Here are some fun craft ideas to keep kids busy over the long weekend.
Mother’s Day is almost here and we have a fun DIY Mother’s Day coupon book for kids to create. You can print the coupons and instructions and mail them to kids in your ministry to complete or email the files to an adult in the household.
Try these fun and easy Easter activities at home with your kids this Easter weekend.
It may alarm you or it could cause you to burst out laughing, but listening to kids in your ministry will always educate you. What do the kids you teach care about most? What are they excited to share with you each week? For the kids you lead it may be their sports teams, a new app on their phones, their friends, or the latest video on YouTube™. Kids reveal what they love most through what they talk about regularly.
And so do you.
We all set our affections and our attention—our worship—on something or someone. We may have a thousand things we like or care about, but the passion of our hearts is to love God and worship Him. When our interests supercede our worship of God and our love for others, we have a problem. However, when we cultivate genuine worship in our hearts and teach our students that the overwhelming passion within us is to love and obey God, they will see it.
Worship is our response to what we love most. It is recognizing and responding to God as worthy, deserving of all honor and praise. (Psalm 29:2) True worship overflows from a heart that is satisfied in God and wants to glorify Him, and it affects every part of our lives.
Wouldn’t it be exciting if what captured your kids’ hearts, minds, and attention spans was true worship of God? It can!
When the kids you lead trust in Jesus for salvation, He makes them new and begins to mold or shape their lives more into the image of Jesus. As they grow in their faith, the truth of God’s Word shapes their minds and hearts and changes their actions to look more like Jesus.
This month as you celebrate Valentine’s Day, help your kids remember that their hearts can praise God no matter where they are—on their way to school, riding a bike, or even posting on social media. Anytime we set our minds and hearts on God and choose to value Him above all else, we worship Him.
For deeper Bible study resources from LifeWay Kids on worship, check out the latest volume of the preteen series Forged: Faith Refined at lifeway.com/forged.
Consider using this free craft with the kids you teach this Valentine’s Day. As you do, discuss these questions about worship:
● What words come to mind when you hear the word worship?
● What do you know about God that makes you want to worship Him?
● How should knowing who God is lead you to value Him most?
● What do you think it looks like to love God with all of our hearts?
● How does knowing and loving God fuel our worship of Him?
You will need:
Small paper plates
Single hole punch
Guide kids to fold a paper plate in half and cut out a heart shape from the middle of the paper plate, making a template. Next, instruct them to open the heart template and place it on top of a second plate. Explain that they will trace the heart template onto the center of the second plate with a pencil. Then, they will cut out a heart shape in the center.
Use a single hole punch to punch holes around the entire perimeter of the heart shape.
Select various colors of yarn and guide kids to tape the ends so they don’t fray. Lead kids to thread the yarn through different holes of the heart and tape the yarn in place on the back of the paper plate. Continue threading the yarn around different holes choosing a variety of colors until each hole has been used. Encourage kids to place their craft in their rooms. When they see it, they can stop and remember that God wants their whole hearts to worship Him.
Kayla Stevens is the Content Editor for LifeWay Kids Discipleship. She is a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and William Carey University. Kayla lives in Nashville, Tennessee and has served in Kids ministry for over 10 years.
Depending on where you live, the winter months can be brutal, with temperatures so low that taking the kids outside isn’t an option unless absolutely necessary. Even if you live near an indoor amusement park or an indoor swimming pool, those can get crowded during the winter months—which is also the height of flu season!—and the entry fees and/or costs to play can add up.
On days when you’re all stuck at home, what can you do to keep the kids—and yourself—from getting cabin-fever? While letting your children watch TV or play video games for a reasonable amount of time is fun for them and gives you some time to yourself, plopping your kids in front of screens all day isn’t good for them, can trigger waves of guilt in you, and does nothing to promote your family’s bond.
The benefits of family bonding are well-established and far-reaching. Making time to communicate positively with your children can boost their self-esteem and lower the incidences of childhood depression and anxiety. Moreover, making time to establish a close bond with your children can improve their school performance, problem-solving skills, and relationships with teachers and peers.
There are many ways to spend quality time at home with our children that include bond-building communication and fun, and exclude reliance on screen time. Here are 5 fun (and cheap!) activities to do at home with your kids when it’s too cold to go outside.
