A great warmer & ice-breaker!

These are instructions on how to play ‘Rubber Chicken’, which is one of our favourite warmers/ice-breakers. We’ve played this with all of our classes, from 3 to 83 year-olds – Chris does it with her Aula de la Experiencia (3rd Age) students too!  I’ve even done it as a warm-up activity with 250 teachers at a conference in Serbia, and that was something to see!

It’s a real classic energizing activity. Of course, this warmer is especially good in the winter time, when the students are physically cold. (Also see: Warmers: Tick and Tag.) That said, it’s also a great ice-breaker on the first day with a new group. And with any class, it’s good for shifting the focus and waking up your students after a long time sitting down.

Start off by asking how a chicken moves and walks. There’s always at least one student willing to demonstrate! Get everybody walking like a chicken. Then ask how a chicken would move if it were made of rubber, and what noise it would make too. Explain and demonstrate what you’re going to do next.

Thanks to Brent Moore on for the pic!

How to do the rubber chicken!

First shake your right arm vigorously while quickly counting down: 8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1. Then shake your left arm, right leg and finally your left leg, counting down each time.

Now start with the right arm again, and do the same, but this time only count down from 7. Do each arm and leg again. Then again, counting down from 6, then 5, then 4 etc. After you get to 1 with each arm and leg, shout ‘Rubber Chicken!’ and jump about shaking your body and clucking at the same time. Then do it for real with the whole group.

Sounds mad, and it is! But it really gets everyone warmed up, both physically and in terms of feeling more comfortable with each other. Once you’ve all been rubber chickens, the ice has definitely been broken!

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