Leaving home comforts and going to university can be scary, especially if you decide to move in with other students.
While some universities allow students to connect to their future housemates before moving day, many people arrive at their student accommodation not knowing who they will spend the next year with.
Luckily you’ll all likely be in the same boat — anxious and eager to get to know each other. This is where classic icebreaker games for students come in handy.
Gathering your housemates and playing a few icebreaker games is an excellent way for new students to connect. Just remember to follow these tips to ensure maximum safety and fun:
- Don’t force anyone to participate or answer questions they may not be comfortable with.
- Keep it PG — there’s plenty of time for more intimate chats later.
- If playing a game that involves drinking, make sure to offer non-alcoholic alternatives or the option not to drink.
- Be respectful of people’s responses. University is a great place to get to know people from all different walks of life.
A self-explanatory game, this activity involves sharing two true things about yourself and one lie. Your housemates must guess which is a fib, so try to make your answers as difficult as possible. Surprising celebrity encounters, unexpected hobbies, and niche achievements usually throw people off. Your response may spark other questions for icebreakers, so be prepared to discuss what you share!
This activity is especially fun if you’re part of a large international group and helps showcase the diversity in your new student house.
Place a map at the front of the room and ask housemates to pin their place of birth or home country. Encourage them to share a fact or two about their area, taking turns to go around the group and discover more about each other’s culture.
People bingo is a buzzing game and prompts many icebreaker questions to get to know someone.
Housemates are given a bingo grid, each square containing a broad statement such as ‘has a dog’, ‘has been to Asia’, or ‘never broken a bone’. Students then mingle around the room, asking questions to find someone who fits each statement. The first person to bingo is the winner, or you can play until everyone has crossed off each box on their grid.
Like people bingo, three of a kind encourages mingling and asking questions between housemates.
The goal is to find two other people who have the same thing in common with you, making your ‘three of a kind’. This game can be as complicated or easy as you like depending on your choice – it could be as easy as finding people with the same t-shirt or hair colour, or something more challenging like the same favourite band or book.
Take turns around the group and present your housemates with a series of ‘would you rather’ questions. Suggestions include:
- Would you rather be able to fly or be invisible?
- Would you rather be an ant or a lion?
- Would you rather be an Olympian or a famous musician?
- Would you rather have toes for fingers or fingers for toes?
The questions can be as thought-provoking or silly as you like — just remember to keep the tone appropriate for the situation. It’s a great game to spark intriguing and fun conversations and gain insight into your housemates’ logic!
Who doesn’t love a game of Jenga, especially when it’s giant-sized? Order a cheap Giant Jenga set from Amazon or eBay and, using a permanent marker, write tasks on the back of each block. Housemates should each write an even number of tasks, so the game is varied and unpredictable — everyone’s challenge threshold is different, after all!
The game is then played as usual but with a twist. Students must perform the task written on the block they pull out.
The result is a fun, slightly chaotic icebreaker game that students can return to throughout the academic year.
If your new housemates know their way around a deck of cards, this one is for you.
Each person is given one card and is tasked with teaming up with four other students to form the best poker hand. The group that makes the best hand wins — simple.
You can play this icebreaker game multiple times in one session. Just make sure to reshuffle the deck between rounds. Ideal for improving your poker knowledge, developing your strategy thinking, and getting to know your new housemates.
Icebreaker questions for students
If you just need a go-to bank of quick icebreaker questions to get to know someone, this list is perfect to refer to.
- What course are you studying?
- Where are you from?
- Do you speak more than one language?
- How did you spend your summer?
- Do you play any sports?
- Are you planning on joining any societies?
- What is your favourite film or TV show?
- What is your dream job?
- What’s your karaoke song of choice?
- If you had to eat one meal every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?
- What’s your favourite sandwich filling?
- What fictional world or place would you like to visit?
- Coffee or tea?
- Most famous person you’ve met?
- If you could choose any famous person to have dinner with, who would it be and why?
- What is the weirdest habit you have?
- What’s one thing people never guess about you?
Start your time at university right with a comfortable place to call home. At Pickard Properties, we have a range of homes for students across the Leeds area in university hotspots where you can get to know other like-minded learners.