Preparation: Paper and pens for each group.
To start this game have students and leaders get into groups of 3-6 people. Each group will need a piece of paper and a pen. Once everyone is in a group, start off by giving the groups a word like “Church”. Have the groups come up with as many words that have to do with church as they possibly can. For example, words like cross, Jesus, Bible, guitar, chairs, sermon, pastor, people, etc. Any word that can be associated with church/youth group works. Some of my students get smart and start naming books of the Bible! See how many each group can get in 3 minutes!
You can practice this version 2 or 3 times and then move to the degrees of separation. The degrees of separation works in the same way, but every new word gets farther away from the original word as it possibly can. Every time a group writes a word that is not associated with the previous set of words, it counts as a degree of separation! See how many your students can get in 3 minutes.
You will laugh at where their minds go. We went from Church to Chuck Norris! Example Word: Church – cross, wood, forest (forest would be the 1st Degree of Separation) forest, leaves, animals, zoo (Zoo would be the 2nd Degree of Separation) and so on. Students love this game and when you have them read their answers out loud, they will all be laughing!
Idea Submitted by Paul Pellizzari
Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Bullying Breakthrough; The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices; If I Had a Parenting Do Over; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers on TheSource4YM.com. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.