Category:Team Building

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Each field group needs to work well together for everyone to learn and enjoy the most during their SOP experience. This means that in one team there are different roles that each student can fill that will help the group to accomplish all their goals for the week. These roles may change during the week, illustrating the value of diversity as a team strength. The skills that are required for teamwork are also ones that are very transferable--they can be used for the rest of a student's life. To that end, each day at IslandWood includes some team building practice.

Grad Certification

In order to facilitate an element on the teams course you must first me approved by an IslandWood staff member. Before entering the team course you must first give a safety talk with your students. Students must be aware of the “logs of restrain.” Familiarizes students to the “Walk Only” rule emphasizing "moving slowly" as a key to success. Explain the concept of task vs. goal. Front load the importance of emotional intelligence with the group. For example, the height or weight of a student is not important on any element in the team course. Make sure to let students know the team course is a privilege and if you as the instructor see any negative behavior it can lead to leaving the team course.   Explain to students what a “freeze stop” indicates. Finally, let the kids know the rules: 1. Be Safe 2. It will be challenging 3. HAVE FUN! Understand this conversation is just the first conversation you have before you enter the Team’s Course.

When you enter the Team’s Course never begin your intro to the element without an IslandWood staff present if you plan to be certified. An IslandWood staff member must be present the entire time at the element including the debrief in order to be certified. Before you start any element check the traction level and general function. If necessary cleans leaves, adds sand, or cancels element as needed. Make your students aware of the hazards of slipping, crushing and excessive motion and again point out “logs of restraint.” After you set the rules for the element allow the group time to plan with minimum adult help. It is okay to let the adult in your group "spot" on certain elements. Create an “exit strategy” that does not allow students to remain and play on element after the task vs. goal is completed. 

Conduct a debrief that includes:

  • listening to student learning
  • attending to emotional safety issues that arose during challenge
  • connection to rest of the week/day

(For a ton of Team Building Activities, check the Teampedia wiki....)