Look Up, Look Down

Look Up, Look Down

Type of Activity:  Energizer, Ice Breaker, Time Filler


Props Needed:  None


This lively game is a facilitator favorite. 


Phase 1:  Ask the participants to get into a circle and look down onto the floor.  Instruct them that when you announce, “LOOK UP!”  Each person is to look up and look directly into the face of another participant.  If they do not make eye contact with another person they stay still.  If they make eye contact with that person, they are to point and scream (with conviction!) at that person.  Then you will announce, “Look Down” and the whole group will look down.  Play this way 6-7 times and then move onto Phase 2.


Phase 2:  Phase 2 has the same rules as Phase 1 with one addition:  When you announce, “LOOK UP!” and you make eye contact with someone, you are to point, scream and then turn and face the outside of the circle.  You are then out for the remainder of that round.


Phase 3:  Phase 3 has the same rules as Phase 1, but this time if you make eye contact with another participant, you are to point, scream and then run and join another circle.  (that is, if you have multiple circles).


Variations:  An alternative Phase 4 would be to repeat the rules from Phase 2, however this time if you find yourself facing the outside of the circle, you are still in the game.  If, when the facilitator announces, “LOOK UP” and there is another participant from a neighboring circle that is facing out, you may point, scream at them and then turn back to the center of your circle.  This allows for you to continue playing.  You can also add in the rule:  ‘Merry Go Round” where the entire group spins 180° so the people on the outskirts of the group will have the opportunity to make eye contact with another person.


Facilitator Script:  “OK, everyone.  I need you to get into small groups of 9-10 people and stand in a circle.  This energizer is called Look Up, Look Down.  I want each of you to find an imaginary spot on the floor in the center of your circle.  When I say ‘Look Down!’ I want you to stare at this spot.  Let’s practice this.  ‘LOOK DOWN!’  OK, good!  You are with me so far.  Next, if you hear me say, ‘Look Up!’ then I want you to pick ONE person that you are going to immediately look straight at their face.  If they did not choose you, then they will be looking at someone else and you do nothing.  If they did choose you, the two of you will be looking directly at one another.  If this happens I want you to point at them and scream with conviction.  Let’s give this a try, ‘Look Down!....  LOOK UP!’  (If they didn’t scream with conviction, add in a few comments about how to scream with conviction.)  OK, now that didn’t sound like screaming with conviction.  Let’s try that again.  ‘Look Down!....  LOOK UP!’  (Usually it will be better this time.)  Now that’s more like it!  Let’s do this a few more times.  ‘Look Down!....  LOOK UP!’  (Do this 4-5 more times.)  OK, great!  Now we are going to add a rule.  This time, if you make eye contact with another participant, you are to point, scream and then run to another group.  Any questions on what we are doing?  OK, here we go!  ‘Look Down!....  LOOK UP!’  (Give them a few moments for anyone who moved to get settled into their new group.)  ‘Look Down!....  LOOK UP!’  (and repeat 4-5 more times.)


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