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In Chapter Six we introduced some techniques that we typically use with the individualizing process. However, there are other introduction or icebreaker techniques that can be used:

1. Learners can introduce themselves progressively around the circle by describing something about their personal or professional self, what they would like to accomplish during the course, and other information they are willing to share with their colleagues.

2. A slight variation on the above is to add the stipulation that each subsequent person must also work backwards among all people who have already talked and in order give their respective names out loud. However, it should be noted that a person has the right to pass on this portion of the introductions or to use a crib sheet if so desired.

3. A techniques that can be used in very large groups (i.e., 45 to 50 or more) is to ask people to work in groups of three or four (whatever is convenient in terms of seating arrangements and proximity). They spend about 20 minutes becoming acquainted with each other.

4. Here is a technique that can be used for introductions if several of the people already know each other somewhat or later in a class where you wish to employ an icebreaker or reintroduction activity. Ask each student to take a few moments and write down three statements that represents themself. Two of the statements need to be truthful and the other a lie. The better the students are at deriving truthful statements (for the true statements), but something somewhat obscure that the present group of students may not already know, the more interesting this activity will become. Ask the students to make sure the statements are not visually obvious to the groups (such as hair color, clothing style, etc.). After a few moments, each person in the class (one by one or around a circle) reads each of the three statements and the task for the entire group (one by one or as a group) is to find the lie. If it is a very large group, divide them into two or more smaller groups and carry out the activity within each small group.

Any of these techniques will help establish an informal tone and set in motion the process of learners finding out more about each other outside the group setting.


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