Check out these 12 games that teach, challenge,
inspire, and lead kids into deeper faith.
Form groups of four, and have kids take off their shoes. Have
groups each create the outline of a box on the floor, using their
Say: Now all four of you must stand in your shoe box for
three minutes, but you can't help one another. You're on your
After three minutes, ask: How easy or difficult was
Say: Let's try the challenge again for three minutes, but
this time you can help one another stay in the box.
Ask: How did helping one another compare to not helping one
another? Have you ever experienced a time you needed friends'
support? Tell your group about that time.
Read aloud Galatians 6:2.
Say: The Bible says that we need each other. There are
times we're weak and we need each other to help carry our burdens.
What kinds of burdens do kids your age have? How can you help your
friends carry their burdens?
Say: A great way to help one another carry our burdens is
to pray for one another. Find a partner, then write your partner's
burden on your shoe. Then let's pray for one another and help carry
one another's burdens.
Doing the Impossible
Form groups of four. Give each group a bag of Hershey's Kisses.
Say: Your group can eat as many Hershey's Kisses as you
want -- as long as you don't use your hands to unwrap
Allow time. While this is a near-impossible task, applaud your
kids' creativity and efforts.
Afterward, ask: Would you say this was an impossible task?
Why or why not?
Read aloud Matthew 19:26.
Ask: What are things that are impossible for us to do that
God can do? Is there anything that is impossible for God to do? Why
or why not? What's something you're facing that seems impossible?
What do you think Jesus would have you do about that "impossible"
Give each child a balloon to inflate and tie off. Have children
each place the balloon under one of their feet.
Say: I'm going to call out things that can cause stress in
your life. Maybe the thing I call out causes a little stress for
you. If so, put a little pressure on your balloon. Or perhaps the
thing I call out causes a lot of stress for you. If so, put a lot
of pressure on your balloon. Don't release the pressure between
things that I call out.
Call out things that can cause stress in a child's life, such as
parents fighting, a test at school, a family move, being sick, a
pet dying, too much to do, breaking a friend's toy, and so on.
Continue to call out stresses kids face until the list is exhausted
or the balloons are broken.
Have kids turn to a partner and discuss these questions:
Which thing made you put the most pressure on your balloon?
How did you feel as you pressed on your balloon? How do you feel
when you're stressed in real life?
Read aloud Philippians 4:6.
Ask: How can God help us deal with the stress in our
Say: Let's do what God tells us to do when we're anxious or
stressed. Let's pray for one another right now.
Have kids pray with the partners they discussed the questions with
Form groups of four, and have one person from each group leave the
room. Have the remaining three people in each group do an action of
their choosing, such as waving their arms, jogging in place, or
clapping. Ask them to continue their action and not say anything
when the person from their group comes back in. Tell them the goal
is to get the person who comes back in to join them in performing
Once they've started their actions, have the people from each group
who went outside come back in and rejoin their group. See how many
of the people coming back inside the room join their group in the
action they're doing. Let the groups continue their actions for a
minute and then stop.
Ask: How many of you who came back into the room were
influenced to do your group's action? What did you group members do
that did or did not work?
Read aloud 3 John 11.
Ask: When is a time someone influenced you to do something
good? Were any of their influential strategies similar to what our
groups used today, such as enthusiasm?
Say: God is calling us today to become people of
influence-people who influence others to do what's right, to make
good choices, and to live full lives that honor Christ. If you'd
like to do that today, just tell God silently that you want to be a
person of influence while I pray.
Close in prayer.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Pushed and Pulled
Form groups of four to six. Have the people in each group link
arms. Then choose one person in each group to face the opposite way
from the others. Then have the group travel together in the
direction they're facing. The one person facing the opposite
direction tries to pull the group his or her way.
Afterward, ask: How did you feel during this game? How is
that like or unlike the way you feel when friends are trying to get
you to go somewhere or do something you really don't want to
Read aloud Ephesians 4:14-16.
Say: Peer pressure is when friends -- or peers -- pressure
us to do something. What does this verse say about peer pressure?
How can we live out this verse in our lives this
All Shook Up
Play this game outside because it's messy. Form groups of four, and
give each group a can of a diet lemon-lime soft drink. Have groups
each pass around their can as each person shares an example of
something that makes them really angry-and shake the can a couple
Then have each group toss the can quickly from person to person as
they tell what they do when they get mad. The person who first
drops the can must open it.
Ask: How was what happened to the insides of the can like
or unlike what happens to our insides when we get
Read aloud Ephesians 4:26.
