Youth ministry workers may have difficulty coming up with game ideas that work with a small group. Many youth websites provide ideas for large groups games, but fail to include much for small groups. It is important to find fun games for a small group to play, as it can help get youth excited about the group. Teens that enjoy their time at youth group are more likely to invite friends. Friends who enjoy it are more likely to return.
This game can be used with a small or large group. You need a large area to play. Blow up enough balloons to have two for each youth. Tie one balloon to each ankle. Use enough string to allow the balloons to drag about 10 inches behind the youth. Each player uses his feet to try and pop the balloons of the others before both of his are popped. The game ends when only one youth is left with an unpopped balloon. Use the game as an introduction to a lesson on how the world tries to bring you down and "Pop your balloon."
In the Caterpillar Race, the contestants are wrapped tightly from shoulders to ankles in a bed sheet, with their arms tucked inside the sheet. Youth race to the finish line by moving like a caterpillar. A lesson on sin can be used with this game. One suggestion is to talk about how sin wraps us up and makes it hard for us to be what God wants us to be, and that we can break free of sin just like a caterpillar breaks free of its cocoon.
Youth love to play hide and seek. It can be played indoors or in an outdoor area that has lots of hiding places. Playing at night or in the dark makes it even better. Make the rule that no one can hide together. Use this game in conjunction with a lesson on "The Great Commission," found in Matthew 26:16-20. Teach about Jesus commanding to seek unsaved people and bringing them to him. Talk about why it is important to tell others about Jesus and teach them to follow his example.
Have the youth sit in a circle. Choose one person to be "it" and go first. When the youth group leader calls out "suey," the first player will go to another youth in the group and begin snorting like a pig in attempt to make the other player smile within five seconds. If the player smiles she is out of the game. If she does not smile, she takes over as "it" and the first player goes back to his seat. The leader calls "suey" again, and play proceeds as before. Keep playing the game until there is only one pig left in the pen.
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Nick Johnson has been writing professionally since 2000. His creative works have been published in collaborative books, as well as various online publications such as Kids Ministry Resources, a children's ministry website.
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