Written by Kaitlyn Wren, Young Life staff in London, England.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has just hit the theaters and if you’re like me and many of our high school and middle school friends we love who grew up loving Harry Potter, you should be SO PUMPED!
For our WyldLife club here in London, I love to put on themed clubs that reflect what is happening in cinemas for that month. So, we just had a rockin’ Harry Potter Themed WyldLife Club! Invite your friends to dress up and whether or not they are Potterheads they can join in on the fun.
Here are some game ideas for your Harry Potter WyldLife Club:
- enough red bandanas for half of the kids at club
- enough green bandanas for the other half of kids at club
- 2 yellow shirts
- 4 black bandanas
- 4 rolls of toilet paper wrapped in duct tape. (or dodgeballs)
- Sort everyone into Gryffindor (red) or Slytherin (green). Each player receives respective red or green bandana and must tie around head. (I used a cone like the sorting hat to sort kids into teams.)
- From each team pick a respective snitch- each receives yellow shirt. (one person from each group to wear the shirt.
- From each team pick 2 beaters- black bandanas (around arm)
- Everyone else is a seeker.
- Objective: Each team is trying to catch other team’s snitch.
- Obstacle: Beaters may freeze anyone from the opposite team by throwing toilet paper (bludgers) at them. Only beaters may throw toilet paper bludgers. Once frozen, remain frozen until snitch is caught.
- Once snitch is caught game is over, successful seeker becomes snitch. Pick new beaters and snitches, play again.
Four Houses (played like four corners)
- 4 Cones labelled with Harry Potter house crests
How To Play
- Place cones into four corners of club room
- Sort kids equally into the four houses: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin
- Each team gathers behind their house’s cone.
- Objective: in whatever manner game leader announces, they must get their entire team across to the cone diagonally across from them and sit down. First team with their team entirely across and sitting is the winner.
Obstacle: getting through the chaos created in the middle while still following directions.
Game leader will call something like: “hopping on one foot. GO!” And each team must hop all the way across the room to the cone diagonal from them.
Some fun commands are: leap frogging your whole team across, rolling, bunny hopping, skipping, crawling, giving a piggy back ride, or bear crawling.
- 2 cones to mark starting lines
- 2 cones to mark shooting lines
- 2 hula hoops
- 2 brooms
- 2 dodgeballs
How To Play
- Sort each team into houses (ie put kids into two teams. I just combined teams from four corners by putting two teams together ie: Slyther-Puff and Griffyn-Claw)
- Each team gets 1 broom and a dodge ball.
- Each kid must run down with broom between legs and shoot their dodgeball into the hoop.
- Team who scores the most points wins!
Wingardium Leviosa Relay
- 2 sticks/wands (I genuinely just picked up sticks from outside the club room. Just make sure they aren’t too sharp or the game won’t work!)
- 5 balloons (you only technically need 2, but its good to have some on reserve.)
- 4 cones (to show beginning of line and where each player must turn.)
How To Play
- Divide teams up into houses. (or keep same teams from Quidditch relay)
- Explain that “Wingardium Leviosa” is the spell that makes objects levitate.
- Each team receives a wand and a balloon.
- Each kid must keep balloon in the air by tapping it up with their wand/stick as they come around their teams respective cone and back. (Be sure to tell them not to try to swing for the fences and just hit the balloon all the way down and back because balloons will 100% pop and it isn’t actually easier that way.)
At the end of each club we have a raffle and we raffled off Bertie Bots every flavor beans. We also always have a mystery box with an unknown item that I put in a toy spider (aka a fantastic beast) and a toy owl and harry potter pins.
Also, a fun pre-club activity would be to do face painting and paint lightning scars. I love face painting at club and camp because it gives leaders the chance to be face-to-face with kids and say silent prayers for them as you help them get into the fun theme of the night! I also like to pull club themes into the talk.
Each of these games could be adapted to Young Life, but they went over great with my WyldLifers! The best part is that they weren’t really required to know about the books/or movies to play, so everyone felt included. Once they were explained the rules, they went with it and had a blast!
Looking for other Harry Potter themed club ideas? Click here.