Skip to main content

Name, action, repeat

This warm up activity helps siblings and group leaders learn each other’s names and it increases energy levels. Siblings often get called ‘Dan’s sister’ or ‘Jade’s brother’ so this is great way make sure siblings are acknowledged with their own names.

How to do it

Standing in a circle, each person in turn jumps into the circle and performs an action like a high kick or waving their arms, while saying their name. Everyone else then jumps into the circle and copies the same action and repeats the same name. So if Jo jumps in and hops and shouts her name, then straight away everyone else jumps in and hops and shouts ‘Jo’. Then the next person shouts their own name and jumps into the circle doing their own action, and then everyone else repeats that action and shouts that name. Be prepared for copying some athletic actions! 

Line ups

A good icebreaker activity to start a first session

How to do it

Announce a suitable topic and ask the siblings to make a continuum from one side of the room to the other, depending on their answer. Make it clear which side of the room is for which end of the continuum. For example, ‘youngest person at this side and oldest person on that side’.

Suggestions for topics:

  • Height – smallest to tallest sibling
  • Age – youngest to oldest sibling
  • First letter of their name – A to Z
  • How long it took to get to the session – shortest to the longest journey
  • How do you feel about being here – happy at one side, nervous at the other

Snowball fight

A fun activity in winter to get feedback at the end of a session.

You will need

You will need sheets of white paper and pens

How to do it

  • Ask the children to write down what they have enjoyed most about the group
  • Each sibling writes his or her statement or feedback clearly (so others can read it) on a blank piece of paper
  • They scrunch their paper into snowballs.
  • You shout ‘snowball fight’ and they throw and catch snowballs for 30 seconds or so until you shout ‘stop’.
  • Each sibling picks up any snowball and they read out what is written on the paper to the rest of the group

They will want to do this again!

Spider’s web

This activity helps identify and reinforce things that the siblings have in common. These may be general likes and dislikes, or sibling issues.

You will need

A ball of wool

How to do it

The first person holds the end of the wool in one hand and the ball itself in the other. They say something about themselves. All those who feel it applies to them put their hand up. The ball of wool is thrown to one of them (the first person keeps hold of the end) who then says something else. Repeat, with each person holding onto the wool and throwing the rest of the ball on, until everyone has had the wool thrown to them several times – the wool should now form a spider’s web linking everyone in the group. This can also be used as an ending activity with siblings saying something that they have enjoyed about the session.