What's Race Got to Do with It?

Blindfold Exercise – Sort by Numbers

This simple trust-building exercise works best with groups of 6-10 people. If you have more than 10 people, you can either ask for 10 volunteers to participate while the rest observe silently or divide everyone into small groups of 6-10 and conduct the exercise with one group at a time. If there are multiple groups, have them wait outside the room until their turn to participate, so they can’t see what’s happening ahead of time. Allow about 10 minutes to play one round of the game.

Ask everyone to spread out around the room and put blindfolds on. Once the blindfolds are in place, go around and whisper in each person’s ear a different number between 1 and 10 (or however many participants there are). Make sure that that no one else hears what number you’ve assigned , that everyone has their own number, and that the participants are arranged in a random order. Tell participants that the object of the exercise is for them to figure out a way to line up in numerical order without speaking or using any kind of verbal communication. They’ll have to move around to find each other, and using non-verbal communication is okay.

After they’ve finished the exercise, have everyone count off to confirm the proper order. As a follow up, you can ask participants how they felt during the exercise, and/or how they think it is relevant to the overall theme you’re exploring together.

© 2006, California Newsreel. All rights reserved. www.whatsrace.org