What would Jack say?

(Courtesy of Daniel Higgins)

This game is a combination of T.V. show “Family Feud” and the board game “Compatibility”.
The person running the game will approach a youth grouper before youth group, and ask them to answer some questions. For each question, “Jack” must provide 3-5 answers and rate them in order of importance.
When the game is played in youth group, teams will be asked the same questions as “Jack” and they will have to try and give the same answers and in the same order of importance.

(The game can also be played live with the “Jack” person writing their answers at the same time the teams write theirs.)

Jack will reveal and explain his answers why he gave them in that order so that we all get to know him.
After about 3 or so rounds, the team with the most points win.

Scoring:
3 points for a correctly placed match
1 point for an incorrectly placed match

Here’s and example:

QUESTION:
Something you would do on the weekend…

Jack’s Answers:

1 Go out for coffee
2 Go to cadets
3 Update planes on wikipedia
4 Go to the movies
5 Set something on fire

Teams Answers:

1 Set something fire + 1 (One point for a correct answer in the wrong place)
2 Go out for coffee + 1 (One point for a correct answer in the wrong place)
3 Updating Planes + 3 (Three points for a correct answer in the correct place)
4 Spit roasts + 0 (Zero Points for an incorrect answer)
5 MCing events + 0 (Zero Points for an incorrect answer)

The Download

[This is the Mixer Version of the same Sharing Time activity]

Give each person in the group a sheet of paper and tell them to write down (download) everything that they did, or that happened to them during the week (or holidays). Then get them to find another person or other people in the group who’s list has the most similar items to their own. Interview some of the groups or pairs then pray.

Name That Tune

This game is adapted from the Spicks and Specks game show where it is called “Substitute”.

The aim is to teach the memory verse by singing it as many times and in as many ways as possible to help reinforce memorisation.

Split into at least 4 teams. Give the memory verse for the term to each team or have it up on the projector or a whiteboard. Each team will also need to be given three tunes to well-known songs as well – you can use national anthems, pop songs, church songs etc. This game is played in 3 rounds. Before the start of each round, each team has a minute to practice among themselves singing the words of the memory verse to the tune of one of the well-known songs that they were given.

Each team then takes turns in singing the memory verse to the tune of the well-known song while the other teams listen in and try to guess the tune of the song that is being sung. Teams only get one opportunity to make a guess and they “buzz in” when they think they know the tune. 1 point is awarded to the team that makes a correct guess, and 1 point given to the team that was singing the song that was correctly guessed. No points are awarded if no one guesses the tune of the song.

4 Pics 1 Word

This game courtesy of Mark Schroder, youth minister at Campbelltown Anglican.

This game is based on the same game that has overtaken your news feed on Facebook!

The idea: Try and guess the word that is being represented by 4 cryptic pictures. This activity is a great one for learning about Bible characters, Bible stories and each other.

Create 3 rounds for the game. For example:

Round one: Bible Character

Round Two: Bible Story or thing:

Round Three: Youth Group Character ie. leader or member.

How to play:

  1. Display pictures and the blanked out word on the screen
  2. Allow groups to think about the answer and write it down
  3. After a few minutes move on to next round.
  4. After all pictures have been displayed provide everyone with the answers
  5. Finally, choose one of the categories and give a few details or extra facts about it. If its a youth group leader or member interview them and pray for them in your small groups/pairs.

If the pictures are too cryptic, you can make a round easier by providing one or two bonus letters as clues.

Below are 2 examples provided in pptx files with the following answers for each respective one:

powerpoint #1

a) Callum- (he’s a youth group leader at Campbelltown Anglican Youth)

b) Samson

c) The Prodigal Son

powerpoint #2

a) Nick Bull- (he’s a youth group leader at Campbelltown Anglican Youth)

b) Jonah

c) Tower of Babel

Evangelistic Prayer

The aim is to pray for people you know who aren’t Christian (yet!).
Read out one or more of the sentences of Scripture below and then get the group to write down on a piece of paper at least 3 evangelistic things they can pray for (ie. for non-Christian friends/family or enemies, for missionaries, for governments etc). Then get them into small groups of about 3 and get them to pray for the points they have.

