52+ Activity Ideas for the Children + Youth Program


Disclaimer: These ideas aren't all my own. Most are from past fun activities I have been to, all of which have been team efforts. I hope all my current and former leaders know how much I appreciate everything they planned for us. So...

A year of activity ideas!! Pin your favorites. πŸ“Œ

INTELLECTUAL ACTIVITIES


1. Cook for the missionaries


Choose a target dish for the youth to learn to make. Bring supplies and tell missionaries dinner's on y'all for that night. Instruct them on making, serving + setting up the meal. Add time limits for suspense!

2. Photography night


A photographer in the ward shared her tips on posing, selfies, lighting, group pictures, cameras, and more. It ended with a big photo shoot for practice.

3. Paint night


One of our young women was close with her art teacher, so we brought the supplies and the expert showed us how to use them. So much fun that we've done this several times. You don't need anyone good at painting to lead the activity, though -- Pinterest and YouTube have so many tutorials as well!

4. Outdoor survival night


 We split into teams in the church parking lot and had to "fight to survive" through three stations: making a lean-to with a tree, rope, and tarp, building a fire without matches, and using a compass to find hidden treasure, and enjoyed s'mores. 

5. Cake decorating night


A sister in the ward is a professional caterer + baker and she showed us all the different icing and frosting mixing and piping techniques! It was sweet. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‹

6. Traveling Etiquette Dinner


 We went to three houses with different lessons and food at each one. First, we had appetizers and a lesson about dinner behavior, then we drove to the next house where we had dinner and talked about place settings. Finally, we went to the last house and talked about dating while having dessert.

7. International Foods Night


Our youth group is so diverse and we have a lot of amazing girls that have joined us from different countries around the world. We set this up to let them teach us about their culture...and yes, to have lots of amazing food. It doesn't get better than that!

8. Friendship Bracelet Night


We all wished we knew how to make friendship bracelets but felt intimidated by complicated techniques. So we learned to make them soooo easily, with cereal boxes!! All credit goes to this blog from Pinterest, we enjoyed using her tutorial.

9. Iron Chef Competition


This was so fun it became a ward tradition. Gather mystery ingredients. Missionaries make great judges. The teams have an hour to make a master meal with what they have, learning resourcefulness and cooking from the older kids along the way.

10. DIY flip flops


Relief Society tablecloth flat lays 🀣🀩
Relief Society tablecloth flat lay πŸ€£πŸ€©


Cheap, useful, and cute. We bought $1 flip flops for each Young Woman, and decorated them with fabric ties, as per here. The goal was for everyone to have a pair of inexpensive flip flops they didn't have to worry about getting dirty at girls camp.

11. Tie dye night


Everyone brought a white shirt and we folded and dyed them. Pretty easy and quick, try the tutorial here. We bought tie-dye colors but I've seen food coloring used before, from Pinterest ofc.

12. Band night





Our bishop got each of the members of his band to teach a different "clinic" based on each instrument - voice, piano, guitar, drums, etc. The youth signed up for which instrument they wanted to do in advance. Instruments were borrowed. We all learned the different parts to one song and had a performance in the gym.

13. Time capsules night


I've made printables for cute individual time capsules! What would also be so cute is a group time capsule - each class could make one with group photos of them, positive things they write about each other, their favorite church things, etc.

14. The Game of Latter-Day Saint Life


 We brought a Game of Life board and played, pausing for devotionals from different people at each spot (college or work first? marriage? kids? home ownership? money?) You can also make a custom Latter-Day Saint themed game board or a life sized game of LIFE.

15. Babysitting skills night


A bunch of primary kids were invited. We were given a babysitting lesson before, and then put our knowledge into action as we played with the children.

16. Make-up Know How


In a group of young women and their leaders, people qualified to teach makeup techniques it won't be scarce. This was fun for the younger yw who were just getting into makeup and for the older yw who could show off their talents.

17. Bread Making


We learned how to make our own bread. We each had index cards to write the recipe on, but we did it step by step as the leaders demonstrated the process with us. Bread making can be intimidating, but thankfully Pinterest exists! Here's an idea to get you started.

18. Hairstyle night


Learn to do Dutch, and French braids and have each girl bring her own brushes and hair ties so everything is sanitary. You can also go over curling and straightening hair, products everyone swears by, dos and don'ts, etc! 

19. Modesty night


We cut out paper dolls and made modest outfits for them with scrapbook paper. We discussed standing out from the world and being a light as we cut, pasted, and taped. 
A modest fashion show could also be fun! 

20. Song night


We've done this to prep for musical numbers, or to learn to sing a song. A way to make this more fun is to get a ukulele involved. Chances are that several of the youth know how to play (this has always been true for us at a given church activity) and gets them involved and everyone having fun. 

