Youth Group Games Archives

So it’s already time to throw your teenagers a group Christmas party and you don’t know how you’re going to top last year’s gathering. You’ve already exhausted the white elephant game and you can only handle watching Elf so many times. What’s a person to do? Well, there’s always Holiday Charades and the traditional Christmas trivia, but how can you spice it up…as in, keep your teenagers awake and participating? Well, we’d like to think we’ve assembled a pretty great list of Christmas party game ideas here…feel free to read through them and add your own ideas at the bottom. Also, don’t forget to take a look at our first post about planning a Christmas party from last year.

Christmas Carol Karaoke

Grab a karaoke machine and start playing your favorite holiday tunes. Whether it’s a solo competition, group style or lip synching, judge each performance on a scale of  one to five, with one being a “lump of cole,” two being a  “fruit cake,” three being an “ugly Christmas sweater,” four being a “cup of hot chocolate” and five being a “new iPad under your Christmas tree.” Well, you get the point. Just make it fun.

Holiday Costume Party

Remember that candy-induced holiday just a few weeks back? What was the name of that again? Oh yeah, Halloween. Here’s a thought…why only dress up for Halloween? Why don’t you host a holiday costume party and tell everyone to come dressed as their favorite holiday character. The possibilities are endless. From Santa and the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree, to the Grinch and Scrooge, the possibilities are endless. And it’s just one more way to spice up your Christmas party.

Human Christmas Tree

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but if you need further elaboration, here it goes. Pick a few teens to “decorate” as human Christmas trees. Divide a group of kids into teams of five and hand them a strand of Christmas lights, tinsel, garland, ornaments and popcorn strands to decorate their “trees.” Put two minutes on the clock and have them light up their trees at the end. Take a vote on the best trees and hand out awards.

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Teens love games that seem cutting edge and professional. If you have a computer or laptop in your youth room, you can play these games and have a blast. We’ve put together a list of (we’d say impressive) youth group Power Point games and screen games that don’t require Power Point for you to use at your next youth service.

Summer Themed Youth Group Game – Race This

Available as part of the Race This Volume 2 from Simply Youth Ministry, SYM is offering one game free of charge for download from their website. These games are just like the ones you see at sporting events on the jumbo screens, where one color, drink or other item races another and the crowd yells out which one will win. Each race is randomly selected and the winner changes each time. These are great for use during down time or before service and are compatible with both Mac and PC. To get your free download, click here. Or, if you can get the  full set of Race This Vol. 2 – Download.

Downloadable Game Show Games for Groups

You can download free game show games for your group, such as “Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader” and “The Family Feud.” The games are fun and interactive and available at However, unless you are just really set on using your big screen to play a game show game with your group, we suggest mimicking the games on the popular show, “Minute to Win It.” They are absolutely hilarious and performed with things you already have around the house.

Customizable Wheel Spin Game for Groups – Spin that Wheel

This one is a new one and very professional looking. In fact, you could play this over and over, customizing it however you wish and using it either as the sole game or to enhance a game you are already playing. It works by imputing your prizes onto the wheel and letting your kids spin for prizes such as t-shirts, gift cards, or a bag of chips. The possibilities are limitless. Alternatively, you could use the wheel to determine something the players have to do in the game. For example, lose a turn, get a free spin, lose all your points, or you could imput actions, such as eat 15 marshmallows in 45 seconds or some other ridiculous task. Your a youth pastor – you can come up with something, we just know it. To check out the game and view a demonstration, click Spin That Wheel – Download.
Spin That Wheel - Download


Planning a youth group Christmas party is a tedious process, and doing so during the holiday season is even more difficult. Take some tips from the pros for planning your next youth group Christmas celebration soiree.

Looking for a detailed list of youth group Christmas games, printable party-planning worksheets, ideas and activities? Check out our favorite collection of Christmas youth ideas to the left. It’s available for immediate download to your computer, and includes over 360 pages of ideas, as well as a search index. Many games and ideas are also appropriate for children and adults.

In it, you’ll get immediate access to:

  • 112 Christmas games
  • 24 Christmas icebreakers
  • Many devotions, teaching illustrations, jokes, funny stories and more.

