ADDED 3/19/20 An idea from Camper Claire Hershberger. Get some bandanas around the house and see how many you can use to make new clothing items. Claire is shown here with some of her creations, including bandana shoes, belt, headware, and skirt!
Faith Family Tree (need card stock or other thick paper, such as mixed media paper, small sticks and leaves, glue, and markers that will write on leaves)
- Guide kids to collect small sticks and dry leaves from outside. Remind them to use what is already on the ground rather than taking them from a living plant.
- Ask them to write the names of people who have been important to their faith on their leaves.
- Give each kid a piece of heavy paper.
- Have them arrange their sticks and leaves in the shape of a tree (trunk, branches, leaves) and then glue their items to the paper. Allow projects to dry completely.
- As they work, remind them of the story of Abraham and Sarah (one of our stories from this summer’s curriculum from Genesis 12:1-9)
Space Slime ADDED 3/17/20 (need 4 oz. [118 mL] bottle of glue per person, 1 teaspoon [5 mL] of baking soda per person, contact lens (saline) solution, various colors of food coloring, eyedroppers or straws, glitter,baby oil, plastic bowls for each person, spoons for each person, plastic zipper bags, permanent black marker) Note: Do not use starch or Borax in this activity.
- Give each person a bowl and a spoon.
- Ensure each person has one 4 oz. [118 mL] bottle of glue.
- Instruct everyone to empty their bottle of glue into their bowl.
- Give each person 1 teaspoon [5 mL] of baking soda; instruct them to add that to the glue.
- Have an adult add several squirts of contact lens solution to the bowls.
- Have an adult add three drops of baby oil to the bowls.
- Instruct kids to add small drops of food coloring to their mixture. They can use eyedroppers or straws. Remind them that small amounts go a long way.
- Kids can add glitter to their slime to represent the stars in the sky (Genesis 15:5; 22:17).
- Instruct kids to mix up their slime, first with the spoon, and then with their hands.
- Put slime into plastic zipper bags with their name for storage.
Happy Mosaics ADDED 3/18/20 (need brightly colored patterns and solids of scrapbook paper, scissors (or paper cutter), glue sticks, yellow card-stock circles 8″ [20 cm] in diameter, paper plates (to hold mosaic pieces)
- For each child, cut one 8″ [20 cm] circle from yellow card stock.
- Cut scrapbook paper into 1″ [2.5 cm] squares.
Invite kids to name things or people who make them happy. Share your ideas too. Then talk about happy colors. Hold up a yellow card-stock circle.
- Ask how the yellow circle makes campers feel. (Happy, excited.)
- How can a circle remind us of God? (Like a circle, God’s love doesn’t have a beginning or an ending.)
Explain that long, long ago where Joseph lived, people often decorated tables, floors, and vases with mosaics. Ask if anyone knows what a mosaic is. Mosaics are made from little pieces of colorful glass or ceramic. The little pieces are arranged to make beautiful designs or pictures. Kids will make their own mosaics on the happy yellow circle, except that they will use pretty little squares of paper and sticky glue.
- Write each child’s name on one side of a yellow circle. This will be the back of the mosaic.
- Set out paper squares on paper plates and give each camper a glue stick.
- Encourage kids to use the paper squares to make a design first, then glue it into place.
Point out that the sticky glue that they use to make the mosaics can remind them that God always sticks by us.
Warm Fuzzies ADDED 3/19/20 (need skeins of yarn in different colors and scissors)
- Have kids measure out one strand of yarn that is 8 lengths of their arm.
- Also have kids cut a single piece of yarn that measures from their thumb to their pinkie across their spread palm.
- Then have kids carefully wrap their long piece of yarn around three of their fingers. Instruct kids to spread their fingers out so as not to wrap the yarn too tightly.
- When the kids have finished wrapping their entire length of yarn, instruct them to pull the yarn off their fingers by the middle of the bundle, pinching it tightly.
- Tie the bundle in the middle with the small piece of yarn.
- Kids should then cut the closed loops at either end of the bundle, being careful not to cut the piece of yarn holding the bundle together.
- Invite children to give the newly created warm fuzzies to people who might need love and forgiveness, just like Joseph forgave his brothers.
Binoculars ADDED 3/20/20 (need toilet paper rolls, colorful, patterned scrapbook paper, scissors, masking tape, twine or string, single-hole punch)
- Talk with kids about the ways God sees us and then read Psalm 100:5. Next, explain today’s craft activity.
- Give each kid two toilet paper rolls to make a pair of binoculars.
- Allow kids to choose their scrapbook paper.
- Invite kids to cut the scrapbook paper to the size of their toilet paper rolls.
- Instruct kids to wrap the paper around the roll and secure with the tape.
- Kids should then use tape to secure the two toilet paper rolls together.
- Help kids punch a hole on the outside of each roll for attaching the string or twine neck strap.
- Have kids tie the ends of some premeasured string to each hole to create a neck strap for their binoculars.
God’s Eyes ADDED 3/23/20 (need two wooden craft sticks or small tree branches, balls of yarn in different colored yarn or variegated yarn, hot glue and glue gun (optional), scissors)
- Read Psalm 100:5 to campers. Talk about how God sees us through loving eyes, then explain the activity.
