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JLBC: Construction Competition

JLBC: Construction Competition

Working with groups to achieve a common goal is not always easy. The unexpected often occurs, making the job more complex than expected. By learning to anticipate changes and deal with these changes, a group can still effectively accomplish the goal set initially.



What words were used during the tower building (when you could talk)?

What about this activity was similar to working with groups in real life?

What made your group work effectively together? What inhibited your group's effectiveness? Would you have done anything differently?

How did having competition affect the way your group worked together? Do you think the group would have behaved differently if there hadn't been competition? Why or why not?


What are some problems groups sometimes encounter when working together?

What are attributes important for effective teams? What hinders group success?

OBJECTIVES: For youth to:

work within a group to accomplish a common goal.

Discuss the effect of competition when completing a task. Determine how limitations can affect the outcome of a project.

Learn the attributes of effective teams.


Getting along with others. Communication. Brainstorming.


Four packages of 100 index cards

TIME: 20 minutes


Comfortable room with space for small groups to work together.

Divide participants into four groups and allow the groups to spread out. Give each group a pack of 100 index cards and explain that when you give a signal, they will build a tower using the index cards, with the highest building after ten minutes being the winner. The tower can only be made with index cards and cannot be supported by anything else.

Signal groups to begin. After about three minutes, tell the groups that they will only have nine minutes instead of ten.

After four minutes, tell the groups they are not allowed to speak anymore.

After five minutes, tell the groups you need to take away fifteen cards from each group and proceed to take them.

After six minutes, tell the groups they can only use their left hands (they must place their right hands behind their backs.)

At nine minutes, have members step away from their tower and judge which building is the highest.

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