Zoom fatigue anyone? Yeah, me too. I realized it finally when I had a youth meeting and only my kids showed up because I made them. We are forgetting time and what used to be a normal schedule and routine. In many ways I am ok with this, except it is 11 am here on a “school day” in North Carolina and I have yet to see a child emerge from their bedroom.
My children and youth families I am sure are feeling the same. We have been picking back up with attendance to meetings now that school has gotten organized, but one thing that has never dropped off is our family trivia night. Every Friday at 7, I lock myself in a room in my house so my husband and kids can participate while I facilitate. Our church families log on to a Zoom meeting and talk a little trash while I play a little Yacht Rock to get them pumped up for competition.
During the week I create a PowerPoint slide show that I use the with the Zoom share screen function. Each slide is a category and there are 5 questions listed for each. I allow families 3 minutes to answer the questions on mute before we all unmute and go over the questions. We tally scores and move on to the next category. Honestly, there are no hard and fast rules here. I copied how a local pub did their trivia and it has worked for us. I trust that no one will cheat, because you know, it’s a church activity and who cheats at one of those?!?
The whole thing lasts around 40 minutes to an hour depending on how chatty everyone is. It has been a wonderful way to connect our families in a social way during this time. Usually on Sunday mornings when things were normal, we were able to say a quick “hello, how are you?”, but this allows them to play and laugh together weekly.
Some nuts and bolts to get you started:
- The internet has been a gift. So many trivia questions and sites to use to get you started.
- The categories we use are Entertainment, Bible, Literature & Science, Random, News of the Week, Are you smarter than a 5th grader?, Sports, and Geography & History. There is room for flexibility. A colleague of mine added photos of members to the slide show and asked participants to “Name that Member!”. You could take close up photos of things at church and see if people can name them. I tailored our Bible category toward our Confirmation kids and what they have been learning for a couple of weeks.
- Do as many questions as you like, just allow for more time.
- Make sure they mute so you they can talk as a family.
- Play host! When we go through the answers, I ask them to shout out what they wrote and we have some fun with it. Call your youth out when they get a right answer. Add scores up between rounds and announce who is winning and who is close to taking them out. When I hear someone scream “I told you that was the answer!”, I jump on board and make the situation worse. “Why didn’t’ you listen to Lindsay?”
- Play some music, crack some jokes and have some fun.
In a time when it is hard to connect and all we seem to do is cancel activities, this would be a great way to connect. If you want to try it out without all the work, help yourself to the trivia night files uploaded below.
Karen Miller is Director of Children and Youth Ministries at Church of Reconciliation in Chapel Hill, NC and a Member of the Hope4CE Steering Committee