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Regular Jenga (4)
Head Bands
Apples to Apples
Imagine If
Tenzies (X40)
Settlers of Catan
& many more

MIXERS:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Common Ground for Leaders
Record how many of you in your group have the following things in common.  The group with the most points at the end of the game wins.  Be sure to be honest, and not just looking for points.  
How many of you are married? _________________________________
How many of you have a job besides being a youth leader? _________________________________________
How many of you have kids, write down the number of how many per person? _________________________________
How many of you have more than 2 siblings? ____________________________________
How many of you have at least one student in youth group you could strangle? _________________________________
How many of you volunteer as a leader? ___________________________________________
How many of you can agree on a favorite movie? ________________________________
How many of you have been on a serve trip? ___________________________________
How many of you can agree on a favorite food? ________________________________
How many of you have been doing youth ministry over 3 years? ________________________
How many of you broke a bone in the last 5 years? _____________________________
How many of you have a family vacation planned for the summer? _________________
How many of you text your students regularly? __________________________________
How many of you have blue eyes? ___________________________________________
How many of you have led a lesson at youth group this year? ________________________________
How many of you have a pet? ______________________________________________
How many of you love the winter? _________________________________________
Add 1 point for each of you for each night you were with your family this past week: ________
Add 1 point for each time you’ve been a patient in a hospital: _______________________
Add 1 point for each year of age for each of you: _________________________________
Add up your score:  _____________________________

Common Ground for Students
Record how many of you in your group have the following things in common.  The group with the most points at the end of the game wins.  Be sure to be honest, and not just looking for points.  
How many of you share a bedroom with a sibling? _________________________________
How many of you are currently in track? _________________________________________
How many of you are in the school play? ________________________________________
How many of you have more than 2 siblings? ____________________________________
How many of you have a part time job? ________________________________________
How many of you own your own car? ___________________________________________
How many of you can agree on a favorite movie? ________________________________
How many of you have been on a serve trip? ___________________________________
How many of you can agree on a favorite food? ________________________________
How many of you received a “B” on your last report card? ________________________
How many of you broke a bone in the last 5 years? _____________________________
How many of you have a family vacation planned for the summer? _________________
How many of you are obsessed with texting? __________________________________
How many of you have blue eyes? ___________________________________________
How many of you have a summer job planned? ________________________________
How many of you have a pet? ______________________________________________
Add 1 point for each of you for each night you were with your family this past week: ________
Add 1 point for every hour of homework each of you did this week: __________________
Add 1 point for each time you’ve been a patient in a hospital: _______________________
Add 1 point for each year of age for each of you: _________________________________
Subtract 1 point for each of you for each hour you spent in front of the tv/computer this past week: ________
Subtract 1 point for each outgoing text you had last month: ______________________________
Add up your score:  _____________________________

Heads & Tails
1. Have 2 coins ready to flip.
2. Kids have to guess how the coins will land BEFORE they land.
*2 hands on head (both coins heads)
*2 hands on your butt (both coins land on tails)
*1 hand on head/1 hand on butt (one on heads on on tails)
3. Have everyone stand up to do this.  When they guess wrong-sit down.  So their ends up being a "stand off" at the end.
It's not super "team building" but its gets everyone relaxed and excited to do more.  

Human Knot 
*Get a group of people.  Everyone puts their hands in the middle of a "circle" and grab random hands.  They they have to untangle themselves without letting go of any hands.  End up in a "normal circle" at the end all holding hands.
Pole Balance
*Take a tent pole/piece of long pipe (something light!). Have a straight line of people (probably 10ish people depending on the length on the pole).  
*Have each person put 1 finger under the pole to balance it (just resting on the finger).  
*Have the group bring the pole to the ground and back up again without dropping it

All Aboard                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Objective:  ƒ To work together to fit your whole group onto the board square(s)  Group Size: ƒ 11-15 per board square (depends on size of players)  Equipment: ƒ 1-2 board squares approx. 25"x25"  Procedure: ƒ Suggested preface:  Titanic has just sunk, this is the floating debris, no one can touch the water. ƒ All in group need to find a way to fit everyone on board(s) - at least 1 foot needs to be on the board and no body parts touching the "water"/ground. (option: to start, put 2 boards together to give group first success in fitting everyone on, then challenge them by saying the waters have separated the boards and you need to find a way to fit the group on the two separate boards.  At least 11-15 can fit on 1 board square.)    ƒ No stacking of people or putting people on shoulders ƒ Let them try and fail.  If frustrations mount, regroup and get the team to discuss what has worked or not worked so far. ƒ Once the group(s) is on the board(s), they must stay on long enough to sing "Row Row Row Your Boat." ƒ Toward the end of the activity time, you may want to encourage what ideas have been tried that would make them successful [e.g.: one option would be for each person to reach across and hold the hand of the person across from them and, each with 1 foot on the board, pull their weight out and balance each other]. 
Ants on a Log (aka Log Shuffle)                                                                                                                                                                                                              Objective:  ƒ To work together to achieve directions - while maintaining balance on a log.  Group Size: ƒ Small-Large group (depending on log size)  Equipment: ƒ A fallen log big enough for a group to stand on. (Caution: log may be slippery if wet.)  Procedure: ƒ Participants stand on a fallen log that is level, all facing the same way.    ƒ Participants follow directions and exchange positions without touching the ground:     Directions can be: line up according to birth date or height ƒ If a participant touches the ground, the participant starts over from the end (or entire group can start over.)  (option: if participant touches the ground, they can sit out until the round is over.)     Cautions to group:     - if you are losing your balance, step off to avoid pin wheeling arms and possibly bringing others      off with you - be careful of stepping on fingers or toes when crossing over someone. ƒ (option: Facilitator can time the activity and assign a 10-second penalty for every "tilt"  (tilt = stepping  off the log).) After a completed attempt, the group processes what worked and didn't before another attempt.  Let the group decide how many times they want to try to beat their own record. ƒ Facilitator can add limitations:  deaf, mute, physical impairments.  Mute works well, especially with older youth or adults, makes group find other ways to communicate. ƒ This can be a very frustrating activity for younger participants, for those who are not focused, or are unable to provide physical support to maintain balance.  Assess the group's capacity before setting the guidelines for this activity.  Try to avoid compromising the guidelines after they are established. 
Back to Back                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Objective:  ƒ Group must work together to achieve the task of standing up.  Group Size: ƒ 2-any (groups of 2, then 4, then whole group)  Equipment: ƒ None  Procedure: ƒ 2 people sit back to back.  Interlock arms.  Then try to stand up. ƒ After pairs have been successful, put 4 people together, sitting back to back, and interlock arms.  Then try to stand up. ƒ After groups of 4 have been tried, and hopefully successful, have original partners get together and make 2 long lines facing back to back. ƒ Everyone sit down. ƒ Interlock arms of the person NEXT to you, not the one behind you.  This creates two long lines of interlocked arms. ƒ Then have the group stand up.  (They will need to remember how to use each other's backs for support 

