Monday, March 18, 2019

Children's Sunday School Games and Activities

Children's Sunday School Games and Activities!!! by [Wilson, Rev. Steve]
Kindle $4.99, Print $7.99

The following games, crafts, and other activities are ordered by theme. Activities that don't fit a particular theme but are useful for telling a specific Biblical story are listed at the end.

Bible

Devotion Diaries

Let children use construction paper, hole punches, ribbon, and craft supplies to make their own Devotion Diaries. Students will tie construction paper into a booklet with ribbon and then decorate the covers with markers, stickers, or whatever else you have available. Encourage students to take their booklets home and record Bible verses, prayers, and important things they learn about God in them. 


My Spiritual Health Plan

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils. Have them write the name of each day of the week along with a description or picture of what they plan to do each day to get their spiritual checkup. Ideas could be praying, reading their Bible, going to church or a midweek children’s ministry, talking to their parents, etc.

Remind students that it’s important for us to get a spiritual checkup every day so that our spirits can stay clean and happy.



Musical Chair Share

Play Musical Chairs. Remove one chair. When the music stops, the person without a chair must say one true thing about themselves. Remove no more chairs. No one leaves the game. Play until interest fades. When the game is over, explain that the Bible is like the game students just played. They told true things about themselves in the game, and the Bible is the place where God tells us true things about Himself.



Sword Drill

Give each student a Bible. Then, call out the name of one of the books of the Bible. The student who finds that book first wins. To make it a little more difficult, you can call out the chapter and verse of a book or the name of a Biblical person or event.
Remind students how important it is to read and study the Bible on their own so that they can know it well.



Christian Living

Acting Out Right Thinking

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which a non-Christian is thinking about something the wrong way and a Christian is thinking about that same thing the right way.



Birds and Flowers

In this version of Freeze Tag, you’ll divide the students into two teams. The team that is chasing the other is the Birds. They have to flap their arms and make bird noises as they’re running. The team being chased is the Worms. When they get tagged, they have to stay still like Flowers.

The Worms can tag the Flowers to unfreeze them, or every minute or so, the leader can call out “Unfreeze!” and the Flowers turn back into running Worms.

The round is over when the Birds tag all the Worms.

Remind students that God gives the birds food, but they have to work for it.



Catch It!

Divide students into two teams for a game of dodgeball. You can use soft balls or paper wads. One team can only play defense and the other can only play offense.

Team A throws the balls to get Team B out. Team B can only catch the balls to get Team A out. After Team B catches a ball, they roll it back to Team A.

See which team wins. Then, switch roles.

Afterward, explain that the team who was only defending was being “meek” because they didn’t try to throw balls at the other team.



Good vs. Best

For this game show type game, you’ll call on volunteers to come up and answer a question about the Bible (choose questions you think kids will know). If they get the answer right, give them a cookie or other small prize. Then, tell them that they can take their one cookie or prize and sit down or they can try to answer another question. If they get the second question right, they’ll get a second cookie or an even better prize. If they get it wrong, they lose their cookie or prize they earned from answering the first question.
When everyone who wants to has had a chance to play, ask, Was it a difficult choice deciding if you were going to try to answer the second question? Why or why not?
Sometimes, we need to make difficult decisions, and we have to think about what the best choice is.


Miracles

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw two pictures. The first can be of God or Jesus performing any miracle: a scene from the Bible, a modern healing, etc. The second should be of God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit changing them into a believer or a more mature believer.



Think about What You Say

To help students think about what they say before they say it, choose a random object and tell students you want them to tell you something about it using certain a certain criterion. Students have 10 seconds to come up with a statement that meets the criterion. They cannot use the same statement someone else made.

If they can’t come up with a unique description that meets the criterion within the time limit, they’re out.

The criterion can be such things as the first word must start with a certain letter, or the third word must start with a certain letter, or you can only use a certain number of words in your description, or you must describe the object in a funny voice, etc.

Play a couple of rounds to show kids how to play. Then, let each student name an object and a criterion.

Remind students that when you think about what you should say or do, we’re giving Jesus the good fruit that He wants from us.



Up and Down

Give the students blankets, sheets, or beach towels to hold between them. You can break the students into teams or have them complete the following challenges together.

1. Bounce an object 5, 10, and 20 times without dropping it.

2. See how high they can bounce an object.

3. Bounce more than one object for 30 seconds without dropping any of them.

4. Bounce an object while spinning their blanket, sheet, or towel. (Everyone in the circle moves one step between bounces.)

5. Bounce and object while hopping. (Everyone takes one hop between bounces.)

You can add more complicated challenges if your group is doing well. As you finish, point out that we all have ups and downs in life. Sometimes, things are going well for us, and, sometimes, they’re not.



Walking with God

Have students pair up side by side and put one of each of their legs in a trash bag or tie them together to set up for a three-legged race. Mark a start and finish line. If kids fall down, make them start over.

Round 1. Cooperation. The Bible says we can walk with God. You can imagine two friends taking a walk and talking together side by side. So, we’re going to practice walking with someone else. The team who walks together to the finish line best wins. That means that you’ll need to work together and walk slowly this time.

Round 2. Speed. But sometimes, things in life are happening very quickly, and we still need to be able to walk with God when things get busy. This time, the first team to get to the finish line first wins. But, remember, if you fall down, you have to start back at the beginning.

Round 3. Hopping. And sometimes, life is crazy, but God is always right there with us. So, this time, you’re going to walk with God by jumping together to the finish line.

Round 4. Crab Walking. And sometimes, life is really hard. Things happen, and we get sad, but God is still with us through those hard times. So, this time, I want you to walk like a crab with your partner to the finish line.




Church

Remembering

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw two pictures. The first picture can be their favorite memory of something that was fun at church. The second should be their favorite memory of something serious happening at church. Have students share explain their drawings.


Creation

Adam’s Zoo

Pick one student to be the first guesser. Have them leave the room. Whisper to the other students what animal they all should pretend to be. Call the guesser back in to figure out what animal everyone is pretending to be.



Boy/Girl Tag

Split students up into two teams with boys on team and girls on the other. The boys’ team is Team Boaz, and the girls’ team is Team Ruth. For the first round, the girls chase the boys. For the second round, the boys chase the girls. Time each round and declare the winner to be the team that tags all their opponents the fastest. Play a few times to give each team a couple of chances to speed up their time.


Creation Collage

Have students work together on a large piece of roll paper or poster board, drawing a collage of all their favorite things that God has made.



Drawing Man 

Give each student a piece of paper and some crayons and instruct them to draw a person as best as they can.
When finished, allow students to show their drawings to the class and compliment them on their work.
Ask, How did you know how to draw a person? (Suggest that we know how to draw people because we are people and because we’ve seen lots of people.)
Well, we were drawing people, but God made real people. Does anyone remember who the first two people were that God made? (Adam and Eve.)


Death and Resurrection

Acting Out Death

Divide students into groups of two or three. Give them a few minutes to think of their skit. Then, have each group act out what they think happens when someone dies.



Don’t Let it Fall!

Gather students in a circle. As you toss a balloon up into the air in the middle of the circle, call one of the student’s names. That student must run to hit the balloon back into the air before it touches the ground. The student next to them then runs to hit the balloon. The round continues until the balloon hits the floor.

Play as many rounds as you like. The last time the balloon drops (or if it ever pops), announce, “I’m sorry, kids. The balloon has dropped for the last time and now, it’s dead. Let’s have a funeral for our dear balloon.”

Gather the balloon and place it in the box. Say a few words over it and invite others to do the same.

Part 2 – Play the intro game again, taking the balloon back out of the box or blowing up a new one. Explain that even though your balloon was dead, it came back to life just like Jesus will bring all of us back to life when He comes again.



Get Up!

(This game can apply to healing or resurrection.)
Have students lie down on the floor. Sitting is fine if you don’t have enough room for everyone to lie down. When you yell, “Get up!” everyone should get to their feet and jump into the air as quickly as they can. The first person to jump gets to be the next caller. Play as long as time allows. Be sure to give everyone a chance to be the caller, even if you have to ask someone who’s already done it to give up their turn.


Jesus’ Return

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of what they think it will be like when Jesus comes back to Earth. Remind them that He will change us so that we won’t die or get sick or be sad or do anything wrong. Everyone and all the animals will be at peace.
When they’re finished with their drawings, have them explain them to the class.


Letters to Heaven

Give students writing and drawing supplies and ask them to write a letter or draw a picture for someone who has died. It can be about how they’re excited to see that person again one day.

If any of your students haven’t lost someone, they can write to Jesus about how they’re excited to see Him.



Looking Forward

Remind students that when Jesus comes back, He will bring everyone who believed in Him to back to life to live with Him forever. Then, give them drawing supplies and have them draw them a picture with someone who has died but whom Jesus will bring back to life. It could be a relative or someone famous they’d like to meet.



Re-Making

Give each student some clay or Play-Doh and tell them to make whatever they want. When they’re finished, have them show their creations. Then, tell everyone to roll their creations into a ball and start over. Tell them to try to make the exact same thing over again.
When they’re finished re-creating their creations, ask, Was it easy or difficult to make the exact same thing over again?
Was your first creation better or was your second creation better?
If something that God made gets destroyed, He can always remake it to be the exact same. He can even make the second one better if He wants to. 


Resurrection Race

Divide students into pairs. Have each pair line up along one line. Place cones a good distance from the line, directly in front of the pairs.
Give each pair two rolls of toilet paper. On, “Go!” the first person from each pair will wrap their partner in toilet paper, using the whole roll. The wrapped person will then break free of the toilet paper and run around the cone and back toward their partner. They will then wrap their partner, and the second person will do the same thing. The first pair to have both people wrapped and run around the cone wins.
Explain to students that this is what will happen to us. Our bodies will be dead, but then when Jesus comes back, He will bring our bodies back to life, just like God brought Jesus’ body back to life.


Resurrection Tag!

Divide students into two teams and play a game of freeze tag. When students get tagged, they freeze in place. They are Dead. Every few seconds, the leader runs through the playing field, pretending to be Jesus. When Jesus runs through, the Dead are unfrozen.

Perform this action a few times and then, switch which team is chasing the other.



Resurrection Tag! (Version 2)

Pick one student to be It. That student is Death. Pick another student to be Jesus. When Death tags someone, they fall down and lie on the ground like they’re dead. Jesus can then come to tag them, and they can get back up. If Death tags Jesus, Jesus must count to three (because Jesus was dead for three days), but can then get up again. If Jesus tags Death, the round is over. Play until everyone has had a chance to be both Death and Jesus or as long as time permits.

Remind students that Jesus will come back one day and will raise everyone who believes in Him back to life.


What Will It Be Like?

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of themselves going to Heaven. When they’re finished, have them share their pictures and ask them what they think Heaven will be like.



Discovery

Clue Hunt

Prepare a clue hunt around the church or your meeting area. The clues can be strips of paper hidden in a room. The clue on each strip of paper gives the students a hint as to where to find the next strip of paper.


Empowerment

Catch the Vision

Have students draw a picture of God helping them do something difficult.



Challenge!

Choose one thing that you’re good at and that you have a high chance of beating the kids at. It could be running a race or finding random books in the Bible or any other short activity you can think of. Show kids a snack or prize and tell them that you’ll give it to them if they can defeat you in your challenge. You’ll let them challenge you one by one, and if any of them wins, the group gets the snack or prize.

When one of them wins or once they’ve all tried, explain that today’s story is about someone answering a challenge. Then, give them the snack or prize.



Power Up Freeze Tag

Divide the students into two teams. One team is It and tries to tag the members of the other team. When a student is tagged, they freeze in place. Every minute or so, a designated Power Up leader runs through the play area. If someone on the team being chased tags the Power Up leader, the leader shouts, “Power Up!” and the frozen students are back in the game. The roles also reverse, so that now they are It and the other team is running from them.



Evangelism

Acting Out Inviting

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a conversation in which someone tells another person about Jesus and invites them to come to church or a church event.



Acting Out Reaching Out

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out one way that they can help someone and convince them to believe in Jesus. Name some outreach activities that your church does if students need help thinking of something.



Acting Out Timing Who You Talk To

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone is sharing about Jesus, but the other person doesn’t want to hear it. Ask them to show how each person might react.

Part 2 – Now, have the groups continue their same scene in which the Christian comes back later, and the other person is ready to listen, or in which the non-Christian later approaches the Christian for more information.



Carrying Your Friends to Jesus

Have students get into teams of five. Four friends carry the other person to the other side of the room to the leader, “Jesus.” Once they get there, “Jesus” touches the person being carried and says, “You’re healed.” The whole team then races back to their starting line and carries another team member. The first team to bring all their friends to Jesus, get back to their line, and sit down, wins.

Tell students, Remember, the paralyzed man needed to have someone else bring Him to Jesus. He needed to have his friends bring him. And we can help bring our friends to Jesus too. We can tell our friends about Jesus and invite them to come with you to church. Inviting a friend to church is just like the paralyzed man’s friends carrying him to Jesus.



Disciple Tag

Choose one student to be It. When they tag someone, that person links hands with them and joins their team. They continue adding people to their team, linking hands with each one until all but one student is part of their chain. That remaining student becomes It for the next round.
Play two or three rounds and then, explain that when we tell people about Jesus, we want them to believe in Jesus too. If they do, they become a Christian and join our team. Then, they help us tell more people about Jesus.


Magnet Fishing

Before class, make a fishing pole out of dowel rods or cardboard tubing. Glue a piece of string to the end of the pole. Tie a paper clip to the other end of the string. Cut out some paper fish and glue magnets to the mouth of each of them.

As class starts, have students decorate the fish with crayons, colored pencils, or markers. Spread the fish out on the floor or in a kiddie pool and let students take turns using the pole to catch the fish magnetically.



Mixing in the Yeast

Students stand in a tight circle with one student in the middle. The student in the middle is the Yeast. The students forming the circle are the Dough.
The student in the middle crosses their arms and spins, allowing the rest of the students to help push them along so that the Yeast makes it all the way around the circle.
Ensure that the circle is tight enough that the person in the middle can’t fall down. Divide your students into two or more groups if you need to in order to make each circle tighter.
Time how long it takes for the Yeast to go all the way around. Then, time the next student as they pretend to be the Yeast. Encourage the students to try to beat their best time.
Once everyone has had a turn being the Yeast, explain that like yeast mixing up in a batch of dough, we have to go to different people and tell them about Jesus to give them a chance to believe in Him.


Pass it On

Have students sit in a line or a circle, holding hands with the person next to them.

Have them all close their eyes. The leader should be on the end with their own eyes open. The leader will squeeze the hand of the person next to them. That person will open their eyes and then squeeze the hand of the third person.

So, when a person feels their hand being squeezed, they should open their eyes and then, pass the squeeze on. The goal of the game is for everyone to open their eyes, going down the line or around the circle, as fast as possible. Play a couple of times to get your speed up. Feel free to rotate who starts the line or circle.

Tell students, When we believe in Jesus, it’s like our eyes are being opened, and we can see the truth. And if we believe in Jesus and can see the truth, then it’s our job to tell other people about Jesus so that they can believe in Jesus and see the truth too, just like how we passed our hand-squeeze down the line today.



Receiving the Invitation

Choose one student to be It. Then, have It turn around and choose one of the other students to be the Hostile.
It then tries to tag all the other students, but if they tag the Hostile, they’re out. It wins when they tag everyone except the Hostile.
Part 2 – Play the intro game again, but call It the Servant. Then, remind students that the servants in the story went out to invite people to the wedding, but some of the people attacked and killed them. We have to invite other people to go to Heaven, too, but some people will be mean to us when we try to invite them.


Salt the Meat!

Divide the students into two teams and set a timer. Tell team A that the meat (Team B) is going bad and that they need to salt it (tag it) before the timer goes off.

When Team A succeeds or when the timer goes off, switch the team’s roles and play again.

Explain that the people of the world are going bad and will go to Hell when they die. That’s why we have to hurry to try to tell them about Jesus.



Scattering Seeds

Divide your students into two teams. Make a line down the center of your play area. Each team must stay on its own side of the line and must lay, sit, or kneel on the ground.
When you’re ready to start, dump a load of ping pong balls or small wads of paper on the center line and start a timer for 3-5 minutes. The teams flick the balls or paper wads across the line into the opposite team’s area.
When the time is up, all students stop and count how many balls or paper wads are on their side of the line. The team with the fewest balls or paper wads wins that round.
Explain that the balls or paper wads are the seeds of our belief in Jesus that we want to share with other people, so we want to make sure we’re spreading as many seeds away from us as we can.
Play as long as time allows.


The Seed and the Yeast

Just like in Disciple Tag, you’ll choose one student to be It. They start as the Seed. When they tag someone, that person links hands with them and joins their team, forming part of the Tree. They continue adding people to their team, linking hands with each one until all but one student is part of their chain. That remaining student becomes the Yeast for the next round.
The next round is the same, but instead of forming a Tree, the Yeast starts and forms a whole loaf of Bread by joining hands those they tag.
Play a couple of rounds using each metaphor and then, explain that the news about God started small, but when we tell people about Jesus, we hope that the number of people following God will grow, just like a little seed grows into a large tree or a small amount of yeast makes a whole batch of dough rise and become a loaf of bread.


Telephone

Have students sit in a line or in a circle. You’ll whisper a message to the first student, and they’ll pass it on. See how close the message is to what you said when it gets to the end. The goal is to have the message stay as close to the original all the way through.

Part 2 – Play the intro game again, but this time, tell students that you’re pretending to be the angels and shepherds. Have students spread out around the room. The first student you tell your message to will be the Angel. They’ll go tell a Shepherd. The Shepherd will then tell the other people. The last person to hear the message will be the Angel for the next round.

Use messages from the Bible story or lines from hymns, such as the following.

“Today, in the town of David, a Savior has been born to you.”
“Glory to God in the highest and peace to men on whom His favor rests.”
“Hark! The herald angels sing, ‘Glory to the newborn King!’”



Who Does God Want You to Talk To?

Pick one student to be It. Put a blindfold on them. Then, silently pick another student to be the Speaker.

Students, including the Speaker, spread out around the room. Then, the Speaker says, “Help me,” as quietly or as loudly as they want while the rest of the students talk and make noise. The student who is It has to guess which student the Speaker is.

When It guesses correctly, the Speaker becomes It, and the teacher chooses a new student to be the Speaker. Play until all of the students have had a chance to fill both roles. At the end, explain that we have to listen closely for God to tell who He wants us to talk to about Jesus.



Faith

Acting Out Faith vs. Worry

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone is worried about something but then puts their faith in God.



Blindfold Challenge

This a classic game to teach kids what it was like for Abraham to trust God even though he didn’t know where God was leading him.

Have the students pair up in a safe area. One of the students will put on a blindfold. The other will give them verbal directions of where to go. When I used this game, I had the children lead each other to another room in the church. You could also take the kids outside to walk a path around your property or set up a course for them to follow in your classroom.

