Monday, January 26, 2009

    COMMUNITY BUILDER: Circle Stretch!

    With several recent posts on this blog pondering the ills of competition, perhaps it's time to remember that one way to "rethink" youth ministry is to focus on cooperation rather than competition. For every game that requires winners and losers, there are even more games and activities that encourage sharing, teamwork, and fellowship in order to achieve a mutual goal.
    For this activity, Circle Stretch, you will need: 1 rubber band per team, 1 ten-inch piece of string for each participant, and paper cups. Divide the youth into teams of 5-8 people. Instruct team members to tie one end of their string to different places around the rubber band. Next, set out a collection of paper cups for each team, rim down. The challenge: each team member takes hold of their string and they must work together to stretch or relax the rubber band so that it will grip or release the cups, allowing them to be moved, stacked, lined up, or whatever challenge you devise.
    Resist the temptation to pit team against team! The challenge isn't to be the first group to finish the task. The challenge is to support each other and work together. Want to make it even harder? Blindfold the whole team save for one player and have that person stand alongside and offer directions to the team.