Scripture passages (NIV 84):
Colossians 4:2-4
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should.

1 Timothy 2:1-4
1 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Saviour, 4 who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

2 Thessalonians 3:1
Finally, brothers, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honoured, just as it was with you.

Ephesians 6:19-20
19 Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

Your Room

Have a young person (or a few people) from youth group make a 30 second video (each) of their room, showing things that are on their desk, posters on their wall, the song playing on their iPod, their Bible open at the last passage they read, the clothes in their wardrobe, a musical instrument or any other quirky thing they might have (a pet snake for instance!). The whole idea is to give a snapshoot of their life and what they’re interested in. After watching the video at youth group, quiz the group on what they saw in the video (questions like: what poster was on the wall? What passage was their Bible open on? What was on their doona/quilt cover? etc). Reward those who make a correct answer (with chocolate or something). This game can be played in pairs or groups where you would have each pair/group make a list answering the questions about the video. Repeat the process if there’s more than one video.

The aim of the activity is simply to better know someone at youth group.

Whose Bin? (Mixer version)

Decide on a person from your church (not from youth group because it won’t work). Collect about 5-8 items/clues that are related to the person and put the items in a bin (you will want to make them a little cryptic, with the first clue the hardest, and the final clue more or less giving away the answer). Note, you can just get pictures of the items and put them on the powerpoint rather than find the actual props for clues.

Split into smaller groups (mix it up with those who go to church and those who don’t). Bring the bin out the front so that all groups can see it (or the use the powerpoint slide). In the game, each group gets to have only one guess at who the person is, their guess should be made to the leader of the game in quiet so that other teams can continue to play without knowing the guess of other teams. If the person is guessed immediately after the first clue, maximum points are awarded. With every clue that is revealed less points are awarded for a correct guess.

At the conclusion of the round give info about the person from church or play a video interview of them before moving on to the next round.

#1 Alternative game play: Split into teams and give each group a bin with clues to a different person. Each team is given 5 minutes to rummage through the clues in the bin and then make their guess. In this alternative game play all clues should be a bit cryptic with no “give-it-away” clue.

#2 Alternative game play: Instead of using group members, use bible characters or stories and use it as a Bible Game.

Whose Bin? (Bible Game version)

Decide on a bible character or story. Collect about 5-8 items/clues that are related to the character or story and put the items in a bin (you will want to make them a little cryptic, with the first clue the hardest, and the final clue more or less giving away the answer). Note, you can just get pictures of the items and put them on the powerpoint rather than find the actual props for clues (there is a keynote file already prepared attached to this post.

Split into smaller groups (mix it up with those who have Bible knowledge and those who don’t). Bring the bin out the front so that all groups can see it (or the use the powerpoint slide). In the game, each group gets to have only one guess at what the story or who the character is, there guess should be made to the leader of the game in quiet so that other teams can continue to play without knowing the guess of other teams. If the story or character is guessed immediately after the first clue, maximum points are awarded. With every clue that is revealed less points are awarded for a correct guess.

At the conclusion of the round point out the theological significance of that Bible character before moving on to the next round.

#1 Alternative game play: Split into teams and give each group a bin with clues to a different bible character or story. Each team is given 5 minutes to rummage through the clues in the bin and then make their guess. In this alternative game play all clues should be a bit cryptic with no “give-it-away” clue.
#2 Alternative game play: Instead of using bible characters or stories, use group members and make the game a mixer.

Bible Blunder!

(this game comes courtesy of the great Daniel Higgins!)

This game is designed to help young people to be discerning in regards to what they might hear in bible talks or what they overhear about the bible. It will encourage young people to really learn the Bible for themselves, as well as teaching them some stories from the bible. This game requires you to go through and change or add to a Bible story before hand.