Once they get to the ending location, have them switch. The one giving directions will now take their blindfolded partner to a third location or back to the classroom via a different route.

When the second student reaches their location, remind them that Abraham didn’t know where he was going. He had to trust God to lead him. We have to trust God to lead us in our lives too because we don’t know what will happen in the future.



Faith vs. Fear

Print out or write the words Fear or Faith on a set of index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that say Faith as Fear.
Divide students into two teams, and have the teams line up on separate sides of the room in single file lines. Mix up the cards and give each student a card that says Faith or Fear. Set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. When you say Go! the first two students run toward each and show each other their cards.
If one says Faith and the other says Fear, the student with Faith scores a point for their team. The person with Fear does not score. If both say Faith, both score a point and if both say Fear, neither does. Both return to the back of their lines and trade their cards for a new card.
As soon as they leave the center, the second two players run up and do the same thing. Play continues until the timer runs out. The team with the most points at the end wins.
Note: You could also substitute the word “Doubt” for “Fear” to make a slightly different point.


Finding Faith

Before class, hide strips of paper around the room with the word “Faith” written on them. Then, divide students into two or more teams. When you say, “Go!” the team members search the room to find the slips of paper. Once someone finds a slip of paper, they return to their team’s starting area and wait for the others to find theirs. The first team to have all their members find a slip of paper and make it to their team’s starting area wins.
When the game is finished, remind students that we all need to have faith, and we all need to have our own faith, if we want to go to Heaven.


The Moraboofus

This is a game to help kids see why it’s silly to be afraid of certain things. You’ll give kids a series of tasks that they have to add to one another until it’s impossible to do them all. Tell them that if they don’t complete this task, the Moraboofus will come.

For the task, they add each of these steps onto the next:

First, have children touch their nose.
Then, have them stand on one foot.
Then, have them put both arms straight up.
Then, have them bend over and touch their toes that are on the ground.
If they can do that, have them hop on one foot while bending over and touching their toes.

When none of them can do it, say that the Moraboofus is coming. Wait a few seconds, and say, Oh, I guess it’s not coming. We didn’t have to be afraid of that, after all! We get afraid of a lot of things that don’t ever happen. Some things, like the Moraboofus, don’t even exist, so we shouldn’t be afraid of them!



Trust Fall

Have students pair up. One student stands behind the other. The student in front closes their eyes and falls back, trusting the one behind them to catch them. Then the partners switch roles.
Let each pair try the activity a couple of times, getting more and more comfortable. Then, ask, Was it difficult to have faith that your partner would catch you? That’s how much faith God wants us to have in Him.



Family

Family Appreciation

Hang a wide section of craft paper or multiple poster boards on your wall or laid out on tables. Give students drawing supplies and have them draw their family. Above or below each of their family members, have them write one or more words describing the good qualities of that family member.



Following God

Disciple Shirts

Students step in fabric paint and then walk across a t-shirt. Afterward, have them write, “Followin’ Jesus” on the t-shirt.



Drawing Your Life’s Roadmap

Have students draw a road map for the events in their lives. Some locations could include their house, their school, their friends’ houses, their church, a relative’s house, or the home of a parent they don’t normally live with. Encourage the students to add any location that they visit often or that is meaningful to them.
Then, on their map, have them draw themselves in a car but with an empty driver’s seat. Explain that God is in the driver’s seat and that He is with us wherever we go.


Map Quest

Give each student or pair of students a road map. Help them find your city or state and then point out a location close by. Ask, If I asked you how to get from where we are to this other location, what would you tell me? Draw the way using the roads on your maps.

(Do the exercise a couple of more times, choosing different locations. Then, take the maps away.) Now, without looking, if I asked you how to get from here to (another location), what would you tell me?

It's a little harder to tell directions if you don't have the map, isn't it?

But when you're riding in a car, you don't need to know how to get somewhere, do you? When you're riding in a car, who knows how to get where you're going?

Your parents or grandparents or someone else a little older than you know where to go. Sometimes, a GPS helps them know where to go.



Forgiving Others

Acting Out Being a Peacemaker

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone does something wrong to another person, but the person they wronged approaches them to make peace again.



Acting Out Forgiveness vs. Revenge

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone does something wrong to another person, but the person they wronged forgives them instead of trying to get back at them or get them in trouble.



Acting Out Treating Others Well

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone can be nice to a person who’s been mean to them.



Apology Letter

Have the students think of one person they’ve done something wrong to. Ask them to write a letter apologizing for what they did. The letter could be to a parent, sibling, or other family member or to a friend. Direct them to include what they did wrong. At the end, they should ask the person to forgive them. Remind them that it makes God happy when we apologize for the wrong things we do and ask other people to forgive us. When we do wrong things, we should also apologize to God.



Forgiveness vs. Judgment

Print out or write the words Forgiveness or Judgment on a set of index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that say Forgiveness as Judgment.

Divide students into two teams, and have the teams line up on separate sides of the room in single file lines. Mix up the cards and give each student a card that says Forgiveness or Judgment. Set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. When you say, “Go!” the first two students run toward each and show each other their cards.

If one says Forgiveness and the other says Judgment, the student with Forgiveness scores a point for their team. The person with Judgment does not score. If both say Forgiveness, both score a point, and if both say Judgment, neither does. Both return to the back of their lines and trade their cards for a new card.

As soon as they leave the center, the second two players run up and do the same thing. Play continues until the timer runs out. The team with the most points at the end wins.



Praying for Our Enemies

Lead students in praying for one person they consider an enemy. Guide them in moving through these steps in their silent prayer time:

1. Tell Jesus what the person did that made you not like them.

2. Ask Jesus to help you forgive that person.

3. Pray for that person.

4. Ask Jesus to help you think of something nice you can do for that person.



To Forgive or Not to Forgive

Print out or write the words Forgive or Don’t Forgive on a set of index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that say Forgive as Don’t Forgive.

Divide students into two teams, and have the teams line up on separate sides of the room in single file lines. Mix up the cards and give each student a card that says Forgive or Don’t Forgive. Set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. When you say, “Go!” the first two students run toward each and show each other their cards.

If one says Forgive and the other says Don’t Forgive, the student with Forgive scores a point for their team. The person with Don’t Forgive does not score. If both say Forgive, both score a point and if both say Don’t Forgive, neither does. Both return to the back of their lines and trade their cards for a new card.

As soon as they leave the center, the second two players run up and do the same thing. Play continues until the timer runs out. The team with the most points at the end wins.



Genuine Faith

Drawing Out the Hypocrite

Give students some drawing supplies and ask them to draw a picture or write a short story about someone who says they’re a Christian, but they’re doing something wrong.

When they’re finished, asked students to share what they drew or wrote.

Ask, do Christians always do the right things? (Not always. Christians can still make mistakes and sin sometimes.)

If someone says they believe in Jesus, but they never say they’re sorry for the wrong things they do and they never try to stop sinning, do you think that person can really believe in Jesus? (They probably understand about Jesus, but they don’t really believe in Him yet.)



Hearing the Hypocrite

Students sit or stand in a circle with one student in the middle. Choose another student to be the Hypocrite. The person in the middle closes their eyes or wears a blindfold and tells the group to make a noise like an animal of their choice. The Hypocrite, however, makes a different noise. The person in the middle has to guess who the Hypocrite is.

The Hypocrite then takes the middle spot, and the person who was guessing silently chooses the next Hypocrite.

Play until everyone has had a chance to be in the middle or as long as time permits.

Afterward, explain that the Hypocrite was trying to blend in with the rest of the group, but we could still tell there was something different about them. When real hypocrites say they’re Christians, they’re misusing God’s name. And people can tell when they’re not really Christians by how they act or talk.



The Proof is in the Action

Give students drawing supplies and say something like, Jesus showed that He was the Savior and God by what He did. We prove that we’re Jesus’ followers by what we do. Draw a picture of you doing something that proves that You’re one of Jesus’ followers.


Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

Ask students, Have you ever heard the saying, “That person is like a wolf in sheep’s clothing”?

If a wolf put on a sheep costume, would that make him a sheep? (No. He might look like a sheep, but he would still be a wolf.)

What if the wolf said he was a sheep? Then, would he be a sheep? (No. He would be lying. He would still be a wolf even if he said he was a sheep.)

Have students sit in a circle. Choose one student to stand in the middle and close their eyes. The person in the middle spins in a circle with their eyes closed and then, points at someone in the circle, still with their eyes closed.

The person they pointed at must disguise their voice to sound like anyone else in the circle, saying, “I’m _.” If the person in the middle guesses who the person really is, they get a point. If the person in the middle guesses wrong, the person they pointed to gets a point and becomes the next person in the middle.

Play until everyone has had a chance to be in the middle.



Giving and Money

2x Hot Potato

Have students stand in a circle. Give the potato to one child and have that student pass it to their right, around the circle, as fast as they can while you time them for 30 seconds.

The child holding the potato after 30 seconds is caught with it. If they do not have a potato, they keep the one they’re holding. Give them a second potato to begin passing.

If they already have a potato, they’re out because they can’t hold more than one potato once.

Play a few times and then, explain that God doesn’t want to have too much of something if other people don’t have any of it.



Begging for Change

As you’re starting class, have someone dressed as a poor person come into your class and ask for money. It’s best to disguise this person as much as possible so that kids don’t recognize them. They can also carry a sign that says they’re poor and hungry.

Have a jar of pennies or some other money on hand and tell students that you were going to use the pennies to buy snacks for the class but that they can give the person the money if they want to.

If students opt to give the poor person the money, give it to them and let them leave. If students want to keep the money for snacks, tell the poor person that you don’t have any money for them and ask them to leave.



Creating Treasures

Give students drawing supplies and say, Remember that Jesus said everything in this world eventually goes away, but the good things we do last forever. Let’s all draw a picture of something that we can do for God or for someone that you know this week.



Donation Notation

Give students drawing supplies and say, Let’s all draw a picture of something that we can give away this week. Remember that God is happy when we give things away to help other people.

When the students are finished drawing, ask for volunteers to share why they thought of giving away what they drew.



Give it Away

Divide students into two teams. Give one team a handful of pennies. Have them keep as much as they think they need, giving a rationale for each cent. Question their decision on what they need to keep their money for and what they don’t. You are trying to get them to see the difference between needs and wants.

Tell them to give away the rest, putting it into an offering plate. The leader takes some of that money, explaining that it’s for the church to pay its bills, and then gives the rest to the other team. Now, ask the second team to keep what they need from what they’ve been given by the first team. Again, they put their extra into the offering.

Then, the leader pulls out more money to give to the first team to reward them for their generosity. The more they gave away during their round, the more they receive as a reward from God. They are also given the offering from team two. This is how offering works and how God rewards us for it.

Play three rounds. At the beginning of each round, the money that the teams kept is “spent” on their necessities and recycles back into the leader’s supply.



Sneaky Giving

Students sit or stand in a wide circle with their eyes closed. Choose one student to stand in the middle of the circle. They are the Giver. Hand them a random object to lay in front of one of the students in the circle. Their goal is to do so quietly so that the person doesn’t hear them.

If the person does hear them, they can reach out and try to tag the Giver. If they succeed in the tagging the Giver, the Giver loses that round. If the Giver succeeds, they win the round.

After the Giver has either laid their object down successfully or been tagged, the students open their eyes. The student with the object in front of them, or who tagged the Giver, becomes the next Giver.



Treasures in Heaven Relay

Divide students into two or more teams. All teams line up one side of the play area. On the other side is a stack of cards with pictures on them. Some of the cards depict Treasures in Heaven. The rest depict Treasures on Earth.

Start a timer for 2-3 minutes, depending on the size of your play area. When you say “Go!” the first student from each team runs to where the game cards are and selects something they think is a Treasure in Heaven. They run back to their team and give the card to their teammates.

If a team-member selects an item that the rest of them think is a Treasure on Earth, they have to run back and get something else.

The game is over when the timer goes off. The team with the most Treasures in Heaven cards wins.

Play again as long as time allows.

Treasures in Heaven card ideas include: a Bible, a church, a cross, praying hands, Baptism, Communion, someone helping another person, friends, family

Treasures on Earth cards include: coins, bills, a house, a person working, a car, video games



What to Do with It?

Divide students into groups of two or three. Tell each group to pretend that you gave them $20. Their job is to come up with the best way to use that money for Jesus. Tell them not to simply say that they would give it to the church. If they do, they have to say what they would want the church to do with that money.
Each group then presents their answer to the class. After each group has given their answer, have the whole class vote on the best idea. Students cannot vote for their own group’s answer.
Do the same thing for $1,000 and then, for $1 million.


Where are Your Treasures?

Students take turns rolling a die, or you can give them all a die and let them roll simultaneously. Each student will roll 10 times, earning or losing points based on the following die rolls.

As students roll, announce the following:

On a 1, they won a lot of money and earn 1 point.

On a 2, they won a brand new car and earn a 1 point.

On a 3, someone stole all their money, and they lose 1 point.

On a 4, their car broke down, and they lose 1 point.

On a 5, they lost something they really liked and lose 1 point.

On a 6, they did something nice for someone else and earn 2 points.



God

gods vs. God

Print out or write the names of various gods and the word “God” on a set of index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that various gods’ names as God.
Divide students into two teams and have the teams line up on separate sides of the room in single file lines. Mix up the cards and give each student a card randomly. Set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. When you say Go! the first student on both teams run toward each and show each other their cards.
If one says the name of a god and the other says God, the student with God scores a point for their team. The person with a god does not score. If both say God, both score a point, and if both say a god, neither does. Both return to the back of their lines and trade their cards for a new card.
As soon as they leave the center, the second two players run up and do the same thing. Play continues until the timer runs out. The team with the most points at the end wins.


Holy Ground

Divide students into two or more teams for a relay race. Dim the lights. Tell students that when you shine your flashlight on them and call their name, they have to stop whatever they’re doing and take off their shoes before they continue. You can even shine your light on kids who are still standing in line for their turn. The first team to have all of their runners complete the race wins.

Afterward, say, I had you take off your shoes just like God told Moses to take off his shoes. Does anyone remember why God told Moses to take off his shoes? (Because God said Moses was standing on holy ground.)

We have to remember how special God is and we need to show Him respect. In those days, they took off their shoes to show respect. Today, we can show respect to God by stopping what we’re doing and listening to God when He wants to talk to us. We can show respect by paying attention in church. We can show respect by listening when someone is praying or reading the Bible or teaching us about God. Those are all ways that we can show God that we understand how special He is.

Play the game again if time allows.


Holy Light

Play a game of Red Light, Green Light with the change of turning the light on and off. Students run from one side of the room to the other when the lights are dimmed. But when you turn the lights on fully, they have to stop and shield their eyes. If they keep running when the light is on, God is too much for them, and they‘re out. The winner is the first one who makes it to the other side of the room.



Manipulating God?

Have the students sit in a circle and throw one of their shoes in the middle of the circle. Choose one student to be It. They pick a shoe and tell the owner to do something to get their shoe back. They can choose a simple task or something silly – anything appropriate for your play area. When the student completes the task, they get their shoe back and then, become It for the next student.

Part 2 – Tell students that you’re going to play the intro game again, but that you’re going to be It the whole time and that you’re not going to tell them what they have to do to get their shoe back. They have to make something up, and then, you’ll decide to give their shoe back or not.

Randomly give some kids’ shoe back and refuse to give others’ back. When you refuse, put the shoe back in the pile and choose another.

When every student has had a chance to get their shoe back, ask, Why did I choose to give some of your shoes back but kept the others?

I was showing you that even though you were doing things, you couldn’t make me give your shoe back. I could decide to give your shoe back or not based on whether I wanted to give it back or not.

In the same way, we can’t make God do something. The Israelites thought they could make God fight for them if they brought the Ark of the Covenant to the battle. But people can’t make God do anything. God chooses what He wants to do. We can pray and ask God to do things, but He doesn’t have to do them. Nothing we do can make God do anything. We can’t control God. God is in control.

Now, I choose to give the rest of you back your shoes.



Thumb Wrestling Tournament

Have students find a partner. When you say, Go!, each pair of students thumb wrestle. The winners of each match pair up with another winner. The losers pair up with another loser. If someone loses twice, they’re out. The winners keep playing until one student wins the tournament.
Play again if time allows. Then, ask, What if God was in a thumb wrestling tournament with the other gods? Who do you think would win? (Explain that God would win because He’s the only God that’s real. The other gods couldn’t even play because they’re not real.)


What’s Under Box #?

Before class, print out pictures of various gods and paste one picture onto each box or paper bag. Leave one box or bag blank but put a snack or other prize inside to share with the group.
Tell students that you’re going to ask for volunteers to come up. You’re going to ask them a question, and if they get the answer right, they’ll be able to choose one of the boxes or bags. Each of the boxes or bags represent a different god. There might be a prize in the box or bag that they choose.
If a student answers correctly, let them choose a box or bag. If they don’t answer correctly, have them sit down and repeat the question for the next volunteer. If the next volunteer doesn’t know the answer, review the information with the class and move onto the next question.
When students open all the boxes or bags and discover that only the blank one had anything in it, explain that the blank one represents the real God. We don’t know what God looks like, so we can’t make a picture of Him. In fact, one of the Ten Commandments is that we should never try to make a picture of God.
But God is the only real God, so He’s the only that can give us anything good. That’s why only His box/bag had a prize in it.



God’s Actions

Delicious from Disgusting

Show students a raw egg. Ask them if anyone would like to eat it. Do the same with some raw flour and then baking soda. When no one wants to try any of your ingredients, say, You’re right. These would all taste pretty bad if we ate them like this. But we can use them to make something really good! They’re all part of the recipe to make cookies. (Give the students a cookie or two as you start the lesson.)



Dodgeball Rule Reversal

You can illustrate a point by playing any familiar game, but then, as one team or student is about to lose, change the rules so that they’re winning. For example, if you’re playing dodgeball and one team is about to lose, announce that they were actually playing a version of the game in which teams score a point for every member of their team that gets hit with a ball. It’s an instant-game changer and shows that God can always turn our situations around. 

Extreme Exercise Race

Have students pair up and complete this race together. All the students will line up by pairs on one side of your play area. Spaced out in a direct line in front of each pair, you’ll place a series of cards. The cards could say things like, “Do 10 Pushups!” “Do 5 Sit-Ups!” “Do 10 Jumping Jacks!” “Hop On One Foot 10 Times!” “Hop On the Other Foot 15 Times!” “Walk Like a Crab for 5 Seconds!” Arrange the cards randomly on the line so that different pairs of students are doing different activities at each location in their line. The first pair to complete all of their activities wins.
After the game, ask the students, Was it hard work doing all those exercises? Does anyone think they’re going to be sore in the morning? Remember, what they say; “No Pain, No Gain!” Sometimes, you have to hurt a little bit for something good to happen, like getting in shape.


How did God Make It?

Divide students into groups of two or three. Give each group an item from your home, from around the church, or from your classroom. Tell each group that they have to come up with the steps God used to make that item. Ask them to be as detailed as possible.

