Team building activities will help teenagers to understand how working with a team can accomplish goals quickly and more easily than by working alone. There are many free games and activities to choose from that will teach teenagers skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.
Bigger and Better
Split the teenagers into teams of equal size. Ideally, each team should have four or five people. Explain to the teenagers that this is a timed activity. Typically, two or three hours is a good time frame for this game. Give one small object to each team. It can be a paper clip, a coin, a dry bean or even a small pebble. The goal is to go into the neighborhoods or into a public place and use the team creativity to barter and exchange these small objects for better objects. The first exchange might be for a deck of cards, a potted plant or any type of object that is deemed bigger and better than the original object. During the time frame, the team should aspire to make as many trades as possible, but to always trade up for bigger and better objects. All the team members will have to work together. They can use their charisma, charm, friendships or relatives to trade up. Approach only people you know or go to businesses in a public place. Some people might feel threatened by strangers approaching them. Explain that this is a team building experiment and just for fun. When the time is up, the teams will come back to the home location and the judges will determine which team has won by deciding which group traded for the best or most valuable object.
Photo Scavenger Hunt
Divide the group of teenagers into small groups. At least four people in each group will make it more fun. Supply each group with a portable Polaroid or digital camera. Give each team a copy of the items to take pictures of during their photo scavenger hunt. Make sure that some of the activities on the list will require quite a bit of imagination and planning, such as having the group take a picture with a person in a tuxedo. Other things on the list can be enjoyable activities such as finding a yellow car and taking a picture in front of it, holding hands and dancing in a circle around a flagpole, taking a picture with someone who has red hair in braids, forming a letter of the alphabet with their arms and legs. Be creative with your list, the more outrageous the activity is, the more enjoyable the hunt will be. Determine a set amount of time for the scavenger hunt. The judges will give the team members one point for each photograph that correctly depicts one of the items or activities on the list and will give extra points for creativity and imagination.
Divide the teenagers into two teams. Blindfold one person on each team. Create an obstacle course outdoors by placing large and small objects in a designated area. The team members will tell the blindfolded person how to get through the maze of obstacles without stumbling or knocking an obstacle out of place. The teams can decide to let one person do all the talking and guide the blindfolded person or allow every member of the team to shout instructions to the person. It is best to have the obstacle courses several feet away from each other so that the two teams can work at the same time on getting their person through the obstacles. The team that gets the blindfolded person through the obstacles the fastest is the winner. Another alternative is to select a team leader who acts as a shepherd. All the other team members will be blindfolded and he will direct them with his voice to a designated area or a circle drawn into the dirt.