Games to play on Zoom with your youth group
The leader says an item and then the young people run around the house to try and find it. The first one back wins a point. Play a number of rounds and keep score. Some ideas of objects to be found could be… a sock, a toothbrush, something green, something beginning with the letter B, something made of paper, a cuddly toy, something more than 5 years old, a shoelace etc etc.
Count the seconds
Everyone closes their eyes (except for the leader). The leader says an amount of time (e.g. 40 secs, 52 secs) the young people have to put up their thumbs when they think that amount of time has elapsed. The person whose thumb went up the closest to the time wins a point. Play a couple of rounds.
Not the same
The leader says a category, e.g. colour, countries, types of weather, things you find in a church, books of the Bible etc. One person is chosen (player 1), they think of something within that category and write it down. Then go around the group and each person can make a guess, trying to guess what player 1 has written down. If they guess it correctly then they get a point, player 1 gets a point every time someone guesses incorrectly.
A slightly different version of the above. The leader gives the group 3 categories, and then announces a letter of the alphabet. Give the group a specific amount of time, for example 2 minutes. In that time, they need to write down 3 answers under each category that all begin with the letter that was announced. The aim of the game is get answers that no one else writes down. When the time has elapsed, go around the group asking them to read out their answers a category at a time. If somebody else has also written down their answer then everyone who has that answer has to cross it off their list. By the end only unique answers will remain on people’s lists. Everyone gets a point
for each unique answer.
Who am I?
A virtual spin on a classic game. Choose a person from the group (player 1) and the leader puts them into a ‘breakout room’ for a minute (or ask them to leave the call briefly). During that time, the rest of the group decide on a name of a famous person for player 1 to be. Player 1 is then brought back from the breakout room to the main call. Player 1 asks questions to find out which famous person they are. The rest of the group can only answer with ‘yes’ or ‘no’. The aim is to discover who you are with the least number of questions.
Describe an object
Each member of the group has to find a random object in their house, bring it back to the call, but not show it on screen. Each player takes it in turn to describe their object, and everyone else has to guess what it is. Points for those that guess it first.
Leader of the Band
One person (player 1) is chosen to go into a ‘breakout room’ for a minute (or briefly leave the call). While player 1 is absent the rest of the group decide who the ‘leader of the band’ will be. The leader of the band leads the rest of the group by pretending to play a musical instrument, everyone else in the group has to copy the instrument that the band leader is playing. The band leader needs to regularly change the instrument, and the others in the group need to follow. No one speaks, and people need to try and be subtle about the changes. Player 1 needs to watch everyone on the Zoom call and try and work out who the band leader is.
Get each player to draw their own grid of 16 squares (you could have more or less squares depending on your group). They each write numbers into the squares on their grid. The leader tells everyone what the range of numbers are (for example only numbers between 1-30, or 1-100 etc). The leader then shouts out numbers at random, and if they appear on the player’s grid then they cross them off. They win Bingo when they get a line of crosses!
Remember the Screen
This game involves using the ‘Share Screen’ option on Zoom. The leader needs to prepare something in advance that can be shared with the group for 30 seconds. The group need to look and remember what was on the screen and then recreate it, or list it, on a piece of paper. Examples of what could be on the screen – a picture, a pattern, a list of numbers, random pictures of objects, pictures of famous landmarks, pictures of famous people, titles of biblical characters etc. Give the group a time limit to write down what they remember, those who remember the most win a point, or points for every detail you remember.
There are a number of ways that you can do quizzes via a Zoom call. You could simply ask questions in rounds, and individuals write down the answer. You could ask questions and then put the young people into breakout rooms (with a leader) so that they can work as a team.
You could produce a powerpoint (this will need to be made in advance). You can set it so that each slide only shows for a specific number of seconds. As the powerpoint plays through, the young people write down answers. (Good things to put on powerpoints are something visual like dingbats, famous faces, flags of the world, anagrams etc).