Two common steps, for example, would be that God created the raw materials to make the item and gave humans the intelligence and creativity to use those raw materials to make something new.

Give each group approximately 10 minutes to come up with an answer. Then, have each group share what they think. Discuss the steps as a class and see if you can name any other steps God used to make the item or if you can trace item back to God more directly.



How God Works

Give students drawing supplies and ask them to draw their favorite way that God worked in the Bible. It could be a story about God from the Old Testament. It could be a story about Jesus. It could be a story about how the Holy Spirit helped Jesus’ disciples after He went to Heaven. It simply needs to be one way that God worked.
When the students are finished, have them each explain their drawing. Point out that God works in a lot of different ways.


Looks Can Be Deceiving

(This activity applies to how God sees us and how we see other people.)

Set out a series of decorative bags or boxes on a table. These bags all have dirt in them. Set one plain bag or box in a visible but inconspicuous location elsewhere in your room. This plain bag or box has a snack or prize to share with the group.

Tell students that there’s a snack or prize in one of the boxes. Then, ask for one volunteer at a time to come up and choose one of the bags or boxes. They open it to reveal dirt. One student might spot the plain bag or box. If they do, they can choose to open it instead of the more decorative options.

If no students choose the plain bag or box, tell them that there must be one more option somewhere in the room. The first one to spot it gets to open it.

Then, explain that looks can be deceiving. Just because something looks nice on the outside doesn’t mean that it has something good on the inside. And sometimes, what doesn’t look very special on the outside does have something wonderful inside.

God always judges by what’s on the inside, not what’s on the outside. He judges our hearts, not what we look like.

Part 2 – For the second part of this demonstration, you’ll play an active game. It can be almost anything that kids know the rules for. The trick is that you’ll change one of the normal rules. If you’re playing soccer, for instance, set up a goal as usual but also set up a cone to mark the boundaries of the play area. Without telling students, you’ll decide that a team gets a point whenever they kick the ball “out of bounds,” not when they get a goal.

Let the kids figure out the new rule. Then, explain that it looked like the point of the game was to kick the ball into the goal, but looks can be deceiving. Just because something looks how it should be doesn’t mean that it’s right. God looks past how something looks, and so should we.

Once kids figure out the new rule and you give them the explanation, you can continue playing by the new rule or revert back to normal rules, whichever is easier.



Tilly Miller

Tell students that Tilly Miller likes balloons and balls, but she doesn’t like toys. Ask them why. If they can’t get the reason (and they probably won’t unless they’ve heard this before), keep telling them things that Tilly Miller likes and doesn’t like. For example, she likes fluffy cotton candy and taffy, but she doesn’t like gumballs or candy bars.
The trick is that Tilly Miller likes anything that has double letters and nothing that doesn’t have double letters. To help kids get the answer, you can write out what she likes and doesn’t like.
When one of the students figure out the answer, remind them God doesn’t always help us with everything all at once. Sometimes, He wants to help us with different things at different times.



God’s Forgiveness

God the Potter

Give each student a clump of clay. Let them make whatever they like for a moment. Then, tell them to make a cup. 
When they’ve made a cup, tell them to make a house. 
When they’ve made a house, tell them to make an animal. 
When they’ve made an animal, tell them to make a person. 
Tell students, The Bible tells us that we are like clay. Just like we made different things out of the clay, God can make anything He wants, and He can make us. But just like you had to destroy your things to make something new, God sometimes has to destroy the things He made. 
Part 2 – Have students make one more thing out of their clay. Ask them to make something that shows someone asking God to forgive them or someone whom God has forgiven. Have students tell about their creations once they finish. 


Paired Portrait

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of themselves and the woman who was forgiven in the story together, both being happy that Jesus has forgiven them. Explain that Jesus has forgiven them just as He forgave the woman in the story.



Forgiven Much

In this game show, you’ll divide your students into two teams. The first student from each team comes forward to answer a question. You’ll read the question, and listen for both of their answers. They can each answer one time. 
The first student to get the correct answer incurs no negative points for their team. If one or both of the students answer incorrectly, or if one student answered correctly but not fast enough to answer first, they roll a die. The number on the die represents how many sins the team has against them. Write the number on the board. 
The first student to answer correctly can then roll a die to see how many sins their team is forgiven of. Deduct this number of points from their total on the board. 
If either of the students answered incorrectly, they can also roll a die and deduct that number of sins from their total. 
Play until every student has had a chance to answer and roll. The team with the lowest number of sins on the board wins. 


Forgiveness Tag!

Divide students into two teams. One team chases the other for five minutes. When someone is tagged, they’re out, but only temporarily. They go to the sidelines and count to seven out loud. Then, they re-enter the game. 
If the first team can tag everyone and keep them in the out zone at any time within the five-minute period, they win. If they do win, or when the time runs out, switch which team is chasing the other. 
Remind students that the Israelites went into Exile for 70 years as a punishment for their sin, but that then, God forgave them and brought them back.


Going Home

Print out or write the words “Exile!” and “God Forgives You!” on index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that say “Exile!” as “God Forgives You!” Place three each in a direct line for as many teams as you plan to have. You’ll have three “Exile!” cards and three “God Forgives You!” cards laid out in front of each team, stretching from one side of your play area to the other. Mix them up within each line, but always have a “God Forgives You!” card as the last one in the line. 
Then, divide the kids into teams. Tell them that their goal is to make it to the other side of the room, their Home. When you say, “Go!” the first student on each team races forward and picks up the first card. If it says, “God Forgives You!” they can go on to the next. If it says, “Exile!” their turn is over. They go to the back of their team’s line, and the next student runs out to pick up the next card. 
The team who picks up all their cards and makes it to the Home side of the room first wins. Play again if time allows.


God the King

Crowns for a King

Give students craft foam or construction paper and let them cut out and decorate a crown with markers, stickers, faux jewels, or whatever you like. 
Remind students that Saul was the first king of Israel, but that God is the real King.



God’s Protection

Angels All Around!

Give students paper and crayons or colored pencils. Have students draw themselves in a scary situation. Then, instruct them to add angels to the picture to protect them.

Remind students that God’s invisible angels are always with us to protect us and help us, just like God is always with us.



Angel Attack!

Divide the kids into two teams. One team will spread out in your play area and pretend to be the sleeping Assyrians. With their eyes closed, they’ll listen for the angels (the other team) coming to sneak up on them. The angels will tap the sleeping Assyrians. If they tap an Assyrian, that Assyrian stays quiet and is out when the round is over. The angels get a point for every Assyrian they tag. 
If the Assyrians hear any movement before the angels tap them, they raise the alarm, and the round is over. The two teams switch roles. 
Play three rounds. The team with the most points at the end wins.


Angels’ Protection Dodgeball

Divide your play area in half and divide the students into two teams. Give each team an equal number of soft balls or paper wads to throw. They have to stay on their side of the play area.

The trick to this version is that each team can choose one or two players to be Angels. The Angels run in front of the balls or paper wads to protect their teammates. They can’t get out. Remind students that God sends His invisible angels to protect and help us.

The team who gets all of the opposite team’s regular members out first wins.



Army vs. God

Print out pictures or write the names of various weapons (such as swords, spears, and shields) and the word “God” on a set of index cards. You should have an equal number of cards that have weapons as God.

Divide students into two teams and have the teams line up on separate sides of the room in single file lines. Mix up the cards and give each student a card randomly. Set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. When you say Go! the first student on both teams run toward each and show each other their cards.

If one has a weapon and the other says God, the student with God scores a point for their team. The person with a weapon does not score. If both say God, both score a point, and if both have a weapon, neither does. Both return to the back of their lines and trade their cards for a new card.

As soon as they leave the center, the second two players run up and do the same thing. Play continues until the timer runs out. The team with the most points at the end wins.



Draw It! – Daniel in the Lions’ Den

Have students draw Daniel in the lions’ den. If you have the supplies, you can also have the kids add fur to the lions. Remind students that God protected Daniel from the lions because Daniel loved God and did the right thing.


God’s Provision

Supplying the Need

Tell students what to do to make their snack, but only give them what they need one step at a time. If you had a bowl of fruit salad, for example, you would put the bowl of fruit salad in front of them and tell them to scoop some out for themselves. When they say that they don’t have a spoon to scoop with, give it to them. When they complain that they don’t have bowls, give them some. Next, tell them to put some whipped cream on their fruit salad. When they complain that they don’t have whipped cream, give them the container.

When they have all they need, say, When God asks us to do something, He always gives us everything we need. He might not give us everything right away, but, if we trust Him, He will give us all the help that we need.


Healing

Aeneas Tag

Divide students into two teams. Pick one team to be “It.” When an “It” tags someone, they must lie on the ground like they’re paralyzed, like Aeneas was. Their team members can run up to them, touch them, and say, “Jesus heals you!” and then, they are unfrozen again. 
Play until everyone is frozen or until 5 minutes is up. Then, switch roles for the teams.


Doctor, Doctor!

In this game of Freeze Tag, students will come to you for “healing” to get back in the game.

First, divide students into two teams. One team starts as It, chasing the other. Set a timer for 5 minutes. When a student is tagged, they have to pretend they’re sick or injured and hop on one foot to where you are. You’re the Doctor that can heal them. If they make it to you before they’re tagged again, you can pronounce them Healed and send them back into the game as a normal player. If they get tagged before they make it to you, they’re out.

The round is over when your timer goes off or when the It team tags all the members of the opposite team before they can hop over to you for healing. Have the teams switch roles and play again.

Part 2 – Play the intro game again, but this time, have students pretend that when they are tagged, it’s their spirit or soul that feels bad and that they have to come to Jesus for spiritual healing.



Get Up!

(This game can apply to healing or resurrection.) 
Have students lie down on the floor. Sitting is fine if you don’t have enough room for everyone to lie down. When you yell, “Get up!” everyone should get to their feet and jump into the air as quickly as they can. The first person to jump gets to be the next caller. Play as long as time allows. Be sure to give everyone a chance to be the caller, even if you have to ask someone who’s already done it to give up their turn.


Heal Tag

Pick 2-4 students to be It. When they tag someone that person must freeze and pretend to be the dead girl, the sick woman, the blind man, or the man who couldn’t talk by acting out these characters as best they can. Other players can be “Jesus” and go tag them to unfreeze (heal) them.



Serving Jesus

Before students arrive, hide brightly colored pieces of paper around your room. You’ll need at least 5 pieces per team.

When it’s time to play, divide students into two or more teams. Each team will need a team captain. That person will be “Jesus.” The rest of their team spreads out around the room, standing still and pretending to be sick. When you say “Go!” the team captain from each team runs to tag all of their teammates.

The team captain then returns to their starting point while their teammates gather 5 brightly colored pieces of paper. The first team to gather 5 pieces of paper and bring them back their team captain wins.

Afterward, explain that the team captain was like Jesus when they healed everyone on their team from being sick. The rest of the teammates then served them by finding and bringing them the papers, just as we’re supposed to serve Jesus.

Have students close their eyes and re-hide the papers to play again. Choose another team captain for each team. Play as long as time allows.



Holiness

Finding the Difference

Name three items that you can see. Two of them should be the same in a certain way (color, shape, material, etc.) and one should be different in that same way. The first student who calls out the difference gets to name the next three objects.

Play as long as time permits.

When you’re finished, explain that the third item was special because it was different.



Finding Purity

In this game of Eye Spy, you’ll only choose items that are only one color, only one shape, or made out of only one material.

You’ll choose the first item. When a student guesses your item, explain why you choose it (based on one of the criteria above). Have the next student pick their item, but tell them that their item has to match one of the criteria. 
Part 2 – This time, name your category and have students race to bring you something that matches your description. The first one who does gets to choose the next item.

Remind students that God wants our heart to be pure, filled only with love for God and other people.



Purify Our Heart

Draw or print out smiley faces with different negative emotions on them. The negative emotions could include sad, worried, afraid, angry, guilty, or embarrassed.

Tape one of the negative emotion smiley faces on each of the kids’ foreheads without letting them see what it was. They then have to ask each yes or no questions to figure out which emotion they have. Once they know the answer, give them a smiley face showing love to replace their negative emotion.

Remind students that we want our hearts to be pure, so we need to replace our negative emotions with love.



Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit Comes Down

Give students drawing supplies and ask them to draw two pictures. The first picture should be of the dove coming down on Jesus when He was baptized. The second picture should be of the Holy Spirit coming down on them.

When they’re finished drawing, ask, What do you think it feels like for the Holy Spirit to come down and live inside us? What difference does the Holy Spirit make in our lives?



Jesus is With Us!

Give each student a balloon. Tell them to blow it up but not tie it.

Ask, What's inside your balloon? (Air.)

How do you know that? You can’t see it. How do you know it's there?

You see what the air does, don’t you? You see the balloon filling up, so you know there’s air in the there.

The Holy Spirit is like air. He’s a Spirit, which means He’s invisible, just like air is invisible. But we know that Jesus is still with us through the Holy Spirit, even if we can’t see Him, because we can feel Him living in our hearts. We can feel Him teaching us and helping us to be better. Jesus will always be with us in our hearts through the Holy Spirit if we believe in Him.



The Spreading Flame

Divide students into two or more teams. Print out or draw pictures of flames and place them at the opposite end of your play in front of each team. 
When you say, “Go!” the first player from each team will run toward their pile of flames at the opposite end, grab one, and run back to their team, handing the flame to the second player. 
The second player then runs and does the same, handing the flame they retrieve to the third player. Play continues until each team member has run and handed another a flame. 
The first team to have all of their team members holding a flame wins. 
Explain that in the story today, one fire splits into many flames and that each person needed their own flame.



Humility

Acting Out Humility

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a conversation in which someone gives credit to God for something instead of bragging. Suggestions include doing well on a test, winning an award, getting better after a sickness or injury, playing a sport well, being good-looking, having money, etc.



Servant Brainstorming

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of one thing they can do this week to help someone else. When everyone is finished, have them share their drawings and ideas. Remind students that God doesn’t care how great we are. He cares about how much we help other people. 

Jesus

Drawing the Heavenly Jesus

Give students drawing supplies and have them do their best to draw Jesus as given in the description from Revelation. 

Fulfilling Prophecy

Print or write out prophecy clues about Jesus, along with their Scripture reference, on strips of paper and hide them around the room. Kids rush to find them and then, put them in order according to book of the Bible.

When they’re finished, explain that all of the statements are prophecies about one person and see if they know who the prophecies are describing.

Prophecies could include:

Will be born in Bethlehem – Micah 5:2
Will not have a human father – Isaiah 7:14
Will be a prophet – Deuteronomy 18:15
Will be protected by angels – Psalm 91:10-12
Will ride a donkey into Jerusalem – Zechariah 9:9
Will be rejected by people – Isaiah 53:1-3
Will be betrayed by a friend – Psalm 41:9
Will be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver – Zechariah 11:12-13
Will die for other people’s sins – Isaiah 53:8
Will come back from the dead – Psalm 16:10



Drawing Prophecy

Show kids the slips of paper from the Fulfilling Prophecy game. Give them drawing supplies and have them draw one scene from one of the prophecies. Then, remind students that God told the prophets that Jesus would do each of those things hundreds or even thousands of year before Jesus was born. 


Love Letter from Jesus

Give students drawing supplies and ask them to write a letter from Jesus to themselves. Have them imagine what they think Jesus might say to them. If the students are too young to write, have them a picture of them and Jesus together.



Hide and Go Sheep

Pick one person to be It. They are the Shepherd. Everyone else is the Sheep. They go and hide while the Shepherd counts. The Shepherd then tries to find the Sheep. When he or she finds one, that Sheep helps them look for the others. The last Sheep found becomes the new Shepherd for the next round. Play as long as time allows or until everyone has had a chance to be the Shepherd. 
Remind students that just like the Shepherd goes to look for his lost sheep, so Jesus will always come and look for people who have gone away from God.


Jesus is the Way!

Divide students into two teams. Choose one student from each team to be “Jesus” and one student from each team to be “God.” The goal is for each team to tag the opposite team’s “God.” They can’t tag “God,” however, until they tag that team’s “Jesus.”

Explain that Jesus and God never run away from us, but that Jesus is the way to God.


Jesus Our Light

Play a game of Red Light, Green Light with the change of turning the light on and off. Students run from one side of the room to the other when the lights are on. But when you turn the lights off, they have to stumble around and pretend to be afraid. If they keep running when the light is off, they‘re out. The winner is the first one who makes it to the other side of the room.



The Life of Jesus Relay

Divide students into two or more teams. When you say, “Go!” the first student on each team will perform the first leg of the relay race, traveling to the other side of your play area and back to their team. The second student on each team then does the second leg, and so on until that team completes the last leg. The first team to complete all legs of the race wins.

Leg 1. Crying. Cry like a baby to show Jesus was born as a baby.

Leg 2. Crawl. Crawl like a baby to show that Jesus had to crawl when he was little.

Leg 3. Slow Walk. Walk slowly like a one-year-old to show that Jesus had to learn to walk.

Leg 4. Run. Run like a child, as Jesus did when He was a boy.

Leg 5. Hammer the Ground. Hit the ground like you’re a man hammering nails to show that Jesus learned how to be a carpenter.

Leg 6. Spin. Spin around saying, “You’re healed! You’re healed!” to show that Jesus helped all the people around Him.

Leg 7. Crucifix Run. Run with your arms outstretched to the sides to show that Jesus was crucified on a cross.

Leg 8. Backward Walk. Walk backward with your arms crossed over your chest to show that Jesus died.

Leg 9. Skip. Skip, yelling, “Ta-da!” to show that Jesus came back to life.



Prophets and Son

Divide students into two teams and set a timer for 3-5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. Team A will be the prophets and the Son. One by one, they’ll run across the play area and then, back to their team, while the members of Team B stand behind a line and throw soft balls or paper wads at them.

If a member of Team A makes it back it to their team without being hit, score a point for their team and go to the back of the line to run again. If they get hit, they’re out, and Team B scores a point. The last runner left on Team A is the Son, and can only run one time.

The game is over when all of the members of Team A are out or when the timer goes off. Then, switch roles. The team with the most combined points from when they were throwing and running wins.

Remind students that God sent prophets and Jesus to tell them to believe in God and do the right things, but the people wouldn’t listen and killed both the prophets and Jesus.



Who is Jesus?

Before class, write or print out on slips of paper a variety of theories about who Jesus is.

Suggestions include:

Jesus was just a good man.
Jesus was just someone who did miracles.
Jesus isn’t real.
Jesus was faking that He could do miracles.
Jesus lied about being God’s Son.
Jesus is the Son of God.

Hide these statements around your classroom. Then, have students look for the statements. The person who finds the correct answer wins.

Briefly discuss why the other answers are wrong and why only one answer is correct.



Jesus’ Miracles

Bailing Out the Boat

Make an outline of a boat on the floor. Crumple a lot of paper. Divide students into two teams and set a timer for 3 minutes.