For example:

DAVID & GOLIATH (Edited Version!) 1 Samuel 16 & 17

David was the youngest of twelve son’s and was by far the most popular. (False! 1 Samuel 16:10-11) He worked as a shepherd, and often had to kill Lions and Bears. He was also glowing with health and had a fine appearance. Because of his health and fine appearance he was appointed King. (False! 1 Samuel 16:7) Now, the Babylonians were invading Judah (False! 1 Samuel 17:1) They had a champion by the name of Goliath, who was about 9 ½ feet tall! He Defied the people of Israel, and challenged them to send him a person to fight. Lots of men volunteered, but David was chosen because of his practice fighting wild animals.(False! 1 Samuel 17:11) David was a little nervous, but took courage when the King lent him his personal set of armour. (False! 1 Samuel 17:38) He went down to the water and picked out five smooth stones, and with his sling in hand approached Goliath. Goliath taunted him, so david started shooting his stones at him, Goliath charged and with his last stone David knocked out Goliath. (False! 1 Samuel 17:49) David then chopped Goliath’s head off. When the enemy saw what had happened they dropped there weapons and bowed down in reverence and respect of the Lord, becoming Israelites. (False! 1 Samuel 17:51-53) From that point on, David became very popular and went to live with the King and his Son.

Instructions: This game is played in teams and will require a sheet of paper and a pen for each team. Put the edited story on big screen (if you are able) and read the edited story out loud telling them to look out for ‘bible blunders’ which are places where the story has been changed or added to. Afterwards, give the teams 2 minutes or so to list all the mistakes by writing them on a sheet of paper.

Once the time is completed, ask the teams to mark their list as you read out the list of the mistakes (honesty system!). A correct guess gets you one point, but an incorrect guess means you lose two points. After each mistake is announced, say how it really happened, so everyone knows how the story should actually go. At the end, ask people how many mistakes they got (Did they miss some? Did they think there was extra?) then tally up the scores. The team with the most points wins.

Bible or what?

This game helps people become familiar with the Bible and recognise concepts and phrases that are not in the Bible. This game is adapted from a “Spicks & Specks” game where contestants are shown a photo and have to decide if the photo is of a famous composer or serial killer (very entertaining and unfortunately often quite hard to tell…). Obviously “Bible or What?” doesn’t use photos but text. Participants need to decide if the text they are shown is from the Bible or elsewhere.

Some examples of topics are: Bible or Poetry? Bible or Pop Song? Bible or Philosophy? Bible or Buddhism? Bible or Islam? Bible or Shakespeare? Etc. (Poetry & Philosophy obviously refer to non-biblical examples of those topics).

Choose some texts for your topics that are hard to distinguish between and others that are obvious. Here are 2 example questions for Bible or Shakespeare just so you get the idea:

1. “Wisely and slow; they stumble that run fast”

Answer: Shakespeare! (Romeo & Juliet).

2. “He that is soon angry dealeth foolishly: and a man of wicked devices is hated.”

Answer: Bible! (Proverbs 14:17 – KJV)

And 2 example questions from Bible or Pop Song:

1.     “Throw your soul through every open door, count your blessings to find what you look for, turn my sorrow into treasured gold, you pay me back in kind and reap just what you sow.”

Answer: Pop Song! (Adele – Rolling in the deep)

2.     “For great is your love, reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.”

Answer: Bible! (Psalm 57:10 – TNIV)

Instructions: You can play this game in 3 rounds where you choose 3 topics and have a multiple questions in each; or you can play the game with multiple topics that have one question for each, it’s up to you but the latter will be more work.

Once you have chosen your topics and worked out your questions, form the group into teams to play. Give each team a game card that says “Bible” written on one side and “Other” written on the reverse side. After displaying and reading out the text, each team is given a minute to decide their answer before showing if they think the text is from the Bible or from the other topic you have chosen. Tally points as you go and declare the winner when you’ve completed the rounds. More importantly use the game as an opportunity to help people understand what is in the bible and what isn’t.

