Bamboo Tower Team Building Activity
Your group lost their way in a bamboo plantation and they only have one opportunity to make it out. They desperately need to make contact with the tribe from the nearby settlement before the sun goes down. In order to get this right, the group must erect 2 separate structures that support themselves, and each structure must be 6 M high.
Suggested Learning Outcomes
- The activity improves leadership skills
- Aids in better communication
- Develops team work and creativity
- Helps with improving problem solving skills
- Planning and time management
- 40 x 1 meter pieces of canes (exactly)
- 10 x spare 1 meter canes (do not give out with the task)
- 4 x large balls of string
- Pens and paper
- Articles of clothing
Total Time: 55 minutes
- 5 minutes to brief and setup
- 45 minutes to complete challenge
- 5 minutes to review and debrief
Running the Bamboo Tower Team Building Activity
- Introduce the challenge: Your team is lost in a bamboo forest, and the only real hope is to catch the attention of people in the nearest village before nightfall. To be seen from the village, articles of clothing must be hoisted exactly 6 meters on two separate structures. Night is falling; there is limited time.
- Introduce the rules of the challenge and key safety points.
- Provide teams with equipment for the challenge and then let them begin.
Rules of the Bamboo Tower Activity
- The group is only given 45 minutes in order to erect both structures
- They are only allowed to use the resources available.
- Both structures need to be self-supporting, that means they are not allowed to be planted in the ground or supported by any other form of structure or even fastened to something else.They are not allowed to break the bamboo.
- The string supplied is not allowed to be cut.
- The height of each structure has to be 6 meters
- Each member of the group is not allowed to toss or wave the bamboo around
- Everybody must be made aware of the bamboo points and to specifically be careful of the sharp edges.
Guidance for Facilitators
You will be allowed to erect your structure anyway you choose, but make sure that it has a solid foundation, which could be in the form of three-legged support.
Seeing you have no measuring instruments try to discover if anyone in the group knows how tall they are. Then by using the twine, measure their height and then while the structure is still flat on the ground use the twine to measure the height of your bamboo structure.
Debrief and Review Bamboo Tower Team Building
Here are some questions, which can help the group process their experience:
- Did you have any idea what the structure would look like before you started erecting it? How did you accomplish this?
- Did each member of the group participate in the design as well as the recommendations that were made?
- Did your group elect a leader for the exercise? Was this done bearing in mind the major characteristics of a leader?
- Was your team properly arranged? Were certain duties assigned?
- Was there anything that caused discontentment in the group concerning the exercise?
- Did you have times when nothing went ahead as planned? What did you do to correct this?
- Did your team complete the exercise in the allotted time allowed?
- What did you make use of to verify that the structure was the correct height?