One team stands inside the boat outline. The other team is the storm. They pick up the crumpled papers and try to throw them into the boat outline. The team inside tries to bail out their boat by removing the papers.

After 3 minutes, tell everyone to stop and count how many wads of paper are inside the boat versus outside. The team with the lowest number of paper wads in their area wins.

Switch roles and play again.



Calming the Storm

Make an outline of a boat on the floor. Crumple a lot of paper. Pick a few students to stand inside the boat outline. You stand in the outline as well, pretending to be asleep. You are Jesus. They are the disciples. The rest of the students are the storm.

They pick up the crumpled papers and try to throw them into the boat outline. The disciples try to bail out their boat by removing the papers. The round ends when you yell, “Stop!” The storm stops and the disciples are able to bail out their boat. Remind students that Jesus was able to tell the storm to stop, and it did.

Play again. This time, the students who were the disciples are now the storm, and the students who were the storm are now the disciples.



Delivering the Fish and Loaves

Divide students into two or teams for a relay race. Place a pile of paper strips at the other end of the play area in front of each team. 
The first student from each team runs down to the pile, grabs a slip of paper, and hands it to the next person in line, who then does the same thing. The team continues running until each team member has retrieved and is holding a slip of paper. The first team to finish wins. 
Part 2. Play the intro game again, but this time, tell students that they’re like the disciples handing out the food from Jesus to all the people.


It Changed!

Show students how we can turn something into another by adding ingredients together. If you only have a little time, you can add a powdered drink mix to water. If you have a little more time, you can mix cookie batter and bake the cookies for an after-lesson treat.

When you’re finished, ask, How is what we did to change our ingredients into something else different from what Jesus did to change the water into wine?

Jesus didn’t add anything to the water to make it turn into wine. He did a miracle.



Poor, Imprisoned, and Blind

Divide students into two teams. Choose one team to be It. When an It tags a player on the other team, they become Poor, holding their stomachs as if they’re hungry. When an It tags them again, they become Poor and Imprisoned, holding their stomachs with one hand and putting their other hand behind their back as if they’ve been arrested. When an It tags them a third time, they are Poor and Imprisoned and Blind, meaning they hold their hands in the same position but also close one eye. When they’re tagged a fourth time, they’re out.

If, however, one of their teammates does not have any of the conditions, they can act like Jesus and take away those conditions with a single tap.



Judgment and Punishments

Angel Fishing!

Photocopy Happy and Angry fish patterns and place them in a kiddie pool (without water) or in a paper bag. Have students take turns closing their eyes and reaching in to pick a fish.

When they pull one out, they open their eyes and decide what to do with the fish. If it’s a Happy fish that they caught, they get to keep it and get a point for that fish.

If it’s an Angry fish, they have to put it in a common discard pile. The student with the most Happy Fish at the end wins.



God’s Punishments

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils. Remind students that God let the Israelites’ enemies conquer them when they sinned against Him and that He helped the Israelites defeat their enemies when they prayed to them. Ask, how do you think God punishes us today? Draw a picture to show how you think God might punish someone today who wasn’t listening to Him.

When they’re finished, ask each one to share, and briefly discuss it. Guide students into understanding that God can punish in a variety of ways but that not everything bad that happens is God’s punishment.

End by emphasizing that God never wants to punish us. He only punishes us to help us remember Him, just like when God let Israelites’ enemies conquer them so that the Israelites would remember to pray to Him.


Languages

Charades

Prepare a number of charade cards beforehand with familiar words or phrases written on them. The leader should start the game by silently acting out one of the words or phrases. The first student to guess what you’re acting then takes the next card and becomes the next actor. Play until everyone has had a turn to act or as long as time allows. After the game, point out that it’s hard to get someone to know what you’re talking about when you can’t speak to them. It would have been much easier if the actors could have just said what their word was.

Round 2 – Tell students that you’re going to make things easier. Instead of the actor acting out the word or phrase on their card, they’re just going to show it to the class. The first person to read the card wins. Give a couple of students a card printed in your language and watch the children race to call out the words. Then, give them one written in a foreign language. When they can’t guess what it says, pretend as if you don’t know what the problem is. As you “catch on,” explain that the word or phrase is written in another language.



Languages of the World

Show your students a picture of a world map. Have them choose a country to draw on their piece of paper. Tell them to draw the shape of the country on one side of the paper along with the name of the primary language people speak in that country. On the other side of the paper, ask them to draw a picture of how they could help someone in that country if they knew their language. Point out that as Christians, we try to learn other people’s language so that we can tell them the Good News about Jesus.


Listening for God

Acting Out Listening

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out one way that God can speak to us. After each group, briefly discuss the best way to listen for God speaking in that way.



Brainstorm

Tell students that you want their help to create a new product or solve a problem. First, ask them what product they want to design or what problem they want to solve. Then, guide them with questions on how they might accomplish their goal. Affirm every idea and try to work it into the product or solution. 
When you’re finished, say, Those were some great ideas you all had! Today, we’re going to hear about how God gave someone a great idea.


Idea Basket

Give children paper to make journals out of. You can give them staples or string to bind the journals. On the front of the journal, have them draw Moses’ mother getting the idea to put Moses in the basket. 
Explain that this is their journal to write down ideas that God gives them. It can be a great way for them to think about what God might be leading them to do in their daily lives or what direction He might want them to follow as they get older. Get them started by telling them to write “Ideas of what God wants me to do today…” on the top of one page and “Ideas of what God wants me to do in my life…” on another page.


It’s God Calling!

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils. Ask them to write or draw some ways that God has spoken to them. It could be through reading the Bible, praying, being in church or Sunday School, singing a Christian song, etc. Ask them to depict how God spoke to them and what He said. The message could be in abstract terms, but help students think of some keywords or phrases to help them remember the experience.



Learning to Listen

Give students drawing paper and instruct them to draw three scenes of them listening to God. They can then add more paper to their project to make a journal. Instruct them to write down any prayers that they say to God or anything that God says to them in church, through the Bible, or through their prayer time.



Listening for God

Pick one student to be Samuel. They wear a blindfold. Everyone else calls their name along with the teacher. “Samuel’s” job is to listen for the teacher’s voice and walk toward the teacher, blocking out all of the other voices. When the student makes it to the teacher, remove the blindfold and choose the next student to be “Samuel.” The first student is now the “voice of God.” Play as long as time allows or until every student has had a chance to play both roles.

Remind students that Samuel thought it was Eli calling him, but it was really God.



Listening for God (Version 2)

Have students find a partner. Blindfold one partner, spin them around, and walk them to somewhere else in the room. When you say “Go!” their partners call their names. The blindfolded partner tries to make it back to the caller.

When all the blindfolded students make it back to their partner, have them switch roles.

Play again if time permits, but make the students find a new partner for each round.

Remind students that we have to listen closely if we want to hear God speaking to us.



Loving God

Different Goals

If you have room, set up an area to play soccer. The twist is that instead of having two goals, you’ll have three. Every 30 seconds, change which goal one of the teams is trying to score in. The goalie from the defending team has to run to the new goal as the offensive team turns their attention toward it.

Afterward, tell students that we have to make living for God our number 1 goal.



Giving Jesus Our Best

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of themselves doing something to give Jesus their best. When they’re finished, have them tell the class about their picture.



God’s on Top

Have students draw a tower of the different things that they like or are important to them. They might draw their family, cartoon characters that they like, hobbies they enjoy, friends, certain places that are special to them, prized possessions, etc. Have them draw a cross or a throne at the top to represent God. Remind them that God has to be first in their life. He is the most important thing.


Jesus, the Most Important Thing!

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw out a scene that shows that Jesus is the most important thing in their lives. It could be showing that Jesus is King in their life or the difference that believing in Jesus makes to them. They might draw a scene of what they might be doing if they didn’t believe in Jesus and what they do now that they believe in Him.



Loving God

Give students drawing supplies and instruct them to draw three pictures on one sheet of paper. The first picture will be of them loving God with all their heart. The second, with all their soul. The third, with all their strength. Have students write the Bible verse somewhere on their picture.



Rotating Firsts

Divide the students into two teams and play dodgeball with soft play balls or wads of waste paper. After 30 seconds, name one of the balls as the 1st ball. That is the only ball that can get someone out. If anyone picks up any of the other balls, they’re out. After 30 seconds, go back to normal play. Then, 30 seconds later, choose another ball as the 1st ball.

After the game, explain that we have to learn to put God first in our lives, just like we had to name one of the balls to be first.



Loving Others

Attitude Comparison

Give student drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of the mean people who wanted to throw rocks at the woman, and of Jesus who wanted to forgive her. 
Ask them to draw the kind of faces that the people and Jesus would have been making.


Build ‘em UP!

Have students sit in a circle. Tell them that you’re all going to practice treating people the way you want to be treated. One way we want to be treated is for people to be nice to us and tell us nice things. Pick one student in the circle and have everyone else in the circle, including yourself, say one nice thing about that student. Then, go to the next person in the circle and do the same until everyone has heard some nice things about themselves. Remind students that we all want to hear nice things about us, so we should remember to say nice things to other people.



Don’t Hit Dodgeball

Divide students into two teams. They stand at opposite sides of your play area. Their goal is to not hit the other team while making the other team hit them. If someone throws and hits a member of the other team, they’re out. Meanwhile, members of the other team can dive in front of thrown balls to get the thrower out.

Players can’t hold balls. They have three seconds to throw, or they’re out. If a ball stays on one side for more than five seconds, the whole team is out. You can pretend the balls are bombs that they want to throw out of their area without hitting anyone else.

The first team to get all the members of the opposite team out wins.



Forward March!

Lay masking tape in lines across the floor. You’ll need as many lines as you have questions. You’ll ask a question and give students the option to answer by a raised or lowered hand. Anyone who gives the correct response moves forward one line. Have students start by standing behind the last line.

Questions:
1. There is only one cookie left in the cupboard. You and your brother or sister both want it. What should you do? Raise your hand if you think you should give the cookie to your brother or sister. Keep your hands down if you think you should keep the cookie for yourself. (Tell everyone who raised their hands to move one line forward. Explain that if we would want our brother or sister to give us the cookie, we should give them the cookie first. That’s treating other people the way we want to be treated.

2. Someone cuts in front of you in line. What should you do? Raise your hand if you think you should yell at them, and keep your hands down if you think you should not yell at them. (Tell everyone who kept their hands down to move forward one line. Explain that if we wouldn’t want someone to yell at us, we shouldn’t yell at them. We can ask them nicely not to cut, and we can tell the teacher, but we shouldn’t yell at them because that is not treating other people the way we want to be treated.)

3. Someone you don’t like very much asks you to be their partner for a game at school. What should you do? Raise your hand if you think you should tell them that you will not be their partner, and keep your hands down if you think you should be their partner. (Tell everyone who kept their hands down to move forward one line. Explain that being nice to someone we don’t like is treating other people the way we would want to be treated because we would want someone to be our partner if we asked them to be.)

4. A friend gets mad at you and calls you a name. What should you do? Raise your hand if you think you should not call them a name back, and keep your hands down if you think you should call them a name. (Tell everyone who raised their hands to move forward one line. Explain that if we don’t want people to call us names, then we shouldn’t call other people names, even if they called us a name first. Not calling people names is treating others the way we would want to be treated.)



Friend Relay Race

Remind students that David and King Saul’s son Jonathan were best friends. Have them choose a partner. Then, each pair will complete the following steps of the relay race together. The first pair to complete all the legs of the relay race wins. 
Leg 1: Skip in step together.
Leg 2: Give high fives to each other.
Leg 3: Walk back to back.
Leg 4: Link arms and spin each around.
Leg 5: Hop in step together. 
Play again if time permits, but make students choose a new partner.


Helping Others Feel Better

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils. Ask them to two sets of pictures or comic strips. The first is something someone could do to make them feel better when they’re angry or upset. The second is something they could do for someone else who is angry or upset. When they’re finished, have each student share both of their drawings.



How Can I Help?

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw pictures of how they could help someone. Ask them to focus on the areas Jesus mentions in the parable: helping the poor, caring for others, and visiting the lonely. When everyone is finished, have them explain their drawings to the class.



Lifting Letters

Give students writing and drawing supplies and ask them to write a letter to one or more people saying something nice to them. If they can’t write, they can draw that person a picture.

Remind students that God wants us to say nice things to other people.



Looks Can Be Deceiving

(This activity applies to how God sees us and how we see other people.)

Set out a series of decorative bags or boxes on a table. These bags all have dirt in them. Set one plain bag or box in a visible but inconspicuous location elsewhere in your room. This plain bag or box has a snack or prize to share with the group.

Tell students that there’s a snack or prize in one of the boxes. Then, ask for one volunteer at a time to come up and choose one of the bags or boxes. They open it to reveal dirt. One student might spot the plain bag or box. If they do, they can choose to open it instead of the more decorative options.

If no students choose the plain bag or box, tell them that there must be one more option somewhere in the room. The first one to spot it gets to open it.

Then, explain that looks can be deceiving. Just because something looks nice on the outside doesn’t mean that it has something good on the inside. And sometimes, what doesn’t look very special on the outside does have something wonderful inside.

God always judges by what’s on the inside, not what’s on the outside. He judges our hearts, not what we look like.

Part 2 – For the second part of this demonstration, you’ll play an active game. It can be almost anything that kids know the rules for. The trick is that you’ll change one of the normal rules. If you’re playing soccer, for instance, set up a goal as usual but also set up a cone to mark the boundaries of the play area. Without telling students, you’ll decide that a team gets a point whenever they kick the ball “out of bounds,” not when they get a goal.

Let the kids figure out the new rule. Then, explain that it looked like the point of the game was to kick the ball into the goal, but looks can be deceiving. Just because something looks how it should be doesn’t mean that it’s right. God looks past how something looks, and so should we.

Once kids figure out the new rule and you give them the explanation, you can continue playing by the new rule or revert back to normal rules, whichever is easier.



Loving the Other

Give students drawing supplies and ask them to draw a picture that shows them loving or doing something nice for someone from a different people group than them – a different ethnicity, country, or religion.



Praying for Others

Have students spread out around the room and pray silently. Direct them to pray for their family members. A minute later, direct them to pray for their friends. The next minute, ask them to pray for anyone they know of who might be having a problem. Finally, a minute later, tell them to pray for people around the world who might be in jail or being persecuted right now because they believe in Jesus.


Neighbors and Enemies Basketball

Set up two basketball hoops. If you don’t have basketball hoops, you can use buckets, trashcans, or boxes to catch the balls. If you have a large group, you can split the students into two or more groups and set up two “baskets” for each group.

One by one, students come up to shoot two balls. They have to shoot one ball at Basket A and the other at Basket B. If they get a basket in each, they score a point. If they get a basket in only one, or neither of the baskets, they do not score a point.

Play long enough for each student to have three turns.



The Peacemaker

Assign each student a partner. One student won’t have a partner. They’re the Peacemaker. If that leaves another student without a partner, have them pair up with another leader or another pair so that one group has three partners.

Partners separate, and students spread out for a game of tag. When Jesus tags someone, they join Jesus’ team, and that person is then able to tag their partner. Once both partners are tagged, they’re out.

The last student to be tagged either by Jesus or their partner is the Jesus for the next round.

Explain that Jesus helps bring people back together after they get into a fight, just as Jesus helped the partners get back together in the game.



Serving Suggestion

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of themselves doing something for someone else. When they’re finished, have them tell the class about their picture.



Snatch Ball

Mark a line down either side of your play area. Place soft play balls on the line. If you don’t have play balls, you can wad up waste paper to play with. Form two teams and tell the students to stand a certain number of steps away from the line. On “Go!” the students race toward the line to snatch the balls. They then throw the balls at the other team. When a student is hit with a ball, they’re out for the round.

Play as many rounds as you like, and then point out that the kids had to snatch the balls to make sure the other team didn’t get them.

Part 2 – Set up to play Snatch Ball again. But instead of putting all the balls on the line, only put one ball on the line. Keep the rest with you. On “Go!” the students will run for that one ball. Give the rest of the balls to whichever side doesn’t get the one in the middle, and continue playing normally.

After the round, remind students that when we let others have their way, God will reward us, just like you rewarded the team that didn’t get the ball in the middle.

Set all the balls in the middle again. Tell students that you want them all to be generous and let the other team have their way this time. See what happens when you say, “Go!”

Keep dropping hints that you actually don’t want the teams to run forward to get the balls. Once they understand and don’t immediately run for the balls, give them a snack or a prize. Tell them that because they were generous and were willing to let the other team have their way, you’re going to reward them.



Lying

Bad Interview

Have students pair up. One will interview the other. They can ask the person questions about themselves or to tell them a story about something they did. The one rule is that the person answering the questions can only tell lies. Give them a couple of minutes and then, have them switch roles.



Bluff!

Have kids sit in a circle. Then, pass out a deck of playing cards with the cards face down. Starting with the first student, they must declare that they are putting one or more Ace cards facedown in the center of the circle. They can be bluffing in the number of cards that they’re putting down and in the value of the cards. If someone calls Bluff! the student must reveal what they put down. If they were bluffing, they take their cards back and any others that are in the pile. If they weren’t bluffing, the student that called Bluff! must take the pile of cards. The next student has to declare Twos, etc. all the way around the circle until someone successfully lays down all their cards.

If you have a large group, you can divide them into more than one circle, each group having their own deck of cards.



The Child Who Cried Wolf

Tell students the story or read a storybook of The Boy Who Cried Wolf beforehand. Then, have all the students close their eyes. You’ll silently tap one to choose them to be the Wolf. Then, students open their eyes and walk around the room. Their goal is to guess one which is the wolf. The wolf can’t guess. 
If someone guesses wrong, they’re out. If someone guesses correctly, everyone chases the Wolf. When someone tags the Wolf, they win. If the Wolf is left with only one other student, the Wolf chases the student and wins when it tags them. 
Afterward, explain that it’s okay to be wrong sometimes, but we have to be very careful that we’re telling the truth about other people. 
Play as long as time allows, choosing a different student to be the Wolf each time.


Cups

Give each student five coins or paper markers. Set three cups upside down in front of you. As students watch, place a die or small ball under one of the cups. Explain that you’re going to move the cups around to try to confuse them about where the object is.

Quickly slide the cups around. After a few seconds, stop. Tell the students to place a coin or marker in front of the cup that they think the object is under.

Then, reveal what cup the object is under. If the students guessed right, they take back their markers. You take the markers in front of the wrong cups. Keep playing until all the students are out of markers.

Afterward, explain that the game is meant to trick students. It’s not a fair game because it’s too difficult to keep track of which cup the object is under.

If you have a large group, you can set up multiple stations with different leaders all playing the same game.


Lie Detector

This game is similar to Two Truths and a Lie. Tell students that you’re going to tell them a story about what happened to you. Most of it will be true, but someone of it won’t be. It’s their job to call out whenever they think you’re saying something that isn’t true.