Download the pre-prepared presentation slides:

Group vs Guru

A version of the TV game show “One verses 100”. Call in a “guru” (minister, student minister, youth minister, youth leader, etc) to youth group have them compete against the whole youth group in Bible (or other) trivia. The game should work like the game show where the aim is for the “guru” to outlast the group by getting all the questions right. The youth group and the “guru” are given a multiple choice question. The group is given 30 seconds for every person to decide their answer and record it on a piece of paper (this works on trust). Anyone in the group with the wrong answer is out for the rest of the game. The “guru” is also given 30 seconds to decide their answer and lock it in. If the “guru” gets the answer wrong, then the “guru” is out and the group wins.

35+ Note: For groups 35+, make A5 size answer cards that are folded into 4 quarters with one letter (A,B,C,D) written respectively in each quarter. People then lock in their answer for the question by holding the letter above their head. Make sure you ask the Guru to lock in his answer secretly before the group answers, otherwise the Guru gets an unfair advantage.

Download the powerpoint template here with 15 ready made questions.

Download the keynote  template file here (this is the original file & exported as a .ppt)

Guess Who? Bible Characters

guess_who_bible_characters_sampleThis game is based on the board game “Guess Who?”. Split into teams (you will need a complete set of cards for each team, so only have as many teams as you have sets of cards), the smaller the teams the better. Each team starts the game with a set of 50 Bible character cards (download cards here) that they arrange face up in front of them. The game starts with the game organiser selecting a card of their choice from a separate complete pile of cards. The object of the game is to be the first to determine which card the game organiser has selected. Teams take turns asking a yes or no question to eliminate candidates, such as “Is this person in the OT?”. Well-crafted questions allow players to eliminate one or more possible cards. Teams should just turn over the cards which are eliminated. Questions need to be asked to the game organiser without the other groups hearing their question (otherwise they would gain an unfair advantage). Each team is only allowed one guess, which is an incentive to play the game the game through without just making random guesses each round… When the character has been guessed, give a short description of who this person was, what they did, and how they are significant in the salvation story of the bible. Here is a good website to get factual biblical information: http://www.teachit.co.uk/armoore/bible/biblepeople.htm

Engrish Memory Verse

« Engrish Memory Verse [works with any number of people]

Type the memory verse into an online translator and translate the verse from English into another language (Chinese works best). Then take the foreign language translation and translate it back again into English. You will notice that it doesn’t come back out the way it went in! You might want to repeat the process a few times if you really want to mess it up, however, it does need to be vaguely recognisable…

Show this mistranslation to the group and then give them a limited amount of time to work out what the memory verse actually is.

Example:

John 3:16 [English TNIV] “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Translate into Chinese (Han): “對於上帝如此被愛世界他產生他僅有的兒子,誰相信他的那不會消滅,然而有來世。”

Translated back into English: “So is liked the world he producing his only son regarding God, who believes that his will not eliminate, however has next life.

If you repeat the process one more time you get: “Therefore is liked producing only then his about God’s his son, believes world he will not eliminate, has the life.

One Point Prayer Tree

This is a simple one point prayer segment that helps people think deeply about what they are actually praying for.

Ask the group to suggest one specific point to pray for (eg. war in Iraq, etc…). Write the prayer point at the top of a white board and then ask the question “What do we actually want to pray for (eg. the war in Iraq)?”. Then begin to write on the board the sub-points that people suggest we should pray for (ie. we want peace) and link the sub-point to the heading by drawing a line. Further still, ask a question about the sub-point (eg. “What do we want peace to look like?”) and then write those sub-points under the previous sub-point.

In the end you should have a kind of diagram that looks something like a tree with many specific sub-points to pray about the original prayer point.

This activity should help people really think about what they want to ask God for. It’s all very well to say “dear God I pray for the war in Iraq.” But are you praying for the war in Iraq to get worse, get better, or what? This prayer segment will help us to pray even more thoughtful prayers.

