Here are some really great games to play in your youth group. Use them for an upcoming midweek/weekend service or an in-person event.
They’re classic “just for fun” games your students will absolutely love.
GAME 1: DEATHBALL
Supplies: Chairs and a ball
How to Play:
- Make a circle of chairs for each player, minus one.
- Students sit in chairs, one player in the middle of the circle. He/she is it.
- One student in the circle holds the ball and throws it to another player in the circle.
- The goal of the player in the middle is to either tag the person who has the ball (while still holding it) or catch the ball when it’s thrown to another player. If either of those attempts are successful, then the player in the middle switches with the player in the circle.
- When starting a round, players cannot throw the ball to the person directly next to them.
- If the ball doesn’t touch a player in the circle when thrown to them, they cannot get up and get the ball. The only person chasing the ball should be the person in the circle who touched it last and the person in the center.
GAME 2: NOODLE WARS
There are two versions of this game you can play:
Version 1 – All Out Noodle War
Supplies: 1 swimming noodle per player. It’s best to cut the long swimming noodles in half rather than using the really long ones.
How to Play:
- Everyone is given a swimming noodle and spread out throughout the playing area.
- On GO, players move around and attempt to hit other players with their noodles.
- If hit, players must stay still and kneel down. They still have the opportunity to hit other players moving around.
- Continue playing until only one player is left standing.
- If you want the game to last a long time, have all kneeling players return in the game whenever you say “scramble”.
- Periodically say “scramble” until you are ready for the game to end. Same tips as given above apply to this game.
Version 2 – Circle Noodle War
Supplies: 3-4 swimming noodles. It’s best to cut the long swimming noodles in half rather than using the really long ones.
Get Ready: Have students get in a circle and put the swimming noodles in the middle of everyone. All players stand up and spread out.
Note: If you have a youth group of over 35+ students, then break them up into smaller circles.
How to Play:
- On GO, students go to grab a noodle. Once you grab it, then it is yours. No fighting over it. Students then attempt to hit with their noodle others who are holding a noodle.
- Players can only hit below the waist.
- Once hit, the player drops the noodle on the ground and sits down in the outer edge of the circle. If a player gets hit above the waste, he/she is not eliminated.
- When a noodle is dropped by a hit player, anyone from the circle can now grab it and begin playing.
- The new player is given 3 seconds before he/she can get hit by an opponent or attempt to hit another player.
- Continue playing until you have one person left standing. Then, play again.
Optional: When you say scramble, everyone who was out comes back in. Do it periodically throughout the game. When you want the round to end, let it play all the way through without saying scramble.
- Warn players not to hit in the face.
- Have adult leaders on the lookout for those that get hit. Sometimes students get hit and don’t realize it. Sometimes they know they’re hit but don’t want to get out. Tell students in the beginning that when leaders say you’re hit, then you’re hit. No need to argue or complain. Trust that the leader is making the right call.
- If a leader is unsure of a hit, let the player stay in.
- Players who get hit cannot throw the noodle to a friend, but drop it where they get hit.
- If no players grab a noodle and it just sits there, give players in the circle 10 seconds for someone to grab it or they’re all out. This will only become a problem once kids play a lot and begin to strategically not grab a noodle till near the end putting themselves in a better position to win.
GAME 3: TOILET PAPER DODGEBALL
Supplies: Lots of toilet paper.
How to Play:
- Same rules as normal dodgeball, but with toilet paper instead of a ball.
- Mark a line dividing the play area in two. Place a row of toilet paper on the line.
- Divide your group into two teams. Each team stands at the back end of the playing area facing the opposing team.
- On go, players race to grab a roll of toilet paper.
- The goal is to throw the roll of toilet paper at opposing players.
- If hit, the player who is hit is eliminated.
- If caught, the player who threw it is eliminated.
- Continue until one team is eliminated.
- The team remaining wins.
Note: Get everyone to help pick up the toilet paper after the game is over.
Well, I hope your youth group enjoys these games. Have fun!
– Nick Diliberto, Ministry to Youth
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