Marriage

The List

Give students drawing supplies and have them make two lists. On one side of the paper, they should list what they’re looking for in a future spouse. Remind them that the most important things will be the person’s spiritual qualities, not how they look or how much money they make.

On the second side of the paper, have the students list how they will treat their future spouse. Remind them of what you talked about in the lesson.



The Course of Life Dice

Make a grid on the floor with six rows across and as many columns as you have students. Have the students line up at one side of the grid, each in front of one column. They take turns rolling a die. The winner is the first student to roll 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 in a row.

When a student rolls a 1, they move into their first square. Announce that they asked a boy or girl out on a date.

When a student rolls a 2, they move forward to the next square. Announce that they asked a boy or girl to marry them.

On a 3, announce that they got married.

On a 4, announce that they had a baby.

On a 5, announce that they had an argument with the husband or wife and must take one step back.

On a 6, announce that they made up with their spouse and can take two steps forward. They win the game.

Students do not move forward until they roll the next number in their “story.”

Play again to give someone else a chance to win.


Obeying God

Acting Out Obedience

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone makes an excuse for why they can’t follow Jesus, but the other person or persons explain why they can’t wait.



Breaking the Rules

Play any simple game your kids know. The trick is that you’re going to break the rules intentionally to disrupt the game. You could also have one of your volunteers do it.

For instance, if you’re playing soccer with the kids, you could pick up the ball and run it to the goal instead of kicking it. You could randomly move the goals while the kids are playing.

Another example is if you’re playing a board game, you could cheat in an obvious manner.

If you’re playing hide and seek, you could keep your eyes open to watch where the children hide.

When the kids say that you’re not playing fair, explain that you’re showing them what happens when people break the rules. Breaking the rules disrupts the game and makes it so that it isn’t as much fun for everyone else.



Don’t Say It!

Divide students into two teams. In this Taboo-like game, teammates take turns trying to get their teams to guess the main word on their card without using four obvious words listed on the card. For example, a team member might need to get their teammates to guess “cow,” but they can’t say “moo,” “milk,” “dairy,” or “steak.” You can purchase the Don’t Say It! game or write your own game cards.

If the team member does say one of the words they’re not allowed to say, they’re out of the game. If they get their teammates to guess the word, they get a point for their team and continue their turn until they’ve scored up to three points. If they say a word they shouldn’t or after they’ve earned three points for their turn, play passes to the second team.

Play until each student on each team has had a chance to be the clue giver. Then, tally up all the points minus how many team members got out. The winner is the team with the most points.

When the game is over, ask, Why did I make some of you sit out the rest of the game? (Listen to their answers and explain that it was because they broke the rule of the game. Even though the rule of a game isn’t a big deal, we have to learn that if we break the rules, there are consequences. If we break serious rules at home or in school, we get punished. If we break God’s rules, He can punish us. There are consequences to breaking the rules.)



Don’t Say It (Version 2)

Have the students pair up. They take turns asking each other questions. The person answering, however, can’t use certain letters. For the first round, they might not be able to use words with the letter “s.” If they do, their partner gets a point. Continue for a couple of minutes and then, change the letter they’re not supposed to use. The student with the most points (caught their partner using disallowed letters the most times) wins.

Afterward, tell students that they were playing a fun game with a silly rule, but it’s important to follow God’s serious rules. We’ll see in our story how two cities were punished because they didn’t follow God’s rules.

You can up the challenge level by naming two letters that the students aren’t allowed to use, or change it so that the person asking the question isn’t allowed to use those letters, either.



Fast Reflexes

Lay out a deck of game cards on a table, face up. The cards could be regular playing cards, UNO cards, Go Fish! cards, etc.

Students gather around the table. You’ll call out a type of card (a number, color, shape, etc.). The last student to reach out and touch that type of card is out.

The last student in the game wins and becomes the caller for the next round.

Remind students that we can’t wait to follow Jesus. We can’t make excuses. We have to obey Him immediately, just like they need to be quick to play this game.



Follow the Leader

Choose a Leader. Students must follow the Leader in every way, going where they go and doing what they do. Play for a specified amount of time and then, choose a new Leader. Play until everyone has had a chance to be Leader or until students lose interest. After the game, explain that today’s lesson is about why we should study the Bible. When we study the Bible, we are learning how to play Follow the Leader. God and Jesus are our Leaders, and the Bible tells us everything we need to know to follow Them. The Bible tells us how we can live the way Jesus lived and how we can do the things that God is happy for us to do.


Following the Shepherd

Have students get down on all fours and close their eyes. They are the Sheep. The leader is the Shepherd/Farmer. The Shepherd moves around the room, calling the Sheep, and they must do their best to follow. The Shepherd can also give instructions like “spin around in a circle,” “baa like sheep,” “go faster,” “come to me slowly,” etc. 
After a while, pick someone else to be the Shepherd. If you have time, give everyone a chance to be the Shepherd. 
Then, remind students that we’re supposed to follow Jesus and do what He says, just like real sheep follow their shepherds and farmers.


Go Fish! Tag

In this active version of Go Fish, you can choose 1-4 students to be your Dealers, depending on how large your group is. The Dealers divide the deck of cards either by suit (if you’re using traditional playing cards) or by characters (if you’re using Go Fish cards). They randomly pass out the cards to the other students.

The cardholders spread out in your playing area and when you say, “Go!” the Dealers have to chase down who has their cards. If a Dealer tags them, the Dealer has to ask for their specific cards back. They can say something like, “Give me back all the Hearts I gave you, please” or, “Give me back my sharks, please.” The Dealer can only request one thing or category at a time.

The cardholder then gives up the cards. If they have other cards that another Dealer gave them, they’re still in the game. Once they’re all out of cards, that cardholder is out.

The winner is the Dealer who re-collects all their cards first. If you’re playing with only one Dealer at a time, play a few rounds and time how long it takes each Dealer to re-collect their cards. The winner is the one who does so the fastest. The next Dealers are the last cardholders in the game.

After you play a round or two, remind students that when God gives us something and asks for it back, we have to give it to Him, just like we have to give our cards back to the Dealers when they ask for them.



Heaven Does

In this game of Simon Says, students follow your commands and motion when you say, “Heaven does” first. If you don’t say, “Heaven does” before the command, and they do it anyway, they’re out. If they follow a motion that doesn’t match the “Heaven does” verbal command, they’re out. The winner is the last one in the game. 
Explain that we want God’s will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven, so it’s like we want what we would do on Earth to match what is done in Heaven.



Listening to God

Have students line up at one side of the room. The teacher gives instructions, saying “Teacher Says” as in “Simon Says.” Do the motions as you say the instruction. Every once in a while, do something and give the instruction without saying “Teacher says” first. Anyone who does something without the teacher having said, “Teacher says” has to pretend that they’ve been swallowed by a fish and taken to Nineveh at the other side of the room. You can also give an instruction that doesn’t match your motion to catch kids off guard. Students who are out wait there until the end of the round and then, join back in. The last student in the game becomes the new leader.


Persecution

Defending the Faith

Divide the room into two sides. Divide the students into two teams. One team stands on one side of the line. The other team stands on the other. One team is the Priests, and the other is the Followers of Jesus.

Give the Priest wads of paper. The Priests must throw wads of paper at the Followers of Jesus. The Followers of Jesus must try to deflect the Priests’ wads. The Followers can use rolled up newspaper or cardboard to do so. They can’t use their hands or feet directly. They can make bats out of the newspaper or shields or whatever else they can think of. Give them time before the round starts to make their wads and their weapons of defense.

The Priests’ goal is to get as many paper wads on the Followers’ side of the line as possible. The Followers’ goal is to knock the wads back onto the Priests’ side of the line. After 3 minutes, have the teams switch, so that all students get to play both roles.



Despite All Obstacles

Set up an obstacle course with two mirror paths. Divide the students into two teams. One student from each team runs the obstacle course at a time while the other team members line up along the length of the obstacle course. When they’re not running, the members of the opposite team throw soft balls or paper wads at the runner from the sidelines. 
If a student makes it through the obstacle course without being hit, they score a point for their team and return to the sidelines. If they are hit, they go to the sidelines to throw but not run again. After each pair runs the course, gather the balls or paper wads again for the next two to run. 
The game ends when all the students have run the course. The team with the most points wins. 
Afterward, explain that we have to do the right things in life even when it seems difficult. There might be things that get in the way of us doing the right thing. There might be people who try to keep us from doing the right thing, but we have to keep doing what we know is right.



The Persecuted Church

Look up a current news story about where Christians are being persecuted. Show the location on a map and summarize the situation for the children and explain why a certain government doesn’t want the people to believe in God. Then, have students write a prayer for their fellow Christians in that situation, or draw a picture illustrating God’s protection around those persecuted Christians.



Prayer

3X Prayer

Part 1 – Tell students that you’re going to have them try something today. They’re going to pray like someone in the lesson. You’ll ask them to pray silently three times throughout the lesson, and you’ll give them ideas of what to pray each time. For this first time, have students pray, thanking God for things He’s done for them or things He’s taught them. They can also praise God for who He is.

Part 2 – Have students confess and say they’re sorry for anything wrong they’ve done. 
Part 3 – Have students ask God for anything they need and for God to help other people who are on their minds.



Amalekites vs. Israelites

Divide students into two teams for a game of tag. When you raise your arms, the Israelites chase the Amalekites. When you lower your arms, the Amalekites chase the Israelites. The team who tags everyone on the opposite team first wins. Play as long as time allows.



Answered Prayers

Students have three options with this craft. They can draw what happened when God answered one of their prayers. They can draw what would happen if God answered one of their current prayers. They can make a list of things they’ve prayed for and how God either said yes or no to their prayers. Point out that sometimes, God doesn’t answer right away. He might say yes to one of our prayers, but we have to wait. 

Ask, Seek, Knock

Tell students you have something you want to give them, but they have to ask you for it first. When they ask you, give them all a spoon or other appropriate utensil for the snack you have planned.

Seek – Tell students to keep their spoons, but that now, they have to find the next thing they’ll need for what you want to give them. Tell them to find something that might go along with a spoon. Give them hints to guide them toward the napkins.

Knock – Lead them to a closed room, cabinet, or refrigerator where you’ve kept the snack. Tell them to knock on the door. If possible, have another volunteer open the door from the inside to welcome them in. If not possible, open the door yourself. Students should now have everything they need and can eat their snack.

As they eat, tell students, The thing to remember today is to ask, seek, knock. If we pray to God, He might not always give us everything that we ask for, but He will give us everything that we need. He will give us everything that is the best for us, and the things that He gives us will be good.



Asking Jesus for Help

Have students spread out around the room and pray silently. Direct them to tell Jesus about something they want help with. Then, after a minute, have them ask Jesus for His help. Finally, have them listen silently for Jesus to say anything in their heart. 

Drawing Your Prayer

Have students draw a picture of something they might need and how God might supply that need. When they’re finished, ask for volunteers to share. 

Long Distance Prayers

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of them praying to Jesus asking Him to help them with something. Remind them that even though Jesus is far away in Heaven, He still hears our prayers and can still help us from where He is.



The Lord’s Prayer

Say the Lord’s Prayer phrase by phrase with your students a few times to help them begin to memorize it.



No!

Have the students line up single file behind a line in your play area. Between them and you is an area where they will play tag. You will stand or sit at the other side of the play area with a variety of objects in front of you. One of the objects could be a sample of a snack you’re going to give the kids at the end of the game. Choose one of the objects to be the key object for each round. One leader or volunteer student will be “It” in the middle of the play area.

The first student will run up to you and ask you for one of the objects in front of you. If it’s the key object you chose, they win the game. If it isn’t, say “No!” That student then remains in the center play area. They then have to run from It. If they get tagged, they go to the back of the line.

The next student runs up to you as soon as the previous one receives their answer.

Let the snack be the last correct answer. When a student asks for it, end the game and pass out the snacks. Use the game to introduce the fact that God doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we want Him to.



Praying for Our Leaders

Tell students that we should pray for the leaders that God chooses. They have a big job, and we need to pray that they make good decisions, that they stay safe, and that they don’t get too stressed by being the leader. 
Hand out drawing supplies and ask kids to draw themselves praying for one leader. It can be a leader of the county, of your church, or any other type of leader they might have in mind as long as that person is real. No praying for the leader of the Justice League in this activity! 


Spending Time with Jesus

Have students separate around the room. Ask them to spend 5 minutes praying to Jesus. Tell them that they can talk to Jesus about anything they want to. After 4 minutes, ask them to stop talking to Jesus and to listen to anything He might want to say to them in their heart.



Raising the Dice

Divide students into two teams and give each time a six-sided die. The first student from each team runs up to a table and rolls their dice. The student with the highest roll gets a point for their team. 
The trick is that each team can help their player. As the students are rolling their die, the teams cheer. The team that’s the loudest gets to add one number to their player’s die roll. So, if Team A’s player rolls a 3, but their team is cheering the loudest, you’ll count that player’s roll as a 4. 
Students re-roll in case of a tie, but only if the tie occurs after you add the cheering bonus. 
After the first two students roll and you determine who gets the point, those students run back to their teams, hand off their die, and the next students run up. The team with the most points after everyone has rolled wins. 
Explain that when we pray for someone, it’s like we’re cheering for them. We’re asking God to help them, just like Elijah prayed for the dead boy. Our prayers for someone else can help God decide to help that person.


Repentance

Change of Heart

Students will cut out two hearts from construction paper, tissue paper, or wrapping paper. Tell them that the first heart represents a heart that is sinful. Joseph’s brothers’ hearts were sinful when they threw Joseph down the well and sold him as a slave. Have the students decorate their first heart to represent a sinful heart in some way. It could be black with the “dirt” of sin, crumpled up or torn to show that it’s not in the best shape, or have words written on it that name sinful attitudes: greedy, hate, jealousy, envy, anger, selfish, etc. 
The second heart represents a heart that changes to be like God wants us to be. Joseph’s brothers’ heart changed when they showed that they were willing to become Joseph’s slaves to save their brother Benjamin. This second heart can be new or shiny or list pure attitudes (love, kindness, peaceful, giving, etc.) to show the change. 


Change My Heart

Everyone, close your eyes. I want you to think for a second to yourself and ask Jesus if there’s anything in your life He wants you to change… Ask Him if you’re doing anything bad that He wants you to stop doing… Ask Him if there’s anything good that He wants you to start doing.



Confessing Our Sins

Have students spread out around the room to pray quietly. Ask them to think about wrong things they’ve done that they can remember. After a minute, direct them to ask God to forgive them for those wrong things. After another minute, tell students to listen to what God wants to say back to them in their heart.



Hot Potato

Have students stand in a circle. Give the potato to one child and have him pass it to their right, around the circle, as fast as they can while you time them for 30 seconds or so. The child holding the potato after 30 seconds is caught with it. Play a few times.

After the game, say Adam and Eve did something they shouldn't have done, didn't they? And then, when God asked them about it, they started blaming other people. Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the snake. They were passing the blame around just like we were passing that hot potato. Why do you think Adam and Eve wanted to blame someone else when they got in trouble?



If You’ve Never

This game is similar to Upset the Fruits Basket. Students sit in a circle with one less chair than players. The person without a chair stands in the middle of the circle and names something that some of the players might never have done.

They might say something like, “If you’ve never worn a pink sock…” Or, “If you’ve never ridden on a plane…” Anyone sitting down who has never done what the person in the middle says has to get up and run to a different chair. The person in the middle also tries to find an empty chair. Whoever doesn’t find a seat is in the middle.

As the last criterion, get up and say, “If you’ve never sinned…” No one should move. If someone does, explain what sin is so that they understand that everyone has sinned.



STOP Light

In this game of Freeze Tag, you’ll choose one student to be It. The rest of the group runs as normal until you turn on a light or shine your flashlight on someone. If you turn the light on and shout “Stop!” everyone but It freezes in place. If you shine your flashlight on someone, only that person freezes. The It can then tag as many people as they can until you turn the light back off, signaling that everyone can run again.

Anyone It tags stands on the sidelines. The last person becomes It for the next round.

Remind students that when we come to the Light, when we come to Jesus, we have to stop doing our bad things and start doing the right things.



Resisting Temptation

Acting Out Resisting Peer Pressure

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which someone tries to make another stop believing in Jesus. They could say that believing in Jesus is silly, or that another religion is right, or that being a Christian and following the rules is no fun, etc. The Christian then must resist the pressure the other puts on them.



Jesus Says vs. Friend Says

Play Simon Says, but use “Jesus Says” and “Friend Says.” They should only listen to you when you say “Jesus says” first. If anyone does do what you tell them when you say, “Friend says…,” they’re out.

The last one in the game is the leader for the next round.



Peer Pressure Playacting

Have students form groups of three. Give them a few minutes to think of how to act out a scene in which one or two of them pressure the other(s) to do something wrong. Then, all the groups perform their scene for the class.

You can allow them to think of their own scenarios or give them cue cards to base their scene on. Ideas include Smoking, Drinking, Doing drugs, Stealing, Lying, Making fun of someone, Cheating, Cursing, Telling a Dirty Joke, and Watching a TV Show they Shouldn’t.



Pharaoh Says

Tell students that you want them to practice not listening when someone tells them to do the wrong thing. You’re going to play Simon Says, but, now, they should only listen to you when you don’t say “Pharaoh says” first. If anyone does do what you tell them when you say, “Pharaoh says…,” they’re out.



Resisting Temptation

Divide students into two teams for a slightly modified game of Red Rover. The teams line up facing each other on either side of your play area. They link hands with the students next to them. 
You’ll call the name of one of the students on Team A. That student must then break away from his team and try to break through the linked hands of two members of Team B. If that student breaks through, they get a point for their team. If Team B resists the charging student, Team B gets a point. 
Next, call a student from Team B to try to break through Team A’s line. 
Play as long as time permits, alternating which team is charging and which is defending. 
At the end, explain to students that a member of the opposite team is like a temptation trying to get into our hearts. The devil sends temptations toward us all the time because he wants us to do something wrong. But we have to be strong and resist those temptations. We can’t let them break through.



Salvation

Born Again Relay

Remind students that Nicodemus wondered how a man could be born when he was old. Say, He didn’t understand that Jesus didn’t mean our bodies. He meant that He wants to give our spirits a fresh start. But when we first believe in Jesus, we are kind of like babies. We don’t know very much about God or Jesus or how we’re supposed to live. Then, we learn and grow up to be the mature people God wants us to be.

So, to act that out, we’re going to play a game in which your team goes from an old man like Nicodemus to a baby that was just born to a mature person.

One by one, the team members perform the following actions. Only once all of the team members have complete each leg can the team move on to the next leg. The first team to have all of their members complete all three legs wins.

Leg 1. All of the team members walk slowly like an old man.
Leg 2. All of the team members crawl like a baby.
Leg 3. All of the team members run like a mature person.



