around, face each other, and continue the discussion—they will likely find it much easier! Using various colors of clay dough, each family member should use their creativity and imagination to create a design or structure that represents who they are as an individual. If you plan on baking your designs at the end of this activity to preserve them, mix together: Follow these instructions to encourage each family member to express their individuality: To continue working on communicating your individuality as a family, ask these questions and discuss your answers together: If the idea of creating a figure out of play dough doesn’t appeal to you, you can also try these two alternatives: This activity can also be found in the PDF mentioned above. To make the game a bit more challenging and really emphasize the importance of active listening, incorporate these three variations to the game: Group stories are a great way to practice active listening with the whole family. Or stool is placed in front of the groups switch roles and repeat the exercise so partners. 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