At the end of the games, be sure to hand out prizes to each child whether the prizes be homemade medals or, if you can plan ahead, inexpensive pre-ordered gold medals.
- Set up an indoor campground. Bring the sleeping bags and tents up from the basement or down from the attic and turn your family room into an indoor campground. No sleeping bags or tents? No problem. Create a campground by arranging chairs in rows of two in the family room, draping a bedsheet over the chairs to create the tent, and piling pillows and blankets underneath to create a sleep area.
You can make your indoor campground as elaborate as you’d like with items you already have in your home. String Christmas lights across the top of the tent to create a starry night scene. Enjoy the glow of a campground “fire” made with paper towel tubes, tissue paper, and LED candles. Set up lawn chairs outside the tent and serve hot dogs, chips, and trail mix; play cards and board games; or do an easy craft like making beaded necklaces or braided bracelets.
Add to the camping aura by having the kids help you make indoor s’mores in the microwave, oven, skillet, or, for a more “outdoorsy” experience, over a well-ventilated sterno flame.
- Host indoor Olympic games. If you look in toy boxes and closets, you’ll probably find that you have enough games and activities at home to arrange back-to-back and create a challenging obstacle course for your kids to compete in, tantamount to a kiddie indoor Olympic course!
You can kick off the indoor “Olympic games” with an opening ceremony in which each child gets to parade onto the course to a theme song of his or her choosing. Depending on your child’s age, he or she may want to grab a favorite teddy bear to serve as his or her Olympic mascot. At the close of the opening ceremonies, get your stopwatch and scorecard ready and time your little Olympians as they compete in consecutive games of skill and physical fitness such as: a ring or beanbag toss, a mini golf course competition (a broom, a Ping Pong® ball, and a plastic cup can be used in place of a golf club, golf ball, and hole), or a ball throwing competition into boxes of decreasing sizes, with a point given per successful shot for each of these activities:
- a sack race or a boiled egg and spoon race with a demarcated finish line and points given to the first person over the finish line;
- a hula hoop competition with a point given for each second the competitors can hold up their hula hoop
- a pyramid cup-stacking race with points given to the first person to successfully stack his or her cups into a stable pyramid;
- a physical endurance competition where points are given for the number of jumping jacks, push-ups, and sit-ups the child can do in three 30-second intervals; and
- a mad dash crabwalk to the final finish line of the indoor Olympic games.
- Send the kids off on a scavenger hunt. Staying indoors can be a blast when the kids are set off on a scavenger hunt to seek and collect common household items. The scavenger hunt can be subject to a time-limit where each child competes alone or are organized by teams to see which team collects the most items first. Print out a free indoor scavenger hunt checklist listing 40 everyday household items for seekers to find here.
- Throw a costume party. Let your kids raid Mom and Dad’s room for hats, scarves, and costume jewelry to put on a costume party. Add snacks and a tea set to make it a tea party-themed costume party. For a quick and easy costume, take out several rolls of toilet paper and wrap your kids up like mummies (without covering the nose and mouth area). For a fun competition with several family members, split the group up into teams where one person volunteers to be the mummy while the other does the wrapping. The team that can wrap up their mummy the fastest and the neatest wins.
- Hold an art show. Grab smocks for your kids and spread out watercolors and brushes, crayons, markers, and colored pencils on a table along with poster board and construction paper. Provide glue sticks and safety scissors to allow for added artistic touches. Once your little artists have created their masterpieces, hang up the artwork and host an art show complete with glasses of apple juice “champagne” and hor d’oeuvres.
Make spending a cold day at home fun and educational for you and your child with these activities and remember that carving out quality time for your child is important at any time of year, in any weather!
Dolores Smyth writes about parenting and faith. A perfect day for her includes running, reading, and spending time with her husband and three kids. Follow her on Twitter @LolaWordSmyth.This article appears in the January 2020 issue of ParentLife. For more information or to order, visit www.lifeway.com/parentlife.
Sunday, January 19 is Sanctity of Life Sunday. As believers we celebrate that God made us and He made us in His image. Before we were born, God had a plan for us. Help kids celebrate the value of life through this art activity.
green, yellow, and purple paint
white construction paper
paintbrushes (large and small)
*Option: You can substitute a large single-color stamp pad and a green marker for the paint.