Christian Story Interview

Have students pair up and ask each other the following questions. They’ll then present their partner’s answers as a reporter. They can write the answers down if they want. 
What is your name?
How old are you?
When did you first hear about Jesus?
When was the first time you went to a church?
When was the first time you came to this church?
Why do you believe in Jesus?


Poor in Spirit Freeze Tag

Divide students into two teams. Team A is It. They try to tag the members of the other team. When a member of Team B is tagged, they freeze in place. They can then call out for one of their team members to tag and unfreeze them. A teammate cannot tag a frozen member unless that person calls out for help.

The round ends when Team A tags all of the members on Team B or after 5 minutes. Afterward, switch roles and play again.

Remind students that we’re poor in spirit and can’t save ourselves. We need to ask Jesus to save us, just like they need to call on their teammates to unfreeze them.


Salvation Stories

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture of someone deciding to believe in Jesus. It can be any type of person of any age and in any circumstance. Have them explain their pictures to the group once everyone is finished.



Taking Our Place

Play a game of dodgeball with soft play balls or paper wads. When one team starts to accumulate a lot of players in the “Out” zone, run in and say that you’ll take their place being out. They can get back in the game. Do the same for the other team. Keep doing it as long as time allows. Then, explain that just like you were taking the place of people who were out, Jesus took our place on the cross. He took our punishment so that we could be forgiven for our sins.



Taking Our Place (Version 2)

An alternative is a game of two-team tag. Take the place of students who are tagged and out of the game.



Taking Our Place (Version 3)

Divide students into two teams for a game of Freeze Tag. Choose one team to be It, chasing the other team. Then, choose one student from the team being chased. They are “Jesus.” They cannot be tagged. They can go stand in the place of a frozen team member, allowing them to run again. When “Jesus” takes the place of someone else, they must stay there for 3 seconds since Jesus was in the grave for three days.

Before the game, set a timer for 3 or 5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. If the team chasing the other gets everyone out within that time limit, they win. If they don’t, the team being chased wins.

Switch roles and play again.



Treasure Hunt

Hide a picture of a treasure chest in any room where students are allowed to go. Draw a simple from your room to the room where you hid the treasure. Draw an X to mark the spot where you hid the treasure.

Give students the map and tell them to go look for the treasure. Let the student who found the treasure first hide it so that the rest of the group can look for it again. Help them draw the map quickly. 
Continue playing as long as time allows, or until everyone has had a chance to hide the treasure. Remind students that the treasure we get is being in God’s Kingdom and going to Heaven when we die.



Two Paths

Make two paths using pieces of paper on the ground. One path is one sheet of paper wide. The other is three sheets of paper wide. The wide path leads out of the building or to a closet or something (a dead end). The narrow path leads to the snack area or some other sort of prize.

Tell children that they all have to decide which path to follow on their own.

When the children all make the right choice and come to the snack area, they get a free snack or other prize you’ve set out. It’s not as good as Heaven, but it is something good for them waiting at the end.



With Me or Against Me

In this game of tag, a player’s own teammates can turn against them. Divide the students into two teams. Each team is trying to tag the other. But when you shout “Against!” players can only tag members of their own team. When you shout “With!” the teams work together against the opposite team again. The winner is the last student in the game.



Serving Jesus

Good and Faithful Servant

Tell the students that you’re going to play a game in which you’re the Master, and they’re your servants. You’re going to name something you want, and they have 15 seconds to bring you what you asked for.

Anything that meets your criteria counts. If a student can’t bring you what you asked for within 15 seconds, they’re out. Items you already have in front of you count if they can apply it to meet the new criteria. The last one in the game wins and becomes the Master for the next round.

Some ideas of what to ask for include:

Something of a certain color
Something of a certain shape
Something that reminds you of the Bible
Something that reminds you of Jesus
Something you would use for a certain purpose

Part of the fun could be naming criteria that a lot of items meet and then narrowing it down to criteria that only a few items in your area meet.

Play 2-3 rounds and then explain that they were all good servants because they all tried to bring you what you asked for. Even though some of them couldn’t find what you wanted, none of them said they wouldn’t do it. They all tried.



Shoe Swap

Students and the leader sit in a circle and take their shoes off, leaving them in front of their chair. The leader then calls out a description for more than one pair of shoes. Whoever is sitting in a chair with a pair of shoes matching that description has to get up and move to another chair.

Anytime someone sits in the chair with the leader’s shoes in front of them, they have to say, “I’m not worthy!” and then, call out the next description.

Description ideas include colors, laces, open-toed, tennis shoes, dress shoes, Velcro, etc.

Explain that we’re not worthy to serve Jesus, but He still lets us serve Him because He loves us.



Spiritual Fruit

Fruit Harvest Tribute

Scatter wads of paper on the floor and around the room to stand for fruit. Give students a 10-second time limit and tell them to collect as many pieces as they can to bring to you. 
After 10 seconds, yell, “Stop!” It’s the end of the harvest season. The student who brings you the most strips wins.

Play a few times to give others a chance to win.



Gathering the Harvest

Divide students into two teams and have them line up at one side of the room. Give each team a bowl. At the other end of the room, place a bowl full of fruit or small wads of paper to stand for fruit. One by one, the members of each team run to their bowl and bring back a single piece of fruit. They then add their piece of fruit to the team’s bowl. The first team to retrieve all their pieces of fruit wins.


Good Fruit Relay

Divide students into two teams and have them line up at one side of the room. Give each team a bowl. At the other end of the room, place a bowl full of fruit mixed with twigs and leaves. One by one, the members of each team run to their bowl and bring back a single piece of fruit, leaving the twigs and leaves in the bowl. They then add their piece of fruit to the team’s bowl. The first team to retrieve all their pieces of fruit wins.

Say, You put all the good fruit in your team’s bowl, but now, we have all of these leaves and twigs leftover. What should we do with them? (Suggest that kids could eat them along with their fruit. Then, let them convince you to throw them away.)


Storytelling

Creative Storytelling

Split the students into groups of three and tell them they have to tell the Bible story in a new way. They can act it out, make up a song or rap about it, tell a joke about it, or anything else they think of. Give them a few minutes to plan and rehearse, and then, each group will present to the class.


Storytelling Sequence

Kids sit in a circle, each telling one sentence of a story. When it’s their turn to make up a sentence, they hold the flashlight under their chin so that it lights up their face as if they were at a campfire telling ghost stories.


Talents and Spiritual Gifts

Acting Out Using Our Talents

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which one or two are using one of the talents the group mentioned in a way that either benefits other Christians or helps reach out to unbelievers.



Becoming a Judge

Hand out drawing supplies and tell kids that you want them to draw themselves acting like a new Judge in Israel. They can draw themselves in a single scene or in a comic strip.

Remind them of the Judges you’ve studied so far to give them ideas of what they could be like as a Judge. Say something like,

Ehud was sneaky when he told King Eglon he had a special message for him.

Deborah was brave when she led the Israelites in battle against the Moabites.

Gideon had to rely on God to help him defeat the Midianites with only 300 men.

Samson listened to God’s special rules, and God made him super strong.

What would you be like if you were a Judge? Draw a scene or a comic strip of what you would do and how God would help you.

When students are finished, have each of them share their drawing.



Distraction Reaction

Have students line up at one end of your playing area. Set up a bowl of dry cereal or other food behind each one of them. Keep a large empty bowl in front of you. 
Tell students that their goal is to race to the other side of the playing area. Do not mention the bowls of food yet. 
When you say, “Go!” students will start racing. But almost immediately after you say, “Go!” say, “Wait! I need you all to take one piece of the food behind you and bring it over here to put in this empty bowl. It’s to help feed hungry people. Then, you can go back and line up for the race.” 
Once they’re all lined up, do the same thing. Repeat the process a few times until students become frustrated. Then, let them race and eat the snack in their bowls. 
Explain that God gives us all different jobs to do in the church so that we can all focus on what we feel called to do.


God’s Super Heroes

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw a picture illustrating that God has given them the power to do right and spread His message.


How Can I Serve God Better?

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils and have them draw a picture of how they could imagine themselves serving God when they get older. When they’re finished, have them explain their drawings to the class.



Superhero

Give students drawing supplies and tell them to think of one talent that they have, one thing that they’re good at, and draw themselves as a superhero based on that ability. There can be athletic superheroes, smart superheroes, and friendly superheroes. 
Tell them to be creative. Help them to think of their talents. Once they’ve drawn their superheroes, ask them to think of how a superhero with that talent could help at church. Again, tell them to be creative in their answers. 
As they’re answering, write down each student’s talent and how they could help at church on the whiteboard. Once all the students have answered, show them the board. 
Ask them to imagine all of their superheroes combining to make one really powerful superhero. Explain to them that that is what it’s like when everyone helps at church. We’re all combining our talents to make one really good church. 
And then, when all the churches combine, and all the Christians work together for Jesus, then our superhero begins really powerful. 
If someone isn’t helping, then the church isn’t as good because we’re losing that person’s talent. Our superhero church isn’t as powerful. Encourage students to think of ways that they can help at church to make the church and the larger Body of Christ really cool like a superhero.


Mock Election

Announce that you’re going to play a game to decide which student will be the next leader of (your country, your class, your church, or any other organization your kids will relate to). 
Explain that everyone will vote for who they want the new leader to be. Even the teacher will vote. Your election will happen in three phases: nominations, questions and answers, and voting. 
Phase 1: Nominations. Kids can nominate themselves or another member of the class. When they nominate someone, have them state why they think that person would make a good leader. A student can decline the nomination if they don’t want to be leader. Once students are finished making their nominations, write the names of all the nominees down on strips of paper and put them in a non-see-through container. This is where the teacher will pull their vote from at the end. 
Phase 2: Questions and Answers. Think of three questions you want the nominees to answer. They can be serious or silly questions about problems your organization (country, class, church, etc.) needs to solve. After you finish asking your premade questions, allow kids time to ask questions that they think of. Nominees can also answer each other questions. Make sure the questions and discussion remain appropriate and respectful. 
Phase 3: Voting. Have each child come up to you and tell you who they want to vote for. Tally up the votes. Say, Based on student votes alone, (student’s name) is the winner! But I haven’t made my vote yet. I will tell you my vote before the end of class, and then, we’ll see who wins the final election. 
Conclusion: Remind students that God chooses the leaders. Explain that for this election, you’re pretending to be God. So, whoever you vote for, that person wins. Then, randomly draw a name from the strips of paper you made for all of the nominees. Announce the winner of the election of and congratulate them on being “God’s” chosen leader.


No, No, Chosen!

In this version of Duck, Duck, Goose! students sit in a circle, and one student or leader decides which person they want to choose.

Explain that God chooses certain people for special jobs.


Pyramid Race

Students divide into teams to build a human pyramid as quickly possible. Point out that the person on top of the pyramid looks like the leader. But they couldn’t be on top of the pyramid if their other teammates hadn’t helped them. The main leader needs other leaders to help them, just like Moses needed other leaders to help him.

Mix up the teams and play again.


Talent Time

Have students perform a mix of activities to show that everyone has different talents.

Some examples include running a race, seeing who can kick a ball or paper wad the furthest, seeing who can do math problems the fastest, seeing who can answer the most questions about the Bible, seeing who can bust out the best dance moves or sing the best, seeing who can tell the best joke or do the best funny voice

You can run the game as a Decathlon with different stations or as a talent show with volunteers to perform in each category. At the end, you can ask for volunteers to show any talents that you didn’t already name.


Thankfulness

Acting Out Giving Thanks

Divide students into groups of two or three. Have each group decide on and act out a scene depicting how they can give thanks to God.



Complaining Communication

The leader starts off telling a fictitious story about something bad that happened. The students’ goal is to then think about all the good things that might have happened afterward.

An example might be, “I went to the fair the other day and dropped my ice cream cone.”

The students could then add, “But the ice cream vendor saw what happened and gave me a new ice cream cone for free. Then, someone stole a lady’s purse, but the thief slipped on my spilled ice cream, and the police caught him. One of the people who saw it was an old friend of one of the police officers. They hadn’t seen each other in years, but when the person saw the police officer arresting the thief, they gave each other their phone numbers. Another person…”

Let kids be as imaginative as possible and ask them questions to prompt their creativity. The only point of the game is to think of how good things outweigh the negative in most situations.



Humble Gratitude

Have kids spread out around the room and pray silently. Direct them to think about all the ways God has helped them, including sending Jesus to take the punishment for their sins.

Then, have them acknowledge to God that they didn’t deserve His help.

Finally, have them thank Him for helping them in all the ways they listed even though they didn’t deserve it.

Remind students that God and Jesus help us because they love us.



My Judges’ Journal

Give students drawing paper and crayons or colored pencils. Have them draw themselves as a strong warrior of God on one page with the words “My Judges’ Journal.”

Remind students that the Israelites in our story weren’t alive when God brought them out of Egypt or gave them the land of Canaan. They forgot who God was. So, to make sure we don’t forget who God is, we’re going to make a journal of all the things God has done for us.

Staple a few pages to their cover and have them start their journal by writing or drawing some things God has done for them. Some ideas include giving them a family, creating them, sending Jesus to take their sins, giving them enough food every day, etc.

Tell students that they can continue writing or drawing in their journal any time God does something for them, including when He answers a prayer.



Ten Leper Relay

Divide students into two or more teams. Have one student from each team stand at the opposite end of the play area as the others. That student is “Jesus” for their team.

When you say, “Go!” the first player from each team will run toward their “Jesus” at the opposite end. “Jesus” tags them, and then that player runs back to their team.

The second player then runs toward “Jesus” and does the same. Play continues until the last player reaches “Jesus” and return to their team’s starting position. At that point, the last player then returns to “Jesus,” and “Jesus” and that player run to the rest of the team together.

The first team to have all of their team members, including “Jesus,” reach their starting area wins.



Thanking Jesus

Give students drawing supplies and have them draw one way that they can thank Jesus for helping them. When everyone is finished, have them explain their drawings.



Thanks Toss

Students stand in a circle and randomly toss a ball back and forth. Whenever someone catches the ball, they have to name one thing they’re thankful for, but it can’t be anything anyone else has said.



Thank You Letter to God

Ask kids to write or draw a thank you letter to God for all the blessings He’s given them. Direct them to remember to include Jesus dying on the cross for us.



Thank You Letters to Earthly and Heavenly Parents

Give students drawing supplies and instruct them to write two letters. One will be a thank you letter to their parents or grandparents. The other will be a thank you letter to God.

Tell the children to start their letter by thanking their parents or God for all the things that they do for them. They should then end the letter promising to honor their parents and God as the commandment teaches.

If children can’t write, they can draw their sentiments. They can draw a picture of what their parents or God do for them followed by a picture of them listening to or honoring their parents and God.



Unity

Acting Out Working Together

Divide students into groups of three or four. Have each group decide on and act out a scene in which a group of Christians from other churches or countries can work together to do something.



If You…

This game is similar to Upset the Fruits Basket. Students sit in a circle with one less chair than players. The person without a chair stands in the middle of the circle and names something that some of the players might have in common. 
They might say something like, “If you’ve never worn a pink sock…” Or, “If you’ve ever ridden on a plane…” Or, “If you have brown hair.” Anyone sitting down who matches what the person in the middle says has to get up and run to a different chair. The person in the middle also tries to find an empty chair. Whoever doesn’t find a seat is in the middle. 
At the end, comment about how the students all had a lot of things in common and a lot of things that weren’t in common.


Worship

Acting Out Worship

Divide students into groups of three or four. Have each group decide on and act out one part of your church service. After each group, briefly discuss why your church includes that in its weekly worship. Point out that doing those actions are part of the way you make the Sabbath a holy day.



From Your Heart

Lead kids in singing a familiar praise song or teach them a new one. Spend some time talking about the meaning of the words. Then, sing it again and ask kids to think about the words as they’re singing. Ask them to think if they truly believe and mean what they’re singing.

Explain that in the story today, Jesus tells us that God wants us to worship Him from our hearts and to mean what we say.



Mini Church Service

To emphasize that kids can worship and pray anywhere, take some time to walk through the elements of a church service. Do any or all of the following:

Sing a praise song.
Choose a student to lead a prayer.
Choose a student to tell what a Bible passage or verse means.
Choose one or more students to give a testimony or praise.
Take an offering.
Choose a student to make an announcement.



Challenges

(The following activities can be used to apply to a variety of topics.)

Eat It!

Before class, place various food or beverage items in individual paper bags. Close the bags and line them up on a table. Suggestions include a bottle of water, a cookie, a piece of fruit, a package of crackers, a juice box, etc.

Divide the students into two teams. Call the first student from each team forward and set the first bag in front of them. Do not show them what’s in the bag. Tell them that if they can eat what is in the bag in a certain time limit, they’ll get a point for their team. But only one of them will get a chance to eat it. If the person eating it can’t finish it within the time limit, the other team gets a point.

Start the time limit at 1 minute and ask the player from Team A if they can eat what’s in the bag within 1 minute. If they say they can, ask the player from B how fast they can eat it. The two players each take turns reducing the time until one of them doesn’t think they can eat it faster than the other. At that point, they challenge their opponent to eat it within the time limit by saying “Prove it.”

Award the point based on whether the player eats or drinks the item in the specified time limit. Then, call the next two players up and start again, this time starting with the player from Team B.

Play until all students have had a chance to participate.



Find a Pair

Name an item around your room that matches another item in some way (color, shape, identical match, etc.). The first student to bring you the matching item wins and gest to name the next item.



Good or Bad?

Divide students into two teams. Then, show students pictures of a variety of items, or name a variety of items, and ask if the items are Good, Bad, or Both? Each team must answer unanimously and provide a reason for their answer. They get a point for each item they identify correctly. The team with the most points at the end wins. 
Some examples of items include: 
1. Bacteria (Both good and bad because it can help us digest food or it can make us sick, depending on what kind of bacteria it is) 
2. Cancer (Bad) 
3. Love (Good) 
4. TV (Both, depending on what you watch) 
5. Money (Both, depending on how you get it and what you spend it on) 
6. Mosquitoes (Both because they bite people and carry diseases, but they’re also good food for things like frogs and birds) 
7. Curse words (Bad) 
8. Truth (Good)



Guess How Many?

Note: The following three games work in a series. You’ll use the same materials for each.

Before class, fill up three or more different sizes of containers with three or more different types of candy. Each container will hold its own type of candy. Count how many pieces are in each container. Then, hand each student a piece of paper and a writing utensil for them to write down how many pieces they think are in each container.

See whose guess is the closest on each of the containers.

Will it Fit? – Using the same containers as you used in the first game (or fill a variety of containers with water if you decide the skip first game) and pull out a number of empty containers. Again, they should all be different shapes and sizes.

For each full container, have students write down what empty containers the contents will fit into. For instance, if you have three full containers and three empty containers, have them write down whether they think Full Container 1 will fit into Empty Container 1, Empty Container 2, and Empty Container 3. They can answer yes or no for each empty container.

Then, pour the contents of each full container into each empty container to demonstrate whether the contents fit.

See which students guess correctly.

