Full Contact Christmas Musical Chairs | UMC YoungPeople
Connecting young people and their adult leaders to God, the church, and the world
December 2017

Full Contact Christmas Musical Chairs

By Lee Barnes

This game is best played with LOUD alternative Christmas music like Lost and Found’s Christmas Album or Relient K’s Deck the Halls, Bruise Your Hand. Yes, it is old school, and that’s why it rocks! Here are the basic instructions, step-by-step.

  1. Divide your group into two sub groups and make a circle of chairs for each group with one chair absent for the total number in the circle. Then the game is on.
  2. Blast the music and have the groups rotate around the circles until the music stops. At that point everyone tries to sit down. As they say in sports, “let them play .”
  3. There will be one person left standing and that person is out.
  4. Then pull another chair…..and so on.
  5. Play until there are two players left in each of the circles then combine the groups and play until there is a single winner.

Variations to increase the fun:

  • Try playing with blindfolds… takes the “full contact” to a whole other level.
  • Remove the chairs and use a circle of Candy Canes (or Blow Pops) instead. Whoever doesn’t pick up a Candy Cane is out.
  • Turn the chairs facing the middle, but keep the line on the outside so that they have to climb over the chair to get to it.
  • When you divide into sub groups at the beginning divide them by gender or by Middle School and High School.
  • NEVER forget to encourage your adult leaders to play the game.

But wait, there’s more!

To finish out the game, or your lesson for the night, play “I Celebrate the Day” from Deck the Halls, Bruise our Hand. It is one of the BEST contemporary Christmas songs to get youth talking about what they believe about the Christ coming as a baby at Christmas.

Rev. R. Lee Barnes is the Youth & Family Ministries Consultant for the North Carolina Conference of the UMC. He offers 20+ years of experience as a pastor, youth/family minister, and parent to provide consultation, training, networking experiences, and spiritual nurture for enrichment of your church’s youth and family ministries. Lee partners with clergy and lay volunteers in small and medium-sized congregations, and in new-faith communities.