Bottle Carry - with wood and strings                                                                                                                                                                                                    Objective:  ƒ Work together through communication and cooperation to move bottle from one spot  to another.  Group Size: ƒ Max groups of 8 (8 strings are on the bottle carry wood)  Equipment: ƒ Circular cut wood piece with 8 strings attached, 16 oz plastic pop bottle filled with water.  Procedure: ƒ Split group up into teams of 8 or less.  While all together, give 3 Rules of activity. ƒ 3 Rules:  1. Everyone must be involved.  2. Everyone must hold onto a string.  3. Team must move the bottle on the wood to another location designated by facilitator. ƒ Let each team try.  As soon as the bottle falls off the wood, the next team tries.  This continues until one team is successful.  (Usually the first round is quick until the teams start talking strategy and planning for their next turn.)  Encourage them to watch each team and try to learn from them. ƒ If team asks for a repeat of directions, repeat the 3 Rules. 
Bottle Carry - with cans and bungies                                                                                                                                                                                                      Objective:  ƒ Work together through communication and cooperation to move ball from one can  to another.  Group Size: ƒ Max groups of 8 (8 black and white elastic strings are on the can carry bungie.)  Equipment: ƒ red/white bungie circle with 8 black and white elastic strings attached, 1 large coffee can, 1 smaller  coffee can, 1 ball.  Procedure: ƒ Split group up into teams of 8 or less.  While all together, give 3 Rules of activity. ƒ 3 Rules:  1. Everyone must be involved.  2. Everyone must hold onto an elastic string and cannot touch the cans or ball.  3. Team must move the ball in the smaller can and put it into the larger can. ƒ Put ball into smaller can.  Set larger can about ~15 feet from the smaller can. ƒ First team holds onto elastic strings and tries to work the red/white bungie around the smaller can to be  able to "carry" the smaller can with the ball in it to the larger can.  ƒ Once they have the smaller can to the larger, then they work together to try to dump the ball into the  larger can. ƒ Let each team try.  If the ball falls out before reaching the larger can, the next team tries.   This continues until one team is successful.  Encourage them to watch each team and try to learn from them. ƒ If team asks for a repeat of directions, repeat the 3 Rules. 
Hoop-La                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Objective:  ƒ Work together to move the hoops "through" each person.  Group Size: ƒ Any 
Equipment: ƒ At least 2 hula hoops of 2 different colors. (More hoops can be used for bigger groups.)  Procedure: ƒ Group holds hands and makes a circle with everyone facing in toward the circle. ƒ Facilitator "breaks" the circle and puts one color hoop on the arm of one person then "reconnects" the circle. ƒ Facilitator "breaks" the circle across from first break and puts another color hoop on the arm of one person then "reconnects" the circle. (If the group is large, more hoops can be added.) ƒ Group must manipulate their bodies to pass one color hoop clockwise and the other color hoop counterclockwise.  No thumbs can be used to lift hoops - head, feet, arms, body in general. ƒ Once all the hoops are returned to their starting point, the group was successful. ƒ (option: can time the process, then have the team see if they can beat their time.) 
Knot So Not                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Objective: ƒ Cooperating as a group to get out of the knot.  Group size:   ƒ 6-10 (in even numbers)  Equipment: ƒ None  Procedure:    ƒ make a tight circle. ƒ each person takes their right hand, reach across and hold someone else's right hand. ƒ then each person takes their left hand and reach out and hold another person's left hand.   (optional: Can choose a person to start a "pulse check" - he squeezes his right hand, then that person who's hand was just squeezed squeezes their other hand that's holding onto someone else, etc. This checks if you only have one circle. Sometimes this process confuses younger players.)    ƒ team can't let go of hands ƒ the group tries to untangle themselves to make a regular circle (some people may be facing outward and some inward). (optional: facilitator may intervene and perform "knot aide" and be a connection to help with an untangle.) 
Lap Sit 
Objective:  ƒ Understanding that everyone needs to work together, and if one person falls, everyone  else falls, also.  Their goal is to sit on each other's lap at the same time. Group Size: ƒ Any  Equipment: ƒ None  Procedure: ƒ Have group make a tight circle, left arm in.  Line up in that circle so the heel of the person in front of  you touches your toe.  Put hands on the person's shoulders in front of you. ƒ On the count of three, guide the person in front of you to your lap. ƒ Say:  One - start thinking about it.  Two - start guiding them to your lap.  Three - everyone is seated. ƒ Once everyone is seated, have them sing Row Row Row Your Boat. (option: once everyone is seated, and have sang, and they seem stable, challenge the group to try and walk  in a circle as one unit.) ƒ Have everyone stand on the count of three. (optional: can discuss with group the idea of habitat and how each part has a dependence on another part and if one part "falls," then the habitat can begin to fall apart.  Facilitator can assign participants to represent each element for survival: food, water, shelter, and space (e.g.: in a group of 20, 4 people have a special role).  Then, once the group is "seated," remove one element from the circle and see how it affects the entire habitat.  If one doesn't change the dynamics, take out another element.) 
Marble Roll Objective:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             ƒ Everyone needs to work together and communicate to achieve the goal of continuously  allowing the marble to roll.  Group Size: ƒ At least 4 per team, up to as many plastic tubes you have.  Usually 2 teams.  Equipment: ƒ Plastic tubes of various lengths and diameter, 1-2 marbles  Procedure: ƒ Separate group into 2 teams (team size depends on the number of plastic pipe pieces available). ƒ Let team members choose a piece of plastic pipe. ƒ Have team members line up in 2 parallel lines.  Give plenty of room between teams. Goal: Each team must move a marble from point A to point B.  When the marble is in "your" pipe, you cannot move your feet.  The marble cannot be stopped or slowed by placing anything over the open end of a pipe, other than the open end of another pipe. ƒ Inform teams a marble will be placed into the first tube and they need to keep it rolling through all tubes on their team, continuing to about 50 feet.  Once the marble has gone through the first tube, that player runs to the end of the line to continue the marble rolling, as does the 2nd player, 3rd, etc., until the team reaches its 50' goal. ƒ Facilitator to place the marbles in the first tube of each team at the same time, then watch the fun. ƒ If the marble falls out of a tube or is touched, that team needs to start over from the beginning. ƒ Once the teams get the hang of it, challenge them to see how far they can keep going.  They can "snake" around versus continuing in a straight line. OR When 1 team "wins" by successfully reaching point B, have them join with the other team - but now alternate the 2 colors of pipe (this integrates the teams to reach the goal).    (Sometimes this activity can be difficult and frustrating for younger children.) 
Nail Balance                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Objective:  ƒ To balance an even number of nails on the head of one nail. Group Size: ƒ Any - This can be done individually or in a group. Equipment: ƒ One nail pounded into board, an even number of nails to balance (usually 6-8 works best).  Procedure: ƒ Participant is given the challenge to find a way to balance all the loose nails (6-8) onto the head of the  nail pounded into the board. 
Path of Life (aka Frogger)                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Objective:  ƒ Having patience for others is difficult to achieve, but once accomplished, everyone becomes successful   by walking the "correct" path.  Whole group must cross the lily pads with a certain sequence without  making a mistake. Group Size: ƒ Any Equipment: ƒ 12-15 "lily pads" cutouts, noise making toy (bird, frog) or whistle.  Procedure: ƒ Facilitator sets out lily pads approx 4-5 across and makes rows/columns. ƒ Show participants possible directions they can travel on the lily pads: left, diagonal left, forward, diagonal right, and right.  NO backwards or jumping.  They must cross the lily pads one person at a time. ƒ Facilitator secretly creates a pattern in their mind for the participants to follow as they cross the lily pads by stepping from one pad to another pad. ƒ Participants line up.  First person steps on a pad, if that pad is correct, no whistle/sound.  They take another step.  If correct, they continue, until they step on a pad not of the facilitator's pattern and hear a whistle/sound from the facilitator.  They return to the end of the line.  The next person in line tries to remember which pads were "correct" and tries to make another choice where the first person made a mistake so they can keep going until they reach the other end of the pads.  If/when they make a mistake, back to the end of the line.  Participants CANNOT tell other teammates where to step.   ƒ If 5 people have crossed successfully and the 6th person makes a mistake in the pattern, all go to the end of the line and start over until everyone has successfully followed the pattern. ƒ The activity continues until everyone has made it to the other side of the lily pads. 

