Compendium of Icebreakers Volume 2
Clarifying Expectations
and Objectives
These activities will help the participants in several ways: some will help them clarify the
expectations they have about the upcoming learning experience; some will help them
identify their feelings about being in the workshop; and some will help them identify their
specific needs. In some cases, participants are asked to identify what resources they
can bring to this group experience.
In many of the activities, you, as the trainer, will clarify your own expectations, your
workshop’s goals and objectives, and the ground rules you will use during the
Group Size Time (in minutes)
5–10 10–20 20–30 30+ Any 5 10 20 30+
2.5 Goals, Objectives, and
2.6 Around the Circle
2.7 Why Are You Here?
2.8 The Magic Box
2.9 Where Would You
Rather Be?
2.10 Folding Arms
2.11 Issues and Obstacles
Compendium of Icebreakers Volume 2
Goals, Objectives, and Guidelines
To clarify the goals, objectives, and guidelines you have established for the workshop
To give participants the opportunity to respond to your goals, objectives, and guidelines
Use this activity at the beginning of every workshop to provide participants with the
workshop objectives and guidelines that will be used.
Group Size
20 minutes
Supplies and Equipment
Handouts and Materials
Develop a handout listing your goals, objectives, and guidelines, or use the sample
Workshop Goals, Objectives, and Guidelines handout
Procedure for Conducting the Activity
1. Prepare a handout or use the sample handout.
a) Add your goals and objectives.
b) Determine the guidelines you will be following in the workshop.
2. At the beginning of your workshop, distribute the handout and go over your goals and
objectives. Give the participants time to respond and then to complete the section
listing their personal objectives.
3. Review your workshop guidelines and your rationale for each one. Give the
participants a chance to respond and to negotiate changes as needed. Examples of
ground rules that often need discussion are the prohibiting of smoking in the meeting
room and frequency of breaks.
Compendium of Icebreakers Volume 2
4. At the end of the workshop (or periodically if your program runs more than one day),
allow time to review the handout, noting the objectives that have been met. Help the
participants determine now unmet objectives could be met through other workshops,
courses, books, or people.
Create a reusable poster listing your workshop ground rules.
Many activities in the Connecting Point 3: Making Transitions section depend on the
fact that expectations and objectives were shared at the beginning of the workshop.
See the Connecting Point 4: Saying Goodbye activities as well. When you close
your workshop, use the information gathered at this early point to help participants
review what they have learned relative to their originally stated expectations. In
particular, see Activity 4.2: My Personal Learning Goal.
Reproduced from Compendium of Icebreakers Volume 2
by Lois B. Hart, HRD Press, Inc., Amherst, MA
Handout for Activity 2.5
Workshop Goals and Objectives
Workshop Goals and Objectives
Workshop objectives include… My objectives include…
1. 1.
2. 2.
3. 3.
4. 4.
5. 5.

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