Other activities undertaken during the exchange that may have an integration value are breaks between the elements of the schedule – free time that can be used by the participants at their discretion. Each of us needs a moment of rest, so it’s worth remembering about it. Activities undertaken at this time should be optional. The degree of their top-down organization depends on the independence of the group, their age and how freely they cooperate with each other.
If the participants like to organize their own free time, leave it to them – they will surely manage. However, provide support when they need information or special equipment, such as a game ball. Such small equipment is often offered for free by reception centers at holiday resorts, but the language barrier may make it difficult for a person who does not speak your country’s language to complete this task. Also, remember to thank the people who demonstrate a leadership approach and take responsibility for organizing free time for other willing participants.
In the case of a group that is not characterized by high entrepreneurship in this respect, it is worth asking at the earliest possible stage about the expectations of the participants – would they like the remaining time to be organized in advance for integration exercises? If so, offer them participation in this process: hang a flipchart in the workshop room, where the participants can write down their suggestions on how to spend their free time. This will give them a real influence on the decisions made, and you can be sure that the organized activities respond to the real needs of the group!