9 Communication Games for Team Building

Team Building Malaysia @ Cherating Lagoona Villa Resort

9 Communication Games for Team Building

Team Building Malaysia @ Cherating Lagoona Villa Resort

Good communication is one of the essential needs – and abilities – for fostering teamwork spirit and the success of collective activities. Various educational games used for team building require participants to express themselves (and listen) in all ways: verbally and non-verbally.

Games aimed at improving communication skills can also be used for other purposes: getting to know others (#7), relaxation (#10), cooperation (#12), fun (#15), and so on.


Strictly adhere and be mindful of cultural norms regarding physical contact. (refer #4.19)

9 Communication Games for Team Building

13.1. Favourite Colours


Materials needed: None.

Game rules: We recommend using this game for a group that struggles with interpersonal communication (during a workshop, or in everyday life). Gather the participants and explain that you’d like to get to know them better. For this, ask each person to think of their favourite colour, and at the instructor’s signal (for example: 1,2, ready!), everyone should shout it out as loud as possible. Then, ask a few participants if they can guess the favourite colour of any of their colleagues/neighbours. Most likely, the majority won’t be able to do so. Ask them WHY they can’t guess.

This small game clarifies to the participants that good communication requires both speaking and listening. Additionally, for effective communication, each person will speak only when it’s their turn.

13.2. Speak!

Materials needed:


Materials needed: a stick about 50 cm long (or an empty plastic bottle, ½ l).

Game rules: Players gather in a circle, facing the center, standing or sitting on the ground. A voluntary player (or appointed) takes the “baton” (the stick or bottle) and says something: a joke, a piece of news, a comment, etc. When finished, they call out the name of another player and toss the “baton” to them. The receiver must speak!


  1. The “baton” is thrown without warning (without first shouting the name of the addressee);
  2. Each player says only one word, but the successive words must form a coherent sentence or phrase, on a given theme (chosen by the group or proposed by the instructor).

Instructions for the instructor: Optionally, the speaking theme can be indicated beforehand: jokes, or about the group’s activity, or about relationships with other teammates, or about the future, or about dreams, etc.

13.3. Wrap the Rope around Your Finger


Materials needed: a rope (see #18.1).

Game rules: One by one, each player has the task of speaking in front of the group for as long as they need to wrap the rope around their index finger (it has been observed that individuals lose their shyness when they are preoccupied with other tasks).

Instructions for the instructor: This method can be used either at the beginning of the lesson (for warming up or introduction) when everyone says their name, where they were born, about their parents, relatives, school, pleasant or unpleasant memories, dreams, artistic or sports preferences, etc., as well as at the end, for discussing the experience.

13.4. The Thread Game


Materials needed: a spool of thread.

Game rules: Players sit in a circle, facing towards the centre, and the spool is passed from one to another, with each person tearing off a piece of thread. No instructions are given regarding the purpose of the action, nor the length to be torn. Each person wraps their torn piece around their index finger.

Once everyone has thread wrapped around their fingers, each person takes turns slowly unwinding the thread from their finger, speaking aloud something about themselves with each unwind.

Variant: Instead of thread, a roll of toilet paper (with perforations!) or a bag of sweets/chestnuts/small stones can be used. Each person tears off a piece of paper or takes a few sweets (which they won’t eat!). Then, players are informed that they must say something about themselves for each sheet of paper or each sweet taken.

13.5. Let’s Make Funny Faces!


Materials needed: None.

Game rules: The players and the instructor form a circle, each facing towards the centre, so that everyone can see each other. The instructor starts the game by turning to the left and making a funny face. The neighbour on the left then turns to the right and tries to copy their expression. Once done, both neighbours turn back to face the centre, and the rest of the players applaud or make admiring comments on their resemblance. Then, a new round begins: the second player turns to the left and makes a funny face, and the third player copies their expression, and so on. This continues until the entire circle is completed, with each person copying one expression and inventing another.

Variations: Players stand in a circle facing outward, so they cannot see each other. Each pair of neighbouring players takes turns as described above, and when ready, they signal, and all players rotate 180º (allowing them to see each other), observe and appreciate the antics of that particular pair, etc. Then, players rotate again with their faces towards the outside of the circle, and the next pair tries to create the greatest resemblance, and so on.

13.6. The Pulse


Materials needed: None.

Game rules: Participants form a circle holding hands, facing towards the centre. They are instructed that, upon a signal, they must transmit a signal (a hand squeeze, finger movement, hand shake, etc.) starting from a certain “initiator” player (specified), until it reaches back to the initiator’s other hand. The initiator confirms the correctness of the signal (if what started is identical to what arrived). The duration of the transmission is timed, and then the process is repeated, with the “initiator” this time being the neighbour of the first initiator. The aim is to shorten the duration. This is repeated with several initiators.

Variations: Two signals can be sent simultaneously, in opposite directions.

Instructions for the instructor: After each new record, the group will be praised and encouraged.

13.7. Talk and Understand!


Materials needed: A4 white paper sheets, one for each player.

Game rules: Players gather in a circle, sitting on the floor, and each receives a sheet of paper. They then close their eyes until the instructor’s signal.

The instructor commands: Fold the paper in half, then tear off a small piece from the bottom right corner. Then commands: Fold it in half again, then tear off a small piece from the bottom left corner. After everyone confirms the execution of the command, the signal is given to open their eyes. Everyone unfolds their sheet and compares it with their neighbours’. Now, the shapes of the sheets vary greatly!

Instructions for the instructor: Although everyone acted correctly, look at the different results obtained from very simple instructions! By analyzing the course of the game and the expression of the commands, emphasis will be placed on the need for better communication among team members. How was the instruction given? Why? What was good and what was bad?

13.8. Treasure Hunt (of the Soul)

Materials needed: None.

Game rules: The theme is finding valuable things within the inner being of others, not those they carry with them or wear. The aim is to find the maximum number of people in the group who cherish the same ideas, virtues, etc. If you don’t know the person you approach, introduce yourselves first.

Ready to play?

  1. Find someone wearing the same shoe size as you;
  2. Find someone wearing a cap; or someone who doesn’t like caps – like you;
  3. Find two people who had a test, assignment, exam, presentation, report, etc., last week;
  4. Find three people who are in the same year of study as you;
  5. Find three people who live in different conditions than you (dorm, with relatives, hostels, etc.);
  6. Find two people who went to the theatre, opera, cinema, nightclub, match, sports event, etc., last week; explain to each other why you enjoy doing it;
  7. Find two people who like the same genre of music, TV programme, magazine – like you;
  8. Find two people who enjoy drinking coffee, coke, beer, mineral water, etc., like you; discuss whether it’s good, how to get rid of bad habits, etc.;
  9. Find people who, besides school, also have temporary jobs; what are the advantages and difficulties they face?

13.9. The Shoe Game

Materials needed: None.

Game rules: Each participant takes off their left shoe and throws it into a pile in the middle of the circle. The instructor mixes up the shoes, and then each player takes a shoe, not their own, and sets out to find its owner. Alternatively, the instructor distributes the shoes to each player.

Once a player finds the owner of the shoe they picked, they exchange information about themselves, such as their name, where they’re from, which college or organisation they belong to, what year they’re in, why they came to the gathering, a funny and a sad incident from their life, a moment they felt proud of themselves and another when they felt embarrassed, etc.