- Give each camper two wooden craft sticks or small tree branches. You may choose to hot-glue these sticks together in advance for younger campers.
- Instruct each camper to begin by looping the yarn around the middle of the two sticks in an X
- When the sticks are stabilized in the middle, forming an equal-armed cross, have campers begin wrapping the yarn tightly around each of the arms (top, bottom, both sides).
- Campers wrap the yarn around one arm and then move to the next arm in an under-over pattern. Each time around, the space between the four arms of the sticks fills in with more yarn.
- Campers can change colors of yarn by tying a new color to the end of the previous color.
- Campers continue until they reach the end of the arms or they may stop before then to make a smaller God’s eye.
- When campers are finished wrapping their yarn, help them tie off the end onto one section and then cut off the extra yarn.
Flying Messages ADDED 3/24/20 (need full sheets (8½″ x 11″ or A4 size [21 cm x 29.7 cm] and ¾″ x 6″ [2 cm x 15 cm] strips of white paper, washable markers, very fine-tipped marker, stapler, paper clips)
- Learn how to fold a paper plane. See https://www.foldnfly.com/1.html#Basic-Dart.
- Ask who remembers what an angel’s job is. (To deliver messages from God.) God wants us to deliver messages about God’s love to other people too. Explain that some businesses or people want to share an important message with lots of people, so they have a small plane fly low in the sky, carrying a long banner with a message. People on the ground can read the words. Kids are going to make their own planes that carry messages about God’s love.
- Give each child a sheet of paper and invite them to draw a colorful picture or design on the paper. Explain that when they are done coloring, you will fold up their paper to make an airplane that really flies.
- As kids are working, go around to each one and ask them to tell you a message about God’s love or Jesus or creation that they would like you to write on their ¾″ x 6″ [2 cm x 15 cm] message strip. Write this using a very fine-tipped permanent marker.
- After you fold each child’s paper into a plane, staple the underside of the plane where all the folds meet. Insert the end of the message strip between the back of the two wings and staple through all three layers.
- When everyone is done, have kids stand side by side, holding their planes. Invite them, one at a time, to say their message loudly as they launch their planes. Remind them of their messages. You may place a paper clip under the nose of the plane and adjust the clip so the planes will fly straighter.
- Encourage campers to share their flying messages with family members and friends to share God’s love.
Bible Bookmarks ADDED 3/25/20 (need colorful scrapbook paper, 1″ [2.5 cm] epoxy dots, three per person, 1″ [2.5 cm] circle paper punch, thin, permanent markers, card stock, glue, large paper clips, hot glue and glue gun)
- Explain that kids will be making three bookmarks. Begin by having kids choose their scrapbook paper.
- Instruct kids to cut out three 1″ [2.5 cm] circles from their chosen papers using the circle paper punch.
- Invite them to write words they associate with today’s Bible story about Mary on their circles. (Some ideas are faith, promise, adored, blessed, holy, servant, rejoice.) Or they could choose words associated with other stories from earlier this week.
- Have them peel off an epoxy dot, being careful not to touch the adhesive side or they will have fingerprints on their image, then place it directly over the paper circle. Do the same for the other two circles.
- Next, have kids cut out three circular pieces of card stock to fit the back of the epoxy dots.
- Assist them with placing a small dot of hot glue on the back of the epoxy dot. Then instruct campers to sandwich one end of their paper clip between the image and the piece of card stock, securing the paper clip in place. The paper clip functions as the bookmark. Do the same with the other two pieces. Ensure kids are leaving enough space for the paper clip to still function as intended.
- Talk with them about using the bookmarks to mark favorite Bible verses in their Bibles.
Good Newspaper Hearts ADDED 3/26/20 (need card stock, various colors, 12″ x 12″ [30 cm x 30 cm], newspapers or printed Bible verses, such as photocopied pages, scissors, glue, and markers)
- Pass out the pages from the newspapers to campers and instruct them to cut out the shape of a heart approximately 6″-11″ [15-28 cm] across.
- Invite kids to then glue their heart onto a piece of card stock.
- Ask them to trim the excess card stock around the shape of their heart, leaving a small border around the shape.
- Allow kids to use the markers to write or draw a message sharing the good news of Christ on their hearts (for example, write “Jesus Is Good News!”; “God loves me and YOU!”); draw heart shapes; or highlight positive words from the newspaper.
Baptismal Sensory Bottles ADDED 3/27/20 (need clean, empty water bottles of any size with lids, vegetable oil, water, blue food coloring (to represent the waters of baptism), decorative items such as small shells, sand, and sequins (optional), and seltzer tablets (optional)
- Give each child a water bottle with a lid.
- Assist them with filling their bottles ⅔ full with vegetable oil.
- Then have kid fill the rest of their bottles with water, leaving a little space at the top.
- Invite them to put two to three drops of blue food coloring into their bottle.
- They may then put in decorations as available.
- For an added bit of fun, tell kids they can put small pieces of seltzer tablets into their bottle and watch the colored water act like a lava lamp.
- Talk about baptism and today’s Bible story about Paul, Timothy, Lydia, and all the people who were being baptized and the ways the message of God’s love in Jesus was spreading.