Early and Mid Adolescents


Have the kids sit in a circle and pick one to be it… The “it” is the Cat and chooses another kid to go up to and Meow at (some do it fancy, some loud, some with eyes crossed). If the person chosen can get out the phrase, “No Kitty, I don’t want you,” with no smiling or no laughing, they are safe and the “it” person has to go to someone else. If they can’t help but laugh, they are now “it” and try to get someone else… This can get pretty hilarious, as the kids will find it hard to laugh having everyone laugh around them.

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Musical Baloons

It’s like musical chairs, only you don’t use chairs. You can make this a large group game or small group game. I do it in small groups cause 50 kids is awful big. Give each kid a balloon, blow it up (not to big yet not to small) and that is their “chair”. Place the balloons in a central location, and have the kids circle around the balloons, play some music, my favourite is elevator music. And when the music stops they run to get a balloon. If they pop a balloon their out, if they don’t get a balloon their out, and obviously the last person standing is the winner, kudos to them.

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Musical Chairs Variation

Another version of the Musical Chairs game is to put out a chair after every round, but still all players can continue. It’s great fun when 20 people have to share one chair at the end.

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Musical Squirt Gun

Can be played with a group ranging from 6 – 30 (can also be played outdoors). Group sits in a circle on chairs or on the floor. A loaded squirt gun is passed around the circle until the music stops or the leader says “Stop!” The person who is holding the squirt gun at the time must leave the game, but before he leaves, he can squirt the person on the left twice or the person on the right twice or each person once. The chair is removed, the circle moves in and the game continues. Last person remaining is the winner. The gun must be passed with 2 hands and received with 2 hands. It is best to have another loaded gun standing by for when the 1st runs out. Emphasize only 2 squirts!!!

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My Father is a Pastor and…

During the summer my church doesn’t have a youth group, so a lot of us teens have been getting together and putting our own lessons together. I wanted to grab everyone’s attention so I decided to play a game. In Girl Scouts we used to play “My father owns a grocery tore and in this grocery store there are..”
The first person says something that starts with an A. The next person repeats everything the first person said, and then they add something that starts with a B…and so on.
I decided to do it a little different. I changed “My father owns a grocery store” to “My father is a pastor and in his lessons he teaches us about…” Every letter has to deal with God somehow. A could be ark. B-bible.
Have everyone sit in a circle for this. That way you can add a twist to the game. If someone has the letter S for example, and they say Second Samuel (2 words beginning with that same letter) then switch directions of whose turn it is to go next. In other words, if you were going clockwise before, go counter clockwise. If someone forgets a letter, forgets what someone said, or can’t figure out what to say for their letter within like 10 seconds, count them out. Whoever is left gets a prize. I went to a Christian gift store and bought little prizes and candy with scripture on it. I think it’s going to be a hit!

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Name Change

This game is great fun, we love to play it lots. What you do, is get all the youth(and leaders – they love it too), in a circle, and add another chair. Make 4 of the chairs (if possible) a different colour so they can be recognized. The aim the game is to get all boys or all girls (depending on what sex you are) onto these chairs. The way this is done is: Everybody’s, name is written on a piece of paper, and each person picks one of those names out of a hat. Then the person to the right of the empty chair calls out a name in the group, and whoever drew that name out of the hat moves to the empty chair. Next the person to the right of the new empty chair gets to call out a name. After a while they will begin to remember some of the names and it gets really involving.

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Name Game

This is a variation on the Animalz! game you can find in the Indoor Games section. Early on in the year when we have a lot of new kids who don’t know each other, we will play this game to help everyone learn each others names.

We prefer a balled up tube sock at the end of another tube sock. All of the kids “line up” in a circle. There is one person who is ‘it” in the center of the circle. Choose a person to lead off. They must say their own name, and then the name of another person in the circle. The person in the center must attempt to tag the second named person before they can say their own name and another name. If the person in the center ever succeeds in tagging the speaker, they trade places.

Once the group starts to get the hang of it, occassionally say one name, but point at a different person.

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Officer On Deck

Purpose: Ice Breaker or energy building exercise, that can be used to divide students into groups, and also get their attention or allow them to use energy throughout a retreat day.

Preparation/ Required Material: No materials required. The area must be free of chairs and desks, etc… People need to find a partner with whom they will work.

“Okay, when I say officer on deck every needs to jump to attention, like this (demonstrate standing at attention). When I say submarine everyone must do this (lay on the floor with one leg in the air like a periscope.) When I say scrub the deck everyone must do this (kneel down and pretend to use a brush to wash the floor.) And when I say man over board one of you must jump into the other person’s arms, like this (demonstrate). Now, while we are doing this several of the adults will be watching, and if you do not act quickly enough or if you do the wrong command then they will tap you on the shoulder and that team of two people are then out. The goal is to be the last team here. Okay?”

Bark various commands at some point you can also shout out a command for which they have not been given instructions, like air raid or lights out etc… You can also divide them into groups and assign them battle stations – so that through out the day as you want them to return to these groups you can simply say, ‘MAN YOUR BATTLE STATIONS’ These commands can be used periodically throughout the day to get their attention, use up some of their energy – like after a lunch break you can start playing a game like this 2-3 minutes before you are scheduled to start, just for fun… but it helps to draw people back together – and eliminates some lagging.

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On The Wall Charades

Before the game create a list of one or two syllable words. Clear a large space on the wall and form 2 teams. Have each team choose a representative to start the game. Explain to kids that you’ll show their selected team members a word that they must convey to their team. Tell the kids that they must convey the word in only one way: by using their heads as imaginary pencils to spell the words on the wall. Play several rounds so each team member gets a turn at writing on the wall. The team that’s able to guess the correct answers in the shortest amount of time wins.

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On The Wall Twister

Instead of using a Twister board, use pieces of construction paper in the same colors. Tape two of each color on the floor near a wall, in rows, just like on the Twister board. Tape the other two of each color on the wall above the floor to complete each row of colors. Then play just like regular Twister! It’s fun to watch the kids try to contort themselves with a new challenge on the old game!

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