Custom Built Team Building and Leadership Initiative Training


Top 7 Moments of The 20 Leadership Camp 2013

My thoughts on our most recent workshop, The 20 Leadership Camp. Check it out.

Ryan Eller

Oh my Dad! What a wonderful week of 20 Camp madness. We spent seven days with the greatest students west of the Mississippi (or anywhere for that matter) learning, playing, singing, dancing, praying, worshiping, growing, and sleeping. Actually, we didn’t have much sleep. Strike out that last one.


I was inspired by Camp Founder and T-shirt model Jerrod Murr’s post about his top 9 moments of 20 Camp, and decided to post my Top 7. Why seven instead of nine? Because seven is God’s number and nine just doesn’t seem right. So, without further ado, here we go:

7. Roy Golden’s Stretch Sequence – Um…Roy Golden can turn his feet all the way backwards and use his size 14 feet as a telephone. What started out as a simple stretch turned out to cause several people to come on stage and use their feet as a telephone.


6. Midnight Basketball…

View original post 459 more words


June 2013 – 12 Workshops – 9 States – 700 Participants – Our Craziest Month Yet

June was a very busy month for Paradigm Shift! As you can tell in the title, we hosted workshops in nine states with over 700 participants. The month included a leadership camp, a few keynote addresses, and over 10 team-building & leadership workshops.

Paradigm Shift Leadership Workshop

Paradigm Shift Leadership Workshop

Paradigm Shift Leadership Workshop

Below you will find the locations of the workshops presented during June:

June 2 – Oklahoma State University Upward Bound Staff Training – Stillwater, OK
June 3 – Northwestern Oklahoma State University Upward Bound – Alva, OK
June 3 – Redlands Community College Upward Bound – El Reno, OK
June 4 – Neosho County Community College – Chanute, KS
June 4-6 – Tulsa Community College Upward Bound – Stillwater, OK
June 6 – Crowder College Upward Bound – Neosho, MO
June 12-14 – Enertia Conference – Las Vegas, NV
June 16 – Alabama A&M Upward Bound Staff Training – Huntsville, AL
June 23 – College of Charleston – Charleston, SC
June 24 – Trident Technical College – Charleston, SC
June 25 – Carl Albert State College – Sallisaw, OK
June 27-28 – Texarkana College Leadership Camp – Texarkana, AR

I would like to personally thank the groups that brought us in to facilitate, and the Paradigm Shift consultants who criss-crossed the nation to work with these amazing participants.

Paradigm Shift Leadership Workshop

Paradigm Shift Leadership Workshop

Ryan Eller
Founder, Paradigm Shift


Chicken Noodle Circle – A Great Way to Round Up a Group

Have you ever had a hard time getting your group into a circle? We all know that circles are the best way for a group to communicate, and sometimes we need the group to get into different sizes of circles depending upon the activity. I picked this fun way to circle up a group on a day at the ropes course at OSU Outdoor Adventure.

I typically will introduce this activity as an opportunity for the group to learn a valuable tool in group communication…forming a circle. I will introduce on circle, practice it a few times, and then introduce a new circle. Each time we playfully form the different circles until the group has learned the different ways to circle up.

Chicken Noodle Circle

Ryan Eller

The most common and effective way to organize your group is to round them into a circle. Use this quick and fun activity to help your participants learn how to efficiently circle up.

Number of Participants: 5-75
Time:  5 minutes
Activity Level:  Moderate
Props:  None

Objective:  To get into a circle quickly and effectively.

Description: Teach the participants these five circles:

  1. Chicken Noodle: Ask your participants to get into a circle “Chicken Noodle Style,” which is a shoulder to shoulder circle (this is a small circle).
  2. Chicken Wing: The participants place their hands on their hips and elbows out as they imagine being a chicken wing. The participants will touch elbows around the circle. (This is a medium circle)
  3. Chicken in Flight: Participants spread out for this large circle by stretching their arms out wide, standing on one foot, and leaning over like a chicken flying through the air. (This is the largest circle)
  4. Free Range Chicken: Everyone finds their own spot in the room, sticks their hands straight out to their sides, and spins in a circle. If they have enough room to spin without touching another person, they have officially became a free range chicken. 
  5. The Great Chicken Turnabout – Everyone stands in a Chicken Wing circle, and at count of three everyone turns around and faces the outside of the circle. 

