All Youth

Auction Game for Peer Pressure

My assistant, Amanda Williams, and I were thinking of a game that will lead into a discussion about peer pressure. Our discussion evolved into a game that is like an auction game:

Preparation: we printed out pictures of 4 items that are bad of the students, and 3 that are good for them. The former were alcohol, drugs, 50 Cent album and a Hummer. The latter were cell phones, education and a Bible.

First, we tried it with our junior high students. We gave each of them $1,000 worth of play money from the Monopoly game. Then, they were all blindfolded with bandannas. We started the auction by describing the items’ advantages. Actually, we mentioned “good stuff” about the bad items, and some “wrong misconceptions” about the good items. Then, we started the bidding with a certain amount, and the students raised their hands if they are offering the amount. When we’ve got to the highest amount that nobody else would offer, we award the item to the winning bidder.

When the auction is done, they all removed their bandannas and were surprised with the items that they’ve bought. The discussion starts as peer pressure compared to being blind and just hearing the deceiving promises of some things that are being pushed to do, like drugs (your problems will go away) and alcohol (you will have a self-confidence).

When we tried the same game with our senior high, we only gave each of them $500 and they were not blindfolded. They purpose is for them to gang up (build partnerships) and share money to buy items. It shows how young people have the same interests, and also you can see how peer pressure works during the game when some students persuade the others to combine their money to buy certain items. We only award all the items once the auction is over. You can see surprises in their faces.

Just remember to collect the pictures back when the session is over, so parents won’t think that you are promoting drugs and alcohol 🙂

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Back To School Blues

In mid September we had a “Back To School Blues” scavenger hunt. I enlisted 3-4 adult drivers and compiled a list of “blue” things. Ex: a blue crayon, a blue shoe, a blue tissue, etc.. The kids had 1/2 hour to find as many things on the list as possible. When they returned to the church we had a pizza party. The youth and the drivers had a blast!!!

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Back Writing

It’s almost like telephone tag, but a little different. Split the group into 2 teams. Make each team form a long straight line of their own. The leader or someone not playing the game will provide a word/object (bike, flower, etc., etc.) then tell both people at the end of each line. They will then write it on the next person in line on their back with their finger. When it gets to the top. The person at the top draws it on a piece of paper and if right, gets a point.

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Backwards Dinner Devotional

This is an idea of a devotional that we used for our group in addition to the backwards dinner post on

For our backwards dinner, we developed a menu to use as a devotional. each course represents something in the Christian walk. The courses are listed as follows and for each course there are several Scripture verses. At each house we assigned different verses to different kids and they looked them up and read them aloud. As each one was read, the youth tried to guess what each course represented. (on the menu, it was left blank and they could fill it it. ex: 1st course: dessert = ___________ )

Here goes:

1st course: Dessert = Heaven
Genesis 1:1
Matt. 4:17
Luke 23:43
1 Thessalonians 4:17
John 14:1-4
Romans 8:17

2nd course: Side Dish = side blessings from God
Mark 3:1-6
Luke 21:33
Luke 12:22-23
John 10:10
1 John 2:15

3rd course: Main Dish = personal walk with God
Luke 9:26
1 Peter 4:16
2 Tim 4:1-2
Matt. 4:3-4
Matt. 28:19-20

4th course: Soup = missions; Salad = growth
Soup: Revelation 14:6-7, Philippians 2:5-11, Acts 14:21-23
Salad: Acts 17:11, Ephesians 6:10-20, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-22

5th course: Appetizers = salvation
1 Tim 2:5
John 3:16
Romans 3:23
Romans 10:9-10

The point of this devotional was, 1) to offer them salvation at the end, once they had eaten and were filled, they could learn that they could “never hunger” by giving their lives to the “bread of life” (John 6:35). 2) to share with them that as much as you would probably like, you can’t go from salvation (appetizers) straight to heaven (dessert). You need to run the race as God has planned for you. Many times we fill up on side dishes (side blessings) and forget about our personal relationship with the KING.

We hope that this devotional will bless you and serve you.

To God be the Glory.

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Backwards Scavenger Hunt

Here’s an interesting twist on the classic scavenger hunt. Instead of providing a list and sending students off to find the items, send the students off to find the items and then provide the list. Here’s how it works…

1. Create a panel of 3 judges.

2. Divide your students into 3 or more groups.

3. Give the groups 5 minutes to go find a huge collection of various items that will form their pool of resources. They may come back with styrofoam cups, couch cushions, pop cans, hockey sticks, etc.

