Recap: Youth Lock-In

Youth Students Sleepover Church During Christmas School Break

On Thursday, January 2nd, 2020, eleven 5th to 12th graders got together during their Christmas School Break to spend the night at the church. “Lock-In’s” are well-known in church student ministry and can be defined as a “fun, exciting event that is often daunting to leaders and volunteers.” Haha betcha weren’t expecting that definition now were you?!

Lock-In’s entail plenty of non-stop, high-energy games, eating tons of snack food, staying up late…or not going to bed at all. Our leaders would have to say it’s not a daunting time, it’s just a time to let loose and have a good time with your students. And that’s exactly what we did!

Everyone loves cheese right?! Well, we decided to have a Mac n’ Cheese bar made up of Kraft Mac n’ Cheese and Annie’s Cheddar Cheese Mac n’ Cheese and a Grilled Cheese Bar, including bacon! I don’t know if it can get much better than that! Well, ice cream, ice cream would definitely made it better. But we didn’t want anyone to go into shock from all the dairy and Calcium so we stuck with cookies and hot chocolate instead.

After fueling up, the group played a series of games:

  • DASH: this is a spiced-up version of musical chairs, where chairs are randomly placed around a room and kids run around the room. When the music stops…everyone makes a mad dash for an open chair. Whoever doesn’t find a chair, is out. We spiced it up even more with turning the lights off!
  • JEDI MASTER: this was a super-fun games for the kids! One student volunteers to be the Jedi in the middle of a circle, covered in clothes pins. The Jedi is blindfolded, given a pool noddle and can only pivot in place. Everyone then proceeds to run in trying to grab a pin. Once you’ve been hit by the Jedi, you’re out. This game was very difficult! Each Jedi had different tactics for defending themselves while the attackers got creative in how and when to go for a pin. Very interesting game for sure!
  • HEAD, SHOULDERS, KNEES, CUPS: This game we got in pairs facing a cup on the floor. Everyone was given commands of places on their body they were to touch…like, head, toes, elbows, ears, hair, etc. and when cups was said, the first one to grab the cup proceeded to the next round. Our backs were definitely hurting the next day because of this game! haha
  • STEAL THE BACON: We split into two teams and sat on the bench facing each other from opposite sides of the room. On each team, everyone was given a number. When your number was pulled, you had to charge for the “bacon” in the middle of the room and run it back safely to your team without being tagged. This game was pretty challenging because our students are so stinking fast!
  • POISON CHAIRS: Everyone holds hands making a circle, an object is placed in the middle of the circle (for us it was a chair), and pull each other to try and touch the object. Once you kit the object, you’re out. I’m genuinely surprised no ones shoulder popped out of its socket!
  • GAGA BALL: In an octagonal pit with a soft ball, players try and hit players under the knees to get the out. This game involves a lot of dodging, striking, running and jumping and addictive. They’re fast-paced games and could go on all night!

After playing all these games, everyone got pretty tuckered out. But they still had a little bit of energy to play Hide & Seek and Sardines around the church. Hiding in the church is one of our students’ favorite things to do. There’s so many possible places to hide and you better believe it’s even better at night. It was the perfect game to wind everyone down for bed.

Boys and girls were separated into different rooms, teeth were (hopefully) brushed and PJ’s were on. It was now time to rest…and you’d think that after all the games they’d be out like a light. But we’re not dumb, we know they’re not tired yet. We know the students talk in their rooms, and guess what…we’re ok with it (for a little while at least lol). And you know why? Because this is what it’s all about! It’s all about children building lasting, healthy relationships with each other. It’s nights like these where deep connections and bonds are made and sustained. It’s nights like these where kids are off their phones, running around, engaging in conversation and having fun! With a world that demands so much from them it’s nights like these that make it a little easier, a little brighter. And for that we’re thankful, and we’ll continue to do it. So catch us next School Break, we’ll be here!

A very special thank you to Tim Cline for chaperoning, spending the night with us and having the remaining calm when he had the most impossible task of making Mac & Cheese in a pot far too small! We had a blast with you!

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