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Get to Know You Games: Top 10 Icebreaker Activities for Youth

get to know you games

Similar to icebreakers, get to know you games help teenagers mingle and find out a little bit about each other. These fun activities might simply introduce names or go a bit deeper. They’re great for breaking the ice and helping new kids feel welcome, especially at the beginning of the ministry year.

Some criteria I consider for choosing the best get to know you games include:

  • how well the games facilitate players learning about each other, whether that’s simply names or something more,
  • how well the games provide a springboard for conversation after they’re over,
  • whether the games work for groups that mostly already know each other, as well as for groups that have never met before,
  • how fun the get to know you games are to play, and
  • how much work is involved in setting up the games.

Have fun with these 10 get to know you games for teens!

10. Penny for Your Thoughts

This is an interesting game involving coins and facts. It might take a little bit of setup time (collecting the right coins), but with the right bunch of kids it works really well.

9. Mingle Mingle Mingle

If you’re up for some chaos with your group, then this is another great icebreaker game for you. Players need to continually repeat an answer to a question about themselves and find other people who are answering the same thing. The positive aspect of the game is how chaotic it can get. The negative aspect of the game is how chaotic it can get!

8. Shoe Talk

For funny get to know you games, this one is a sure bet. Play it with a fairly confident group of people, as it involves taking off a shoe, picking up another shoe, and finding the owner. It also might be wise to play this one when the weather is cooler, to avoid stinky shoe situations! This game is a favorite of mine, because it’s a great way to randomly mix up the players.

7. Get to Know You Bang

“Bang!” encourages kids to react quickly. This is a modification of the classic game that helps kids get to know everyone’s names really well. It’s good because there’s pressure on everyone, not just the new kids, to remember names. The kids who’ve been hanging around for years still might find themselves forgetting names under the pressure.

6. Never Have I Ever

This get to know you game is quick to explain and quick to play. Also, it helps get kids moving and mingling. Plus, it’s a fun way to form random groups or pairs at the end of the game. That’s because players are moving to different seats and sitting next to different people during the game.

5. Mix & Meet

Chocolate is always a great way to break the ice and help people bond. This game uses M&M’s chocolate candies to get youth group members to interact with one another about their different “favorites.” The activity doesn’t put too much pressure on anyone, can be really funny, and has CHOCOLATE! I highly recommend it for a small-group situation.

4. Speed Dating With a Twist

If you want a straightforward talking game without any bells and whistles, then this is the get to know you youth group game for you. Pair kids up, give them some questions or discussion topics, give them one minute to chat, and then rotate. Simple and effective!

3. Team Architect

Although this may be a bit of a wildcard entry in this category, I think it works really well. The game involves getting teams of kids to work together to build something. It’s a fantastic team-building game, as the name implies. But it also belongs in get to know you games because it provides opportunities for people to interact while working together to achieve something. Teens have an opportunity to showcase their personalities and gifts in a way that other youth group games don’t allow.

2. Two Truths and a Tale

This is probably my all-time favorite small-group get to know you game. I’ve played this at countless camps as the first icebreaker activity for my small group. It really gives the group a good insight into how each member thinks, what’s important to them, and what they like to talk about. And as a leader, with the amount of times I’ve played it, I don’t even need to think that hard to come up with my own truths and a tale (lie). I highly recommend this get-to-know-you icebreaker game!

1. Name Bingo

Try this fun activity that’s quick to explain and quick to play. It also gets kids moving and mingling. Bonus: This game is a good way to form random groups or pairs at the end of the game. Players are moving to different seats and sitting next to different people throughout the game.

What other get to know you games do you enjoy playing in your youth group? Share ideas in the comments below!

This article originally appeared here.