4. Each group returns to the room/gym with a nice big pile of items in front of them.

5. As the leader, you will read out one item on your scavenger hunt list – for example: Life preserver.

6. The students then quickly collaborate to come up with one item or a couple of items that will represent “life preserver.”

7. Once they have an item, they rush up to the panel of judges. They rush because bonus points are awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd groups ready for judging.

8. Each group presents their item and is given a brief opportunity to sell the judges on why their item best represents “life preserver.” One group may bring two couch cushions tied around a student’s waist with rope. Another group may bring up a Bible.

9. Judges secretly score each team and after all teams are done presenting, the judges reveal their scores and award the bonuses for the first teams to have their list item ready.

Have fun with your list items and to keep things interesting, make some of them intentionally vague and open to interpretation.

Make sure you set up clear boundaries at the outset so that students don’t get into rooms or offices they shouldn’t and remind them that whatever they bring to the room/gym, they have to return when the game’s done.

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Bag O’ Goodies

Gather all kinds of really horrible foods – ones that are quick to open and eat. For instance, baby food, fresh produce, chips, crackers(small box), etc. Everybody is behind a line, 10 ft. One member/leader is holding the garbage bag with these items in it. The member behind line has to go up to the bag, pick something out, by feeling, not seeing what it is, eat it there, then run back to end of line. Race to the finish. If you don’t like something, you still have to eat it since you picked it. (Be aware of food allergies).
More cruel choices are onions, salami, warm ginger beer (remember, you have to chug it!), a whole pack of gum/candy. This works well if you are a hungry bunch!! 🙂

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Bald Is Beautiful

Select several guys with moderately long hair (but not more than 5 or 6 inches…) Select several girls to be the “stylists”. Each boy pulls a nylon stocking over his head completely covering his hair but allowing his face to still show. The stylists then begin poking toothpicks through the nylon hose and pulling out tufts of hair. The most bizarre hairstyle wins the contest! I’ve had several guys wear their new hairstyle all night long! What a hoot!

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Ball in the Middle

This is a game that I found in a book and modified so that youth would play it.

Supplies: a few tennis balls

Instructions: Divide all youth into 2 or 4 equal teams with at most 20 youth per group. Place a tennis ball in the middle of the room. Put each team in the room so that they are all the same distance from the tennis ball. Give each person in each Team a with number (If you have 4 teams than you should have 4 people with the number 1, 4 people with the number 2 and so forth). Instruct the youth that when you call out their numbers they are to race to the center of the room to grab the tennis ball run it back to their team without being tagged by one of their opponets. If there is a stand-still where neither youth will grab the tennis ball then you throw another tennis ball out and call another number. You can change things up by calling out more than one numbers to begin with or using a different kind of ball and putting Vaseline on it.

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Ball In The Middle – Japanese Variation

This game is the Japanese worm variation of the Ball in the Middle game. This idea came to my friend Greg and I one night after spending time with our friend Junji Takahashi. You set up the Ball in the Middle pretty much the same. Equal teams, and each person in each team has a number, etc. But, you have a basketball or soccer ball or something in the middle. Then you have all the participants lay on the floor, on their stomachs. Then when the numbers are called each person must crawl on their stomachs, not using their arms, in an inch worm type fashion. They do this while yelling, “Nama Coochy!!!!!” which is the Japanese word for worm. They all go to the middle and have to use their heads to bring the ball back to the group.

This game is an absolute hoot. Usually, you end up all on the floor in tears, because it looks so funny.

You could also just make this a race to the middle if you wanted, but it is more fun bringing the ball back to the group.

Enjoy, I know we do.

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Ball Talk

Start out with a small (ugly) blue ball. Have a bag full of balls (all sorts) but do not let students see them. Make the biggest jock hold the little blue ball in the center of the staging area. Talk about the blue ball as though it is not very important, point out its faults, blemishes, and potential uses. Tell the students that this blue ball will be our starting point of importance. Then call on another student (preferably girl) and hand them a football. Tell them to stand either side (left or right) of the blue ball in order of importance. Call on other students, handing each a ball (soccer, baseball, softball, basketball, etc) Go into detail as to the importance or lack of importance for each ball. Let each student position themselves in the line of importance while holding their ball. Let the students describe the reasons why they chose to standing where they are always referring back to the “little blue ball” One side verses the other will become the “important” side. When all the balls have been handed out and the students are lined up in order of importance share with them that the line of importance is not from this side to the other but everyone is important in God’s eyes. God sees importance in everyone, as Christians we are to be humble before God and man never giving rise to putting ourselves better than others. 1 Peter 4:6-7

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