An activity that can be used to get groups talking and to get the creative juices flowing is to provide a list (content-focused or not) and
Creating your own lists for the group or having the group create the list can focus members on one or more topics. If your purpose is community-building, you can find lists that will evoke humor and some debate in books (Everything I Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten and The Book of Lists are natural choices.) or on many websites.
Humor with a point.
Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
Adapted from http://www.commonplacebook.com/jokes/why_did_the_chi.shtm
Top Ten Lists
Many topics have ranked lists. In cases where the data determines the ranking, discussions of reasons for the rankings or of changes over time can be enlightening. In cases where the ranking is determined by expert opinion or polls, discussions of reasons for the determinations and whether or not the group agrees can be interesting.
TIME Magazine's 25 Top Ten Lists
The People's Priorities: Gallup's Top 10
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These Headlines are not just for Journalists; all writers can learn from them: http://commonplacebook.com/jokes/funny-lists/actual_news_hea/
The Writing Teacher's Book of Lists with Ready-to-Use Activities and Worksheets, 2nd Edition by Gary Robert Muschla
Your course content might not include mechanics, but you might wish to review and reinforce good practices using some of the lists in this book. (Example: One Minute Paper: Give the group a list of words and ask them to identify one or more synonyms or antonyms for each. Nice warm up activity.)
Top 10 Significant Presidential Elections in American History ' About.com http://americanhistory.about.com/od/elections/tp/topelections.htm
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Seventeen Things I Believe
Bob Sutton, Stanford Professor and Author
In left side bar of http://bobsutton.typepad.com
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Men's top 10 health threats: Mostly preventable ' Mayo Clinic
The Top Ten Reasons for Soaring Health-Care Costs by Charles Wheelan, Ph.D.
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United States Geological Survey Earthquake Top 10 Lists
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