Ask: Does this verse say it's a sin to be angry? Why or why
not? What does this verse say to do with our anger? How do you
think God wants us to deal with our anger the next time we're ready
Say: Let's ask God to help us with our
Close in prayer.
Santa Ana, California
Have one person in your group quickly say a string of one-digit
numbers while another adds the numbers in his or her head. The
entire time, have other kids say random numbers aloud to distract
the adding person.
Afterward, ask: How easy or hard was it to focus with all
Read aloud Psalm 119:12. Ask: According to this
verse, what does the psalmist concentrate on? What distractions do
we have that keep us from doing what's right? How can concentration
help us do what's right?
Form groups of four. Have one person stand on one foot in the
middle of each group and try to balance as the other people in the
group help the person balance. Then have the people in the group
try to stop the person from balancing on one foot.
Afterward, ask: Which way was easier to balance-the first
time or the second time? What did the people in the group do to
help with balance? to knock the person off balance?
Say: Balance is a word people use to talk about when people
are living by their priorities-by what's important. And when
someone's life is balanced, they're not overdoing things in one
area and neglecting other areas.
Ask: What are some ways that people lose balance? When
people like parents get out of balance, what does that make you
feel like? When is a time your life was out of balance? How is this
experience like or unlike the things in our lives that cause us to
Say: The best way I know to stay balanced is to live by
priorities. Listen to this verse that tells us what our first two
priorities should be.
Read aloud Luke 10:27.
Have kids list their top-10 priorities, with these two first. Then
have partners share with one another how they can stay balanced
with those priorities.
Form groups of four. Give one person in each group a balloon.
Say: The person with the balloon has the job of inflating,
tying off, and then popping the balloon. The rest of you: Your job
is to keep the person from popping the balloon. When I say "go,"
After three minutes, have everyone sit and discuss these questions:
If you were able to pop your balloon, what strategy worked
for you? What strategies worked for the rest of you who kept the
balloons from being popped? For those of you with the task of
blowing up the balloon, how much did you want to succeed but things
got in your way? Explain.
Read aloud Romans 7:14-25. Say: This is a tough
passage of Scripture, but Paul is saying that he wants to do right,
but he keeps doing wrong. It's not that his "want-to" is broken;
something stands in the way.
Ask: How is that like or unlike the game we just
Read aloud Romans 7:24-25. Say: If we had had
helpers in this game, we might've been able to succeed. What does
this verse say about the helper we have to do right in life?
Say: Let's thank God for Jesus, who helps us do
Close in prayer.
Listening to God
Form groups of three. Have one person in each group close his or
her eyes. Have the other two take the person at least 20 feet away
from their group.
Say: You have one minute to get back to your seat with your
eyes closed. Your friends in your group will guide you, but listen
The "blind" people can't be led by the hand; they must follow only
their group members' instructions.
Play three times to let each group member have a turn being the
blind one. Then ask: How easy or difficult was it to listen
to your group members' voices? How did other people's instructions
affect you? What techniques did you use to listen
Say: Listen to this story about a little boy who learned to
listen well-and heard God's voice.
Read aloud 1 Samuel 3:1-11.
Ask: Think of the techniques we used in our game to listen
well. How can we use some of those same techniques to listen well
You'll need one square of milk chocolate for half the kids and two
squares of bitter chocolate for the other half of the kids. Place
the squares in two separate paper bags.
Say: I have chocolate for you today, but you have to choose
which kind you want. In this bag, you can have two squares and in
this bag, you can have one square.
After everyone has chosen, let them taste the chocolate. Then ask:
How do you feel about your choice? What other choices have
you had to make this week, such as what to eat or which friend to
hang out with? What choices have you ever made that were a
disappointment to you?
Say: Let me tell you about a very important choice we all
have to make.
Read aloud Deuteronomy 30:19.
Ask: What is this verse talking about?
Read aloud John 10:10. Ask: How can people choose
the life Jesus promises?
Be available to kids after this game who may have questions related
to their faith decisions.
Form groups of four, and have one person sit in the center of the
group while the rest stand. Have the seated person try to stand
while the others gently push him or her down for one minute. Play
until everyone has had a chance to be in the center.
Afterward, ask: What was it like being pushed down by
others? What was it like pushing your friend down? When is a time
you've tried to do something and people around you pushed you down
Read aloud Hebrews 10:24-25.
Say: Now tell about a time someone encouraged you and
helped you do something. What are ways we can encourage one another