Fun games to play during video calls
Use these brilliant games to add some fun to your video calls and virtual meetings
We know that meeting over video is very different to meeting face-to-face, so try these quick games to find new ways to add some virtual fun.
All the ideas are written for young people - so why not ask them to pick their favourite and share it with everyone on the call?
Ladders and snakes
Can you make it to the top step of the ladder or will you be caught out by a snake? Your leader’s going to need a coin for this one.
Do you think you can predict the future? Your leader’s going to flip a coin. If you think it’s going to land on heads, place your hands on top of your head. If you think it’s going to be tails, place your hands behind your back. Your leader’s going to flip the coin now. Did anyone get it right?
Your goal is to make it to the top of the ladder without getting caught by a snake. Everyone, take four big steps away from your camera. You need to guess if the coin will land on heads or tails. Don’t forget to place your hands on your head or behind you! Your leader is then going to flip the coin and call out the result. If you get it right, you get to take a step up the ladder - take a big step towards your camera. If you get it wrong, take a big step back as a snake got in your way!
Keep going and see who’s first to make it to the top of the ladder (back in front of their camera).
Did you see it?
You’ve tried virtual scavenger hunts…now it’s time to take them to the next level. Your leader’s going to show you something on screen but only for 10 seconds. It could be a fridge magnet or a sock – anything they have to hand. Make sure you pay attention and don’t blink! You’ve got 60 seconds to find a similar item in your space. If you don’t have the exact item, don’t worry – find something alike. For example, if they hold up a cuddly elephant and you only have a cuddly dog, that will work.
On the count of three, everyone apart from your leader hold up the item. Who got closest to your leader’s item? Keep playing with your leader showing a new item each time.
Dance it up!
Grab your dancing shoes and get ready to boogie. Your leader’s going to need a dice for this one. Together come up with a move for each number on the dice. Make sure everyone knows all the moves.
It’s time to get ready to bust some moves! Your leader’s going to roll the dice and call out what number it lands on.
Everyone needs to start doing that dance move. Keep going and see your random dance come to life.
You can add music but make sure everyone can still hear the number on the dice being called out. You could also use virtual dice for this game.
Are you storytelling masters? Your leader’s going to write the order in which everyone is going to tell the story in the chat box. Make sure you know who’s in front of you, so you know when it’s your turn.
Altogether, you’re going to tell a story but only one word at a time. You can start the story however you want, have any characters and they can do whatever you want. The only catch is you can’t stop the story until your leader says so. They might keep it short and sweet or make you use your storytelling skills to tell an amazingly long tale.
If you get lost and forget what’s happened, don’t worry! This is your chance to take the story in a whole new direction.
Oh no, your virtual meeting has been joined by a witch called Froggy Moggy who happens to look a lot like your leader! She's very angry as she was trying to join the virtual witch's council meeting but ended up here. She's put a curse on all of you!
Froggy Moggy loves animals and she's trying to turn you all into toads. The only way to beat her curse is to act like the animal she calls out. This will confuse her and make her think the curse has worked.
When Froggy Moggy calls out the animal, do your best impression. Keep going until she starts a new curse. Can you make it through all ten curses?
"Froggy Moggy, turns you into a......"
Try it this way
Have Froggy Moggy pick a different girl each time who has to keep her impression going until everyone’s been cursed. You could also add you own animals.
Well done, you’ve confused Froggy Moggy enough that she’s lifted the curse, you’ve saved your unit!
Your leader's going to need a timer for this one. Does anyone know how many seconds there are in a minute? If I asked you to count 60 seconds perfectly, do you think you could do it? Together, try to count to 20 seconds perfectly. Your leader will time you.
Harder than it sounds? It's time to test your timing skills. Your leader will give you a time between 5 seconds and 60 seconds. When they say 'go!' they'll start their timer. Close your eyes and don't peak until you think the time's up. When you think the right amount of time has passed, stand up and start dancing. Your leader will stand up and start dancing when the timer hits the right time. Who was the closest and did anyone get it exactly right?
Keep playing using different times. Can you think of any ways to make it easier? When you're counting, is there a word you could say in your head after each number to help you?
Follow the Rainbow
Can you beat the guesser as a team?
Your leader’s going to pick someone to be the first guesser. The guesser needs to turn away from the screen and close their eyes. Your leader’s going to pick the first Rainbow captain by writing their name on a piece of paper and holding it up so everyone can see. Don’t say the name out loud! You don’t want the guesser to hear. If you’re the Rainbow captain put up your hand.
If on your device you can’t see everyone, switch pages until you can see the Rainbow captain.
