Switch Seats

Helps with: Rebuilding Connections and Community 

Total implentation time, with discussion: 15 minutes

Switch Seats is a useful tool to help students actively engage in sharing their experiences during the pandemic and acknowledging the spectrum of realities experienced since March 2020. We help build empathy when we realize that while we are not in the same boat, we are all in the same storm, and although we’ve all been dealing with loss of some kind, our respective experiences may not have been the same. 

Materials Needed

  • A chair, poly spot, or something similar for each student

How to Play

  • Have everyone start by standing on poly spots or sitting in a circle of chairs.
  • Explain that you are going to say “Switch seats if…” or “Find a new spot if…” or “Raise your hand if…” followed by a prompt.
  • If that prompt is true for students, they should either switch seats, find a spot, or raise their hand based on your directions. If the statement is not true for them, they should stay where they are.
  • Once everyone is set in a spot, the next prompt can be shared. In between prompts, you can ask questions and invite students to share more about what made them switch their spot. 
  • This activity is all-encompassing and can be used for both silly and serious conversations and anything in between - use relevant prompts depending on your goals for the activity. 

Questions for Discussion

  • This tool invites every student to participate by moving if the prompt is true for them but doesn’t force students to share if they don’t want to.
  • As you call out different prompts, feel free to pause to ask follow-up questions and invite students to share verbally if they want to. 

Download this activity as a PDF