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Youth Ministry Games

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Bonkers – Best Youth Camp Game Ever!

Bonkers – Best Youth Camp Game Ever!

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

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Honey If You Love Me

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

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Categories

his Catholic youth ministry game is very simple, requires just a little prep, but can be done several times. Materials Needed – Notecards Have everyone site in a circle or in a line.  What you will do is you will have cards pre-made that have a category and one answer to that category on it.  Starting with one person they have to name something from that category in five seconds or less.  There are three ways they can get out: Say something that someone else has said Not

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Pictionary Telephone Tag

Pictionary Telephone Tag

Materials Needed – Lots of quarter sheets of scratch paper, pens/markers, chairs (optional) and a few volunteer helpers and printed download (available below). This has been one of my favorite youth group games to play.  It is a quiet game that draws great competition and requires team work.  The game is basically a mix of the three games mentioned in the title. Directions We use chairs that you can straddle while sitting on them.  For ease of explanation I will use 10 youth and 4

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Ships & Sailors

Ships & Sailors

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

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Mafia

Mafia is a common game that has been used and known by just about any group I have been around.  It is a great starter game for groups of about 8-15.  If you have more and a lot of time, it works also.  Otherwise you can break in to more than one game.  We mentioned Mafia in our post on the game of Wink and in our top games as part of our starting a youth group from scratch series. Mafia is a killing game, so if you are against that.  Please check out our Wink game instead or you can be cre

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Extreme Four Square

To play this youth ministry game you don’t need a four square and you do not need to be outside.  Grab some painters tape and map out a larger four square area on the floor.  Try to make it about 2-3 times as big as a regular four square and you can make it a rectangle shape (like a gym) if you need to.  Doing so will actually make the game a little more interesting. The game is played just like 4-square except with teams.  Each area should have room to allow about 3-4 people to comfortably

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Balloon Shock

Materials Needed Sweatpants and shirt or loose clothing for each group Lots of Balloons Directions Start this youth ministry game by telling each group (typically 3-5 in a group is good) that one person will need to put on the loose clothing over their clothes. When you say go, each group must blow up and put as many balloons in the clothes of the person in the group as they can until you say stop. Be sure put size minimums on the balloons, so that are big enough. When t

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Whap Em'

This youth ministry game is probably the one game that has never gotten old at our youth group.  It is a great easy quick game that can be thrown in just about anywhere to get kids moving.  It is one of the only games I have found where kids do not hesitate to hit people they don’t even know with a pool noodle. Set-Up Have everyone make a big circle with chairs.  In the middle of the circle have a garbage can or bucket.  One person starts in the middle with a pool noodle (or half of on

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Wink

This is a game we played when I was in Junior High and I loved it. Seems to work best with groups of about 20 or more. It is sort of like the Frogger, which we will put up soon. A great game for youth group. Have everyone sit in a circle, with chairs or on the floor. Everyone will close their eyes and the leader will pick someone to be the winker. Then you say go and everyone put their head’s up and tries to figure out who the winker is. The winker attempts to knock people out of the game b

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

The Toilet Paper Game

The Toilet Paper Game

This game does not really have a name, but is very simple. You play until everyone or most people figure it out. Simply find an item that can be passed around.  Let's use a roll of toilet paper for an example.  The leader will start by saying “Ok, we are going to play the toilet paper game, do you know how to play the toilet paper game?”  and they will pass the toilet paper to someone else.  That person will now try to do it correctly.  You will tell them they either did it right or wrong a

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Search and Find Your Small Group Activity

This is a great way to get people to find their small groups. This was used for a Freshman Catholic School retreat and thought I would share it. Make the groups certain categories like: Food, Movies, Places in (your state), etc… Keep the categories very general. Then make a sticky note for each person and put something on the sticky note that would fall in the category of their small group. Every person should have something different on their back, but by asking yes or no questions to

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Boppity Bop Bop Bop

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

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Buzz

Buzz

You should split up into groups of 3-6 people. You can have more than six, but not seven people. This game is unique in that the group(s) will work together to win.  The goal of the game is to count to 50. One person starts by saying “1.” The next person continues with “2.” You go around the circle until you get to 50. The tricky part is that there are a couple of rules to follow. Anytime a person gets to a number that is a multiple of 7 or contains the number 7 (7, 14, 17, 21, 27, 2

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Towel Throw

Towel Throw

Here’s a quick game that works in almost any setting…plus everybody gets to play. All you need is a hand towel (or dish towel). Here’s how you do it. Prior to the game, tie a small knot in the middle of a hand towel. (You may want to do this to several hand towels to speed up play.) Then, get everybody that wants to play into a circle, facing inward. This is an “every man for themselves” kind of game. The object is for players to throw the hand towel at the other players in the circle, hitting t

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Screaming Toes

Screaming Toes

You will need at least 5 people to play.  If you have more than 25 people, it may be good to split them in to two groups. First have everyone shake each others hand and introduce themselves to each other. Then have everyone stand in a circle. Directions: Everyone will look down at their feet. When the leader yells “SCREAMING TOES” everyone will look up and look at one other person.  They should have this person in mind before the leader yells "SCREAMING TOES".   If the person they are

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Hunter, Gorilla, Woman

Hunter, Gorilla, Woman

This game is like rock, paper, scissors. We play it with individuals, if you browse around there is a group/team version of this game. Have everyone grab a partner and stand back to back. Count to three and have them turn around and do an action. You can create your own actions for the three characters or have the youth create them before you start. It is in an elimination game so the loser of the two is out. The winners take on other winners until you are down to one. As an icebreaker, be

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

 

Johnny Whoop

Johnny Whoop is a game that involves having the youth ‘figure out’ the rules.  You start by showing them the way to do it and then having them learn how. I’ve found a great video explaining the game. Great, especially because the gal that recorded was clearly the subject of the game at some point!  

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Shoe Game

Shoe Game

Materials Needed Music (music must be loud, game gets loud and people need to hear it stop) Directions 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

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

Spoons – The Youth Group Game of All Time

Spoons – The Youth Group Game of All Time

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! Supplies Needed Spoons (one for every person) Playing Cards Directions This ga

Eric Gallagher

Eric Gallagher

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