When you’re ready, get the guesser to turn around. Everyone else, you need to pick an action and start moving. You could jump up and down, tap your head or do your favourite dance move. Slowly, everyone needs to change to the same action as the Rainbow captain. If the Rainbow captain changes what action they’re doing, everyone else has to too. But be careful, try not to make it obvious to the guesser!
Guesser, can you guess who the Rainbow captain is? Keep your eyes peeled. The guesser gets three guesses before it’s game over. Reveal the Rainbow captain to the guesser at the end. Pick a new guesser and Rainbow captain and play again.
Does your unit ever play ladders? Meeting virtually doesn’t mean the fun has to stop, so here’s a way to play online together. Together, pick an action. You could wave jazz hands style, stand up and spin around or do a pirate’s salute and call out ‘arrrrrgh’! Practice your action to make sure everyone knows it. Your leader will put you in pairs and give each pair a number. In order, call out your number and wave to the other half of your pair.
Your leader will call out a random number, for example – ‘three’. If that’s your number, quickly do your action. Did you both do the action correctly? Play this a few times, making sure every pair has a turn at being called.
Now let’s play the game. This time when your number’s called, can you do the action faster than the other Rainbow in your pair? Listen carefully as your leader calls out the numbers quicker and quicker! Can you keep up?
Now it’s time to listen even more carefully. This time, your leader will call out two numbers, which pair is the fastest? But be careful, because if you leader calls out ‘Rainbows’, everyone needs to do the action together!
Is it a?
Are you a Rainbow detective in the making? It’s time to put your guessing skills to the test.
Choose someone to go first. They’re going to hold an item in their hands but not show it on camera. It’s their job to describe the item without saying its name. For example, if it’s a slipper, they might say it’s soft, warm and maybe a bit smelly! If you think you know what they’re holding – raise your hand. When your leader says your name, call it out. If you get it right, you get to be the next mystery player. If you’ve described something before, you can choose someone else – make sure everyone gets a go.
Keep playing until everyone’s had a turn at describing their item.
What's that noise?
Crackle, whizz, bang, whoosh! What’s that noise?
It’s time to transform into noise detectives and solve the mystery! Take turns switching off your camera and find something nearby to make a noise. For example, you could scrunch up a piece of paper, spin a coin or play a musical instrument. You could even use a body part, like clapping your hands or make a funny animal noise.
Try it this way
If you can’t turn your camera off, move away from the screen or tilt your camera upwards so nobody can see you!
Everybody else - once the noise has been made a few times, try guessing what you think it could be. Keep going until someone guesses it right.
Make your noise close to the microphone so that everyone can hear you.
Keep playing, taking turns making your funny noises. See who’s the best noise detective!
Bring me something…
It’s adventure time! But before you set off, listen to what you’ll need along the way. Your leader will ask you to find something to bring for the journey. They’ll tell you a category, and you have to find something that fits. For example, if they say ‘bring me something fluffy’, you might bring a soft toy, a feather or your blanket!
Once you have your item, show everyone on your screen. You might want to tell everyone else what it is. Keep going looking for new items that you could bring on your adventure with you!
Note to leader
Here are some examples to get you started. Add as many rounds as you would like to keep the game going.
Bring me something…
- That is fluffy
- That makes a funny noise
- That makes you smile
- That you can eat with
Take it further
Look at all the items you gathered. What kind of adventure do you think you could go on with them?
10 seconds to go!
Can you talk forever about something you love? Let’s put it to the test. Your leader’s going to choose a topic they know your unit loves – it could be ice-cream, animals, Rainbows, fruit or even chocolate!
Choose a Rainbow to go first. You have ten seconds to chat all about it. You might say things you love about it, describe what it looks like or make up a quick story about it. Your leader will time you.
After ten seconds your leader will choose someone else to keep talking about that topic. Can you say different things about it that the Rainbow before didn’t say? How much can you talk about something you all love? Give it a go, changing what you talk about every time you play.
You’ll each need a balloon for this game. If you don’t have a balloon you could use a ball instead. Your leader will need a music player and some music too.
Oh no! Asteroids incoming! It’s time to transform into space cadets and save planet Earth. Quickly, everyone grab your balloon or ball. When the music starts playing try to keep it in the air, but you can’t keep hold of it (so either use your hands to push the balloon up, or keep throwing and catching your ball). When the music stops, listen to your leader as they choose a few Rainbows to complete a mission. Keep playing the music and completing the missions until your leader tells you the Earth is saved!
- Sing a part of your favourite song in a funny voice.
- Count to ten with whilst spinning around.
- Pat your head whilst rubbing your tummy for five seconds.
