The purpose of the activity is to get participants connected and related.
- Two rows of chairs are facing each other with about two feet of space in between opposing chairs. For example, if I was sitting in one chair, there would be someone sitting across from me almost touching their knees with mine in another chair. The closeness of the chairs provides a nice intimacy to the sharing. Depending upon how many participants there are in the activity, each individual should have one person sitting across from them.
- Once everyone is sitting down in a chair with a partner across from them, the facilitator begins to explain what will be shared between the participants. There are many variations on this activity.
- If the theme is connection, one might ask the participants to share with each other what is important to them in their lives.
- A few other questions could be: “What are some of your dreams?” What is something that most people don’t know about you?” The activity can also be performed with the theme of acknowledgement. “I would like to acknowledge you for…”
- Depending upon the amount of time one has for the activity, the length of sharing would be determined. Sometimes it could be a two minute share, while other times it could be a five or ten minute share.
- After time has expired, the facilitator will call for the participants to switch. Each participant will then end their conversation and move one space left/right in the same direction. In doing so, each individual will get a new partner to speak to. This will continue until every person has gotten the chance to speak with everyone participating.
- One important piece to the activity is— in order for everyone to have the opportunity to speak with a new partner, one participant on one of the corner seats of the two lines has to stay planted, sitting in his chair for the entire duration of the activity. During the rotation, individuals will rotate around this planted individual. Participants will only get to have conversations with everyone if one person does not move for the entire activity.
Ultimately, the activity is a direct and powerful opportunity for strangers/friends to get to know each other more deeply. It leaves people feeling more known, heard, understood, and connected.
Submitted by Sam Orman and the Bridgeport Youth Ministry