I often have friends in ministry who ask me for directions on games I play and I typically just point them to the site. When a friend asked me about Spoons and I realized I had never mentioned it on this site, I immediately realized how incomplete the game library on here is. So, for those who don’t know, here are the instructions to the youth group game that I take much too seriously!
Spoons (one for every person)
This is probably one of the greatest games for retreat type atmosphere when you need to lighten things up a little bit. To start have group of between 6-8 people form a circle. You can just have one or two groups. They do not compete against the other groups and there really is not a winner.
This game is played like ‘Hot Potato’ with a twist. Have one person volunteer to use their shoe as the hot potato. Start off by playing one round like hot potato and start the music
This game was a huge success at our summer camps.
To start you will need one dozen eggs for every two teams. Seven of the eggs in each dozen should be boiled and five should not. Mix them up in the carton so you can't tell which ones are which.
We had the teams (small groups) send a representative up to challenge a representative from another team. They each selected one egg and (on a count of three) smashed it on their head. The first team to get three of the raw eggs lost.
I was in a meeting this past summer at one of summer missionary training times and heard a crazy game going on outside. When I walked out and watched them, they were playing this game. Before I even give the instructions, the reason I love this game is because there is so much energy that comes from it.
First I will teach you the motions that are required for the game.
Bunny – Make your hand into a duckbill (thumb touching four fingers). When making this action you
A twist on the classic Mafia! Make sure you check that one out first so you have at least a small understanding of the rules.
How the game works:
Pick a few teens to be "mafia" members. This is done secretly, either having everyone close there eyes and hold out their hands, or by giving out cards and having the face cards be the mafia. Usually I do about 1 mafia for every 5 regulars. The game is played in rounds until all mafia members are eliminated or the mafia win.
In leading 100’s of games over about 16 years this has been one of the favorites.
a marked off area (either a square in a gym or made with cones)
dodge balls (softer is better)
Set up the boundaries. Have each person find a partner. One of them will be blindfolded and the other will not. Place a good number balls scattered around within the boundary. The blindfolded person will be in the boundary area and their teammate w
You may have seen this game before and not really understood what was going on. The game is called Ninja. It is an extremely easy game to figure out and explain but can take a lifetime to master. Youth Ministers like it simply because they will play and analyze it more than anyone else, ensuring that they could beat any youngster up for the challenge.
Here are the instructions:
Size of Group:
You can play two people but I would recommend starting with at least four. If you ha
I can’t believe it has taken this long for me to find this game. Grab some potatoes and some buckets and you are good to go! Divide your youth into groups or run it individually. The person takes a potato, puts it between their legs, takes the potato to the bucket and drops it. If they drop the potato anywhere else on accident, they must go back to the beginning and try again. The person or team with the most potatoes in the buckets after a set amount of time wins!
This is fairly new game that has made it’s way into the youth ministry world. The kids introduced it to me. It is sure to lighten people up, embarrass some, but most of have a ton of fun.
Ideal Number of People
How It Works
To begin, everyone will stand or sit in a circle. Everyone must make a face where their lips cover their teeth. If you show your teeth, you are out.
One person will start and they are it. They have the option either say Pterodactyl or make a
This is a youth ministry game that we started playing about two years ago and is always a great game because it is quick to put together, the supplies are minimal and it is extremely competitive and engaging.
The Ideal Setting
This game works if you have anywhere from 12-99 people. Those may seem like random numbers to you, but the trick is that people are in teams of three. So as long as you have a dividend of three you are good, but the more teams you have to more crazy it gets.
This is a hilarious youth ministry game that someone showed me this last summer at camp. You need NO supplies and can do it with two people or 100 people. I found a pretty humorous video on YouTube of two guys who explain the game well. This is a different variation from what I saw, but the concept is the same. Two people have to look at each and do little slightly embarrassing actions with each other. The person who smiles first, loses the game. Typically the actions will build off of eac
I am coming to the realization that the game that our youth group played more than anything is not well known by other youth leaders. Luckily I have a platform to tell the world about it. So here it is!
Pin Guard = Dodge ball With Pins
It really is that simple. If you know how to play dodge ball, Pin Guard is the exact same game except that you can either win by getting everyone on the other team out of the game (like Dodge ball) or by knocking down the all of the other teams pins.
A great game for any size group. Typical ‘circle’ game where the person in the middle tries to get out. Comes with several different options. Easily create more of your own also!
This game can be played with as little as 5 people and still be a ton of fun. It is a typical circle game where everyone is standing in a circle and there is one person in the middle. The person in the middle tries to get out of the middle.