- Find something that’s one of the colours of the Rainbow in your room.
- Do a funny dance move to make everyone laugh.
You’re going to need paper, a pencil and felt tips or colouring pencils for this game.
Before you start, ask an adult to help you draw out a few separate 3x3 grids, so you have a grid of nine squares.
Choose someone to be the first number caller. This could be your leader. Everyone else, fill your first grid with nine numbers between 1 - 20. Make sure you don’t write the same number more than once. Ready? Let’s play bingo lingo!
The number caller will say a number between 1 and 20 – but they can’t play this round. If you have that number in your grid, use a felt tip or colouring pencil to colour in that box. Keep listening and colour in the boxes that have your number.
When you have all the boxes coloured in, shout as loud as you can, ‘Bingo lingo!’. You’re the winner of that round. Choose someone else to be the number caller and play again.
Strike a pose
Turn the music up, it’s time to put your dancing shoes on and strike the best Rainbow pose!
Your leader’s going to show you four dance freezes. Take some time to practise them together. When you’ve all mastered the moves, pop some music on and dance along.
When the music stops, choose one of the dance freezes and hold the pose. Did you all choose the same one? Put the music back on and keep practising your amazing moves.
Now, choose someone to be the dance master – this could be your leader. When the music stops, if your pose is the same as the dance master you get a point. The first to three points wins.
Keep playing, swapping the dance master between rounds.
- Saturday night fever: place one arm on your hip and the other pointing up to the sky.
- Waltzing wonders: Hold your hands out like you’re about to dance with someone else.
- Stuck in a box: place your hands next to your head so it looks like you’re in a box.
- Jazz hands: put your hands in the air with your fingers spaced out, remember to stay still!
The alphabet game
Choose someone to be the first alphabet picker. Your job is to silently go through the alphabet in your head until someone tells you to stop. Say the letter you stopped on out loud, for example ‘E’ or ‘J’.
Your leader will give you a theme and ask one of you to say something that begins with the letter and is in the theme. For example, if someone stopped on ‘A’, and your leader asked you to think of a food you might say ‘apple’ or ‘apricot’. If you can think of another word that begins with the letter and is in the theme, raise your hand. How many words can you think of that begin with the letter?
Once you’re done, choose someone to be the next alphabet picker. Keep going, working your way through different letters and themes. How many words can you come up with together?
- Cartoon characters
- Things that have buttons
- Sports or hobbies
- Things that have stripes
- Ice cream flavours
Higher or lower?
Note to leader: You’ll need a pack of playing cards for this game. Remove the face cards from the pack.
Do you have magical card reading powers? Your leader will show you a card. Do you think the next one they pick will have a higher (bigger) or lower (smaller) number on it? Shout out your answer. Were you right?
Have a practise round. Now you’re warmed up, it’s time to play. Every time your leader shows you a card, either shout higher or lower, or put your thumbs up or down. If you’re right, you’re still in the game! If you were wrong, put your hands on your head and stay silent. Who will stay in the game the longest?
Keep playing to see how far your mind reading powers can take you!
What's in my bag?
Note to leader: Come up with six random items to call out to the girls. For example, hedgehog, butterfly, plate, dinosaur, flower, slipper.
Rainbows, before your next meeting, grab a bag or empty pillowcase and put in six random items that you find around your house. You could grab things like a toy, a spoon, a piece of fruit, or your favourite fridge magnet. If you’re not sure if you can use something, ask the person that owns it.
Make sure you have your bag near you when you join your next Rainbows meeting. And don’t tell anyone what’s inside – it’s a secret!
Your leader’s going to call out six things, one by one. After each word, look in your bag and see what you have that reminds you of that thing. For example, if they say ‘hedgehog’, see if you have something that’s either spikey or brown.
If you find something that looks like the object, you get one point, your leader will be the judge.
Keep going, trying to pull out a different item each time. Who has the most points at the end? You’re the winner!
Next time you play the game, look for different items around your home.
You’ll each need a pencil and one sheet of paper per drawing for this game. Decide as a unit how many drawings you’d like to do before starting, two or three would be good.
Can you tell your apple from your banana? It’s time to put your artistic skills to the test!
Your leader will share their screen that has a picture of an object on it. Without looking down at your sheet of paper, can you draw what you see? You have one minute for each drawing. Keep your eyes looking at the camera - don’t peek.
When the time’s up, show off your masterpieces with each other. Did anyone’s drawing look like what they saw?
Keep going, swapping the pictures and trying it again. Practise makes perfect, so it might get easier the more you play!
Do you have magical mind reading powers? Can you guess who your leader is thinking about, with only a few questions?