String-A-Long                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Objective:  ƒ Communicate and cooperate to create shapes out of string/rope as a group. Group Size: ƒ  Small rope circles = approx 3-6 people  Large rope circles = approx 7-15 people  Equipment: ƒ Rope - in small circles   OR     Rope - in large circles, blindfolds for each participant.  Procedure: ƒ Participants stand in a circle holding onto the string with both hands, facing into the circle. ƒ Participants put on their blindfolds. ƒ Instruct participants:  - They may NOT talk to each other. (option: You may start out letting group talk for a few shapes, then ask if they're ready for a challenge, then tell them they will need to create the next shapes without verbally communicating.  If some group members are very dominant, which may happen when you mix youth and adults, you can "stifle" them by saying only those under 15 may talk, or only those over 30 may talk, or make all mute.) - They do not have to hold tightly onto the string/rope.  They may slide their hands back and forth, but do not let go completely.  Both hands must remain touching the string/rope. - Facilitator will give them some tasks to perform (make shapes with the string/rope) as a group.  Once they believe they have achieved the task, have them call the facilitator over to check it.  Then the facilitator will have the participants use one hand to remove their blindfold, while still holding the shape of the rope, to see for themselves how they did.    ƒ Tasks:     ³ Have group make the string/rope into as close to a perfect * circle as they can.   (Allow several minutes for each shape the group is to make.)     ³ Now change it into:  * a square          a rectangle (twice as long as it is wide)         * a triangle         a right triangle         * two triangles         a pentagon (5 sided figure)         * a star      * = usually takes about 15 minutes to get through these. (Other shapes/tasks may be: an equilateral triangle; a trapezoid; a high shape; a low shape; a long shape; a short shape; a soft shape; a hard shape; a smooth shape; a ragged shape; a high and low shape; a fat, sharp shape; a long low soft and hard shape. 
Trust Walk                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Objective:  ƒ Self evaluate levels of personal trust of others in group.  Group Size: ƒ Minimum- 2, put participants in pairs.  Equipment: ƒ 1 blind fold per pair.  Procedure: ƒ Choose two volunteers to model appropriate guide skills:     One will be blindfolded, the other will guide the blindfolded person around.  Left hand ON left shoulder, right hand IN right hand.  Be specific with directions.    ƒ Option: have girls lead boys first, then boys lead girls = maturity issues. ƒ Have pairs move across a level area with few obstacles. ƒ Have blindfolded person discuss how far they think they have traveled before removing the blindfold (participant usually perceives distance to be much greater than they traveled. 

