Five Hilarious No-Prep Games to Kill Time


Every once in a while, I find myself with a few youth and some extra time. To keep things exciting, I always keep a few no-prep games in my back pocket. And for my students, these never get old.

1. Backwards Names

Have your students share their full names. But the catch is they have to do so backwards. This gets a few laughs and is actually a little challenging.

2. Eyeball Tag

Gather in a circle. Have everyone look down. Have the leader count down, “3…2…1…LOOK UP!” When everyone looks up, the must be looking another person directly in the eyes. If any two people are looking into each others’ eyes, then the two of them are out, and the game continues. The bigger the group, the crazier the eyeball tag.

3. Thumb-to-Palm

Gather in a circle. Have everyone give a thumbs up with their right hand and hold out their left hand flat, palm facing up. Each person turns his or her thumb down and touches the thumb into the palm of the person to his or her right. The leader counts down, “3…2…1…GO!” On go, each person must try to remove his or her thumb from the palm of the person on their right before that person grabs the thumb. At the same time, you have to attempt to grab the person’s thumb resting in your left hand. If your thumb gets caught you are out.

4. Try to Laugh Without Smiling

A fun game when simply sitting at a table is to challenge each student to attempt laughing without smiling. It is almost impossible.

5. The Most Polarizing Question: Is a hot dog a sandwich?

Ask the question. You might find yourself breaking up a fight. I’ve had discussions about this question last for an hour.


Andrew has been in youth ministry since 2008 and currently serves as the Director of Youth Ministries at Dunwoody United Methodist in Dunwoody, GA. Andrew has degrees in Religious Studies and Telecommunications from the University of Georgia, and an M.Div. from Candler School of Theology at Emory University. Andrew loves listening to records, watching Seinfeld, and crockpotting (can that be a verb?). He currently resides in a carriage house, next to a creek that you can hear from inside the house. You can follow Andrew on Twitter @goin2daCHAPPELL