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4 Top Icebreakers for English Mentors & ESL Teachers

4 Top Icebreakers for English Mentors & ESL Teachers


Meeting people isn’t easy. This is even trickier when you’re meeting someone who doesn’t speak the same language. As an Angloville Volunteer, you’ll meet countless new people from all over the world, but getting these conversations started can be tricky. Sometimes a simple ‘Hi, how are you?’ isn’t quite enough to break the ice. Not to worry! We’ve compiled a quick list with our top 4 Icebreakers to help you make the most of your next meeting.

These suggestions can be tailored to all age groups, so whether you’re on one of our KidsJuniors or Adult programs, you’ll be ready to dive into enriching conversations on your Angloville Adventure!


This is a great starting point as your conversation partner will make a choice on your question and you can progress from there – ‘why that option’ etc. As these questions tend to be humorous, they will help you both relax as well. You can prepare your own “would you rather” questions or find plenty online! Just make sure they’re appropriate for your audience.

Some examples are:

  • Would you rather find your soul mate or find a million dollars (and never find your soul mate)?
  • Would rather eat your favourite dish for every meal or never be able to eat your favourite dish again?


This simple and quick game is an excellent way to get conversation flowing. It’s fun and also opens a channel to share personal stories with one another – be they embarrassing or otherwise. In sharing these personal facts (and fictions) you’ll get to know each other better and maybe even find some common ground!

3. TOP 5

This is a very easy conversation starter as you’re asking someone about their interests – we all love to talk about ourselves after all! You can apply this to almost any topic, so it’s good with any audience. Some examples:

  • Top 5 favourite/most hated movies
  • Top 5 favourite TV shows
  • Top 5 countries you’d love to travel to


It sounds simple, but it’s easy to forget the easiest way to spark conversation is an open ended question. This is a question that can’t be answered with a yes or no response. This allows the person you’re speaking with a greater chance to expand on their answer and give you more to work with. Besides, what fun is chatting where everyone just says yes or no?

Think ‘Where have you travelled in Europe?’ instead of ‘Have you travelled in Europe?’

With these ice breakers, it helps to have a few pre-prepared questions ready to go to save any awkward moments. Keep these tips in mind on your next Angloville trip or when you find yourself meeting someone new!

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