To start, everyone raise your hand. Your leader’s going to choose one Rainbow in your unit, but won’t say her name out loud. Together, take turns asking your leader a question to try and find out who they’re thinking about.
For example, you could ask, ‘Does she have brown hair?’. If your leader answers ‘no’, then all the Rainbows with brown hair must put their hand down.This is to show they’re not the chosen Rainbow. Keep going with lots of questions until there’s only one Rainbow with her hand up. She’s the Rainbow your leader chose!
Play as many times as you like. When you’ve mastered the game, why not take turns choosing someone in your unit?
Questions you could ask:
- Is she wearing her Rainbow uniform?
- Does her name begin with the letter ‘B’?
- Does she have blonde hair?
- Is she holding a piece of fruit or a vegetable? (you could add in props to make it more fun!)
- Is she six years old?
Sounds in the round
Let’s try and make a sound orchestra.
Time to practise! What sounds can you all make? Why not try out some of these together: clicking, clapping, saying oohs and ahhs. One by one, make a sound. Then, all make sounds at the same time.
Once you’ve mastered those, have a look around your room to see if there’s anything you could use to make your sound. Perhaps you could hit a pan with a wooden spoon, or run your pen along the curly spine of a notebook? Once you’ve got something, bring it back to show and make a sound for your unit.
Take turns trying out your sounds until you’re ready to come together as an orchestra!
Now, find a beat. Altogether, slowly count out loud: one, two, three, four.
One by one, your leader will choose a Rainbow to make a noise on each beat. So, it might be: clap, clap, clap, clap. Your leader will then choose the next Rainbow to make their sound. Once you’ve all been, give yourself a big round of applause!
Wow! We bet that was a beautiful sound. When you’re back meeting face to face with your unit, why not play this game again, but try singing too!
Pass the pen
Work together to get a pen (or any other object you all have at home) passed around your whole unit and back to your leader!
Everyone grab a pen. Your leader will start. They’ll move their pen across the screen and call the name of the Rainbow they’re passing the pen to.
When they move their pen off screen, the Rainbow’s name who was called then moves her pen across the screen, passing it back to your leader. Your leader will then say the name of the next Rainbow and pass the pen across the screen again.
Can you all pass the pen back to your leader?
Now you’re warmed up, can you pass it around everyone and back to your leader in a big circle? Give it a go. Call another Rainbow’s name when it’s your turn. It might take a bit of practise.
Check out how Girlguiding staff and volunteers tackled this game:
Are you up for the challenge?
Quick! Your leader needs your help to find some things she’s lost around her home. Can you find them in yours?
Listen to what she’s lost and when she says ‘Go!’, see if you can find them as quickly as possible. Bring them back to show your Rainbow friends.
Are you ready? Can you find…
- Something that starts with the first letter of your name?
- Something the colour orange?
- Your favourite toy or game?
- Something you love to eat?
- Something really soft?
- An adult?
What did you find? Did anyone else find the same thing?
It’s time to play a game of Rainbow says!
Choose one girl to be the first caller. Listen carefully to what they say. If they start the action with ‘Rainbow says…’, do what they say. If they don’t, make sure you stay as still as a statue.
Have a practise with your different facial expressions:
- Be happy
- Be sad
- Be angry
- Be shocked/scared
- Poke your tongue out
- Close your eyes
Ready? Get playing! If you get it wrong twice, you’re out. Who can stay in the game the longest? Keep changing the caller every few goes so everyone gets a turn.
Knife, fork and spoon game
Everyone grab a fork, butter knife and spoon.
Place them down in front of you, making sure the handles are closest to you, and the knife is facing away.
Your leader is going to count 3, 2, 1…and when they say ‘Go!’, lift one item of cutlery. If it’s the same one as your leader, you get a point!
The first Rainbow to get three points wins and becomes the next caller.
Make sure not to use sharp objects, you can use plastic cutlery if you have this available. Instead of cutlery, you could also use different coloured pieces of paper or objects that everyone would have at home.
Before your next virtual meeting, send a photo or picture into your leader of something that makes you happy.
If you’re taking a photo, you could try to stage it to look like something, for example – you might have a teddy bear off on a big adventure!
In your next meeting, your leader will show everyone your photos. For each of them, try to come up with stories about what’s happening or could happen next. Who knows, perhaps you’ll come up with the next big Rainbow story!
Do not share any personal information in your photos, and if you’re using photos of anyone else, make sure to ask their permission before sharing.
Pick up your programme resources
Everything you need for programme - from Skills builders to badge books - can be found at the Girlguiding shop