The Middle Years Ministry

Formerly "The JH Uth Guy", THE MIDDLE YEARS MINISTRY is a Site Dedicated to Providing Resources, Ideas, and Help to Pastors, Leader, Directors, Teachers, Mentors and Anyone Else Working in
Pivotal and Important 5th-9th Grade Years. The "Middle Years" are not children's ministry, not high school ministry, and are more than just Middle School. It is a unique and specialized ministry.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Game: “Tunnel Rats” (YS Idea Lab Game)

Last Thursday night at the Youth Specialties: National Youth Workers ConventionIdea Labs” area, we kicked off the Idea Lab with “Games-a-Palooza”.  It was a silly time of fun and playing a sampling of 12-14 games from our YS Core Blogger Group. 

One of the games we played, was my own game “Tunnel Rats”.  Here are the quick easy instructions for this low-prep/no-prep Big Group Team Game! 

• 2 cones (*or consider using a foam “Wisconsin cheese head”, it is what I use)


Quick explanation: A combination between a race and steal the bacon. Players will have an assigned number, when their number is called they must race to the back of the line and crawl like “rats” through their team’s legs forming a “tunnel”, in order to the first person to get the “cheese” (orange cone)

Before the Game:
• No set up is needed

•  Divide up in 2 equal teams.
• Line teams up in single files, facing forward
• Give the “quick explanation” and rules
• Give each player on each team a number from 1 to how many each players there are on each team.
• There should be a corresponding numbered player on each team.
• Place a cone at the front of each team’s line a few feet away from the first player in each line.
• Start the game by announcing a number.
• The players with that number on each team will run to the back of the line and they crawl as quickly through their team’s legs to get to the cone first.

• Player that are crawling must go through every player’s legs.
• All players on the team must spread their legs giving the crawling player room to crawl through.
• For each “rat” (player) that get to the “cheese” (cone) first they get a point for their team.

• The winning team is the team that has the most points at the end of time allotted time or rounds played

• This game is best played when everyone is wearing pants or shorts, obviously girls in skirts should not play.
• For larger groups consider 3-4 teams, or even more!
For extra challenge after a few rounds, add a second in front of each team, and announce two numbers at a time.


Check out another great game from the YS Idea Lab:
 “What Are the Odds?” from Cory Jones.  

More Coming Soon From the YS Core Blogger Team!!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Top 10: REAL Reason I STILL Love Youth Specialties National Youth Workers Convention!

10. Amazing Speaker Line Up On the Main Stage and in the Breakouts... Including this year’s super talented group of YS Core Bloggers.  I don’t know who that group of people were, but they were killing it this year!!?

9. Trick or Treating in the exhibitor Hall
...seriously next year I am dressing up!

8. Awesome Locations, Like Memphis this year! Next year consider my area in Lancaster, PA.  All the hipster beards will fit right in, in Amish country!?

7. Seeing much as you can see him behind the beard, glasses, and farmer hat?

6. The Idea Lab... Those people were so talented and helpful.  Once again, don’t know who that group of extreme wise people were, but they deserve a raise and to be asked back next year!

5. Watching all the Young'uns... they are so cute, rushing up to the stage and buying everything in the store, asking Mark-O if they can pet his beard?

4. The Big Bean Bag Chair Things...if I had the budget I would buy enough to cover the floor of my youth room.

3.  Seeing All The Gray Hair! ...there is a hope for an almost 43 year old Middle Years Guy, oh wait they were all in their 30's?? 

2. Old Friends, New Friends, and All My Virtual Social Media Friends Too.  Yes, I am--Taller/Shorter/Fatter/Skinnier/Cuter in Person, Thanks for being So Surprised?

1. Hearing and Seeing the Heart of a Couple Thousand Youth Workers From Around the Country.  Remembering I am Not Alone.  You All Inspire Me to Keep On Serving God Through Serving Students! You Are ALL My Heroes!