10 Creative Group Activities for Students to Build Classroom Engagement for Middle & High School

Do you remember when you were in elementary school and every day consisted of playing games, doing arts and crafts, and taking naps?! Yeah, those were the days. While education evolves as students grow older, we believe creativity and game time should remain a priority in the classroom!

That is why we have come up with 50 group activities for students that you can use in your classroom to build creativity and collaboration. This blog will only cover 10, but will hopefully inspire you to check out some of our project-based learning materials that will take your class to the next level!

Unleashing the power of creativity in the classroom

Creativity is a vital skill that should be nurtured and celebrated in the classroom. While the traditional focus on academic knowledge and standardized testing has its place, fostering creativity has become increasingly essential in preparing students for the complex challenges of real life as we know it. Here are 5 skills we believe students can gain from exploring their creative side…

  • Cultivating critical thinking

Allowing students to explore, question, and analyze ideas beyond the boundaries of conventional thought, encourages them to consider alternative solutions, consider multiple perspectives, and evaluate information critically. When students have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in creative and fun ways, they begin to develop a more agile and inquisitive mind that keeps them excited about learning!

  • Enhancing self-expression and confidence 

Creative thinking provides a platform for students to express themselves freely, nurturing their self-confidence and individuality. Students are able to develop a sense of pride and ownership over their work when given the opportunity to share their unique perspectives, experiment with new ideas, and think outside the box. This process empowers students to become active participants in their own education, allowing their voices to be heard and ideas to flourish. 

  • Developing collaboration and communication skills

Collaboration is a cornerstone of success in the modern world, and creativity plays a pivotal role in fostering effective teamwork. Through group projects, creative problem-solving, and hands-on learning, students learn to communicate their thoughts, listen actively to others, and build upon collective ideas. This collaborative environment encourages empathy, cooperation, compromise, and the development of essential social skills that are crucial for future personal and professional endeavors. 

  • Encouraging adaptability and resilience

The ability to adapt and thrive in an ever-changing world is paramount. Students already have a fair amount of experience with adaptability after living through the pandemic, but it’s important to continue cultivating this mindset in the classroom. This will equip students with the necessary skills to embrace uncertainty, navigate challenges, and find innovative solutions. These qualities build a strong foundation for lifelong learning so that students feel prepared to tackle obstacles in every area of their life.

  • Promoting holistic development

Creativity nurtures a well-rounded education by integrating arts, humanities, and sciences. It encourages students to explore various subjects from diverse perspectives, building a holistic understanding of the world. Incorporating creative initiatives into different disciplines helps students appreciate the interplay between logic and imagination, leading to a more comprehensive and enriching learning experience.

Building creativity into your daily curriculum doesn’t have to be challenging or a ton of work for you! There are so many ways to implement fun and engaging activities for your students that remind them of the importance of finding joy in their work. There are even creative tools that students can use to help with studying and retention!

Check some of these ideas out…

10 Group Activities For Students

Quick, 5-15min activities to fill the gaps in your day!

#1: Build a tower from scratch 

In a group, students must look for anything they can find to build a tower from scratch. They will have 10 minutes to build the tallest tower possible. The group with the tallest, most stable tower wins!

Materials: Blocks, cards, pencils, empty boxes, and anything that students can use to build the tower.

#2: Bingo, studying edition 

Players start with a grid filled with answers and they cover up spaces as the corresponding item is called from the Bingo "caller." The questions and answers on the Bingo card are all related to whatever concepts are being discussed in class at the time. In order to win the game, players must be able to answer each Bingo question that is pulled correctly. Winners must make a complete line going vertically, horizontally, or diagonally. 

Materials: Bingo cards, construction paper, printing paper, expo markers for bingo marking, plastic paper slips

#3: Peg Board Matching game 

This matching activity allows students to familiarize themselves with companies & the problem they solve by placing rubber bands in the correct pegs. The concepts can also be switched out for whatever is being taught in the classroom, and used as a study tool! 

Materials: Cardboard, rubber bands, push pins, writing utensils, paper, glue, marker

Mid-length activities that will likely take less than 30min!

#4: Entrepreneur/Business Jeporady, studying edition

Set up a Jeopardy board with questions about various concepts that are being learned in class to test students' knowledge and prepare them for upcoming tests and projects in a fun and engaging way! 

Materials: Paper, writing tools, & prizes OR use Google Slides or Canva for presentation templates

#5: Create a unique product

Give students 20 minutes or less to create a product out of random items in the classroom (tissue boxes, paper clips, etc), OR draw it on paper, OR design it using a digital design platform like Canva. This product should serve a specific function that solves some kind of problem they see in their life. 

Materials: Rubber bands, tissue boxes, napkins, notebook paper, paper towel rolls, computer, cardstock, pencils, etc. 

#6: Blind artist activity (can be related to class concepts or be random)

Pair students & place them in a position back-to-back. One will hold a picture & describe what the picture is, whereas the other student will have to draw an image according to the description. The picture and description can be related to a class concept to be used as a study tool, or be completely random and just be used as a fun way for students to express their artistic side. 

Materials: Paper, pencil, paint, markers, etc. 

Longer activities that will take up 30min or more! 

#7: Create an advertisement 

With a group, students will create an advertisement for a product or service idea that they have been working on, or build off of an existing brand! It could be anything from a commercial video, to a billboard ad, or a social media campaign.

Materials: Recording devices, editing devices, design platforms, computer 

#8: Educational movie day (link to blog) 

If you're looking for a break and want to have a movie day that is still educational and engaging for your students, check out our blog post "10 Fun Entrepreneur Movies & TV Shows to Watch with Your Students"

Materials: Internet access, screen/ projector for playing

#9: The Envelope Please  

Have students write 10 facts about themselves on paper & place them into their own envelopes that will be shuffled & read aloud to the group. The other players will guess the identity of the envelope in hand. 

Another way to use this activity is by placing various descriptions and definitions of educational concepts into the envelope to be used as a study tool! As they are read aloud, students have to guess which ideas relate to specific concepts.

Materials: Envelopes, papers, pens

#10: 2 Truths and a Lie, studying edition

A game that helps your students practice True or False questions as a study tool! By having them brainstorm three "facts" about concepts they are learning — two of the facts will be true, and one will be a lie. Students will be able to test their knowledge by figuring out which concept isn’t true. 

Materials: none needed

In an era that demands innovation, adaptability, and critical thinking, creativity emerges as a vital skill that must be cultivated in the classroom. By embracing creativity, YOU can unlock the full potential of your students, empowering them to become lifelong learners, confident individuals, and active contributors to society. It is through creativity that students develop the skills needed to shape the world and address the challenges of tomorrow. So let us help you embrace creativity in education, igniting young minds and paving the way for a brighter and more imaginative future.

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We create materials to help teachers provide youth with entrepreneurial skills! Our curriculum not only empowers youth but also gives educators the tools to lead entrepreneurial experiences in their own programs, classrooms, and more.
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