Love and Hate – Using the candy and the containers from the previous two games, have each child come up and answer a question based on the Bible. They should be fairly easy trivia or review questions for your students to answer.

If the student answers correctly, let them choose two types of candy. When they don’t choose one of the types, ask if they hate the type they didn’t choose. If they answer no, clarify that they don’t hate it but that they like the type or types they did choose better.

If the student answers incorrectly, let them choose one type of candy for trying. Again, point out that they must like one type of candy over the others for them to make their selection.

Play until all students have had a chance to answer a question and make their candy selection. You can keep the rest of the candy in your containers for future weeks.



How Much Does it Weigh?

Bring in a kitchen or body weight scale and make a game show out of having kids guess how much various items weigh. Choose only one student at a time to come forward and answer your questions. 
Round 1. Gather a variety of items and simply have kids guess how much they weigh. 
Round 2. Weigh an item and have kids guess how much lighter or heavier the next object will be. 
Round 3. Set a target weight limit and have kids bring you an item they think will be as close to that as possible. If it’s more than a pound lighter or heavier, reject it.


Monkeys in the Middle

Form students into three groups. Two groups stand on either side of your play area. The third group stands in the middle. The two groups on the end throw or rolls the balls (or paper wads) back and forth to each other. The third group tries to intercept them.

When someone from the group in the middle gets one of the balls, it’s out of play. Set it to the side. Play continues until the middle group intercepts all the balls. Then, switch which group is in the middle. Play until all groups have been in the middle at least once.

Part 2 – This time, tell the students that their goal is to rotate as quickly as possible. The groups on the end want to throw their balls to the group in the middle and then rotate as quickly as possible. The group in the middle goes to side A. The group on side A goes to side B. The group on side B goes to the middle. Time each round to see if they can get faster and faster.



Mother, May I?

Choose one student to be Mother or Father. The rest of the students stand facing the Mother or Father in a row. The Mother or Father randomly chooses a student and tells them that they can take a certain number of baby steps, giant steps, or regular steps forward. The student, however, must ask, “Mother [or Father], may I?” and receive a “Yes” before they move. If they move without asking, they’re out of the game.

The first student to reach the line where the Mother or Father is standing wins and becomes the new Mother or Father.



Poke the Bear

Similar to the “No!” game, you’ll set a series of random objects in front of a leader or student at one end of your play area. The chosen person (the Bear) secretly decides which object will be their trigger. One by one, students from the other side of the play area run up and take one of the objects in front of the Bear. If it’s not the Bear chosen object, the Bear does nothing and the student stays in the play area. If the person takes the Bear’s chosen object, the Bear roars and chases after everyone, including those who haven’t taken their turn yet. Anyone the Bear tags is out. The last one left is the winner.

Part 2 – This time, when the Bear starts to chase after the kids, start counting. The Bear can tag as many students as possible, but when you reach the number 3 on your count, they have to stop and either go back to their place or take a normal place in the game.



Promises, Promises

Set a cookie or small prize in individual paper bags or under individual boxes. In this game show type activity, call one student contestant forward. They are the Prize Giver for the round. That student (the Prize Giver) can then choose two more student contestants to come forward. They are the Promisers.

The Prize Giver chooses one of the bags and, without opening it, asks what the Promisers will do for them if they will give one of them the prize inside the bag. The Promisers can make up anything they want, but they can only promise one thing. The Prize Giver then chooses their favorite promise and gives that student the bag with the prize inside.

Play until every student has had a chance to play both roles and every student has won a prize.



Pulled Apart

Divide students into two teams for a modified tug of war. The first team divides their members in half, taking each side of the rope. The second team holds the middle of the rope. The goal of the team in the middle is to pull the ends of the rope to the middle. The goal of the team on either end is to keep the rope taught so that there’s no slack in the middle.

After the first round, switch which team is on the ends and which is in the middle and play again.



Sneaky Stealing!

Place a variety of items in the center of your play area. Then, divide the kids into two teams. One team will spread out in your play area and pretend to be sleeping. With their eyes closed, they’ll listen for the other team coming to sneak up on them. If they hear any movement, they raise the alarm and chase and tag the opposite team members. Then, the two teams switch roles. 
If the sneaking team makes it to the center of the play area and picks up the items, they win. Then, the two teams switch roles. 
Each team can choose to leave some of their members behind to give fewer members a better chance at sneaking.


Stick ‘Em Up!

Hold a contest of who can keep both arms raised in the arm the longest. Next, have students form a circle and hold hands as they all raise their arms. Time how long they can all keep their hands raised.



Try Not to Laugh

Make funny faces at the kids. The first one that laughs has to get up and make funny faces at the group. Keep playing until everyone has had a chance to stand up. If some are good at not laughing, call on them to make faces.

When the game is finished, tell students that laughing is fun, but we shouldn’t laugh at someone when they’re being serious. In the story today, there’s going to be a woman who laughed at God when He said something serious.

Part 2 – Hold the ultimate silly tournament. Students pair up and make funny faces at each other simultaneously. The first one to laugh is out. The other pairs up with another winner until you find the one child who is the best at not laughing.



Two for Two

Divide students into two teams and ask the questions below. The first team to shout the answer gets a point. The team with the most points at the end wins. 
1. What happens twice a day? (The clock reads the same time.)
2. What two body parts do people see with? (Eyes.)
3. What two body parts do people walk with? (Legs.)
4. What two body parts do people walk on? (Feet.)
5. What two body parts do people hear with? (Ears.)
6. What two body parts do people filter their blood with? (Kidneys.)
7. What two body parts do people pick things up with? (Hands.)
8. What two body parts do people breathe with? (Nostrils or lungs.)


What Am I?

Tape names or pictures of animals on students’ backs. They have to figure out what animal they are by asking each other yes or no questions.



What are the Odds?

Make a grid on the floor with six rows across and as many columns as you have students. Have the students line up at one side of the grid, each in front of one column. They take turns rolling a die. The winner is the first student to roll 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 in a row. 
Students do not move forward until they roll the next number in their sequence. 
Play again to give someone else a chance to win. 
Ask, Was it difficult to get the number you wanted? (Show students that the chances of getting their number were 1:6 every time.)


What is It?

Show kids close-up images of everyday objects and let them guess what the images are.

Play until interest fades. Then, explain that it’s difficult to tell what something is sometimes.


What Time?

Think of a time (example: 12:49 pm) and ask students to guess what time you’re thinking of. Whoever is closest then gets to think of a new time. Continue playing as long as time allows or until each student has had a turn to think of a time.



Wrong Purpose

Divide students into groups of three. Hand each group a common object and tell them that they have to come up with a skit that shows them using that object in a different way than it was made for.

Give the groups a few minutes to think of something and then let each group perform their skit. As each group finishes, ask them why their object wouldn’t work very well for the purpose they showed?



Activities for Specific Stories

(The following activities go with certain stories of the Bible but don’t teach a specific theme. They’re ordered by book of the Bible.)

“What’s Missing?”

Place a variety of objects on the table or around the room. Have students close their eyes, and then, take one of the objects and put it in your pocket or outside the room. Have students open their eyes and guess what’s missing. Give them hints if they can’t figure it out. The first student to correctly guess what was missing then gets to take the next object.

Play until everyone has had a turn taking an object or as long as time allows. Explain that when God took (Enoch or Elijah) up to Heaven, His body wasn’t on earth anymore. God took his spirit and his body up to Heaven. When we die, God will take only our spirit to Heaven. Then, when Jesus comes back to earth, He’ll bring our spirits with Him and will raise our bodies back from the dead to be like new. Then, our spirits will go back in our bodies and we’ll live forever with God and Jesus.



Ark Animals Bingo

Create Bingo Cards using the names of different animals that might have been on the ark. Use animal crackers as the markers. Put all the animal crackers on a plate in the middle of the table. When you call an animal’s name, kids will grab an animal cracker from the middle to put on their card. Tell them that their goal as they’re marking their card is to make matches with their animal crackers because God told Noah to take two of every kind of animal on the ark. When you’re finished with the game, kids can eat some of the animal crackers.

Some ideas for animals include Dog, Cat, Horse, Rhino, Monkey, Dove, Pigeon, Giraffe, Elephant, Lion, Lizard, Snake, and Camel.



Chase the Coat

Hand one student an old garment or something to represent to Joseph’s coat. Make a scene of bestowing your wonderful gift on that student. Then, tell everyone else to chase that student. At any time, the student can call out the name of another student or leader and toss them the garment. When they do, everyone else freezes and that person takes the garment. They get a 3-second head start and then everyone chases the new garment-holder. If someone gets tagged before they can call out someone’s name, they’re out. The game ends only one garment-holder and one chaser are left. 
Afterward, ask, Why was everyone chasing the person who had the garment? Why weren’t you chasing anyone else? (The reason is because they had the garment and no one else did. It made the person who had the garment special.)


Freeing the Prisoner!

Divide the students into two teams on opposite sides of your play area. A line divides the play area. A “Benjamin” from each team goes to stand on the play area’s boundary, behind the opposite team. They are in the opposite team’s prison. The rest of the team then tries to reach their Benjamin without being tagged. The opposing team can tag them anytime they cross the middle line into their territory. The strategy is for the teams to send some of their members to free their Benjamin while leaving others behind to tag members of the opposite team trying to cross over to free the Benjamin they’re guarding. When a player crosses the line and gets tagged by a defending team member, they’re out. The game is over when one team reaches and frees their Benjamin.



Wrapping Baby Moses

Remind students of how Moses’ mother put him in a basket and put him by the river for the princess to find him. Half of the kids line up on one side of the room, the other half on the other side. In the middle of the room is a baby doll, a blanket, and a basket. On “Go”, one student from one side of the room runs up and wraps the baby in the blanket and places it in the basket. As soon as the baby is in the basket, a student from the other side of the room runs out and unwraps the baby. Then a wrapper wraps, etc. The goal is to see how much time it takes for every student to complete their part. Play a couple of rounds, switching which side wraps and which side unwraps. Try to beat your previous times.



Moses and the Burning Bush

Remind students of how Moses saw God talking to him out of the burning bush and had to take off his shoes to show respect for God. Kids run in a semi-lit room. When someone turns on a light or shines a flashlight, everyone has to stop and take off their shoes as quickly as they can. Take turns letting people turn on the light or have the flashlight.



Finding Moses

Tell the students to close their eyes. Then, take the baby doll and basket (or a smaller version of it) and hide it somewhere in the room. Tell students to open their eyes and find the baby Moses. The first student who finds it gets to hide it for the next round. 
An alternative would be allowing the student to hide themselves. In that case, they are Moses, and their hiding place is the basket.


Impersonating the Plagues

Give each child or group a card with a plague written on it. They have 2 minutes to figure out how to act out that plague without using words. The plagues are the river turning to blood, frogs everywhere, gnats everywhere, flies everywhere, cows dying, sores on everyone, hail, locusts eating everything, total darkness, death of the oldest children. You can also act out the plagues as a whole class.



Crossing the Red Sea

Divide students into two teams. One team is the Israelites, the other the Egyptians. Have the Israelites stand a few feet in front of the Egyptians. Tell the Israelites to run in a certain direction when you say, “Go.” Tell the Egyptians to chase the Israelites, but they can’t cross a certain line. Don’t tell them where the line is. Let the Israelites cross the line. When the Egyptians do, tell them they’re out because they crossed the line. They’ll complain that that this isn’t fair, but explain that this is what God did for the Israelites. He let the Israelites cross the Red Sea (the line), but not the Egyptians. He protected the Israelites, but destroyed the Egyptians.


Desert Survival Gear Relay

You will need an adult-size pair of shoes and a large hat as well as game cards with necessary and unnecessary items pictured on them. Children will run a relay race against the clock to collect all the necessary things that the Israelites needed in the desert.

The first person in the line wears the shoes (because the Israelites were walking through sand and that’s pretty difficult) and the hat (to keep the desert sun out of their eyes). On “Go,” they run to where the game cards are and select something they think the Israelites would have needed. They run back to their team and give the shoes and hat to the next person, and the game continues.

If a team-member selects an item that the rest of them think is unnecessary, they have to run back and get something else. The game is finished when all of the necessary items have been collected. The students need to work quickly to get the best time because the Israelites had to leave Egypt and go into the desert in a hurry.

When all of the necessary items have been collected, however, point out that none of the cards had any food or water on them. Tell them that God gave the Israelites their food and water and then hand them the cards picturing those things.



Ordering the Commands

Write our print out the Ten Commandments. Cut them in half or thirds and hide the pieces of paper around the room. Kids race to find the pieces of paper and arrange the commandments. The second part of the challenge is to put the commandments in order. Kids can use Bibles for reference.



The Punishment Grid

Make a grid on the floor with half the number of columns as students you have in your class. There should be ten rows. Form the students into two teams and have the students stand beside their teammates on each side of the grid. Each student starts behind one column on the grid.

As you ask questions, students will move forward on the grid until the two teams meet in the middle. You’ll ask a question, and if students think the answer is true, they’ll raise their hand. If they think the answer is false, they’ll keep their hands down. If they get the answer right, they move up one square. If they get the answer wrong, they move back to their previous square.

When the students meet, the team with the most right answers chases the other. They are the Levites chasing the Israelites after the incident with the golden calf. The round is over when the Levites tag all the Israelites.

Play again, continuing down the list of questions and then asking some of the trickier questions over. If both teams do equally well, rule that the winners from the last round are now the Israelites, and the opposite team is the Levites.

Ask the following questions and give a brief explanation of the right answer afterward.

Questions:
1. An idol is a statue made to look like God.
2. It’s okay to do something wrong if everyone else really wants you to do it.
3. It’s okay to make a statue of God because God likes statues.
4. Aaron didn’t have a choice to make the idol. He had to do it.
5. We can make statues of Jesus, but not God.
6. God punishes people because He doesn’t like them.
7. Everyone knows what God looks like.
8. Something isn’t wrong if everyone else is doing it.
9. God likes it when we make idols of Him because they help us worship Him better.
10. We can make statues of regular people in the Bible.



Changed!

Divide students into two teams and play freeze tag, one team chasing and tagging the other. When someone is tagged, they freeze in place.

Every few moments, say, “God spoke to (the name of one of the frozen students). That student then unfreezes and can run to touch and unfreeze other frozen teammates. After a few seconds, call, “And the glory faded.” That student then freezes in places again.

The round is over when all students on one team are frozen. Play again, switching which team is chasing the other.



Crossing the Jordan

Place two ropes parallel to each other on the floor. Explain to the students that the space between the ropes is a raging river. If they touch it, they’ll be swept away and drowned. Now, have students jump across the “river” one at a time or in a group. Continue to widen the area between the ropes until it is impossible to cross. Ask, How are we going to get across the river if we can’t jump over it? I guess we’ll have to find out in our Bible story how the Israelites crossed a big river like this.



Sneak Smash

Divide kids into two teams. One team will spread out around the playing area with a stack of blocks or cushions in the middle. They’ll close their eyes and pretend to be the sleeping villagers. The other team will pretend to be Gideon coming up to smash the statues of the fake gods at night. If the “sleeping” team hears them, they stop and switch roles. 
Play as long as time permits. The team who successfully smashes the tower the most times wins.



Sneak Attack!

Divide the kids into two teams. One team will spread out in your play area and pretend to be the sleeping Midianites. With their eyes closed, they’ll listen for Gideon’s army (the other team) coming to sneak up on them. If they hear any movement, they raise the alarm and the Midianite army chases and tags Gideon’s army. Then, the two teams switch roles. 
If Gideon’s army makes it to the center of the play area, they yell and win the round. Then, the two teams switch roles. 
Play as long as time permits.


Samson Tag!

Divide students into two teams. Ask the group another riddle. The first team to get the right answer is Samson. They chase the other team, the Philistines, and win when they tag each of them. The game continues with the next riddle and an opportunity for the teams to reverse their roles.


I Won’t Leave You!

Tell students that they’re going to pretend to be Ruth and Naomi in this game. Ask them to find a partner and then, have them lock arms and each place one foot in a paper bag for a three-legged race. You can tie their legs together instead if you want.

When you say “Go!” they’ll have to work together to get from one side of the play area to the other. If they fall down or rip their bag, they go back to the starting line. The first pair to get the other side of your play area wins.

Play a second or third round if time permits.


Wheat Harvest

Scatter strips of paper on the floor for wheat. Give students a 10-second time limit and tell them to collect as many pieces as they can. 
After 5 seconds, yell, “Stop!” Explain that you are Boaz and that you own this wheat. But tell the students that since you know they are collecting the wheat because they are hungry and are trying to help their mother-in-law, Naomi, they can keep going. 
At the end, yell, “Stop!” again. It’s the end of the workday. The student with the most strips wins. Then, give each student a sack of paper strips to take home as well as what they collected already. Explain that this is what Naomi did for Ruth.



Soothing the King

Tell kids to line up one side of your play area. You stand at the other end with a toy musical instrument behind you. Tell them that you’re King Saul. When you say, “Go!” the kids will try to run past you to play the musical instrument. If you tag any of them before they can play the musical instrument, they’re out. Once one of them does play the instrument, the round is over.

Students who are still in the game return to the other side of the play area, and you signal the new round to begin. The last student in the game becomes the new King Saul.



Sling Shot

Put a soft ball in a sock and give a “sling” to each student. Put a bucket or garbage can a few feet way. Tell students that they have to swing the sock over their head and then, sling it to try to get it in the bucket. They let the sock loose along with the ball inside it.

After everyone has thrown, students retrieve their sock slings and start round two. Each time their sock lands in the bucket, they get a point. The student with the most points at the end wins. Play as long as time permits or interest continues.

Remind students that God helped David beat the huge Goliath with only a single stone.



Pacifying David

Choose something around your room. Tell students that you’re going to play a game of tag. The only way to make you stop chasing them is for them to bring you what you want. Give them a clue as to the item’s color or shape.

When one of the students brings you the item, you stop. That student is now It and they must choose a new item. Have them whisper what it is to you so that you can referee the game. If none of the students bring you want you want before you tag them all, simply choose the last student in the game to be It for the next round.



Uriah Dodgeball

Divide your play area in half and divide the students into two teams. Give each team an equal number of soft balls or paper wads to throw. They have to stay on their side of the play area. The trick is that they can only target one member of the opposite at a time. All the players throw at that one person until they’re out. Then, they decide who to target next. The first team to get all the members of the opposite team out first wins.



Solomon’s Wisdom

Divide students into groups of two or three. Give each them a piece of paper with this scenario and question written on it.

Two women were living in the same house.
Both had a baby the same week.

One of the babies died while the women were sleeping.
Both women claim that the living baby is theirs.

How can King Solomon use his wisdom to decide which woman should keep the baby?

Underneath this section, you can add a picture of two women and a baby.

Give the groups approximately five minutes to brainstorm. Then, have them present their ideas.