Walking Logs (aka Trolleys)                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Objective:  ƒ Work together to move as one unit on the walking logs.  Group Size: ƒ minimum 2, maximum 6, people per set of walking logs  Equipment: ƒ 2 walking logs (large wooden 6"x6" boards with 6 ropes on each board as handles for  each person to grab)  Procedure: ƒ Give team the challenge to "walk the logs" by standing on the logs and hanging onto the  ropes and going from one point to another. ƒ Their feet must remain on the logs. (If you have many participants and some waiting to do the activity, challenge them to pay special attention to what is working and what is not for when they try it.) ƒ CAUTION: THIS ACTIVITY MAY BRING ISSUES TO A HEAD QUICKLY!  You may choose to stop and discuss what do they feel is working and/or not working and how can they work toward success. ƒ After they master the act, have them try walking backwards, sideways, or do it without verbal communication. 
Warp Speed                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Objective:  ƒ Everyone's name is said and everyone touches the ball  Group Size: ƒ Any  Equipment: ƒ A small ball (about the size of a tennis ball)  Procedure: ƒ Everyone stands in a circle. ƒ The ball starts with the leader, who makes the first throw, and the ball ends with the leader.    ƒ Throw the ball to someone across from you.  As you throw the ball, you must call out that person's name  you are throwing it to before you throw it.  Remember who you have thrown it to, and who throws it to you for the next round, which you will do in the same order once more.    ƒ After one trip around, the facilitator will time the next round.  See if they can cut the  time in half.  Repeat.  (option: Have the group brainstorm ways to cut time.  Try suggestions, while timing  the activity, to see if there is improvement.  Go through as many productive suggestions as the group wants to try until "warp speed.") 
Whirlygig                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Objective:  ƒ Cooperate as a group to invert the circle.  Group Size: ƒ Any  Equipment: ƒ None  Procedure: ƒ Hold hands and create a circle with everyone facing toward the center of the circle. ƒ Have the group brainstorm ideas on how to invert the circle, then have them try the suggestions.    ƒ Continue holding hands while working to invert the circle (make everyone face outward, instead of in  toward the center of the circle).   ƒ No one can be twisted and no one can let go of hands. 
UNSPEED Dating Quiz
1.    This person’s favorite color is red__________________________________
2.    This person has a part time job_________________________________
3.    This person really likes pizza ___________________________
4.    This person has been in a play ____________________________________
5.    This person has moved more than 4 x_______________________________
6.    This person’s birthday is in April _________________________________
7.    This person has never broken a bone_______________________________
8.    This person has been to Mexico ___________________________________
9.    This person lives on a farm ____________________________________
10.  This person loves the TV show “America's Got Talent”___________________________
11.  This person has a boyfriend/girlfriend ___________________________
12.  This person plans to go to college ________________________________
13.  This person has been on a mission trip______________________
14.  This person plays volleyball  ________________________________
15.  This person plays an instrument___________________________________


Get everyone in a circle.  Begin with the first person saying an action that begins with the first letter of their first name, then their first name (Swimming Sally (do a pretend swim stroke)).  The whole circle repeats the name (Swimming Sally) and does the action.  The next person does the same thing, but uses their own name (Galloping Glenda).  The whole group repeats each name, beginning with the most current (Galloping Glenda, Swimming Sally) while doing the corresponding actions.

Begin by having everyone give his/her name loud enough for everyone to hear.  Have them line up in alphabetical order.  Allow enough time but do not let it drag out.  Start at the front of the line and have everyone give his name aloud.  Anyone out of order is sent to the end of the line.  If there is a question about which of two persons is actually out of order, send both of them to the end of the line.
Variation:  After you use this idea a time or two, go down the line and have each person give the names of the people on either side of them.

Mingle in a group by shaking hands and saying “Hi, my name is ____”. One individual while shaking hands will be the assassin who uses their pointer finger to itch other person’s wrist. However, the person who was itched cannot exaggerate their death till they have shaken hands of two more people. Goal is for group to figure out who is the assassin before they are all “dead”!

Split the group in half.  Hold up a blanket (or tarp, etc.) in between the two groups.  Each group huddles behind the blanket so that the other team cannot see them.  They quietly pick one person to be ‘it’ and sit right in front of the blanket.  When both teams are ready, the blanket is dropped.  When the blanket is dropped, the person on each team that is ‘it’ (sitting right in front of the blanket) has to try to say the person’s name that is ‘it’ on the other team first.  The person that does not say it first now becomes a part of the other team.

Group stands in a circle with one person in the middle.  The person in the middle points to any person of their choice standing in the circle.  When pointed to, the person ducks down.  The two people standing next to the now ducking one, “joust” to see who can say the other person’s name first.  The one who wins stays in the circle, while the other leaves the circle.

For this activity, the facilitator tells everyone in the group to think of the date on which they were born (not the year or month but the day). Next, the group is instructed that they can no longer make any sound but they must get lined up in order from 1-31.

Break the group up into 2’s or 3’s, and have them come up with as many things that they have in common with each other (We all like pizza.  We both have ridden in a sled in Colorado.  We both have an Uncle Jeff).  If you want to make it tougher, challenge the pairs to have use commonalities that aren’t physical things (We are wearing blue jeans.  We have brown eyes.  We both have mullets).

This is a combination of a relay, the game telephone, and charades.  You need to split the group into 2 groups, have them line up facing the back of the person in front of them, so they can’t see what’s going on behind them.  then, you will start with the last person in each line and tell them an action (like drinking from a water fountain, playing a sport, or running from a t-rex, etc.).  After you speak those words to them, they have to communicate that to the person in front of them without using words (charades).  When they have to pass the message, they tap the person in front of them and they can turn around to see the message.  They will then continue the message until it gets to the front.  The front person runs back to the back of the line and waits.  Whichever group gets to this point first wins the relay portion of the game, giving them an edge.  Then, the true winner is decided when they show their action to the back person in line (the one who originally got the correct message) and you share with the group what action they were supposed to be showing.  Whichever group is the closest wins!

Have the kids circle up with 2 people in the middle.  One of these two people must stay frozen while the other must protect them from a ball.  The people in the circle can pass a ball around or take a shot at the frozen person in the middle.  If they get hit, have them switch roles.  you’ll want to stay out of the circle and run to get the ball to keep the energy level up.

Each participant finds a partner and together they decide on a double name (ex. Salt and pepper, ice and cream, or black and white).  Everyone is then blindfolded and one of each partner is taken to opposite sides of the playing area.  The object of the game is to find your partner by calling out his half of your agreed upon double name.

Like a cross between Foosball and soccer.  Teams must be linked to other team members and may only move side to side (not forward or backwards)

Everyone stand in a circle.  You must find out the names of the people on both sides of you.  Then one person is in the center and goes around the room pointing at people saying, “Do you know your neighbor?”  That person will count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 really fast, and the person that was pointed to must say the names of the people beside them.  If that person doesn’t say the names fast enough, or forgets them, he/she must go in the center.  Other things may be said, such as:
“bowl full of jello” - people on the sides of the person that was pointed to must hold hands around the person, and the person that was pointed to must wiggle like jello;
“elephant” - person pointed to makes a trunk and sways it, the people on the sides make elephant ears;
“milk a cow” - person pointed to makes udders with their fingers, and the people on the sides milk the udders.  If the person that was pointed to, or either person on the sides do not act fast enough, they go in the center.