PHYSICAL ACTIVITIES


21. Sledding


If you have the weather and location, enjoy some fun in the snow and then some hot chocolate back at the church building.

22. Youth Pool Party


This one is a classic, along with a BBQ! πŸ’¦ The leaders bring the most essential items (burgers, buns, plates, paper utensils) the young women bring the kind of essential items (salads, desserts, appetizers) and the young men bring the items that won't be too unfortunate for us to miss (sodas, chips, condiments etc) and it always works out. πŸ”

23. Yoga Night


We did this one outside + got some low impact exercise + fresh air. Dual yoga is also fun!

24. Cultural Dance Night


 A dance teacher from the ward taught us traditional dances from different world cultures.

25. Nutrition Night


We learned how to make healthy green smoothies. You could also expand this to healthy meal ideas.

26. Color run 


We got everyone white shirts that said "let your colors shine." Then we sprinted around the church parking lot while the leaders tried to make us as colorful as possible. 🎨

27. Outdoor/backyard games night


We played kickball + Spud, but other outdoor games are, of course, fair game. Ideas include Mother May I, What Time Is It, Missionary Tag, Blob Tag, Ghost in the GraveyardπŸ‘», Werewolf/Mafia, Sardines, or whatever y'all enjoy.

28. Glow In The Dark Volleyball


This is what it looked like during the activity! πŸ‘‡


For the first fifteen minutes, everyone got glowsticks + put them together as necklaces, bracelets, anklets, etc. We put glow in the dark paint on our volleyball and really enjoyed this fun twist on a classic game. 🏐 See the glow in the dark dessert table below!


29. Church gym sports


When nonmembers ask why we all have gyms, this is one of the reasons. Volleyball, basketball, dodgeball, soccer, and more are all easy to plan + play inside in those cold winter months. 

30. Self defense skills night


One of the young women does karate + invited a member of her dojo to give everyone tips on basic moves to defend themselves and stay safe if attacked.

31. Nerf Wars



The young men thought this would be fun. Tie in doctrinally to "avoiding the fiery darts of the adversary" or the "Samuel the Lamanite" story.

32. Life Sized Games


Our ward has played life size Hungry Hungry Hippos and Battleship.The latter was when we did life size Battleship. We split into teams, put up a blanket in the middle, and everyone lay in different areas on the gym floor. While lying down, we would throw a light ball at each other over the barrier and if someone was hit, they were out. 

I found so many other cute life sized game ideas on Pinterest y'all could try, including Foosball, Clue, Guess Who, Connect 4, Operation, Angry Birds, Chutes and Ladders, Candyland, Jenga, Pac Man, Scrabble, Tic Tac Toe and Kerplunk. Woah, 15 weeks of creative combined youth activities. πŸ˜‰

33. Group bike route


In my old ward, there were SO many of us (easily 30+) and I still laugh out loud thinking about this one bewildered man walking his dog who saw this procession of dozens of women and girls zooming by on their bikes, and was like "who is this?" Having enough bikes for everyone can definitely be a challenge, but if you can round up a lot of extras or consult with parents first before planning, you could make it work!

SPIRITUAL ACTIVITIES


34. Watch Face2Face Addresses


We always do this whenever they come out because our time zone has them dropping at 10 pm on a school night. You can even do this with old ones they've made. Give one of these a try.

35. Scripture canvas bags


These are great for when your youth need to have + transport their heavy, irl scriptures--and y'all need a cute and crafty activity idea! We created ours with fabric markers + canvas bags.

36. General conference prep night


We made trail mix to enjoy with our families and DIY notebooks -- dollar tree journals, with cut out pictures of the general authorities that we taped to the pages and used as tabs. 

37. General conference review night


I'm planning to blog about some fun games to do for this. For now, try a themed Kahoot or

38. Teach the Theme activity


Every year we get a new one and every year I put together a package to help you make teaching it to your youth a fun and memorable experience! I ended up having to take the 2020 one down 😒 but I'll be back with another one when the creating-resources-for-the-theme-in-4-months frenzy returns.

39. FamilySearch Workshop


Everyone brought a dessert from a country of their heritage and we enjoyed treats while our Youth Family History consultant gave us pointers on how to use the Family Search indexing program. We also did our best to make it fun by incorporating the "Find My Famous Relatives" database that BYU has. 

40. Spiritual Journal Jars


Talk about the importance of writing down your "Spiritually Defining Memories" (recently coined term, classic concept.) We decorated mason jars with washi tape, scrapbook paper, Mod Podge, and acrylics and then filled them with journal prompts + ideas.


