Giving & taking in relationships

Rationale/ development

This particular activity is based on one developed by Pravah and the Community Youth Collective, in New Delhi, India. Both organisations work with young people to impact issues of social justice. A version of this activity is used as part of their ‘Get Real’ workshop, where students explore their ‘vyaktitva’ (character) over a number of days. It links to the ‘tatva’ (element) fire, which requires students to think about their relationships with others (Patel et al., 2013).


30 mins


One set of square puzzle pieces that have been mixed into 5 envelopes per group (of 5) students (These can be easily made from cardboard using the following pattern)


The Process

  1. Introduction

Explain to students that we are about to play a game. Divide them into groups of five people. Leftover students are to be made moderators / observers.

  1. Write up the aim and rules


For every person in your team to complete their own puzzle


  • Nobody is allowed to talk
  • Nobody may ask another person for a piece or signal in any way that they would like a specific puzzle piece
  • You may give another person a piece of puzzle
  • You may not interfere with or help complete another person’s puzzle (although you may offer them a piece of your puzzle)
  1. Distribute pieces of puzzle to participants
  1. Allow participants time to complete the activity. Moderators should observe what is happening and ensure that no rules are broken.
  1. Once all (or most) groups are finished bring the group back together to discuss what happened, starting with the moderators. Ask,
  • What happened? (starting with the winners first)
  • Which groups were more successful? Why?
  • How did students feel about the activity? Why?
  •  How do you think this activity might relate to your upcoming PACE activity?

Issues to consider

  • Difficulties in communication
  • Asking for support
  • Being aware of your own behavior
  • Giving and taking in relationships


Patel, A., Venkateswaran, M., Prakash, K. & Shekhar, A. (2013), The Ocean in a Drop: Inside-Out Youth Leadership, New Delhi: Sage.