With the Festive Season well and truly here it is time to share some of my favourite festive themed games. I love Christmas! I really love Christmas! It is the most wonderful time of the year and it also happens to be a fantastic opportunity to make some great youth ministry memories, so pull out all the stops and get creative with your events.
My absolute favourite youth group event of the year is our annual Christmas Bash; in my youth ministry we shoot for a lot of mirth, madness and mayhem at this event. It is a memory maker and it also happens to be a terrific environment to share the heart of the Christmas story with our young people. Hearts are never more tender and open than they are at Christmas time.
How to Play: Divide the group into teams of 6 – 8 people and give them rolls of wrapping paper and tape plus gifts tags, tinsel etc. Their task is to wrap up half their team. The most creative and best-wrapped present wins. Set a time limit.
How to Play: Get two cheap elf suits or Santa suits. Or mix them up and have both. Divide your group into two teams and give them several packets of balloons. They should pick a team member to wear the suit (its good if they have a smaller sized student wear the suit – as they will be able to stuff more balloons in). Set a time limit and their task is to blow up the balloons and see how many they can get stuffed into the Santa/elf suit.
It’s a great group photo moment, then count the balloons stuffed into each suit & the team with the most wins!
How to Play: Divide your group into two teams; you could have up to four teams playing if the group is large. Each team will have one member wrapped up in Christmas wrapping paper. They have to be upright and able to walk & move around. Ensure the teams leave a gap so they can clearly see out and they must also make sure that and index finger is also exposed and left unwrapped. (the best tactic is to have the person being wrapped hold their hand up in front of their chest with their index finger pointing out – and have their team wrap around this).
Form a circle and place your wrapbots in the centres of the circle. Just like robot wars on TV they must do battle and try to remove as much wrapping paper from their opponents using only their index finger to tear the paper. Set a time limit and the wrapbot incurring the least damage is the winner!
Rules: Ensure the teams do not use excessive tape (e.g. going around & around the wrapbot with a roll of tape, as this is impossible to tear off). Tape strips used to secure the paper must not be longer than 6cm. The wrap bots must stay inside the circle and for safety they are not allowed to run.
How to Play: This game is a riot and a real highlight of our Christmas Bash event every year. Divide your group into guys and girls, all the guys (Reindeers) get on all fours. The girls (Elves) have to get the guys (Reindeer) into the stable. section-off part of the room either by using cones or Duck Tape to mark an area big enough to accommodate all your Reindeer. The Elves must round up the Reindeer and drag them into the Stable.
Rules: Once a Reindeer is dragged past the line, they are out of the game. Reindeer are not allowed to get up or run. They must remain on all fours throughout the whole game. Reindeer are not allowed to hold onto or hide under chairs, tables or any other furniture that may be in your meeting room. The challenge is that the Elves must get all the Reindeer in the Stable before the song ends. The song is the Christmas classic: “Run Run Rudolph” by Chuck Berry.
This is a group version of the “Paper-Rock-Scissors” game, with the elements being replaced with Santa, Reindeer and Christmas Tree.
How to play: The game is a lot like Paper – Rock – Scissors. Everyone should get a partner to compete against. Have the young people stand back –to – back. Tell them that you will count out 1,2,3 Jump! When they jump around to face their partner if they choose to be Santa, they must grab their belly and jiggle it while saying, “Ho ho ho!” If they choose to be a Christmas Tree, they must stand up straight with arms slightly out from their sides (like an arrow or Christmas tree shape) and they must sing “O Christmas Tree O Christmas Tree”. Finally, if they choose to be a Reindeer, they must place their hands by the side of their heads and extend their fingers to make their antlers and sing “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer!
Rules: “Santa beats Reindeer (because he is the main man); Reindeer beats Christmas Tree (because it can eat the tree) and Christmas Tree beats Santa (because it can fall on him and squish him).
If you lose your round you are out of the game. Winners should find another winner to play against on the next round. If you draw you simply play again until there is a winner. You must turn around, do the move and say the line at the same time.
How to Play: Get as much shredded paper as you can. Minimum 4-5 large bin bags of shredded paper… the more the better. Divide your group into teams (minimum is two if your group is larger go for 3 or 4 teams).
Give each team several rolls of double sided tape (regular tape will do but they need to make sure they put it on their team mate sticky side out). They will also need some sheets of orange card, black card and scissors. You can also use any other materials – scarfs, Christmas tinsel etc that you can get your hands on.
Each team will pick a team member to be their snowman. They need to cover that person with tape (sticky side out). Create a snow pile (with your shredded paper) in the centre of the room. On your signal they will then go to the pile of shredded paper and roll in it trying to get as much stuck to them as possible. Then their team must decorate them as a snowman. The best looking snowman wins! You will be finding shredded paper for weeks after this game, but it is totally worth it.
How to Play: This requires at least a couple of days to prepare. Get two plastic basins and make some jelly (Jello for any North American readers). When the jelly is partly set place some chocolate Christmas decorations in the jelly. Spread them out at different levels. Use 20 – 30 chocolate ornaments (the kind that are wrapped in foil that you can hang on a tree.) Place some candy canes in there also. When the jelly has set put some custard on top & some cream, sprinkles, the full works!
This is an upfront challenge that the rest of the group will enjoy watching. Ask for two volunteers. It is very messy so give them a bin/trash bag (poncho style) to wear. Cue up a festive tune and when the music starts they have to dive in with their face (no hands allowed) and using their teeth grab as many Christmas choc ornaments as they can in 2mins. The winner is the player who retrieves the most.