Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Exploring Bible Stories: Foam Print Craft

Here's an interesting way to help children to explore Bible stories: print making!

Tell a Bible story and then encourage children to cut out foam shapes to retell a scene from the story or to express their feelings/ observations about it.

You will need: Jar lids, scissors, craft foam, glue, paint, paper

Draw round the base of the jar lid on a piece of craft foam.  Cut the circle out and glue to the lid so that your print has a firm base and the jar lid acts as a handle.

Cut out pieces of foam to form a picture of  a scene, character or aspect from the story and stick them on to your foam base.

Cover the foam pieces with paint and print!  Children might want to choose paper and paint colours they think are significant to what they are trying to convey about the story.

Talk about:

  • What part of the story/ character does your print show?  
  • Why did you choose to make that picture?  What was special to you about that part of the story/ character?
  • Why did you choose particular colours?
  • If you could make another print for this story, what would you make? Why?
Other ideas:
  • Ask children to make a print for any Bible story they know.  Try to guess the story from the print.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Fruit of the Spirit Curriculum- 10 Free Lesson Plans to Download and Use

Here is a free set of lesson plans on the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5) to download and use with children.  Each lesson is short (lasting about 30 minutes) and includes a story to look at, a memory verse, questions to think about, a craft and a prayer activity.  They are suitable for 4-11s and might work well with groups where a range of ages is covered.

Lessons  include

  • Love
  • Joy
  • Peace
  • Patience
  • Kindness
  • Goodness
  • Faithfulness
  • Gentleness
  • Self-Control
  • Life Changing Spirit
There are also ideas for different ways of learning memory verses and further links for each lesson.

Click here to print out the lessons.

Enjoy and let me know how it goes if you use them!

Monday, 1 September 2014

Jacob's Ladder Ascending Angel Craft and Prayer Activity

The story of Jacob's ladder in Genesis 28 (vv 10-17) is one of my favourites and this is a creative way to pray about the story's themes using an easy but effective craft.

Tell the story of Jacob's ladder and think about the theme of God's closeness to Jacob, even when Jacob, himself, didn't at first realise it.  

Talk about: How do you think Jacob felt when he saw the ladder and the angels? How would you have felt?Have you ever felt or known that God is with you? Do you have anywhere where you feel close to God? How do you know that God is with you?  Do you know anyone who might like to know that God is with them, caring for them?

Craft- You will need: paper, scissors, pens, string, sellotape, straws and a coin

Get children to cut an angel shape out of the paper (or provide them with a pre-cut version).  Cut 2x 2cm pieces of straw and sellotape them to the angel shape as shown below.  Make sure they are parallel to each other. Sellotape a coin to the bottom of the angel to give it some weight (I used a 2p coin here).  Thread string through the straw as shown.
Anchor the string to a coat hook or a nail on the wall- something static, strong and above head height if possible!  Bring the angel to the bottom of the strings and hold each end in a separate hand.  Spread your hands out so that they are wider than the parallel straws and pull on the strings.  The angel should rise up towards the anchor point.  Release the tension on the strings and the angel should descend.  Have fun testing this out!
Write the names of people who you would like to know that God is close to them- perhaps people who are having a hard time or who don't know about God yet.  As you pull the angel up and down the string, pray that God will bless them and they will know His closeness, just as Jacob did in the story!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

God Made Me Unique- Paint Marbled People

This is a fun way to help children to explore the uniqueness that God has given them and to thank him for it.  It would fit well with teaching around the creation story or Psalm 139, or just as a stand alone activity.

You will need: A shallow tray or plate, shaving foam, paint, cocktail sticks, lolly sticks, people shapes cut from coloured card.
Let children choose a colour of card that most reflects them (e.g. their favourite colour from the selection).  Cut a person shape from it to represent themselves.

Spread shaving foam across the bottom of the tray or plate, making sure that there is enough to completely match the size of the card person you have cut out.
Drop small drops of paint into the shaving foam (less is more!) and use a cocktail stick to make swirling patterns.  Children can, again, chose colours they like best.
Press the person shape down on top of the paint swirls and carefully lift off.  Use a lolly stick to scrape away the shaving foam and paint and see the unique artwork revealed underneath!

Talk about: 
  • How God has made each one of us unique- just as each person's painting will be completely unique.
  • The special way we have each been made- God has put a lot into making us special in the same way that we spent time making intricate patterns and swirls with the paint
  • While painting and swirling, encourage the children to reflect on and to discuss the things that make them special and unique.  What do they like best about themselves?
  • Arrange all of the paintings in a display.  Ask children to say something special about themselves that they would like to thank God for.  Say a big thank you prayer together!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Feeding the 5000 Play Dough Prayer Mat to Print Out

This is the next in our collection of play dough mats.  This one helps children to reflect in a tactile way on the story of Jesus feeding the 5000 with 5 loaves and 2 fish.

Tell the story and then let children use play dough to make loaves, fish or their favourite foods, placing them in the open hands.  While they are constructing the foods, ask them to pray for people who are hungry and have very little food.  Pray that God will provide for them in miraculous ways, just as Jesus did in the story.

Click here to print out the mat, then laminate it for repeated use!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Fruit of the Spirit Reflective Colouring Page (Printable)

I'm in the process of putting together a set of lesson plans for 'The Fruit of the Spirit' so, to add to the collection, here's a reflective colouring page based on Galatians 5:22-23

Click here to print off the page.  Enjoy colouring!