Fun Activity to Encourage Connection Building

One of the struggles many ministries to children and teens face is trying to encourage students to become close emotionally to each other when they often attend different schools, live in different areas of town and have different interests and personalities. It is crucial to teach them how to discover points of connection with each other so they can begin building those deeper relationships we want them to have.

Being able to quickly find things in common with people we have just met is also a crucial skill set for Christians as we serve others and share our faith with them. It is a skill set that often seems to come naturally to many extroverts, but even they have had to practice (often without knowing it) to become comfortable and put others at easy as they are trying to discover these points of connection. As social skills decline with more device time, even interacting with other people can seem strange and your Bible students may need practice having normal conversations with each other.

There is a fun activity you can do with your students to introduce them to the idea and give them some practice. As a bonus, they will start to find those connection points with each other and draw a little closer emotionally as a group.

Below you will find the activity and its instructions. You can make copies to share with others or to cut up and use for the slips you give to participants. Have fun with it, but make sure to allow enough time to discuss what worked, what didn’t and what seemed the most natural. The last time I did this, I had a really savvy student who was assigned to find a favorite place they all had in common. He used the discussion someone else was having to subtly discover favorite foods to segue into his category by asking about favorite restaurants. (If you do this periodically, you can make it more difficult by telling students they have to find the answer to their category without the other students in their group being able to identify what that category was!)

Commonality Exercise

Participants are divided into groups – preferably with people they don’t know well and consisting of five or six people. They are instructed to carry on a normal conversation as if they had just met for the first time. Each participant is given a piece of paper that has a category for which they must find what their group has in common without being obvious about their category or that they are trying to find what they all have in common. The group must find all of the commonalities following the rules in five minutes of natural conversation.



Movie/Streamed or TV show

Game or sport

Activity or hobby

Favorite place to visit, hang out in, etc.

Categories Elementary, Faith Based Academic Program, Special Needs, Teens
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close