You could share your screen and watch a video clip, then ask questions about the video clip e.g. what colour was the man’s hat etc. You could break the young people into two teams, and put into separate breakout rooms. Each team has to make up questions to ask the other team when they all return to the main call.
Real or unreal?
Find a catalogue, brochure or magazine – for example an Ikea catalogue, a leaflet of paint colours, a hymnbook! Read out a name (or pretend to read out a name) of something (e.g. an ikea name for a piece of furniture, or a Dulux paint colour or a line of a hymn) and the players need to decide whether it is real or not real. E.g “when troubles come and my heart is burdened be, then I am still and wait here in the silence” – hymn or Westlife? Radicchio – a paint colour or not? (it was Westlife by the way!)
This involves sharing the ‘Whiteboard’ facility in Zoom. Each player can draw on the whiteboard, so use this way of playing the classic game of Pictionary.
Play Your Cards Right
If you are old enough you may remember this classic game from the TV! You’ll have to do a bit of prep to work out how you get your camera to see 5 playing cards lined up in a row with the backs of the cards showing initially (if that causes too many problems then you could just hold them up!). A player is chosen to start and the leader turns over the first card. The player can decide whether the second card will be higher or lower than the first (the rest of the group can shout out their thoughts on this too, to keep everyone engaged). If they guess correctly then they go to the third card and guess whether it will higher or lower than the second, and so on. If they guess incorrectly then their go is over and they receive no points. They can choose to ‘stick’ at any point and collect the points they have gathered – points are awarded for how many cards are turned over e.g. 5 points for 5 cards, 4 points for 4 cards etc.
A category is agreed upon, such as boy’s names, famous people, food and drink etc. The leader announces a letter. Everyone takes it in turn to say something in that category beginning with the letter announced (no repetitions allowed). To make it faster and more frantic, set a time limit of 3 seconds, if a player can’t think of an answer in the time then they are out, keep going until there is a winner.
The leader shouts out one of 6 instructions, however the young people have to do the opposite of what is said.
Left (hold up your right hand)
Right (hold up your left hand)
Up (duck down so your head can’t be seen)
Down (stand up)
Turn (do nothing)
Still (turn around)
The faster you shout them out the more fun it will be. If a player does it wrong, then they lose a life (you can decide on how many lives you allow them to have). Maybe the young people will come up with some of their own instructions so the game can develop in other ways!
The players can take it in turns to act out titles of movies, TV shows, books and everyone else has to try and guess what it is.
A silly yet simple game. This is a game of good reaction times! Choose a young person to be on (player 1). Player 1 has 30 seconds (or longer if you prefer) and at some point during that 30 secs they need to duck down and disappear from the screen. As soon as the others see player 1 move they need to move too – the last one to disappear from their screen loses that round. (At least one leader needs to not play and be watching the screen!) If any player moves before player 1 moves, then they are out!
Choose a player to start. Everyone stares at their screen for 30 secs. Then the player stops their video and has 30 secs to change something (e.g. they change their hair, or move something that was in the background etc) Then, when they turn on their camera again, the first person to notice the change wins.
Would I lie to you?
You could play this like the TV show – the first player describes briefly something they have done/a story about themselves. Everyone else then asks them questions to find out more details. Then collectively they decide whether they are telling the truth or not. Alternatively, everyone could say three things – two of them truths, one of them a lie. Everyone has to decide what the fake statements are.
Ask everyone to find a book in their house – it doesn’t matter what it is. The leader shouts out a page number, a line number and word number i.e. page 24, 12th line down, 4th word on that line. The young people then have to find that word in their book and tell everyone in the group to see who wins. For each round, how you win changes. For example the first round winner is the person who has the longest word, second round – the shortest word, third round – word nearest the beginning of the alphabet etc etc
Sign Language Challenge
This is a challenge more than a game. Find online a simple introduction to the alphabet in British Sign Language. Spend some time going through the BSL alphabet as a group. This could even be a challenge to them between your meetings. When you feel that they have learnt enough, mute everyone’s audio and, in turns, the young people need to sign a word or phrase to the rest of the group, and those watching need to work out what was said.