Read Psalm 139:13-14. Point out that God has made each child remarkably and wondrously.
As you help each kid create their handprint flowers, remind them of these special Bible truths:
God made me, so I am special.
God loves me.
God will always love me.
God has plans for me.
Give each kid a piece of white construction paper. Help kids print I am remarkably and wondrously made on the bottom of their papers.
Pour some yellow or purple paint onto a plate and after it spreads out, allow a kid to place their hand palm down in the paint. Guide her to stamp a handprint in the middle of the construction paper. Use a baby wipe to clean off the hand and repeat the process with the other hand.
Allow kids to use a small paintbrush and green paint to add stems to their handprint flowers.
Happy thanksgiving from everyone at the CentriKid office!
I don’t know about you, but for me it can be pretty easy to get caught up in all the family gatherings, home cooked foods, and cute fall scented candles that make you think I’ve been baking cinnamon rolls all morning. All of those are so fun and seasonal, and things that I am so grateful for, but this year we want to focus on being more intentional with our thanksgiving and I hope you will all join us!
Every year the CentriKid office team makes Thankful Turkeys where we list all of the people and places that we are thankful for on the tail of a turkey! We are so thankful for things like camp ministry, a job that allows us to serve the Church, ministry leaders who take the time to serve the Lord every day, and overall we are thankful for the Gospel!
Here are some ways to step up our Thankful Turkey game:
-Make Thankful Turkeys together with friends or family. Use this time to talk about the things you are grateful for and share ideas of how you can continue to remain grateful for the things the Lord has given you.
-If you wrote down a person or people that you are thankful for, take a few minutes to write them as small note and let them know that you are thankful for them!
-Make this a habit! Every month, write down all of the people/places/things you are thankful for. Maybe for christmas, you can make a thankful Christmas Tree … who knows?!
-Pray. Take time to thank the Lord for giving you all of these things. 1 Timothy 4:4 says that everything created by God is good … so let’s bring it all back to Him and give Him thanks!
Make sure to post a picture of your Thankful Turkeys on social media and tag us @Centrikid and use the tag #CKThanks. We can’t wait to see all of the things that you are thankful for … and we might even repost some turkeys! As always, thank you for taking the time with us to reflect on what we are Grateful for this holiday season!
Click below to download these fun Scripture reminders for your desk!
All parents love Christmas tree ornaments made by their children. My wife and I still have treasured kid-made ornaments that are over 40 years old. And, we continue to place them on our Christmas tree each year!
Two of our favorites:
Wooden Drapery Ring Ornament:
- Wooden Drapery Ring
- Acrylic Paint
- Photo of your child (possibly posed in front of a stable scene)
- Felt scrap
- Black permanent marker
- Lay drapery ring on top of kid’s photo and then on the scrap of felt and trace the ring.
- Cut out the traced circle on the photo and on the felt.
- Paint the drapery ring.
- Glue the ring onto front of the photo with the metal circle of drapery ring on top.
- Trace, cut out, and glue felt circle onto the back of the photo.
- Decorate ring with glitter/sequins.
- Tie a loop of ribbon onto the metal ring for placing the ornament onto your Christmas tree.
- Print the child’s name and date on back of the ornament with a black permanent marker.
- Enjoy for years!
Jesus and the Star Ornament
- Yellow star cut from poster board
- Gold/metallic chenille stem
- Small amount of hay
- Glue and tape
- Small, oval shape from white paper
- Small circle shape from pink or tan paper
- Silver sequins
- Black permanent marker
- Position the star with one of the points at the top.
- In the two lowest star points glue a small amount of hay.
- Glue the white oval onto the top of the hay for baby Jesus’ body.
- Glue the pink or tan circle onto one end of the oval for baby Jesus’ head.
- Encourage the child to draw a face on the baby Jesus with the black marker.
- Make a loop with the chenille stem and tape it onto the top/back of the star.
- Print the child’s name and the date on the back of the ornament.
- Enjoy for years!
Jerry Vogel is an Editorial Ministry Specialist in LifeWay Kids. He is a graduate of Dallas Baptist University and has served over 40 years in Kids Ministry at the local church level as well as at LifeWay. Jerry currently teaches four-year-olds at his church.