This is another awesome version of rock, paper, scissors.  Teach the whole group these three actions: Troll - hold your hands in the air like you’re big and roar, Wizard - hold your arms straight forward as if casting magic and say “Alakazam” and Dwarf - duck, stroke your beard, and roar.  Troll beats Dwarf, Wizard beats Troll, and Dwarf beats Wizard.  Have 3 lines made with good distances among them.  Have them split into 2 teams and have them brainstorm as to what their whole group will be.  Then they line up on the middle line, facing one another and you yell “1, 2, 3.”  On 3, they demonstrate their action.  If they choose the same, they go back to brainstorm and repeat the process.  If they are different, the winner groups will try to catch the loser group and adopt them.

Choose one volunteer to leave the room and not listen to what is about to happen.  The rest of the group decides what action they will make the volunteer do when that person returns.  It could be to do a push up, sit on a bench, put on someone’s hat, etc.  However, the only way the group can communicate with the volunteer is by clapping and cheering.  So, if the person has to sit on the bench, when they get closer to it, the cheering and clapping will increase.  If they move away from it, then it will cease.  All you will tell the volunteer person (the one out of the room) is that they have to do a specific thing that the group decided and they will guide them with their claps.  It gets really funny as they get confused.

PRUI (Prue-E)
Blindfold everyone except one person and space them around in an open space.  Take the one person who CAN see and tell them they are the “prui”.  They are not allowed to move or talk.  Tell everyone else they need to find the prui and the only word they can say is “prui?”  If they find someone else who cannot speak, they will know they found the prui and they link arms with them and they do not speak either (they can take their blindfold off at this point).  Continue until everyone finds the prui.

The group pairs up and stands in a circle, facing the facilitator.  The facilitator begins chanting, “Hands to hands”, “Back to back”, “Knee to Knee”, etc. and as he repeats the chant, the group lets their bodies follow the directions and assumes whatever imaginative position the leader’s chant has suggested.  If he says “Hip to hip” the partners bump hips, etc. Matching body parts to body parts continues until the leader shouts “People to People!”  That’s the signal for everyone to scamper about and find a new partner.  The facilitator continues to shout out the different body parts and occasionally yells “People to People.”

Write simple questions on pieces of paper, and put them into balloons.  Inflate them, and give one to each student.  One at a time, have them pop their balloon, read and answer the question inside.

Blow up lots of balloons.  Divide kids into two teams.  Select one guest from each team to be the Weakling.  The remaining guests are the Personal Trainers.  Have the teams gather on opposite sides of the room and divide the balloons up equally among them.  Then have each Weakling put on a pair of larger clothing.  On the count of 3, the two teams of Personal Trainers must make their Weaklings grow some instant muscles by stuffing as many balloons as possible into the large clothing.  After a set amount of time, take pictures and count how many balloons each team has while removing them from the large clothing.

Pack two suitcases with a collection of crazy, mismatched clothing.  Divide the kids into 2 teams, and set a starting and goal line.  The first player in each line runs toward the goal carrying the suitcase.  When those two players reach the goal line, they open their suitcases, put on every item of clothing, pick up the empty suitcases, run back to the starting line, undress, put all the clothes back in the suitcases, close them, and hand them off to the next teammates in line.  The first team to get everyone through wins.

Divide kids into 2 teams.  Take one team into a different room.  Have each child switch various items of clothing or accessories with their teammates until each kid has switched something with each other kid.  This team goes back into the main room and the other team has to try to figure out all the switches.

Pass around a roll of toilet paper and tell everyone to take “what you think you need”.  They’ll want to know what they will need it for, but don’t tell them.  When everyone has their share, explain to them that this is to get to know each other better.  Each person should tell something about him or herself, one thing for each square of toilet paper they have.  They can share hobbies, favorites, collections, nicknames, childhood memories, and family history, anything they can think of that everyone doesn’t already know about them.  Feel free to give the ones who took tons of paper a break.
Variation - each person will cut off any amount of yarn they want.  They will hold the end in one hand and wrap the yarn around their finger once for each fact they share with their group.  They must continue to talk until they have reached the end of their yarn.

Stand in a circle so that everyone except for a person in the middle is standing on an object (spot, piece of paper, shoe).  The person in the middle says their name and a true statement about themselves (I like cheese.  I walk to school every day.  I have a dog named Nicolai, etc…).  If anyone in the circle knows that the statement is also true for the (they like cheese too, etc.), they step off their spot onto another one, while the middle person tries to get a spot as well.  The person left without a spot says their name and a true statement about themselves.

Before the game, write the names of real or fictional people, places, or things on cards.  The first player chooses a card (without looking at the other cards) and tells everyone whether their word is a person, place, or thing.  One by one, the other players ask yes or no questions to figure out the answer.  The group can only ask a total of 20 questions.  Each player can try to solve the mystery when it’s their turn, but an incorrect guess means that person is out of the game.  The incorrect guess doesn’t count toward the twenty questions.

Everyone comes up with 2 facts and 1 lie about themselves.  Everyone else has to try to guess which is the lie.

Have one person turn around and close their eyes while you point at one person.  That person will run away to hide.  When the blinded person turns around, they will have to identify who is gone.  They have 10 seconds to do so.  You can add challenges like having 2 people leave or have 2 blinded going against each other.

Get the group in a circle and take a volunteer.  Tell that person to stand in the middle.  Explain the rules: One person on the outside will be the leader of the circle.  That person will start all actions that the entire circle does, like clapping, jumping up and down, whistling, etc.  The person in the middle, however, will shut their eyes while the counselor points out the leader for the rest of the group.  The middle person’s job is to then uncover their eyes and try to figure out who the leader is by seeing who is beginning the actions.  The rest of the group will want to catch on to the leader’s actions as quickly as possible so that they keep the middle person confused.  Give the middle person three guesses for the leader.


