41 Fun Activities for Youth Groups Indoors

Here in Idaho we tend to have pretty unpredictable weather. With long months of winter, we are used to getting creative when it comes to indoor fun. As a youth group leader for our church, I’ve had to help brainstorm plenty of fun activities for youth groups indoors. We also asked our readers and this is a collection of the BEST of the best ideas!

So if you’re looking for ways to entertain a big group inside a church, school, or gymnasium, here are 28 crowd-pleasers that are sure to get everyone involved and having a blast.

41 Fun Activities for Youth Groups Indoors

Minimal equipment/prep: 

1-Indoor disc golf course: Use frisbees and laundry baskets as “holes” and set up a course using different rooms. So much fun!

2-Human battle ship! Put a tarp over a volleyball net and set up a grid of chairs with the youth sitting in them. Each team takes turn calling out target numbers and the team to sink all the ships first wins! Reset and play again.

3-Gaga ball:  This one is so much fun! You can use white plastic tables set on their sides to make thepit” if you have access to a gym, or set up heavy-duty cardboard boxes at home. Here is a great demo of how the game is played.

4-Dancing lessons: You may have some dancing pros in your neighborhood or circle of acquaintances. Ask them to come in and teach your youth group some fun dancing lessons. Our youth group had a blast combining guys and girls in swing dancing. Break dancing and country line dancing would be a blast too!

5-Yoga: Our group of about 40 girls and leaders did “glowga” (glow-in-the-dark yoga) together and it was amazing! Invite a teacher in, grab a black light, and have the youth wear white or neon colors. Glow-in-the-dark necklaces are a bonus as well.

6. Scatterball: Kind of like the more organized version of dodge ball which includes wrist bands that you can “win” when you get someone out. Super fun for active kids. You can find a scatter ball kit here. 

Activities that include everyone:

7-Karoke: Always a blast with youth groups. Our youth wanted to go on and on singing…once they started, it was hard getting them to stop.

8-Dodge ball: A classic for big groups. You can go guys vs. girls, leaders vs. youth, or just count off 1-2-1-2. One thing we’ve learned though, is to set the rules at the beginning. No head shots, have to aim below the shoulders. I’ve found these are the best dodge balls. Super soft when they hit so they don’t hurt, but still heavy enough to hurl through the air.

9-Make commercials for pretend/funny products: We did this one night and it was a riot. Leaders brought in a few random things laying around the house and split the kids into groups. Each group had to come up with an amazing new product that just hit the market and a commercial to try and sell that product. Groups took turns getting up on the stage to present their commercial. There were some real creative juices flowing!

10-Sprout tag: An easy one that requires no planning, no equipment, and kids could stay entertained for a good hour. To begin the game, everyone is able to tag a person by touching them with their hand. Once tagged, you immediately need to sit down. The goal of the game is to be the last one standing. If you were tagged and had to sit down, you can be freed if the person to tag you gets tagged.

11-Relay games: Great for splitting large groups into smaller groups for one unifying activity. Our favorite relay games are balancing penny on nose or balance ball on spoon, crab walk, hula hoop pass, etc.

12-Telephone: Split into two teams and make a long line. Leaders provide the word or phrase to be passed from one person to the next until it reaches the last person who writes the message on a white board and holds it up or says it out loud. This one always gets lots of laughs.

Get-to-know-you activities:

13-Murder mystery activity: Probably most fun for smaller groups. You can find free printable murder mystery games online.

14-DIY escape room: Bring the thrill of an escape room to your local youth group. These are great for making kids think. You can also find lots of free escape room ideas online.

15-Human foosball: It’s that classic table game in real-live format! Here’s how to play. 

16-Never have I ever: All you need are a few packages of pom-poms and each person gets 5 pom-poms. Players sit in a circle and go around the group saying something they’ve never done. For example, “I’ve never broke a bone.”  All players who HAVE broke a bone must throw one of their pom-poms into the center. The goal is be the last one with pom-poms still in your hand. This is a great get-to-know-you game.

