Every trainer and facilitator has his/her favorite engagement activity.  Some facilitators like the more active interventions such as rope courses; others prefer the more “touchy-feely” ones like trust walks; still others like using blind-folded instruction, or simulations like Gold of the Desert Kings… Yet, of all the team building activities I have experienced, my favorite by far is an activity called Crossing the River.  I’ll describe the exercise first and then I’ll tell you why I think it is so great.

To start, here’s what you’ll need for preparation:

Objective Have all members of the team cross the river at the same time.
Preparation Create three islands by taping together four 8.5 x 11 sheets of paper for each island. Create a pebble for each person by cutting sheets of paper in half length-wise to form 4.25 x11 sheets. Create one rock (an 8.5 x 11 sheet) for every six participants. Tape off an open area at least 10 medium strides (25-30 feet) long and six strides wide. Place the islands as shown in the diagram.

Download the full “how to” on this engagement activity.