Build Bridges, Not Walls

Two teams build separate halves of a bridge using the materials provided. Once finished, they have to work together to make the halves fit. A great game for building collaboration and creativity skills.

Number of participants: 8-20 people – at least enough to create two teams

Duration: 60 minutes

Objective: Build creative thinking, communication, collaboration and problem solving skills

How to play

1. Grab items that can be used to build a bridge, such as cardboard, Lego, building blocks, straws, paper, tape, rulers, etc.

2. Divide the participants into two equally sized teams. Separate them into two different sections of the playing area such that they can’t see what the other team is doing (use a sheet to make the separation if you have to).

3. Ask each team to build one-half of a bridge. A team cannot see what the other is doing. They can, however, communicate verbally and exchange ideas about the bridge design.

4. Give the teams free access to whatever materials they need to build the bridge.

5. Each team gets 10 minutes to come up with an idea and a sketch for the bridge. They get an additional 30 minutes to build the actual bridge. The teams can communicate verbally across the room throughout this period.

6. After 30 minutes, ask the two teams to meet together and see whether their bridges were actually similar or not.

Optional: If you have a larger group, you can make this competitive by dividing the group into 2 (or more) pairs of teams. The team-pair that gets closest to building a complete bridge wins.

Strategy

Building bridges is fun, but when you have to build only one half and ensure that the opposing team does the same, it brings in interesting dynamics. Teams have to communicate clearly through verbal instructions to be successful.

They also have to be good at solving problems, teamwork and collaborating on a design – again, without actually seeing each other (something that happens a lot in modern remote offices as well).



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