17-Add-on: As kids we used to play this game on the trampoline, but it can easily be adapted inside for a crowd. Sit in a circle. The first player enters the circle and does an action like clapping hands, a jumping jack, etc. The next player must “add-on” by completing the previous action and then adding on their own action. This gets tricky as players have to think about the order of all actions performed.

18-Write a song as a group and then present it to the group. Add dance moves!

Getting creative:

19-Indoor baseball using a plastic toy bat and rolled up socks for baseballs. You can even turn it into glow-in-the-dark baseball!

20-Murder in the dark: Best played in a large room with no obstacles to trip over. And yes, it’s played in the dark. Not sure how to play? This is one version.

21-Killer wink: All players must close their eyes. A supervising adult selects a “murderer” by tapping him or her on the head. That person knows that they are the murderer. Everyone opens their eyes, looking around. When the murderer makes eye contact with a person and winks, that person must fall to the ground dead, often in a dramatic fashion. If a living person things they know who the murderer is, he or she can say “I accuse!” If they are correct, the game ends and the murderer is found.

22-The human knot: A great team-builder. Split a large group into smaller groups of 5-8 people. Each group gathers in close together, putting their hands in the center. Everyone grabs a different hand. The goal of the activity is to “un-knot” the whole group. This gets fun as people have to bend and duck and step over arms to become untangled.

23-Ships and Sailors: Not exactly sure of the rules, but this huge group is having a blast!

 

Activities for youth groups that are a little more work, but a lot of fun:

24-Hungry hungry hippo: Youth groups have a BLAST with this one. You’ll need skateboards, pillows (to make the skateboards more comfortable, laundry baskets, and a lot of inflated balloons. Here’s an example of how to play with small balls, but balloons work just fine too.

25-Indoor nerf battle: Have everyone bring their own gun and bullets (it’s useful to count how many bullets they brought so they can go home with the same number.) Split into teams. You can set tables on their sides for obstacles and bases. Guys and girls have a blast with this!

26-Talent show: Have youth sign up in advance and put on a good ol’ talent show.

27-9 square: Ask around for families that may have a 9-square set. You can buy or make your own. Kids love 9 square.

28-Travel the globe: Set up stations where you learn about different parts of the world. Ask friends and neighbors to run a station representing another country. You could even have food from that country or learn a cultural greeting or dance from that location.

29-Minute-to-win it games

30-Cooking challenge: Give the youth the ingredients to a dish but no recipe. This is where things get fun!

31-World records: Try to beat them (or even come close)

32-Fear Factor: Just like the TV show. You can find tons of ideas on Pinterest.

33-Build structures out of newspaper and duct tape that could support a large textbook

Crowd-pleasers:

34-Put on a haunted house

35-Unconventional materials challenge: Using Project Runway as your inspiration, design an outfit out of unconventional materials that youth bring from home.

36-Retro fashion show: Have the youth each bring an item from their parents’ or grandparent’s past (i.e. wedding dress, old suit, etc.) and have a youth group fashion show with friendly judges.

37-Indoor movie night including popcorn.

38-Banana split in the mouth (messy but hilarious!): You might want to lay down a tarp for this one. You need all the ingredients for a banana split–banana slices, ice cream, nuts, ice cream, chocolate syrup, and a cherry. One player lays on the ground while another player stands above. The goal is to drop each ingredient into the other player’s mouth without missing. Teams can only switch when they’ve got all the ingredients in their teammate’s mouth.

39-Jumbo card games: These could have lots of fun possibilities and you can find jumbo cards on Amazon. 

40-Game stations: Twister, Dutch Blitz, Jenga, etc.

41- Blindfolded taste-testing: Bring some interesting snacks (pickles, Skittles, Takis, etc.) and have youth take turns trying to guess them blind-folded. You can even split into teams and keep score.

 

Well, there you go! This should be enough fun activities for youth groups indoors to keep kids entertained for a while!

 

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