Explain that because Solomon didn’t which woman the baby belonged to, he said to cut the living baby in half and give one half to the first woman, and the other half to the second woman. The woman who knew that it was her baby said, “No! Give my baby to the other woman.” She was willing to give up her baby to the other woman to save her baby from being cut in two. The other woman didn’t say anything. So, Solomon knew that the woman who said not to cut the baby in half was the baby’s real mother.



Peer Pressure Playacting (Version 2)

Have students form groups of three. Give them a few minutes to think of how to act out a scene in which one or two of them pressure the other(s) to do something wrong. Then, all the groups perform their scene for the class.

You can allow them to think of their own scenarios or give them cue cards to base their scene on. Ideas include Smoking, Drinking, Doing drugs, Stealing, Lying, Making fun of someone, Cheating, Cursing, Telling a Dirty Joke, and Watching a TV Show they Shouldn’t.

Part 2 – Explain that Rehoboam lost most of his kingdom because he listened to his friends instead of the wise older people.

Have students form groups of three. Give them a few minutes to think of how to act out a scene in which one or two of them pressure the other(s) to do something wrong, but then, the person resists them. Tell them to be creative in how they might say no to someone who’s trying to get them to do something wrong. Then, all the groups perform their scene for the class.

You can allow them to think of their own scenarios or give them cue cards to base their scene on. Ideas include Smoking, Drinking, Doing drugs, Stealing, Lying, Making fun of someone, Cheating, Cursing, Telling a Dirty Joke, and Watching a TV Show they Shouldn’t.



Splitting the Kingdom

Divide students into two teams for a modified game of Red Rover. The teams line up facing each other on either side of your play area. They link hands with the students next to them. 
You’ll call the name of one of the students on Team A. That student must then break away from his team and try to break through the linked hands of two members of Team B. If that student breaks through, they get a point for their team. If Team B resists the charging student, Team B gets a point. 
Next, call a student from Team B to try to break through Team A’s line. 
Whenever a student breaks through the opposite team’s line, those two students do not link hands again. The next student from the opposing team has to try to break through the linked hands of another two students. When one team succeeds in breaking all the links of the opposing team, they win.

Explain that just like the teams were trying to split the other team up, King Rehoboam made a bad decision that ended up splitting his kingdom.


Raven Relay

Divide students into two teams and have them line up at one side of the room. If you want to use cereal, give each team a bowl. At the other end of the room, place a bowl full of cereal or a bucket of building blocks. One by one, the members of each team run to their bowl or bucket and bring back a single piece of cereal or building block. They then add their piece of cereal to the team’s bowl or add their building block to the team’s tower. The first team to retrieve all their pieces wins. 
Explain that when the students were running to get their pieces, they were like the birds flying to get food and bring it back to Elijah.


Race Ya!

Have kids test their speed in a foot race. After the first race, congratulate all the runners and remind them that God gave Elijah the power to run even faster than the horses pulling Ahab’s chariot. 
Then, you can mix up the race by requiring students to do different things on their way to finish line. Suggestions include doing jumping jacks, hopping, skipping, doing the crabwalk, spinning, and running backward.


Spy Among Us!

Have students close their eyes. Explain that when you walk among them and tap one student on the shoulder, that student is the Spy. When you tap them, they should look up and point to another student.

Have everyone open their eyes and say that the student the Spy pointed to is not the Spy. Students then have the opportunity to guess who the Spy is. If they guess more than one person, have them take a vote. If the majority votes for the actual Spy, they win and the game is over. Choose a new Spy and play again.

If the majority is wrong, the person the Spy pointed at is out. Have everyone close their eyes and then, ask the Spy to point to another student. The game continues until students guess the real Spy or the Spy is one of the last two students left. If the Spy makes it to the end, they win.

Play as long as time allows. Then, explain that your story today is about a king who thought there was a spy in his army.



Rebuilding the Temple

Divide the students into two or more teams and give and have them line up on side of your play area. Place a set of building blocks in front of each team on the other side of the play area. The blocks can be any type or size. Tell the students that their goal is to build a Temple using their blocks, but that they can only retrieve one block at a time. 
When you say, “Go!” the first student from each team runs to get a block. When they return, the second student runs to get one. The first team to retrieve all their blocks and use them to build a Temple wins. But to illustrate the lesson, you’ll yell “Bad king!” to signal each team to freeze in place and then, “Good king!” to unfreeze them. 
When the game is over, remind students that the Israelites had to stop building the Temple for a while when Israel’s enemies told the king lies about them, but that they eventually finished it when another king said they could continue building.



Right Time Bowling

Divide the students into two or more teams. Give each team a soft ball and set an empty two-liter or other lightweight item in front of each team. Set a timer for 5 minutes. When you say, “Go!” the first student from each team rolls their ball toward their two-liter. The trick is that one or more leaders pace from one side of the room to the other, walking in between the players and their two-liters. 
Students need to time their rolls so that the leader doesn’t get in front of them and block them. After they roll, they run to retrieve their ball and hand it off to the next student. Students score a point for their team each time they knock over their bottle. The team with the most points after 5 minutes wins. 
After the game, ask students, When was the best time to roll your ball? (When the leader wasn’t walking in front of them.) 
So, you saw when it was the right time, when you had an opportunity, and went for it! Today, we’re going to learn about a woman whom God made queen during a certain time so that she would have the opportunity to do something very important.


Job Relay Race

Students can run this race in teams or as individuals.

Leg 1. Skipping. At the beginning, Job was happy because everything in life was going well for him. Skip like you’re happy.

Leg 2. Flapping Arms. Then, God called all the angels to a meeting. Flap your arms like they’re angel wings.

Leg 3. Hopping with Devil Horns. Satan came to the meeting too. Hop with your fingers on your head in the shape of devil horns.

Leg 4. Hopping and Pointing Fingers. Satan didn’t’ think Job would stay faithful to God if bad things started happening to Job. Hop and point your fingers like you’re Satan pointing at Job.

Leg 5. Dragging Feet. God believed in Job, so He let Satan do bad things to Job. That made Job very sad. Drag your feet, cry, and mope like you’re sad.

Leg 6. Crippled and Rubbing “Sores”. Satan even made Job break out in painful sores all over his body. Hop on one leg and rub your arms like you have sores on them and are in pain.

Leg 7. Running and Shouting for Joy. But through it all, Job never turned against God, and that made God very happy with Job. Run and shout with joy like you’re God being happy.

Leg 8. Skipping. Then, God reward Job by making his life better again. Skip like you’re Job being happy.



Watchman

Divide students into two teams. The first team spreads out on one side of your play area and closes their eyes. Choose one of the students on that team to be the Watchman. Explain that a watchman is the lookout to see if another army is coming to attack. In this game, the Watchman won’t use their eyes though. They’ll use their ears.

The second team then tries to sneak up and tag members of the first. If the Watchman hears them sneaking up, he or she calls out, and the first team chases the second until they tag everyone. The teams then switch roles.



Fiery Furnace Tag

Divide students into two teams and set a timer for 5 minutes. The first team is the Nebuchadnezzars, and the other is the Shadrach, Meshach, Abednegos. The Shadrach team chooses one member to be an Angel. The Nebuchadnezzars chase and tag the Shadrach team. Whenever a member of the Shadrach team is tagged, they stand in the out section, the Fiery Furnace. 
The Nebuchadnezzars cannot tag the Angel until at least three members of the Shadrach team are in the Fiery Furnace. At the point, the Angel can run into the Fiery Furnace, freeing any team members who are there. If the Nebuchadnezzars tag the Angel before he or she gets to the Fiery Furnace, the game is over. If the Angel succeeds in freeing his or her teammates, the Nebuchadnezzars cannot tag the Angel again until three members of the Shadrach team are again in the Fiery Furnace. 
When the Nebuchadnezzars win or at the end of 5 minutes, switch roles and play again.


Nebuchadnezzar’s Transformation

Tell students that they’re going to pretend to be King Nebuchadnezzar. Remind them that King Nebuchadnezzar was always bragging about great he was. Tell students to brag about how great they are. Encourage them to be really dramatic about it. Then, when you yell, “Act like an animal!” tell all the students to do their best impressions of whatever animals they want to. Count to seven and then, yell, “You’re healed!” Students then act like their normal selves again. 
Remind students that God made King Nebuchadnezzar think he was an animal because he didn’t believe in God and because he was bragging about how great he was all the time, but that then, after seven years, God forgave him and healed him. 
Repeat the exercise a couple of times for fun.



In the Lions’ Den!

Divide students into two teams. Choose one student on Team A to be Daniel. The rest of the team members are Angels. Team B is the Lions. 
The Lions try to tag Daniel, but the Angels try to tag the Lions. When the Angels tag all the Lions or when the Lions tag Daniel, the round is over. Switch roles and play again. 
Remind students that God sent His angels to shut the mouths of the lions so that they wouldn’t hurt Daniel.


Reading the Invisible Writing

Prepare a few pieces of paper with invisible messages written on them. Prepare them differently if you can. Divide the students into groups of two or three and hand each group one of the pieces of paper. The first group to discover how to read it wins. Then, show each group the trick to reading their piece of paper and have them share what it says. 
The messages could read: 
1. Mene. Mene. Tikal. Parsin.
2. God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end.
3. You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting.
4. Your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians. 
Remind students that when God wrote these words, the writing wasn’t invisible, but the rest of His body was. The people could only see His hand.


Reverse Fishing

Place a large trashcan, bucket, or box, at the end of the room. Give students a blanket or towel and an action figure, doll, or stuffed animal. Students try to launch their action figure (Jonah) into the trashcan (fish’s mouth) using only their blanket (waves of the sea).

Remind students about how Jonah disobeyed God and had to be thrown into the sea to make the storm stop. Then, God saved him by sending a fish to swallow him.



The Unbelievable

Divide students into two teams. You’ll read a list of statements, and they have to vote as a team whether they believe each of your statements or not. The team with the most correct answers wins.

Here are some statements all about animals. For more general questions, try these.

1. Yogurt is made with bacteria. (True. Bacteria ferments the milk.)

2. Your ears help keep you balanced. (True. The fluid in your ears gives you a sense of balance.)

3. Zebras are the fastest land animal in the world. (False. Cheetahs are the fastest.)

4. A snake’s skin feels slimy. (False. It feels dry.)

5. Adult people have 502 bones in their body. (False. Most people only have 206 bones.)

6. DNA stands for ‘Deoxyribonucleic acid.’ (True.)

7. Crocodiles do not sweat, so they breathe through their mouth to cool down. (True.)

8. The Grand Canyon is the deepest place on earth. (False. The Mariana Trench is the deepest place we know of.)

9. Humans have been to every planet in our solar system. (False. We’ve only been to the moon so far.)

10. Jesus had a human mother, but not a human father. (True. God was Jesus’ father. God put Jesus in Mary by a miracle.)



Shepherd Tag

Choose one student to be the Shepherd. They’re It. When they tag another student, that second student is also It. They continue tagging the other players until everyone has been tagged. Explain that the shepherds went and told everyone about the birth of Jesus until the whole town of Bethlehem knew about it. 
To make the game go faster, you can choose more than one Shepherd to be It. The last student to be tagged is the starting Shepherd for the next round.



Following the Star

Shine a flashlight on the wall or on the floor. Make it go different places. Tell the students that they have to follow the light. The last one to reach a new spot is out. The last place that the light stops is where a baby Jesus and a bag of goodies are hidden. The student who finds the goodies has to share with the rest of the class.


Finding Jesus

Show students one object that will represent Jesus for your game. Have them close their eyes. Then, hide the object. Remind them that Mary and Joseph had to look for the boy Jesus. When you say, “Go!” kids race to find the object. The first one to find it gets to hide it for the next round.



Wrapping Paper Shuffle

Have students split into pairs and give them each a roll of wrapping paper. The goal is for one student to wrap the other as quickly as possible. The wrapped student must make it to the other end of the room without ripping their wrapping paper. Once they get there, they tear off their wrapping paper and use the second roll to wrap their partner. The second student then shuffles back to the starting line and rips off their wrapping paper. The first pair to complete the race without ripping their paper before they reach their individual starting lines wins. 
Afterward, remind students that the Wise Men brought Jesus gifts. The gift he wants from us is us! He simply wants us to love and follow Him.



Samaritan Seek and Find!

Choose one student to be the Samaritan. They close their eyes while the rest of the students hide. The Samaritan then tries to find each student. When they do, they shout, “I’ve found the Savior!” The last student to be found becomes the new Samaritan for the next round.



Trading All We Have

Scatter wads of paper all over the floor. Then, show students a cookie or some other sort of prize and tell them that you’ll give the prize to whoever can bring you the most paper wads at the end of 30 seconds. 
When time is up, have each student count the paper wads they gathered and give the prize to the student with the most. 
Play a few more times and then, give everyone a prize. Remind students that the man who wanted the treasure and the man who wanted the pearl traded everything they had to get them, just like we have to give up everything to make God the most important thing to us and become a part of His kingdom.


Treasure Hunt Version 2

Hide something golden in your room and tells students that you’ve hidden golden treasure. When you say, “Go!” students look for it. The first one to find it gets to re-hide it while the others close their eyes and count to 10. Play until each student has had a chance to hide the golden object. 
At the end, explain that you’re lesson today is on the Golden Rule.


Sand vs. Stone

Give each student a tray full of sand and a tray full of rocks. Then, give each student 10 playing cards to build two card houses out of. They’ll use five cards to build a house on the sand and five cards to build a house on the rocks.

When they’re finished, have them gently blow on the side of each house. If either one of their houses stand, give them a point. You can have many winners in this game.



What are You Building Your House On?

Students take turns rolling a die, or you can give them all a die and let them roll simultaneously. Each student will roll 10 times, earning or losing points based on the following die rolls.

As students roll, announce the following:

On a 1, they built their house on the sand and lose 2 points.

On a 2, they built their house on the rock and earn 2 points.

On a 3, they built their house on the sand and the rain washed it away. They lose 1 point.

On a 4, they built their house on the sand, and the wind blew it down. They lose 1 point.

On a 5, they built their house on the rock and the rain couldn’t wash it away. They earn 1 point.

On a 6, they built their house on the rock, and the wind couldn’t blow it down. They earn 1 point.

Remind students that the wind and the rain that come at us are temptations and hard times in life. If we’re following Jesus’ teaching, we’ll be able to stand up to those things, like a house built on the rock. If we’re not following Jesus’ teachings, those things will tear us down, like a house built on the sand.



Slipping Through the Crowd

Divide students into teams. They stand at opposite ends of your play area. When you say, “Go!” all of the players from Team A will try to run past Team B. If someone from Team B tags them, they’re out.

The remaining members of Team A go back to line up on their side. You’ll then signal Team B to run and try to get past Team A.

The game continues until all the players on one of the teams are out. The remaining player slipped through the crowd, just as Jesus did.



Tax Collector Tag

Give each student two pennies or two playing cards. Then, choose 2-4 students to be Collectors. The Collectors are It. Their goal is to collect as many of the pennies or playing cards as they can. When they tag someone, they have to bring you one of that person’s pennies or playing cards. If they want to keep one of the pennies or playing cards, they have to ask for both of the person’s pennies and playing cards. The winner is the Collector who has the most pennies or playing cards at the end of the game.

When a student has no more pennies or playing cards, they’re out of the game.

Play a few rounds until everyone has had a chance to be a Collector. Then, explain that the tax collectors in Jesus’ time worked for the Roman government. They had to take some of the money they collected to the Roman governor. But to be able to keep some money for themselves and get rich, they made the people they were collecting money from pay them extra. That was a mean thing to do, and most of the people hated the tax collectors for charging them extra money.



The Wolves and the Shepherd

Divide students into two teams. Draw a line halfway between your play area. For the first round, Team A is the Wolves and Team B is the Sheep. Choose one student from Team B to be the Shepherd.  
The Wolves line up on the far side of your play area. The Sheep line up five feet in front of them. The Shepherd stands at the center line. 
When you say, “Go!” the Sheep start running toward the center line with the Wolves chasing them. If a Wolf tags a Sheep, the Sheep is out. But once a Sheep crosses the center line, the Shepherd can start chasing the Wolves. If the Shepherd tags a Wolf, the Wolf is out. 
The Sheep are not safe until they reach the far end of the play area past the Shepherd. The Wolves are safe once they retreat beyond their starting line. 
The game is over when all of the Wolves or all of the Sheep are out. Then, reverse the roles and play again.


Dogs and Leftovers

Choose one student to be the Master. They turn around with the rest of the students behind them. They then throw a ball or paper wad (their Leftovers) over their head behind them. 
The rest of the students are the Dogs who try to catch the Leftovers. The student who catches the ball or picks it up then has to run from the rest of the Dogs to keep their prize. 
If they make it in front of the Master, they’re safe and become the new Master. If another Dog tags them, they’re out of the game, and the Dog who tagged them becomes the new Master.


Mary and Martha Marathon

Have students line up in a row on one side of the room, facing you. When you yell “Martha!” students should run as fast as they can to the other side of the room, then back to their original side, then back to the other side of the room until you yell “Mary!”

When you yell “Mary!” everyone must immediately stop. When you call “Martha!” again, they continue running. Have them start and stop a couple of times. Yell “Martha!” a couple of times in a row to see if you can trick the students. Do the same with “Mary!”

If any students start or stop at the wrong time, they’re out. The last one in wins.

Play a couple of times and once all the students are tired of running, have them sit down for the lesson.



Lazarus Tag

Pick one student to be Death and another student to be Jesus. Death is It. When they tag someone, that person must freeze in place, like they’re dead. Jesus, however, can tag the person and unfreeze them, just like Jesus brought Lazarus back from the dead. Death cannot tag Jesus. Play as long as time allows, switching roles every so often so that everyone gets to be Death and Jesus.


Prison Tag

Pick someone to be King Herod. They are “It.” Pick another person to be the angel. Everyone else is Peter. When Herod tags someone, they have to freeze, like Peter being in jail. But the Angel can come to tag the person and unfreeze them, like the angel setting Peter free. Herod cannot tag the Angel. Let everyone have a chance at being Herod and the Angel.



Saul Sees the Light

Tell the students that they are going to pretend to be Saul. Tell them to spread out and act like they are walking to the city to arrest all the Christians.

Dim the lights and tell the students that when you turn on the light, they have to pretend that Jesus is appearing to them and get down on their knees as fast as possible and shout, “I believe!”

The person who kneels the fastest gets to control the light next.



Peter and Cornelius

Choose one student to be Cornelius and 1-3 students to be Messengers. Cornelius secretly tells the Messengers to tag one of the other students. The chosen student is Peter.

When the Messengers tag Peter, Peter runs to Cornelius and tells that student something about Jesus. Peter then becomes the new Cornelius with new Messengers.



Picking Up the Snake

Write the names of various animals on index cards and mix all the cards up facedown. When you say, “Go!” all the students pick up one of the cards and flips it over. Everyone chases the student with the snake card. Once someone tags them, mix up the cards and play again.

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Find more resources on my Free Children's Sunday School Lessons page!






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