It is good to start the game off with the first two basic rules. Wh
Materials Needed – None
Size of Group – Could have anywhere from 5 to 50!
This is one my favorites to use with new groups or as an icebreaker for large groups. It is easy to explain, allows for some creativity in the group, and allows kids to chat and bond as a group through it out.
Have everyone sit in a circle and have one or two people leave the room. They will be the psychiatrists. They must figure diagnose the problem(s) of the group by asking yes or no questions. Some pr
This is one of the weirdest/craziest youth ministry games that requires no set up, no supplies, and typically 5-20 people. The more people the better I think.
Everyone sits in a circle and everyone works as a team to stack as many "layers of chaos" as they can and can handle before your brains are fried.
So what is a layer of chaos?
One person will be the leader for the group. They will begin and end each layer, keeping track of how the group is doing.
Starting the first laye
This youth group game is great for larger groups and does well in a bigger room or outdoors in the grass. It is a pretty simple game, and when done with a quick explanation seems to do great! It is something the youth from retreats and camps that I have been a part in have always remembered and wanted to do again.
The game is an elimination game that cuts people out slowly until you are down to one or two people. The leader will shout a command and everyone will follow that command. Eac
Supplies Needed – Lots of Plastic Cups. 15-20 of one color per team and one of another color per team.
This is a quick and easy youth ministry game that can be used as a relay or if you have a smaller group can be done with everyone against everyone. I actually got this idea from the big show ‘Minute to Win It’ and made it work for our youth group.
Give every person/team a stack of 15-20 cups of the same color with the one of a different color showing on the bottom of the stack. The go
This is pretty clever youth ministry icebreaker that I found while searching YouTube for some ideas.
Have two or more teams. Have them lie down on their backs in a long line (one persons head at the other persons feet). The person at the front starts with a banana in between their feet and must lift their legs up to pass it on to the next persons feet. The first team to get the banana all the way back to the end of their line wins!
Here's an example I found on YouT
We actually purchased a bible version of "TABOO"
Our teens LOVE it.
You could easily do it yourself without buying the game though.
All you need is a timer, a buzzer & some Bible/Catholic trivia questions.
We have also discovered, this game is great at giving you insight to their personalities.
You see who is competitive, who leads naturally as well as who is reserved.
This youth group game is a great icebreaker. It gets kids to move around a bit and definitely brings out personalities a bit. You need no materials and you can sit or stand. The game is simple.
There is one or two people in the middle (depending on the size of the group) and that person must try to get out of the middle. They go up to a person in the circle and say:
"HONEY, IF YOU LOVE ME, WILL YOU PLEASE PLEASE SMILE?"
The person in the circle will respond:
"YES HONEY I LOV
This is a community youth ministry game where the youth will be going door to door. It is best to send the kids in groups and have an adult with each group. It is very simple.
Start everyone at the parish with a small item like a rubberband or paper clip. Give them one hour to run around door-to-door saying that they are playing a game with their youth group and they are wondering if they can trade their item for something bigger or better.
When they make a trade, they move on to an
We have done tons of different versions of coke relays, but this is definitely the one that has stuck out as the best. This youth group relay is extremely messy but something the youth will definitely remember.
Give each group a 6 pack or 12 pack of coke and a pen. Have a pitcher or glass on one end of the room (or parking lot) and have the youth stand on the other end. The youth must shake the can, stab it with a pen, and squirt the coke in to the mouth of another youth. Using only their m
This game is one of the more funnier games to watch. It is very simple but is wide open for variations.
Hats (usually simple winter caps are fine)
How the game works
Have as many people that you want playing to put on one of the hats. Then you will cover the hat with tape, sticky side facing out. On the floor, you will have a lot of small objects (we have used coins or q-tips before). When the leader says GO, everyone w
I have been involved in our Diocesan summer camp now for about 14 years. As a youth, a volunteer, and now the coordinator of the camp, this is always the favorite.
What You Need
This game only works with a larger group of people. We have about 80-100 youth and about 30 counselors. You could have less (or more), but would need to adjust a few things. As I explain the game, keep in mind the numbers we had.
As far as supplies, your basic supplies would be:
Bandanas – 10 of
A game that we had great success with, was a dry version of marco polo, but it needs to be played at night.
You can create an arena using tables turned on their side (this also helps with safety).
Then you pick who starts as "it" turn off the lights & play like you were in the pool.
When someone is tagged, they , as well as the one searching, say out loud "FREEZE". At this point you turn on the lights. No one is allowed to move again until the lights go back out.