A few months ago I wrote a post about my top three favorite websites to get student ministry game ideas. Even though there are countless websites out there with great game ideas, there are also some great books out there that have tons of great game ideas for your students. Most of these books are pretty cheap and would be a great resource to have on your book shelve. Here are three books I have found extremely helpful when it comes finding great games for students.
Best Ever Games for Youth Ministry by Les Christie. A few years ago I sat in one of Christie’s workshops at SYMC on how to do good games and icebreakers. I love this guys energy and creativity. Many of the games and icebreakers he shared with us came straight from this book. In this book Christie shares well over two hundred awesome games that can work for any size student ministry. He breaks the games into five categories: zoomer (high energy games), energy saver (low energy, stationary games), wide open (games for large playing areas), pair up (games that require students to partner up), and crowd pleaser (games that work great with large groups of 50 or more students). This book will also list any supplies you need for each game as well as a quick summary of how the game works.
The $5 Youth Ministry by Todd Outcalt. What student pastor doesn’t love games that take little prep and supplies only cost a few bucks? This book is just what the title suggests, game ideas for $5 or less. The cool thing about this book is it’s pack with so much more than just games. There are practical ideas for teaching, worship, missions, and more. This book explains the games (or other ideas) in quit a bit of detail. It also shares various options for each idea so you can see what works best for your group. Todd has done an excellent job at putting together this helpful resource.
The Hot Seat by Johnny Scott. This is a little book I bought last year at SYMC and have not used as much as I would want to. This book offers quick “in the moment” games that you can do with your students basically anywhere. Like the book above, this book is packed with much more than games which makes it even a better resource to have. One way this book is helpful is it provides great, fun games you can do with your students when your in a bus or van going on a missions trip or headed to an event. It’s a small book so it’s easy to carry around with you and every idea within it requires basically no prep or set up.
If you want to spend less time planning games and more time preparing your message or next event, than get one or all of these books. They will give you great game ideas so you can spend less time planning them yourselves. If your like me, you enjoy doing games with your students (especially middle schoolers), but often times planning and preparing a good game can take up a ton of time. That’s why these books are helfpul. They give you great game ideas that your students will love!