007 TAG
Everyone stands in a circle.  One person clearly points at and looks at another person in the circle shouting “O.”  That person then passes it again saying “O.”  Than the next person passes it saying “7.”  The pattern continues with “bang,” in which case, the one who got “banged” stays completely silent and the two people next to them yells “ahhhhh!” for a few seconds.  The “banged” person then starts the pattern again (O,O,7,bang,ahhh!).  Pace will increase and people are out if they go out of order, yell when they are supposed to be silent, or can’t keep up the pace.

Before the game, write each letter of the alphabet on a separate index card.  Then think up fun categories that kids can relate to (animals, names, TV shows, sports, hobbies, cartoon characters) and write each one separately on index cards.  Next, put the alphabet cards in a separate pile from the category cards and shuffle both piles.
At game time, choose one player to the Game Show Host.  He must pick a card from the category pile and hold it up for all of the other players to see.  He then chooses an alphabet card, holds it up for everyone to see, and announces the letter.  The first player to name an item in the category that begins with the alphabet letter wins the card.  The player with the most alphabet cards at the end wins.

Group sits in circle facing in. In a clock-wise direction, players count up from 1. Instead of 7 and all multiples of 7, and all numbers that contain 7, say 'Buzz'. For example, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Buzz, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, Buzz, 15, 16, Buzz, 18, ... If there is a mistake, start over at 1 with the next scout in line. Once it is going well and the group has reached 50 or so, stop them and add 'Bizz' to the game. Now, substitute 'Bizz' for 5. For example, 1, 2, 3, 4, Bizz, 6, Buzz, 8, 9, Bizz, 11, 12, 13, Buzz, Bizz, 16, Buzz, 18, 19, Bizz, Buzz, 22, ... If the number is a multiple of 5 and 7, or has 5 and 7 in it, like 35 or 57 or 70 or 75, say 'BizzBuzz'! Try for a group record or reaching 100. 

Counselors will hide around the lodge with a marker and a task (Sing Jesus Loves Me, recite a Bible verse, etc.).  Campers run through the lodge trying to find each counselor and complete each task.  When campers complete a counselor’s task, that counselor will sign that camper’s arm (or paper).  The campers’ goal is to get each of the signatures of each counselor.  Two other counselors will be running around with pool noodles; one ‘good’ and one ‘bad’.  The ‘bad’ counselor will be running around tagging campers.  When campers get tagged, they must stay in the spot they were tagged and say ‘help me, help me, help me’ while pounding their fist on their hand until the ‘good’ counselor tags them.  At that point, they are free to hunt for counselors again.  The game is over when one camper gets the signature of each counselor playing the game.

This game works well for middle school and high school. Elementary school students might struggle with it. Before the game begins, a series of buzz words are created. They should be words that are common in songs like love, Lord, or baby. People are divided into groups. (I've had it divided as floors for dorm events or small groups for youth groups, the best size is probably 5-10 people). One buzz word is given and you go around the room. Each group has to sing a song with that word in it within the time limit. The first group that cannot come up with a song in the given time or that has repeated a song is out, and the time limit gets in each round. This continues with different words until there is only one team left. 

Players will be following directions, similar to Simon Says, to try to stay in.  The activities are broken into group sizes.
Swab the Deck - (1) each person individually will swab the deck
Captain’s Ball - (2) partners will dance
Rowboat - (3) people will get in lines of 3 and row the boat
Octopus - (4) stand back-to-back with arms sticking out
Starfish - (5) grab hands in the shape of a star
Other directions:
Captain on deck - stand at attention until leader says ‘at ease’
At Ease - players don’t need to stand at attention anymore
Port - left
Starboard - right
Stern - back
Bow - front
Walk the plank - ‘you are out’ - if players fail to follow directions, can’t find a group, or forget to wait for ‘At Ease’

Each time gets 5 minutes to hide their flags.  Once the flags are hidden, the game begins.  In order to win the game, one team must capture the other team’s flag and bring it back to their own territory.  If an enemy team member grabs you while you’re standing in their territory, they are allowed to take you straight to jail.  You can be freed from jail if one of your team members touches you.  There is no limit to how many times you can be thrown back in jail.

Like Name Joust, but instead of simply pointed at a person, the middle person will shout a category at the same time.  The two next to the ducking person must say something from that category first or else be “out.”  Categories could include “TV shows, Books of the Bible, Brands of toothpaste, etc.”

Divide the group into teams.  Each team is given one quarter, one tennis ball, and a book.  The idea of the relay is to balance the book on your head, hold the quarter in your eye, place the ball between your knees, and then walk to the finish line.  No hands are to be used to help in any way.

This game is similar to Bonkers.  Same as bonkers, without bonkers
Counselors will hide around the lodge with a marker and a task (Sing Jesus Loves Me, recite a Bible verse, etc.).  Campers run through the lodge trying to find each counselor and complete each task.  When campers complete a counselor’s task, that counselor will sign that camper’s arm (or paper).  The campers’ goal is to get each of the signatures of each counselor.  The game is over when one camper gets the signature of each counselor playing the game.

Need: paper scraps
This is a memory game, pitting guys against girls.  All the players’ names are written on uniform pieces of paper, folded up, and placed in a container.  Meanwhile, all players are seated in a circle with only one opening (one chair).  The container is passed around and each person draws a name.  The purpose of the game is to get the entire couch occupied by your gender.  Movement is accomplished by the person to the left of the open space calling a name.  The person holding that name moves to the open chair, and exchanges names with the person who called his name.  It therefore becomes a challenge to the memory-whose name do I call to get another girl on the couch.

Have all players sit down in a circle. One person is chosen to be the "Psychiatrist." This person must then leave the room as the rest of the group prepares to play. With the Psychiatrist out of the room and out of earshot, the rest of the players decide on a psychological illness that they will all have. Anything and everything is valid, no matter how obvious, vague, figurative, hypothetical, or stupid.
Example Fill-in-the-blank Diseases:
1. Everyone acts and responds to question as if he/she is a famous person or someone in the room. (Prince Charles, the Pope etc.)
2. Everyone answers questions for the person sitting on their right (or left).
3. Everyone answers questions in certain style.
4. People have a certain aversion/obsession with a certain letter/word/object.

