Students can get very caught up in their appearance. Sometimes, this can lead to making assumptions about other people based on how they look.
Other times, this can lead to feelings of low self worth as students struggle to look a certain way to meet others’ expectations.
This fun game helps to shatter these ways of thinking using something as simple as candy.
This game includes a lesson on identity based on 1 Samuel 16:7. The game sets up the lesson perfectly.
Enjoy the game!
Nick Diliberto, Junior High Ministry
JUNIOR HIGH GAME ON IDENTITY – TWINS!
Bible: 1 Samuel 16:7
Identical candy in a variety of colors but with different flavors (Skittles, jelly beans, Jelly-Belly Beanboozled Beans, or red candy that can be cherry, fruit punch, cinnamon, etc) (Due to so many food allergies among kids, fruit flavored candy is recommended over chocolate.)
10 containers to hold candy
Index cards or dry-erase boards
Pens or dry-erase markers
To have the most control of the game, separate candy into containers where you know what flavor is in each.
It might be handy to label containers with masking tape.
Make sure you have at least two containers for each color of candy with a different flavor in each container.
For example, if you have red hard candy: put cherry in one container; fruit punch in a different container; and cinnamon in another container.
Label each with masking tape and the marker as you go so you know what is in each.
For a wackier version of this game, use Jelly Belly’s Beanboozled beans.
You won’t know what flavor each color is, but you’ll have a more dramatic experience!
HOW TO PLAY THE GAME
Choose students to play this game.
If you have a large number of students, each can represent a team.
Make sure labels are removed or not visible on containers.
Set out one container in front of each player – all with the same color, but different flavors.
Give each student a pen and index cards or a marker and dry-erase board.
Without letting them touch, smell or taste, have them write down their guess as to the flavor of the candy.
After 60 seconds, have them show everyone their guess.
Then, have them taste one piece of candy.
Announce who is correct.
There should be some surprise when students have different answers but are still correct because their identical “twin” candy was made of different ingredients and therefore different flavor.
For a wackier version, use Jelly Belly’s Beanboozled Beans.
Have students come up and take the same color bean.
Then taste to see who gets the good and “normal” flavor and who gets the gross flavor.
You can have a large number of players playing at the same time.
Or, you can play different rounds by setting out candy of a different color each round.
You can also have multiple students at each color, helping each other identify the flavor.
When the game is done, have everyone take a seat and prepare for the lesson.
Say: This game seemed like a simple taste-test and when you just looked at the candy, it looked like they were all the same flavors.
However, all it took was one second in your mouth and you could tell the actual flavor.
This seems silly, but let me ask you a question: Have you ever grabbed a piece of candy thinking it was sweet and fruity because it was red, only to have your tongue on fire because it was hot cinnamon?
Or have you eaten a piece of candy thinking it was apple flavored only to find out it was lime?
More often than we realize, we are fooled into thinking that we can figure out something based on how it looks.
In reality, that is only part of figuring something out.
Look at this verse: Read 1 Samuel 16:7 (New Living Translation)
“But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Say: There’s a much bigger story here.
The short version is that Samuel is picking out the man who is going to be King.
His instructions come from God.
He sees a group of seven young men and goes through them, one-by-one, thinking that each is the one God will choose to be king based on his appearance.
In the end, Jesse, the father of these young men, summons his youngest son, David, who wasn’t even there for the selection process.
When Samuel sees him, God makes it clear that this is the man who will be king.
David was dismissed because of his size, age and experience.
He was out watching sheep and goats while his brothers were participating in this selection process for King!
Yet, God sees more than just the outward appearance.
He knew the character of David; the qualities that would make him a great king.
When we look in a mirror, we see the outward appearance that everyone else sees.
And when we look at others, we see their outward appearance as well, but each person is unique – even twins, triplets, etc. are each unique individuals.
Whether you got tasty candy or gross, let this game and verse remind you that there is more to who you are than just what people see on the outside.
And remember that same truth when you look at others.
Just because they look a certain way, doesn’t mean you really know who they are on the inside.
Written by Mike Sheley. Mike is the Middle School Pastor at Mount Pleasant Christian Church in Greenwood, Indiana, where he oversees their ministries for 5th-8th graders. He’s been in full-time youth ministry over 17 years with most of that time focused on students in grades 5-8.