Getting and Giving

Getting and Giving

To begin this exercise make sure the participants have a specific space that they can walk freely in.  That is define the boundaries of their space.  If there are lots of participants, divide the group into smaller groups of about 8-10.

Have participants walk the space freely.  Call out “Freeze” and “Unfreeze” to get participants used to getting still.  After several times, call out “Freeze” and explain that you will unfreeze one participant at a time to walk the space.  Unfreeze one person and let them walk around for a few moments before re-freezing them and unfreezing another participant.  Make sure everyone has the chance to walk the space alone with others frozen.

When the final person has been re-frozen, explain that they, not you, will give the signal to move.  They will do this without speaking or touching.  Only one person may move at a time.  Let them do this until everyone has moved once.

In reverence, talk about what it was like giving and taking movement.  How did it feel to give someone movement and know they were taking yours?  Was it hard to give away?  Was it worth it?

Adapted from:

McKnight, Katherine S., and Mary Scruggs. The Second City Guide to Improv in the Classroom: Using Improvisation to Teach Skills and Boost Learning. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2008. Print.


Great for the themes of: Generosity, Liberation, Freedom, and Hospitality.

Kitty Wants a Corner

Kitty Wants a Corner

This is a standard acting exercise.  Begin by getting participants in a circle or surrounding the space.  One person will be in the middle and go up to people in the circle to say “Kitty wants a Corner.” To which the person in the circle will say “Ask my neighbor.”  The Kitty then moves to the next person and says the same phrase.  The people in the circle’s goal is to switch places with someone in the circle while the Kitty is asking for a corner.  The Kitty’s goal is to take the place of someone that is switching.  The person that is left in the middle if the Kitty gets their spot is the new Kitty.

In reverence, talk about how this relates to hospitality.  Have you ever sent someone to a “neighbor” instead of helping them yourself?  How did it feel to be the one asking for help?

Adapted from:

Spolin, Viola. Theater Games for the Classroom: A Teacher’s Handbook. Evanston, IL: Northwestern UP, 1986. Print.


Great for the themes of: Hospitality, Common Ground, Salvation, Community, Covenant, and Compassion.

Also a great Warm up.

One Part in a Whole

One Part in a Whole

In this exercise participants will work as whole to do a group activity.  To begin separate participants into groups of 5 to 10.  Participants choose one person to be the leader.  The leader will secretly choose a group activity and begin doing an activity that relates.  As the participants realize what the activity they join in doing a part of it.  For example, if the activity is building a house, the leader starts by miming cutting wood.  The next player hammers nails, the next puts up a door, etc. Tell participants to focus more on the movement and not using dialogue.

In reverence, talk about what it was like working as a whole.  How was it like the covenant in class?  Did everyone think it was the same activity?

Adapted from:

Spolin, Viola. Theater Games for the Classroom: A Teacher’s Handbook. Evanston, IL: Northwestern UP, 1986. Print.


Great for the themes of: Covenant, common ground, vocation, community, Hospitality.