Magic Mind Trick

  1. Cooperative Games
  2. Icebreaker
  3. Indoor Game
  • Large Group (10 and up)

  • Grades 3-5

  • Chairs

  • 10 minutes or more

This is a great icebreaker, minute mover, or indoor recess game! In this game, students form a circle with one player taking the role of the “Mind Reader” in the middle. This game has several variations and can be modified to for students of different ages or abilities.


To improve non-verbal communication and strategic play.

Before You Start

  • Designate a safe play space in which the group can stand in a large circle.
  • Make sure all players know how to use fire feet (or another safe movement) to cross the circle without running.
  • Make sure all players know to keep their eyes facing forward when crossing the circle to avoid collisions.

Set Up

Have players stand in a circle. One player should stand in the center of the circle. The player in the center of the circle is the “Mind Reader.”

How to Play

  • The goal of the game is to switch places with other players around the circle without the Mind Reader taking your spot.
  • To begin, players stand in a circle. One person is the “Mind Reader” and stands in the center of the circle.
  • The Mind Reader’s goal is to take another player’s place in the circle.
  • To switch places, a player must make eye contact with another player in the circle. Once they make eye contact, they cross the circle and switch places. No talking or additional gestures are used to communicate
  • If the Mind Reader takes your space, you become the new Mind Reader.


  • Use cones to mark the circle. There should be one less cone than there are players.
  • Modify the way students move across the circle, such as tiptoe or bunny hop.
  • For an extra challenge, have two Mind Readers in the center of the circle.