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Pass the Clap
Focus: Having fun, Visual communication
Stand in a circle. One person has the “clap” in their hands and turns to face a person next
to them. About when they make eye contact or just when they are facing each other, they
clap simultaneously. Then, that next person has the clap and turns to pass it on. After it
has been passed around once and everyone has the hang of it, begin to time him or her.
Encourage people to move around, jump into a different part of the circle, and reverse it.
Two Truths and a Lie
Focus: Getting to Know One Another
Go around the group and have everyone say two true statements about themselves and
one false. The rest of the group has to guess which one is false. If participants find it
hard to think on the spot, give them index cards and let them write it down. Then, toss
the cards into the middle of the circle so you have to guess who the person is and what is
false. You may be surprised. You can learn some crazy things about each other!
Focus: Having Fun, Communication
This activity requires one package of computer or copier paper and a large, open floor
space. Have one participant in the group draw a picture on a piece of paper of anything
they’d like. Then, give the group the stack of paper and tell them to mimic the drawing
on the floor. To make it more interesting, silence certain people in the group. For
instance, only allow one person to do the talking and instructing or, perhaps, only the
guys. If there is a large number of participants, divide the group in half and have the
groups compete to see who can lay out a more accurate picture. This activity is
especially fun if timed and allows for a fun photo opportunity at the end.
Focus: Working Together
This game usually takes about half an hour. The organizers of the game begin by finding
multiples of objects. If you plan to have 3 groups, then find 4 objects (i.e. 4 binders, 4
pens, 4 pinecones, etc.). Then, where none of the participants can see, arrange one set of
the objects. Maybe place the pen horizontally in the middle of the binder open to page 4
and put the pinecone centered above the binder. Then gather the participants, split them
up into three groups, and explain the game. Each group has 2 builders, 1 or 2 runners,
and 1 looker. The looker of each group gets to see the original model. Each group’s
builders get a pile of the objects in a space away from the other teams’ builders. The
interaction works like this: The lookers look at the original display and go halfway to the
builders’ location, where the runner will be positioned. The looker tells the runner all of
the details he can remember about the model. Then, the runner goes to builders. When
the runner(s) get(s) to the builders, the builders can only ask the runner yes or no
questions. “Does the pen go here? Is the binder open? Is it open to this page?” When the
runner can’t remember anymore details or wants to confirm a detail, he goes back to the
point where he can meet the looker. He can converse freely about the details. This goes
on until all of the groups feel they are done or are pretty much done. Then, everyone gets
together and looks at each groups finished model. Replication builds communication
skills and is a good teambuilding effort. It’s fun, too, to look at the different results.
1. Amoeba Race - A simple, close physical contact group cooperation activity. The group forms the
three parts of an Amoeba: protoplasm, cell wall and nucleus. Then the group travels, splits into
two amoebas, and the amoeba have a race.
Pass the parcel
Everyone's heard of "Pass the Parcel", so you might think this sounds a bit lame as a youth group game,
but it can work well if you add a little twist.
For those that don't know "Pass the Parcel", you wrap up a prize (eg a box of chocolates), then add
multiple layers or wrapping (up to 20 times). Within each layer, add a smaller prize (such as a lolly or
The group sits in a circle and "Passes the Parcel" around the group with some music playing in the
background. When the music stops, whoever is holding the "Parcel" unwraps one layer and keeps the
small prize hidden within that layer. This continues until the last layer is unwrapt and whomever has the
parcel wins the prize.
Now, the twist. As well as adding a small prize within each layer, add a written "Challenge" of some sort
that the person unwraping the layer must complete. The challenge can be something the person must do
in front of the group, or something share
Sing a song to the group
Tell the group your most embarrasing moment
Do 20 push-ups
What did you want to
As a result, you end up with a game that is fun,
Everyone stands in a close circle - puts both hands out - and randomly grabs hold of someone else's
hand, creating a massive knot!
Without letting go of hands, the group should try to untangle itself...
To play this game, you will need to divide the group into teams (the number of teams depends on the
area you have available and group size).
You will need some equipment for this game. Place empty bowls on one side of the room, and bowls full
of dried peas on the other side. Make sure there is an equal number of peas in each bowl. Give each
team member a straw.
The aim of the game is for each team to transport a small pile of dried peas from a bowl on one side of
the room to another bowl on the other side, using only their straw. They do this by sucking through the
straw so the pea stays fixed to the end of the straw. If they drop the pea they must pick it up again using
The winning team is the one that transports all the peas first.
An acrostic is an arrangement of words in which certain letters in each line, when taken in order, spell out
a word or motto. Ask group members to introduce themselves to each other by using words or phrases
that describe them to create acrostics of their own names (or nicknames). For example:
Andrew: Ace, Nice, Dynamic, Reliable, Energetic, Wonderful
Animal Bird Fish
Sit everyone in a circle, and select someone to start. This person (a) walks up to any other person (b) in
the group and says either “animal" "bird"or "fish."
The person (b) must then name a specific one of these that has not yet been said during the game,
before (a) counts to 10. If (b) succeeds, (a) stays in the middle and quickly approaches a new victim. If (b)
cannot think of one in time, he or she goes to the middle, and (a) returns to his seat.
Do you love your neighbor
Get everyone to sit in a circle and have one person in the middle.
The person in the middle walks up to someone and says "Do you love
They will then respond something like this:
Yes, except for the people who have brown hair
Yes, except for the people wearing red
Yes, except for (insert your own criteria here).
Everyone in the circle who matches that criteria then needs to get up and find a new seat whilst the
person in the middle tries to steal (sit) in someone's seat. The person left standing becomes the new
person in the middle.
The other option is the person can respond "No", which means the two people either side of them have to
switch seats while the person in the middle tries to steal their seat.
This game is obviously physical so take necessary care!
This game also leads on quite nicely to a discussion around loving your neighbor in real life - Who is your
neighbour? What does loving them look like in your context? etc.