Conflict Resolution Thumball™

 Conflict Resolution Thumball™

Type of Initiative:    Icebreaker, Problem Solving, Processing tool

Purpose:   Here is a truly unique tool to help organizations and individuals resolve a conflict.

Source:  Setting the Conflict Compass, Cummings and Anderson

Props Needed:  Conflict Resolution Thumball™

Group Size:   1–100; small groups of 10 people per ball is recommended

Directions:  Here is a truly unique tool to help organizations and individuals resolve a conflict.  There are 32 different conflict resolution or peer mediation questions pre-printed on the panels of the ball.  The ball is made of soft material.

  • Invite your group to sit or stand in a circle.
  • Ask participants to toss the Thumball™ to a teammate. This teammate should catch it, look under their thumb, and respond to the question found there.

Participant responses can vary each time you play. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Respond to the panel under your thumb by answering for yourself.
  • Respond by asking another player to answer.
  • Predict the answer another player would give.

Once a group has played together several times, you can add the challenge of recalling an answer provided by another player on a previous day.  You may also ask them to recall an answer given by another participant that may be helpful in solving a new conflict.

Sample questions found on the Conflict Resolution Thumball™:

1.         What is one thing you could have done differently?

2.         How would you like to see the conflict resolved?

3.         How did you approach the other party?

4.         Describe your initial reaction to the conflict.

5.         Is there old stuff you are using to fuel this fire?

6.         In the grand scheme of things, how important is this conflict?

7.         Are you trying to cast blame?

8.         What are you doing that is blocking the resolution of this problem?

Variation:  Read the group a conflict scenario and then ask them to toss the ball around and respond to the questions based on how they would try and resolve the conflict.

Variation:  This is a wonderful processing tool for one person.  If you are going through a conflict of some kind, toss the ball in the air and look under your thumb to reflect on the question silently.  The 32 questions are well thought out and may give you insight on how to solve your own inner conflict.

Where to find it/How to make it:  The Conflict Resolution Thumball™ is a custom design of Michelle Cummings.  You can purchase the Conflict Resolution Thumball™ by clicking here.  You could make a similar ball by writing conflict resolution questions using a permanent marker on a beach ball or other soft, tossable sphere.


Check out a Video Description Here:

Having trouble with video? Go to: Conflict Resolution Thumball

Material in this Online Games Database is copyrighted.  Copyright ©  Training Wheels or by the author who submitted the activity.  Permission needed to copy or reproduce.