Games for Youth Groups
Here is PYM’s list of the top ten youth group games to play in your church hall without needing a bunch of materials.
Chair Game, aka Poison Pole
Holding hands in a circle, the players try not to touch the chair in the middle.
Fat Cat – Big Dog
One person blindfolded tries to hit others below the waist with a pool noddle.
Basically Piggy-in-the-Middle, where the Piggy stands in the middle of a circle.
Players shuffle from chair to chair to stop the player in the middle from sitting down.
Toss the ball in the basket, while sitting in chairs!
A very fast version of dodge ball played in a pit.
Another great version of dodge ball.
Players swap chairs when they are directed.
Protect the President
Players in circle attempt to throw the ball at the president while the bodyguard tries to block the shots..
When called, two players from each team have to run and grab a stick and hit the ball into their opponents goal first.
Thanks to the young people at Brockville Community Church for demonstrating the games.
Points to Consider
Games break down barriers, develop group identity and give opportunities for endless fun. But although they look simple and easy to run, there are things that a leader should prepare and bear in mind.
The Group – Before choosing the games to be played, consider the make-up of the Group who will be participating. People of limited physical fitness may find it frustrating to be put through a series of high energy activities without a break. Likewise, some games which challenge personal inhibitions.
Familiarity – The session leader should be thoroughly familiar with all the activities in the running order. Before leading a session, why not test them out on friends. If they find them obscure or difficult to follow, then you’ve located the problem to solve before the real event. The more practice and preparation you have, the better your session will be.
Setting – It is worthwhile thinking about the environment for your session.
- If outdoors, Distractions? Weather? Slippery surfaces?
- If indoors, Sufficient space for Nos.? Tables/chairs or other obstacles?
Think about noise, make sure that this is not likely to create problems with neighbours, and when outside, never play close to a busy road.
Tone – Try not to talk too much. Give clear statements, requesting rather than ordering. Smile, speak clearly and exude calm and confidence. People will be reluctant to participate if you appear authoritarian or nervous or unsure.
Pace – Highly influential on the success or failure of a session is the pace. A carefully structured running order can allow for a mixture of high and low energy games which retain the interest of the group.
Ending – End the session in a creative way it is worthwhile sitting in a circle and asking for negative feedback – anything you didn’t like? Why? And finally the positive, what did you like? A group cheer/shout/jump/prayer can finish the session appropriately.