Here are some creative ideas for online youth group (and beyond) that were recently posted in our Facebook group by youth ministry leaders.
Now, more than ever students are craving community. They want real, authentic relationships.
This question was asked…
Beyond coming up with fun games to do with students online, what are some ways you’re intentionally fostering community?
And here are some of the answers…
Students have been sharing something strange that they own from their house, and everyone else works together to figure out what it is. There is no winner. They really enjoy sharing a part of their life to the rest of the group. – Julie Girard
Each week I write down the list of names in our youth group. Then I pull a name from a hat and go down the list ‘assigning’ each student a person within the group to write a letter to. I use different topics… what you love about that person… what you are doing to stay sane during quarantine… what you would do if you won a million dollars… etc. They have loved it. – Todd Fallone
We added a “snack time” to the end of our meeting … no agenda, just social. – Judy Freeman
We spend the last 15-20+ minutes just chatting about: home, quarantine, family, school work, how they are feeling, etc. When we were physically together, we did this same function over a meal provided by parent volunteers each week. It gives them time to listen, share and support each other. For me it is the most enjoyable time of each session. – Kraig D Pritts
My students love small group time in breakout rooms for about 20 mins and then Scattergories with small groups as teams. Play 1 round in rooms then come back together to keep score. Prayer at end. They tell me they like it-no formal teaching, just bonding. – Erika Cada
I have been meeting with them two at a time and we have been doing work around the church and just talking about how things been going during quarantine. Social distancing is much easier if you have two or three at a time and do projects. – James Dawson
(Editor’s note: It’s always a good rule of thumb to have at least one other adult present with meeting with two or three students. So, ask a volunteer to come along.)
We have scheduled lunch time with our high school students on Zoom. Everyone makes something to eat and we all just CHAT with each other. They must be so BORED because they actually CRAVE to be with us leaders… ha ha. This is on top of our weekly 90 min Campus Life Zoom on Thursdays. Breaking into our small groups has really allowed the students to open up and SHARE their difficult times right now… whether it is relationship problems with parents/family, loneliness or depression. We have advised them it is more IMPORTANT NOW than ever to stay connected with us. 🙂 AND who feels BLESSED? ME!!!! – Jill Boss Colussy
Some other ideas related to online youth group:
We had a student create a list of do’s and don’ts during Zoom youth group. He made it fun, short, and we play it right before our talks. This way, it’s student to student reminders. – Chantell Mendez
We are doing an “I’m Bored Challenge” every couple of weeks (see below). The students seem to engage with it! – Jon Drury
Well, I hope you found these ideas helpful.
Keep up the great work you’re doing being creative and continuing to adapt to our ever-changing world.
– Nick Diliberto, Ministry to Youth