One person will be hiding somewhere in the lodge with a list of things that players will have to draw for their teams to guess.  The hiding person will switch hiding places throughout the game to confuse the players.  Players will be in a large room divided into their small groups.  When a leader starts the game, one player from each team will run around the lodge, looking for the person with the list.  When a player finds the hiding person, the hiding person will say the first thing on their list.  The player will run back to their group and start drawing that object until someone in that group can guess what the object is.  The next player in that group will run around the lodge until he or she finds the hiding person.  When he or she finds the hiding person, they will say the name of the object that the previous person drew.  That will tell the hiding person to say the next object on the list.  Teams will compete against each other to get through the list first.  The first team to get through the list wins.

You have two groups get into two separate lines (each behind each other.)  The person in the front of the line has a bucket of water and a sponge while there is an empty bucket behind the last person.  The goal of the game is to see who has the most water in their back-bucket at the end of a set amount of time.  The person in the front has to fill a sponge with water and pass it over his head to the person behind him.  That person then needs to take the sponge and pass it between their legs to the person behind him.  The next person needs to then bring the sponge over his head to the person behind him.  This pattern goes the person in the back gets the sponge, where he needs to empty the sponge into the bucket.  The person that just emptied the sponge into the bucket has to then run up to the front with the sponge to the front to start the process over again.  (Can end the game by a set amount of water needed to win, or can be stopped by everyone being at the front bucket once. Also, you can have it where, rather than run to the front after squeezing the sponge, you simply pass the sponge back the way it came.

This activity starts out with one person who is “it”.  He chased the group around and when he tags someone, that person must grab his hand.  The “blob” grows each time it tags another person.  If the “blob” chases someone out of bounds that person becomes part of the ‘blob”.  If the “blob” breaks apart while chasing someone, that person is not caught.

The players choose a position they want to be first, head or tails.  If they are heads, they put their hands on their head.  If they are tails, they put their hands on their tails.  You play just like tag.  If you are tagged, you switch your hand position like the person who tagged you.  The object is to get everyone to one position.  The heads want all heads, and the tails want all tails.  The leader may call flip at any point to let people change to a position they want.  The game is over when all players are in the same position.

This game is similar to normal tag, with one exception—if you are touched by any other person (everyone is actually “it”) you must cover that one place with your hand.  If you are tagged again (say on the knee) you must hold your other hand on your knee.  If you are tagged a third time, you are eliminated from the competition.  The last person to be tagged three times is the winner.

Everyone is “it”; goal is to tag other people’s limbs (arms and legs).  When an arm is tagged, it is put behind one’s back and cannot be used.  When a leg is tagged, the person holds the foot in the air behind them (and hops around on the other leg, not also tagged).  Feet can be used to tag if done gently (no kicking!).  When both legs are tagged, person rests on knees.  When all four limbs are tagged, person sits down.  Last person standing is the winner!

This tag game starts out with one person being “it”.  As soon as he tags someone, he must hold their hand, and try to tag someone else.  Every time this team tags someone new, that person must join their line and become part of the “link”.  Eventually there will be a long line of people who are “it” and only a few who will find it impossible to escape the huge “Snake”.  (It is very important to have well-defined boundaries for the players in this game).

TEDDY BEAR BATTLE SHIP (can use bean bags)
Split the group into two teams.  Set long tables on their sides splitting a large room into two sides.  Each team gets their own side, where players must lie flat on their backs.  Give each team the same number of teddy bears.  Once the game starts, players will throw teddy bears over the tables, trying to hit their opponents.  If a player gets hit by a teddy bear, he/she is out of the game.  Players CANNOT move until they have been hit by a teddy bear.  The game is over when all players on one team have been hit.

Everyone must either lie on their stomachs with their hands in front of them or sit at table with their hands in front of them, in a circle. Once everyone places their hands directly on the table or ground in front of them, players will move their right hand in between the person to your right's hands. This creates an alternating hand pattern. So, looking down onto the group the hands would look like this: (From left to right) My LEFT hand, then the person on my left's RIGHT hand, then the person on my right's LEFT hand, then my RIGHT hand, and so on. To start, one person calls out the tapping direction, either Left or Right, and starts slaps their hand once on the ground/table. The hand closest to the first slap, in the named direction, slaps the hand, then the next hand, and so on.  If hand A slaps, hand B can either single slap or double slap. A single slap keeps the slap going in the correct direction; a double slap sends the slap in the opposite direction.  If someone slaps out of turn, they must remove that hand. All other hands stay where they are. When both hands are out, that person is out of the game.  The game is over when there are two people left.

Players for a circle.  The first player secretly thinks of an object such as a toy, an animal, or a food item and must pretend to handle it and pass it to the next player in the circle.  For instance, if he has chosen a cat for his object, he could pretend to scoop it up, hold it, kiss it, pet it, and feed it a can of cat food.  He must do all of this without talking and then hand the mysterious item to the next person.  The object is passed around the circle, each treating the object the same way and trying to figure out what it is.  The last player in the circle announces to the group what he thinks the item is.  If he’s wrong, the second-to-last player can take a guess.

Split the group into 2 teams.  Each point begins with both teams lining up on the front of their respective end zone line. The defense throws the disc to the offense.
Points are scored by passing the disc to a teammate in the opposing end zone. Other basic rules imply that players must not take steps while holding the disc (that is, a player holding the disc must maintain a pivot), and interceptions and incomplete passes are turnovers. 

Seated in a circle, each person sits in a circle and thinks of something that they haven’t done but everybody, or at least as many people as possible, have done.  (Example: “Well, I never been outside of the state of Wisconsin.”  Each person then gets a turn to say their statement, and for every person they can get to stand (If you have done what that person has never done), a punishment is determine.  This is done by a container with predetermined punishments on individual pieces of paper.  The person giving the “Well, I never” statement picks one out and everyone standing then must carry out the punishment.  (Example: imitate a monkey).