Ask the participants to learn the five circles, and then randomly challenge the group to get into the circles as quickly as possible when you yell out the type of circle. At any point in the day you can ask the participants to get into any of the types of circles depending on the needs of the group.

I have seen a couple different types of Circle Up activities in different books. Check them out for new ideas and references. 

The Hundredth Monkey by Nate Folan and friends – Circle Up pg. 54
Raptor and other Team Building Activities by Sam Sikes – The Great Roundup pg. 103 

Do you have any circle up activities that work with small – large groups? 

Avalanche – A Perfect Way to Mix Up a Group During Team-Building

I work with teams of all ages and backgrounds from many different cultures, and I find that all groups do the same thing: line up next to their friends while standing in a circle. This activity is a fun way to break up cliques without the participants realizing that it was your ulterior motive.



Number of Participants: 5 and up
Time: 2-3 minutes
Activity Level: Moderate-High
Props: None

Objective: For participants to find a new spot in the circle.

Anytime the group is in a circle, and the facilitator yells, “Avalanche,” all of the participants find a new spot in the circle. However, the participants find the new spot in the most creative way possible.

Example ways to move around the circle:

  • Riding a Pogo Stick
  • Pushing a Shopping Cart
  • Walking Across a Balance Beam
  • Rolling on the Ground

What tools do you use to break up a group? What is your favorite way to move around the circle during Avalanche?

Count The Beans – A Collaborative Team-Building Activity that Focuses on Group Growth


Count The Beans

Number of Participants: 10 or More
Time: 15-25 minutes
Activity Level: Low
Props: Jar of Beans, Paper, Writing Utensils

Objective: To correctly guess the number of beans in the jar.

Place a jar of pinto beans in the middle of the floor, and hand each participant a piece of paper and a writing utensil. Ask everyone to write their name at the top of their paper, and put Round 1, 2, 3, and 4 in the consequent rows.

  • Round 1: The participants try guess how many beans are in the jar. Give enough time for each participant to put some deep thought into the process. It is important that each group member does this individually.
  • Round 2: Participants partner up and review guesses. The two then try to come up a group guess.
  • Round 3: The two participants join another group of two and compare guesses. They then try to come up with a group guess.
  • Round 4: The entire group discusses their guesses, and comes up with one large group guess. Eventually the facilitator reveals the answer and determines how close the group was to the actual answer.

***It is very important that the facilitator actually counts the number of beans in the jar for the integrity of the activity.

Saying Goodbye – A Great All-Day Processing Activity for Team Building and Leadership

This is a great processing activity that links workshops from the beginning to the end, and creates a sense of camaraderie amongst group participants by raising self-esteem.


Saying Goodbye

Number of Participants: 5 and up
Time: 15-25 minutes
Activity Level: Low
Props: Paper, Markers, Tape

Objective: To leave positive remarks on another participant’s paper that is hanging around the room.

Write each participant’s name on a piece of paper, and hang that paper on the wall. Throughout the day, encourage participants to write positive remarks on someone’s paper if they noticed something worthy of a comment.

At the end of the day, encourage the participants to read their paper and take it home as a keepsake of the day’s events.

Source: The Leadership Training Activity Book by Lois Hart & Charlotte Waisman, pg. 71

If you would like information on how to implement this activity or any other activity into your programming or curriculum, do not hesitate to contact the Paradigm Shift consultants at or at 918.931.2053

Human Javelin – A Loud and Entertaining Team Building Energizer

There are times as a facilitator when you need a go-to activity that will let your group let out some noise and energy and Human Javelin is a perfect energizer for the times. It is perfect for all sizes of groups and all ages of participants. There is something to be said about the power of yelling. Check out the videos below for instruction on how to do this easy and loud activity.

I hope this activity helps you on your quest to create a fun and engaging atmosphere for growth with your group. Have you ever attempted this activity? Do you have a Human Javelin world record?

%d bloggers like this: