Trust Building Activities for Adolescents
Many teenagers struggle with trust and responsibility and need help to develop these disciplines. Adolescents also struggle with trust among one another, which may hinder teamwork.
Understanding how a lack of trust hinders relationships may help teenagers learn the importance of supporting their peers. Trust building activities can establish trust and can help adolescents work together as one unit.
Circle of Friends
Have the adolescents stand in a circle with their shoulders touching. The group should imagine themselves in a circle of warmth and friendship. Place someone in the middle of the circle, and tell him to lean forward to the point of falling. The people in the circle should redirect the person before he falls. The Food Project suggests that this activity allows adolescents to build a feeling of emotional and physical safety with one another, which leads to trust.
Partner the adolescents in teams of two. Put a blindfold on one member of each team. Place objects on the ground between two boundary lines. Have the partner lead her blindfolded partner around the objects using only her voice. The blindfolded partner must trust that her partner will lead her around the objects. Wilderdom.com suggests that this activity builds communication and trust.
Place the adolescents in two lines facing each other. Tell them to grab the hands of the person across from them. Have one person stand on a higher object, such as a step stool, in front of the group.
The person on the higher object should fall backwards and have the rest of the teenagers catch him. Repeat until every teenager has completed this task. This encourages each adolescent to trust the group as people who will support and catch him if necessary.
Pair the teenagers, and have them look into the other’s eyes for 60 seconds without turning away. Mix up the partners, and do this again until every partnership has occurred. This will cause some discomfort but will allow the adolescents to accept each other for who they are. Eye trust will also help the teenagers relate on a deeper level.
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