Youth Ministry Games

This page will be ever evolving and being added to - if you have questions please don't hesitate to leave them - I will be filling in the rules to the games as I have time, I just wanted to start adding to the list so I wouldn't forget to add them.
-I will be adding things other than just games - however it seemed like a logical place to start - it seems people are consistently asking for my list of games we play frequently

Games:
  • 2 Truths and a Lie
    • Ask each person in the group to think of two true facts about themselves, and one lie
    • Each person int he group takes a turn telling the group their three items
    • The group then has to agree on which fact they think is a lie
    • The person the tells which item was the lie
  • Balance
    • Have everyone get into groups of two
    • The two people stand six to eight inches apart each with their feet together, the goal is to shove push or whatever the other person so that they have to move their feet to regain their balance
  • Back 2 Back
    • start two people sitting with their backs to each other, their goal is to stand up without using their hands
    • after each successful standing up add one more person to the group - you then have three people back to back and they have to figure out how to stand up without using thier hands
    • keep adding one more person to the group until you have your entire group in the circle
  • Blind Shapes
    • Blindfold the entire group
    • Have a long rope laying on the ground in front of them
    • instruct them to make a particular shape (square, triangle, octagon, circle) without looking
    • it will be interesting to watch who takes charge and how they organize their shape
    • this is a great team building activity
  • Finding Twins
    • I use old mailing labels (the partial sheets that we can't send through the printer any more due to not having enough stickers on them) and I write one animal on each sticker and make two stickers per animal
    • I put all the kids in a circle and make them face outwards
    • I quickly go around the circle and put the animals on their backs
    • they then get to wander around asking "yes" or "no" questions to others
      • I only let them ask 3 questions per person and then they must move onto someone else
    • once they guess their animal correctly they then act like said animal and try to find their match
    • once all the matches have been found the game ends
  • Frogger
    • First have everyone sit down and close their eyes
    • Tell them that you are going to tap one person on the head and they are the frogger
    • the frogger's goal is to stick their tongue out at people without being caught. If someone makes eye contact with the frogger while the frogger sticks their tongue out at them they die and must die a dramatic death
    • There also is a detective who is chosen whose job it is to figure out who the frogger is. The detective sits in the middle of the circle and is given three guesses to figure out who the frogger is, an incorrect guess yields the death of the person who was guessed incorrectly
    • the game ends when the frogger is discovered or the detective is out of guesses
    • we play that the previous game's frogger becomes the next detective
  • Fun Game
    • Seriously I know, it is a lame name but it is what we call it around here, I believe others have other names for similar type games
    • This game works best with a group of about 8-12 people
    • you sit in a circle around a table or sit or lay on the floor in a circle
    • you split the circle into two teams, every other person is on the same team, so that the circle alternates (team 1, team 2, team 1, team 2, team 1, team 2 - all the way around the circle)
    • each person gets three slips of paper (they don't need to be huge piece of paper - I use whatever scrap paper I can find) and each person lists one thing (person, place, or thing) on each sheet of paper - you pick a particular letter that each word must start with (if you picked the letter "t" words could be such things as: tooth, tacos, tower, Texas, ect...) and you fold them in half and put them into a bowl or basket
    • the game consists of three rounds
      • first round the game - is a bit like catch phrase (you can use as many words as you would like but you cannot say the word on the slip of paper or anything that rhymes with it) - you want to get people to guess the word on the slip of paper
      • second round of the game - you get to only use one word to get people to say the word on the slip of paper
      • third round of the game - it like charades - no words are allowed and you have to act out the words
    • each person in the circle gets thirty seconds to get their team to guess as many of the words on the slips as possible - I time each round on my watch and every thirty seconds the basket gets passed to the next person and they get to get their respective team to guess as many words as they can  
      • the person keeps the slips that their team successfully guesses in order to help the tallying of each round
      • when the basket of slips goes empty (you may not make it all the way around the circle) you count up how many slips each team got and write it down on a piece of paper and throw all the slips back into the basket and the next round begins with whomever is next in the circle
    • at the end of the three rounds you tally up the teams scores and see who your winner is
    • next game you can switch the letter that all the words begin with - I let my youth pick what letter the words will start with 
    • Random things about this game:
      • sometimes you do get doubles of words and that is totally okay
      • my youth will play this game for hours without even questioning it
