michael lukaszewski has a great list of the same 21 students you’ll find in any average youth group on his blog:
I read somewhere that the average size youth group in the US is 21. The more places I go, and the more students that I meet, the more I am convinced that there are really only 21 different teenagers in the whole world. They just keep moving around from city to city. Here’s my breakdown.
1. Weird Home school Kid. I’m sorry, but I’ve been a youth pastor for 13+ years, and most home school kids are kind of strange.
2. Star Wars Freak Boy. This is the kid that dresses up and buys lightsabers off eBay.
3. Christian Band Groupie. They have lots of t-shirts, CD’s and autographed paraphernalia and strangely refer to members of the Newsboys by their first name.
4. Facial Hair Guy. This guy could be 12 or 18, but he’s got that scruffy patch of something occupying space on his chin. It doesn’t look very good.
5. Super spiritual girl. Sometimes known as “I’m dating Jesus” girl. She likes to read books like lady in waiting and usually closes meetings in prayer.
6. The IT specialist. He will have a promising corporate career or become an underground hacker. He illegally downloads things from the Internet for his youth pastor so his youth pastor doesn’t have to break the law.
7. The “I refuse to leave” individual. This person graduated from your ministry at least one year ago, but tricks himself into thinking of himself or herself as a chaperone so they can stick around. The will
be in your youth service for some time.
8. Overdeveloped Middle School girl. That’s all I need to say about that one. This group of students did not exist when I was in middle school.
9. The Bible Scholar. This person likes talking about Calvinism and other topics. They are the first to look up verses when called for and like to share their deep thoughts.
10. The Christian School Only Person. Closely related to weird home school kid (see #1), this person will go to Christian elementary school, a private Christian high school and when it comes time to go to college, he will only consider Christian colleges. This person can make it through life without ever talking to a lost person.
11. Little Drummer Boy. AKA Rock Star. Very proud of their $150 acoustic guitar, they are experts at leading worship and being part of a youth praise band.
12. The Event Addict. This person keeps their youth group event t-shirts color coded in their closet. They show up at camps, ski trips, weekends, conferences and every other event known to man.
13. The hoochie. If unchecked, overdeveloped middle school girl may develop into hoochie. This girl rarely wears enough clothing.
14. Smothered by Mother. No matter where this person goes, they can’t do anything without checking in with their parents every few minutes. Their parents require extra information on every event and activity.
15. Middle School Cheerleader. Usually traveling in packs of three, these are very small girls, typically wearing braces. They show up to any event wearing cheerleading shorts.
16. The forwarder. This person will forward you at least four or five e-mails every week. Thanks to him or her, you’ll know about all the companies supported by Mormons. This person might be associated with the IT specialist (see #6)
17. The EO. EO’s only show up to your fun events. They don’t care about anything you have to say, but will surface several times a year. Due to the massive amount of events attended, they have amassed a large quantity of t-shirts, which they use as rags or to mow grass.
18. FBI Parent Agent. While this is not technically a student, this parent is always there watching your every move. They probably have a “Smothered by Mother” (see #14). They want to know who will be driving and will question your word choice in your messages. Even though they are not a teenager, go ahead and include them and count them, because they will always be around.
19. The Drama Queen. This girl is usually the center of attention and needs lots of counseling. They are always involved in a major event or scandal.
20. The Questioner. The questioner will ask you if they can read their poem at your next youth service. They may have a painting or a song that will really encourage everyone else. They want to lead worship even though they can’t really sing and lead a bible study, even though they don’t own a Bible.
21. The all American. These are your regular, everyday teenagers. They don’t fall into any particular category.
Any more you’d like to add?
19 thoughts on “the same 21 kids”
Here is one for the list:
The Caller-They call you everyday just to fill you in on their days activities in minute detail.
The one-upper. – This student always has a bigger and better story than everyone else (including you). This student could also be classified as the center of the universe student as this one-upmanship is rooted in his/her need to be the center of attention at all times. Sort of like a five-year old on caffiene.
Wow marko, you hit it right on the money!
When you said the questioner, I thought you meant the person that had to ask, “Why are we doing this?” or “What are we doing next?”
Where do you think PK’s fit into here?
Hey Brian, do your pastor’s kids acutally come to youth group?
The stalker–The one who calls the house at 7:30 on Saturday morning, and when you dont answer knocks at the door of your house, and when you do not answer there calls from the cell phone in the his loud diesel pickup truck–and you know it is not an emergency. He just cant think of anything better than to spend Saturday morning with you. And you could not think of anything better than to spend Saturday morning sleeping.
I am a PK and I went to all of the youth groups straight through HS. But I was one of those goody-goody PK’s, not the “burn down the church” variety. lol.
Amazing! I know everyone of those kids!!
I know each one…or in smaller groups have had kids be more than one of those. I need to email that to a couple for former youth and see what they say!
wow…. good list…
I’ve noticed that at every camp, conference and event I’ve been to, every group has “crazy hair kid.”
bleached… big spikes… fro….cornrows its all there…
Don’t forget about the “kid-who-loves-pickles-so-much-that-he-brings-a-Sam’s-Club-sized-jar-on-every-road-trip-making-every-vehicle-smell-like-pickle-juice” as well as the “Snoring-big-guy-who-keeps-everyone-else-awake-at-camp.”
the “Guaranteed to Get Car-Sick Kid” or it’s close relative the “I’ve gotta pee every 5 minutes on the 14 hour drive Kid.”
The Corrector – The kid who is just waiting for you to make a mistake or for any word to be mispelled on a screen, email or mailing.
The Non Showerer – Is also a staple of most groups I think!
The Patient: The kid who receives one more attention getting injury at EVERY event!
The Victim: The one forced to be there by their parents – recognizable by folded arms and slouch and muteness.
The IMer. As soon as you log on you get the IM that says HEY!. EVERY DAY!!!!
i thought christian/private schools were full of lost people?
what about the “atheist kid”, or the “wanna be leader who has a drinking problem on the weekends kid”, or the “i love JESUS but hate anyone not american kid”, or the “viva la bam wanna be kids”.
or how about the “i’ve tried it for 8 years and now i’m done youth pastor” – i mean a lot of youth groups have this guy lurking around.
(the above “names” are actually kids in my youth group. my wife and i just took it over last year … and as you can see, i’m having bit of a rough time. but hey, brian, thanks for the chuckle of the other 21 kids. hate to be a downer, but thought i would add some of my kids to the list too. and the youth pastor … i’m praying that’s not me – but you never know.)
Remembered another kid that I don’t think has been mentioned…
“Mountain Top Kid” the one that makes a commitment/recommitment every single camp/retreat (or even at an emotional mid-week talk).
22. The apathetic boy. This guy only comes because his parents make him. He will make paper airplanes out of handouts, whisper loudly to his friends, and never unfold his arms from across his chest. Yet, somehow, he’ll be the king of pranks during overnighters. (possibly merge with The Victim in TammyJo’s comment above)
I think i was like that too. Thank God for them all.
Hey Marko Im a friend of Brian’s. You wouldnt be related to the Oestriechers that live in Greenville Il right?