41. Church escape room


This photo is from a St. Patrick's day escape room I created for the group and let me tell you...never again!! The activity went well, and staying up so late working on it every night and going crazy making every detail perfect did not go to waste.


But you don't have to become a martyr to host a good activity. Which is why I would suggest using a pre-made church themed escape room like the Hope of Israel one (we've tested and enjoyed) or this general church themed one that is sure to excite, amaze, and promote teamwork skills!

42. Primary song helps


Make cute visual aids to help the kids learn their primary songs, helping your busy chorister save energy and time. Win win!

43. Cleaning the nursery


We got on our gloves, turned on our Disney music, and disinfected every last nursery toy. This was pre-corona, but I have a feeling this might become more frequent when we're back at church again. πŸ‘€πŸ˜‚


44. Family History Campfire


Everyone shared one funny/entertaining story from their family history, in the RS room with the lights off and flashlights and lanterns on sitting around this fake fire--which was so hilarious--red, orange and yellow tissue paper crumpled up in a casserole dish.

45. Missionary life skills night


RMs set up a bunch of different stations with rapid fire lessons on missionary (but honestly also) life skills they wanted the youth to review/learn--ironing, shining shoes, cooking, sewing (for repairs)--and talked about their mission experiences while we did those chores. 

46. Pioneer life skills night


Set up different stations with different pioneer skills (making butter, hauling firewood, milling flour, grinding wheat, pulling a handcart) and honor their sacrifice and legacy.

47. Investigator Trailer Night


We were put into companions and a bunch of the leaders went into different classrooms around the building, acting as the different stereotypical types of investigators when we "knocked on their doors." (Golden, nice but not interested, angry, etc). Discuss how missionary work is hard but rewarding and your converts, baptisms, results etc don't determine your success but your perseverance and positivity do.

SOCIAL ACTIVITIES


48. Personality Party


We decorated with Disney Princess Personality Posters, and had everyone take a free MBTI test. We played games that helped us to know how to better minister to and get along with our fellow leaders + young women. Posters, handouts, activities, etc, are here!

49. Speed Friendshipping


Everyone writes creative, funny, or even deep questions on slips of paper. Create concentric circles with the folding chairs, and have one circle rotate so everyone gets to "friendship" everyone. They get a time limit to go through as many questions as they can.

50. Caroling for the elderly


Every year at Christmas, we sing carols at an assisted living home and enjoy hot chocolate afterwards.

51. Heart Attack


This has always been received so well and is a Valentine's Day classic. Spread the love!

52. Cookies + Cards


We made valentine's day cookies and cards and delivered them to our ministering sisters.

53. Friendship Dinner


We did this over the span of three activity nights and it had a Valentine's Day theme. The idea was to make a dinner connecting youth with those who were old/lonely in the ward for a night of ministering and fun. First, we delivered invitations with cookies to the invited. The next week, we decorated the gym for the event. The final week was the dinner.

54. Make fleece tye blankets


Service projects really don't get much easier than this--buy some fleece, cut two equal pieces, and then a fringe. Tie each fringe together while you chat, and donate the finished blankets to a good cause.

55. Gratitude scavenger hunt

I created a Thanksgiving themed escape room/scavenger hunt activity that is so cute and will be available in the shop when the holiday approaches.

56. Daddy-Daughter Showdown


Super fun Father's Day activity with three main events: the dads stood behind a chalkboard and we had to guess whose was ours, we drew pictures of them they had to guess which one was them, and then the big finale was us having to tie their tie and them having to paint our nails.

57. Disney lip sync battle


One of our favorite activities EVER. Young women versus young men -- we rehearsed separately to face off and ended up choosing the exact same song! Super fun, easy, and hilarious.

58. Taking Photos of Graves


Easy service project to organize -- index graves for BillionGraves, which has an easy to use mobile app.

59. Mall Scavenger Hunt


We split into teams with leaders as the captains and were dropped off at our local mall. The team to take group photos with every item on the list and make it back to the church first were the champions.

60. Making gift boxes for Samaritan's Purse


In this Christmastime activity, everyone brought cute gift items from 5 Below, Dollar Tree, etc. We got our assignments from Samaritan's Purse Ministries and put together and decorated boxes for them.

61. Bulletin Board Making

Putting together a bulletin board, whether organically or with a printable kit, is a lot of work. We did it together for one of our activities. You could also do it as a service project for a busy (primary, rs, etc) leader at the beginning of the year. Bonus points if you use one from the shop!

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Whew! We made it. But before you dash, I want to make sure you know that this is NOT the only resource I have to make your life easier as a busy Latter-Day Saint. πŸ’› To easily see & have all my free Latter-Day Saint resources at your fingertips, follow me on Pinterest!

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