If your child has difficulty trusting you or their peers who have been only good to them, your child is probably going through trust issues. In this post, we have curated some trust-building activities for kids. When kids are uncomfortable around people and find it difficult to share things as they fear getting betrayed, their social circle also becomes limited. As parents, you can be concerned, and hence, we bring to you some exercises that will help your child overcome these issues. Read on to learn more.
10 Trust Building Activities For Kids
The following 10 activities, inclusive of different trust building exercises and games will help develop and strengthen the trust factor in your kids:
1. Trust Fall:
Trust Fall is an activity for kids that is most commonly practiced by groups who want to build on the confidence and trust factor of their members. It is also very commonly practiced by the Boy Scouts of America.
- In the Trust Fall activity, one person has to fall on purpose while the other has to catch him.
- Let your kid stand with another partner in an opposite direction. One of the partners has to stand in front of the other and make his body go stiff. He has to give a signal that he is about to fall backwards. As the kid falls, the partner has to catch him gently and prevent him from hitting the ground. The activity begins with less distance between the partners. As the levels increase and the partners start trusting each other, the distance increases with each level.
2. Wind In The Willows:
The Wind In The Willows activity is another variation of the Trust Fall activity but is of a more intense level.
- Your kid has to stand in a circle and one kid has to stand in the middle.
- The kid who stands in the middle has to make his body go stiff. Once everyone gives the signal that they are ready, the kid in the middle has to fall backwards in any direction towards any kid. The kids have to hold the child gently push the kid in the middle towards other kids till he finally manages to get upright again.
3. Trust Walks:
A Trust Walk activity is also known as a Blind Walk activity. A fun trust exercise for group of kids.
- Your kid and friends have to be divided into two groups. Make sure that both the groups have the same number of players.
- Blindfold one group and let one kid from each group hold hands with each other to form a pair. Each pair should have one kid who has the blindfold and one who doesn’t. Depending on the level and intensity of the activity, you can let the path be regular or add obstacles. The kid who is not blindfolded has to guide his partner carefully through the path and reach a safe zone. Once all kids are in the safe zone, switch the blindfold and put it on the kids who did not wear it earlier.
4. Helium Stick:
Helium Stick is another interesting trust building games for kids, that will let your kid develop trust and build confidence among friends and peers.
- Make all the kids stand in a circle.
- Ask them to hold out their hands parallel to the ground. They also have to stick out their index fingers. Gently place an object on their index collective fingers, like a hula hoop or a stick. Now ask them to lower the object to the ground but make sure their fingers do not lose contact with the object. Your kid and friends may find it difficult at first. The idea is that they have to formulate a strategy by which they can collectively work and place the object on the ground while ensuring their fingers are in contact.
5. 4 Up:
4 Up is a fun game that will teach your kids about trust building and communicating without speaking.
- Ask your kid and friends to sit around in a circle on chairs.
- Tell them that they are now in a different planet where they cannot speak out loud but can only communicate through actions. Also, it is required that at all given time, at least 4 people from the group remain standing, while ensuring that no participant can stand for more than 10 seconds at a stretch. The activity will teach your kids to communicate effectively and also form strategies.
6. Tie And Untie:
A popular, engaging group activities for students. For the activity also known as Human Knot, ask your kid and friends to form a circle.
- All participants have to put their hands in the center of the circle and close their eyes. Next, they have to connect their hands with another pair of hands. Once everyone is holding another pair of hands, ask them to open their eyes. They now have to get themselves out of this human knot and make a circle again, without letting go of the other’s hand.
- One of the best trust activities for youth groups.
7. Blindfold Navigate:
The activity requires one kid from the pair to be blindfolded while the other acts as a guide.
- Divide your kid and friends into two groups. Blindfold one partner from each pair.
- Set obstacles around the area. The kids who are blindfolded have to concentrate and find out their partner’s voice and listen to the instructions to safely navigate.
8. Draw A Twin:
An interesting trust activity for large groups. In this activity, your kid and friends will be divided into groups.
- Hand out a pen and paper to one member of each team and ask them to draw something without showing their partner. Once they are done, they have to hide it and give instructions to their partner to make the same drawing, without saying out any clue. For example, if they have drawn a face, they can say things like ‘draw a big circle, then draw two more circles’ and so on. Once done, the partners have to compare the drawings.
9. The Bat And Moth:
A fun trust activity, not only the kids, also teenagers and young people with small groups can enjoy playing this. For this activity, the kids have to play the role of a bat and a moth.
- Ask kids to make a circle.
- One kid has to come in the middle to wear a blindfold and be the ‘bat’. Another kid has to wear a blindfold and be the ‘moth.’ The ‘bat’ has to say ‘bat’ and as soon as the ‘moth’ hears it he has to say ‘moth.’ The ‘bat’ has to try and locate the ‘moth’ through the sound of his voice while the ‘moth’ has to avoid the ‘bat’ by following his voice.
Hand out a baton and a toy fish to each participant.
- All kids have to stand on one side of the room.
- They have to race to the other side of the room by hitting the ground behind the fish and making it move ahead.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. At what age does a child develop trust?
According to experts, trust starts from birth. A baby is dependent on the caregiver to fulfill their basic needs. Hence, the caregiver knows that the baby needs something whenever a baby sends cues, such as crying. This process, over time, makes a baby understand that their caregiver will be there to meet their needs, and that’s how trust develops (1). From birth till adulthood, an individual transitions through several stages of trust.
2. How do I teach my child to trust?
Trust your child to teach them the value of trust. Talk about trust and its importance with them often. Have an open and honest conversation on issues to help them know how trust is built. Keeping healthy boundaries and adhering to them, making eye contact while talking, and being supportive of them in challenging situations to instill trust in your child and help them understand its importance.
Trust-building activities for kids are essential to make them secure and confident. It takes time for one to begin to trust someone. And often may require an activity or two to feel more comfortable around a group of people. Some kids have difficulty trusting their peers or teachers and sometimes even their parents. To take care of these issues, trust-building activities can be introduced. These will help them improve their social skills in the long run. Ensure to be patient while addressing these issues and not rush the child into believing someone they don’t feel like. Teaching your child about the importance of trust in relationships can have a profound effect on the way they see the world.
Infographic: Why Do Children Need Trust-Building Activities?
Trust is important for children to feel secure and have healthy relationships. So these activities are fun and help instill healthy dependence and a sense of belonging in children. Explore more essential benefits of trust-building activities to learn why your child needs them.
- Life Stages of Trust.