Plan your Christmas party for twice the number of teens you normally have at a given youth group service. Depending on when you hold your party, it is likely to become one of your most popular youth nights. Form a budget and a party committee, and get to planning.


Anyone who’s been in youth ministry for more than 2 seconds knows that the way to a teen’s attention is through pizza. If you feel pizza is too tired for your group, opt for a dessert night or a church-sponsored pot luck. Better yet, contact a local restaurant to donate food trays for the party as a tax write-off, but be sure to supply them with a receipt for the food’s total value. Some youth groups get by with serving holiday drinks like hot cocoa, apple cider and egg nog, along with homemade cookies and other baked goods.


Try organizing several mini-games or Christmas-related competitions to keep students busy throughout the course of your Christmas party. This may mean creating a group gingerbread house making contest or organizing a gift exchange. Whatever your choose, keep in mind that not all students will want to participate in activities. Try to have a movie playing in the background for those students. We usually prefer Elf or A Charlie Brown Christmas.


Teens love free stuff almost as much as they love pizza. Try to contact some local business for small donation giveaways. Chick Fil A is known to give away free chicken sandwiches when asked, and bigger corporations such as Walmart have also been known to offer product donations. You could also use the giveaways as a slick way to promote your upcoming year. Offer gift certificates toward youth camp or your next retreat. Other ideas include youth group t-shirts, CD’s and gift cards.

Do you have a Christmas party idea you want to share? Leave a comment below to help other youth pastors out.


Being in youth ministry for several years, I know what it means to have to relentlessly come up with group icebreakers for services each week. And inevitably, at least half of them were total duds. It gets quite tiring and frustrating after a while

I recently found this icebreaker book by Ken Sapp and Joshua Goh that is chock full of icebreakers youth groups love. There are enough icebreaker games in this book for every week of the year. (Can you imagine not looking up an icebreaker for a full year? What ever will you do with the extra time? :) )

No, I can’t take credit for the work and I certainly didn’t come up with them, but these guys did a great job. Each icebreaker comes with a complete leader’s guide and a service transition that includes topic questions and a challenge for the participants. All of them can be used to teach on topics such as attitudes, leadership and purpose.

The book is available right now from their website for immediate download and the cost of all 52 icebreakers comes down to about 38 cents for each week. Yes, you can keep scouring the Internet for icebreakers, or you can check out what these guys have to offer. If you don’t like it, they offer a 100% money back guarantee.

Download your copy of Icebreakers Ahead: Take it to the Next Level Here.


In our many years of youth ministry, no indoor youth group game stood out more, nor was requested more than Ranger, Bear, Dog. Now don’t get me wrong, the game was not my idea, so I do not take credit for it. ( I actually have no idea where I picked it up.) But none the less, it is a hit.  And perhaps best of all, it is a FREE game for youth ministry.

It helps to think of the game as a giant Rock, Paper, Scissors competition. Organize students into two teams. Draw a line in the middle of the room with duct tape*. Line up each team along the line with their toes approximately six inches from the line, facing each other. An announcer yells, “Ranger, Bear, Dog!” On the word, “Dog,” each team strikes a predetermined pose, with each team having 7 seconds before the round to decide the single pose that everyone will strike.

The poses act as following:

RANGER                     Kills Bear                          pose as if aiming to shoot a rifle

BEAR                            Eats Dog                           pose as a bear standing on two legs with claws in the air

DOG                               Urinates on Ranger     pose with one leg bent in air as a dog would urinate.

Before you say anything, yes, I know that last one is a little disgusting. But that’s kind of what youth ministry is about and what makes the game so funny.

Anyway, I digress. Back to the game. Once each prospective team strikes their pose, it is a matter of quick thinking to decide who won the round. If team one strikes a Ranger Pose, and team two strikes a Bear Pose, team one is the winner. However, team two must make it to the wall behind them (Or across a back borderline) before a team one member tags them in order to remain in the game. The team to lose all of its members first loses.

* If you don’t have duct tape, mark a defining border line that is easily discernible by everyone in the room.