Quotable Quotes

This game should help people get to know characters from the Bible, from Christian history and to know each other.

Compile a range of quotes (can be bible quotes, Christian quotes or quotes from someone in your group). Split the group into teams and then read out the quotes in character. Teams buzz in to have a guess when they think they know who said it. Award points for each correct guess.

You may need to give clues if quotes are hard to guess.

Alternative: No teams needed. Compile a range of quotes and write them on separate pieces of paper with the answer included (can be bible quotes, Christian quotes or quotes from someone in your group). Place the pieces into a container and select one at random. Read the quote in character. Whoever guesses the quote correctly come to the front and draws another quote from the container at random and reads it out in character. Continue this cycle until all the quotes are finished.

Who am I?

Very similar game to “Who’s bin?” but without the props…

Choose names from the bible (be sure to use the more well known names). Prepare 12 clues for each of the Bible characters. Start with harder clues and then get easier until you finally reveal the Bible character. Play this game in rounds, with one bible character per round. Split everybody into groups and read out the clues pausing after each clue in order to give the groups a chance to guess. Once a group has made their guess, that’s it for the round. Have a range of prizes to give out depending on how many clues were read out before the character was guessed.

AAPB

The good old Australian Anglican Prayer Book (AAPB) has some great prayers written in it for various things on pages 91-97 (also p.120). Doing some of these every now and again is a good way to be trained in WHAT to pray and different things to pray for. The leader of the prayer time can print some off (or photocopy) a few of the different prayers and choose some of the youth group to pray them out. Some of the language might need to be adjusted and updated so the youth group understand it.

Here is a word document of the AAPB prayers with language adjusted to be gender inclusive.

SMS Memory Verse

Write the memory verse out on a piece of paper using only the numbers used to write the words in an SMS message, ie. the numbers that correspond to the letters on the keypad. (Eg. “843 5673” = “the lord”). Obviously there will be a number of words that will correspond to a pattern of numbers but that’s all part of the fun for the kids to work out the memory verse. They can use their mobile phones for this game to help them work it out. Split the group into small teams of 3-4 and if there is a person on each team who has credit and is willing to spend it, then you could say whoever is first to text the memory verse to the leader’s mobile wins. Otherwise the winner can be whoever is first to decode it and write it out correctly.

Mad Gab Memory Verse

This is a good game for introducing a new memory verse. Just like the card game ‘Mad Gab’ from Mattel©. It’s a game of words and phrases, it’s not what you say, it’s what you hear. Say the words “Day Leo Fur Rings” a few times and you’ll find you’re saying. “daily offerings!”, just sound it out. Write up the memory verse in Mad Gab style (eg. “Iron hot ash aimed off day goes bell” = I am not ashamed of the gospel). If it’s a large memory verse split it into sections (ie. If there are 3 sections to the memory verse then make 3 rounds to the game, and when a team has solved the first section, give them the second, and so on til they solve the whole verse). Players work in teams and compete against each other to solve the memory verse first, and when they have solved it, run up to the white board and write it out in full.

Buzzer Blanks

(AKA. Wheel of fortune, missing letters, hang man) This is a good game for introducing a new short memory verse. Using a white board, put underscore dashes on the board for every letter in each word of the memory verse eg. Jesus wept = _ _ _ _ _    _ _ _ _. Divide everybody into 2 groups. Each group elects someone to be the buzzer and another to be the contestant. The ‘buzzer sits on a chair out the front while the contestant stands behind them with their hands on the head of the buzzer, when they want to answer a question they lightly press the buzzer to make the sound for that team. The game is played in rounds so that the each person in the team has an opportunity to be the buzzer or contestant. When a contestant gets a question right they are allowed to select 1 letter of the alphabet (apart from vowels) to be uncovered on the board. Have special rounds where contestants are allowed to choose vowels or solve the memory verse. You will need to prepare at least 26 questions for the game and they can include bible questions, youth group questions, celebrity questions, etc.