      • adults also love this game
  • Giants, Wizards, and Elves
    • Split the group into two teams - can be done with as few as 8 people and as many people as 200 people
    • designate 2 safe zones, one for each team behind each team
    • designate a middle line (I always put mine down on the floor with masking tape or use some sort of natural middle line)
    • Each team then huddles up and picks if they want to be a Giant, Wizard, or an Elve. 
      • Giants put their hands and arms high above their heads
      • Wizards hold out their arms and hands in front of them as if they are casting a spell on people
      • Elves put their hands on their knees and squat slightly
    • Once teams have chosen a first and second choice of what they will be (the second choice is in case both teams pick the same first choice) - the teams stand back to back and on the count of three turn around and pose as their chosen thing (giant, wizard, or elf)
      • Giants beat Elves
      • Elves beat Wizards
      • Wizards beat Giants
    • The winning team chases the losing team all the way back to their safe zone the winning team tries to tag members of the losing team (I make a rule that each person can only tag one person per round). If a losing team member is tagged by a winning team member they become a member of the other team
    • goal of the game is to get everyone on the same team
  • Human Knot
    • Have everyone stand in a circle and grab someone else's hand at random, then take the other hand and grab someone else's hand at random. 
    • the goal is for the group to get untangled and into a circle without having to let go of one another's hands
    • some times two or three smaller circles will form depending on the size of your group
  • Human Machines
    • this is how I often decide who gets to go first for a particular activity or snack - I have the youth make human machines
    • split the group in to groups of six or eight or really any number would work
    • tell the groups that they need to make a particular machine (stapler, toaster, pencil sharpener, popcorn maker, lawn mower, paper shredder, over, etc) out of only themselves
    • the youth get super creative
  • Knights and Dragons
    • Can be played with a group as small as four or five and with a pretty large size group (say 50 but the chaos level greatly increases)
    • Begin by having everyone stand in a circle - tell them to look around the room and to silently pick one person to be their "knight" and to silently pick their "dragon"
    • Goal: to have your knight be between you and your dragon, so as your knight and dragon move you will have to move in order to keep your knight between you and your dragon 
    • Begin playing music - when the music stops everyone is to freeze
    • I have the kids raise their right arm and poing to their knight and then raise their left arm and point to their dragon - if the knight is not between the person and their dragon they are out for that round
    • each round you begin by making a circle and having everyone pick a knight and a dragon - you keep going dwindling down the group until you have an ultimate winner (or two or three)
  • Magic Carpet
    • spread out a blanket on the floor
    • goal: the whole group must get on the blanket so that no hands, feet, or any body part is touching the ground
    • If the group completes the stand, have everyone get off the blanket and fold the blanket in half 
    • repeat the process until the group can no longer successfully complete the task
    • people are allowed to be on one another's backs and whatever it takes to succeed
  • Never Have I Ever
    • Have the group stand in a circle
    • One person starts in the middle and says "Hello my name is ________" and "Never have I ever (insert something that they have never done....like.... Been to Florida or Had a sister or had blue eyes)
    • At this point everyone in the circle who has done what the person in the middle hasn't done must get up and switch places (we play that you cannot move to the spot on either side of where you were - we use either carpet squares or shoes to mark where the spots are located) - the person in the middle also takes a place in the circle
    • When the group is all back into a circle one person will be left in the middle and they say their name and what they have never done
    • repeat as many times as you want
  • Ultimate Paper, Rock, Scissors
    • Everybody partners of up and plays a "normal game" of rock, paper scissors
    • Play best out of three
    • Whoever loses goes and makes the beginning of a train behind the person who won
    • the winner goes and finds anther winner and plays rock, paper, scissors best out of three
    • whoever loses and the train following them goes behind the winner
    • repeat process until you have an ultimate winner
  • Relay Pictionary
    • You have a list of items (I usually have about one page of items going down the sheet - dog, monkey, forest, titanic, etc - ) and the object of the game is to work one's way through the entire list
    • split the group up into teams of about 6-8 (too many more than that and it gets tough for everyone to participate
    • spread the groups out around the room
    • start with one member of each team up near you - tell those folks the first word on the list
    • the first people run back to their group and draw out the item that was first on the list - 
      • the rules I use when drawing include: no letters or numbers can be drawn and the person drawing cannot speak or point to objects/things in the room
    • the person who guesses the item being drawn then comes forward and whispers the world to me and I tell them the next word on the list
    • the first team to finish the list wins

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