1.) Case:  A single man is found dead, face down in the snow, far from his home.  There are no tracks around him and it has not snowed in several weeks.  Hundreds of people witnessed his death, but only he could have prevented it. 
The Mystery:  What was the man doing just before his death and how did he die?
Answer:  He was skiing and fell off a ski lift
2.) Case:  In 1994, a man’s dead body is found sitting upright, in a small room with no windows.  Had the year been 1989, he would not have died.  Even before the authorities open the door, they know that the man did not take his own life. 
The Mystery:  How did the man die and why wouldn’t he have died in 1989?
Answer:  He was executed because the death penalty was legalized in California.
3.) Case:  A scuba diver is 1,000 ft. below the surface when the oxygen in his tank runs out.  The diver doesn’t make it to the surface for nearly 3 hours, yet he doesn’t die when his oxygen runs out.
The Mystery:  Why didn’t the diver die when his oxygen ran out and how did he reach the surface?
Answer:  The diver was already dead when his oxygen ran out and his body floated up the surface.
4.) Case:  An elderly woman goes for a leisurely walk.  Two young men in excellent physical condition are directly behind her, sprinting toward her.  No matter how fast they run, they do not catch up with the woman.
The Mystery:  Why can’t the men catch up with the woman and where are all of the three people?
Answer:  All three are on treadmills in a gym.
5.) Case:  It’s a holiday.  Moss hops into the car and begins to drive. He drives for hours in one direction and covers hundreds of miles.  When Moss stops the car and gets out, he’s in the same place that he started.  
The Mystery:  In what state and in what month did Moss drive?
Answer:  Indiana—Indianapolis 500 in May
6.) Case:  A masked man is attacked by a gang of 5 men who shoot at him, then quickly flee.  The masked man survives the attack, but the gang returns again and again until it finally quits.  The masked man moves to a new location, but the gang continues to come after him.  He moves back to his original spot, hoping in vain for a reprieve.  The next night, a different gang attacks him.  
The Mystery:  What is the masked man’s profession and how long does the first set of attacks last?
Answer:  Hockey goalie attacked for 20 minutes in 1st period.
7.) Case:  Wilma is working diligently in a lab when she gets a tremendous urge for a cigarette.  There aren’t any “No Smoking” signs posted, and the chemicals she is working with pose no real fire hazard.  As soon as Wilma strikes a match, her boss fires her for destroying his work.
The Mystery:  In what kind of lab did Linda work and what is her boss’s profession? 
Answer:  Lab is a darkroom run by a photographer.
8.) Case:  Bob and Ursula are having an intense conversation while Bob is trying to concentrate on driving their 2-seater car down a winding mountainous road.  Bob has a seat belt on, but Ursula doesn’t.  Suddenly, a truck swerves and hits their car head on.  Their car is totaled, with equal damage on both sides.  Bob has 2 broken legs and broken pelvis, but Ursula doesn’t have a scratch on her body.  Ursula calls the police right away but can’t tell them where the accident happened.
The Mystery:  Why isn’t Ursula injured and why doesn’t she know where the accident happened?
Answer:  She wasn’t in the car; she was on a cell phone.
9.) Case:  A man’s body is found 1,000 ft below sea level.  Drowning is not the cause of death.
The Mystery:  Where and how did the man die?
Answer:  The man died of heat exhaustion in Death Valley.
10.) Case:  Years ago, 2 men spent every day and night together.  A third man waited for them nearby.  Going outside could kill the men, but they went for short walks and drives nonetheless.  Now the men lead normal lives and can go outside as often as they like. 
The Mystery:  Where were the men and what was their profession?
Answer:  They were astronauts on the moon.
11.) Case:  Jason feels perfectly fit.  He has no symptoms of any disease and feels not pain.  After a brief exam with a doctor, Jason is told that he needs surgery.  Jason has the operation and goes home bleeding profusely and in excruciating pain.  The Dr. declares the operation a success and tells Jason to go to work as soon as possible.
The Mystery:  What kind of degree does the Dr. have and what was the surgery?
Answer:  Dentist—wisdom teeth

1.)    There is a dead body in a field with a pack.  How did the person die?   
Answer: The man fell out of a plane and his parachute didn’t open.
2.)    There are two bodies in a cabin on the top of a mountain.  How did they die?
Answer: The cabin was a plane cabin and they people died in a plane crash.
3.)    A dark horse jumps over a wall and lands on a white man who then disappears.
    Answer: It is a chessgame.
4.)    Jack and Jill are dead on the ground.  Broken glass and water are all around.  How did they die?
    Answer: Jack and Jill are goldfish.
5.)    A body is found frozen in the middle of a city park—in the middle of summer.
    Answer: A man had climbed up into the landing gear of a plane, froze, and then fell out.
6.)    A man walks into a bar and asks for a glass of water.  The bartender points a gun at the man instead.  The man says “thank you” and walks out.
    Answer: The man had the hiccups.
7.)    An archaeologist discovers an ancient mummy which he claims is Adam.  How does he know?
    Answer: Adam had no belly button.
8.)    There is a body lying at the foot of a mountain.
Answer: It was superman and the mountain was made out of Kryptonite.
9.)    A man is standing on a corner.  He runs home, meets a man with a mask, and runs back to the corner.
    Answer: It is a baseball game.
10.)    A man was driving a black car and drives into a town which has just suffered a black out.  All the house lights are also black.  There is no moon and his car has no lights.  A black dog runs in front of the car.  The man swerves to miss the dog.  How did he know the dog was there?
    Answer: It was daytime!
11.)    A man walks into a restaurant and orders albatross soup.  He takes one bite, steps outside, and kills himself.
    Answer: He had been stranded on an island. His wife died. Another stranded person made “albatross” soup one night and this man ate it. In the restaurant he tastes albatross soup again and realizes what he ate on the island wasn’t albatross but the body of his wife.
12.)    A man is flying at a height of several thousand feet.  He steps from his craft, falls to the ground, and walks away.
    Answer: The man was in a space craft where there was no gravity.
13.)    You’re driving a bus.  At the first stop, 15 people board.  At the next stop, three get off, five get on…What color are the bus driver’s eyes?
    Answer: Whatever your eye color is because you are driving the bus.
14.)    You are staying in a house in which all sides face south.  A bear walks by.  What color is the bear?
Answer: The bear is white and you are at the North pole
15.)    Those who make it don’t want it.  Those who buy it don’t use it. Those who use it don’t know it.
    Answer: Coffin
16.)    A man came to town on a horse Thursday, stayed 3 days and left on Friday.
    Answer: The horse’s names are Thursday and Friday.