Outreach and Get-Together Ideas
Is your Sunday school experiencing the summer slump? Summer is a great time for activities, outreach, fellowship, and bringing in new prospects. Getting parents and children together for special events is a great way to get people excited about Sunday school and church. Below are some fellowship ideas. If you have any ideas or have recently had a get together we would love to hear from you.
Bible Story Themes - Harvest Festival Activities
David and Goliath
David and Goliath Ball Toss Game - Paint a large Goliath on a piece of masonite or smooth board. Have the children throw sponge balls at him. The object of the game is to hit him in the head like David did.
David and Goliath Sling shot booth - sling shot booth aiming at a giant. Use bean bags for the stones. Decorate a sheet of paper to look like a giant or use a punching bag. I've seen them in dollars stores. Jamie Morrel
We made a Giant (David and Goliath) for the kids to throw bean bags through a hole in his head. Bev
How to Print or Copy these instructions.
Toss Game - This game was designed for our annual Harvest Festival thathad a Bible Story Theme. Make an ark out of cardboard boxes and wood (I used a lot of craft sticks) or draw an ark on a large piece of wood and cut holes in it for the door and windows. The object of the games is to get a beanie baby animal into the ark by throwing the animal through the hole.
Toss Game - I used large sheets of cardboard and traced the designs using an overhead and then painted them using a very simple coloring book. Cut out holes in the faces and use as a toss game. The prize for participating? Animal crackers, of course!! Carol Weddle
Balloon Game - Divide the children into two teams. Blow up balloons and put into piles. Give the first child in line a balloon and a broom. Each child must "herd" their balloon onto the ark (a cardboard box or a clothes basket). Great time to talk about how difficult it is for us to follow God leading our lives when we want to go another way.
Toss Game - Float a boat in a tub and from a distance, kids try to throw a ping-pong ball into the boat. Jamie Morrel
Daniel and the Lions Den
Throw bean bags at stand up lions. Decorate 2 liter bottles with fun foam to make them look like lions. Jamie Morrel
I found a piece of clip art of a lion with it's mouth wide open. I purchased a rubber steak dog toy and they were able to feed the lion. It ended up they wanted to hide behind it and stick their heads out. A great opportunity to share about Daniel. Carol Weddle
Peter Walking on Water
Place a ping-pong ball in a tub of water. Two kids, one on each side, armed with squirt guns try to squirt Peter (the ball) until he gets to the other side. Jamie Morrel
Water Into Wine
Set up a refreshment booth where kids get to pour some Kool-Aid mix into a cup of water to see it "change" and then they have a drink to enjoy. Jamie Morrel
Tower of Babel
Play Jenga, the stacking block game where kids keep removing a block and adding it to the top until it finally crashes down on someone. Jamie Morrel
David and Jonathan
Make a bow and arrow target booth (toy bow and arrow). Jamie Morrel
Jesus and the Five Loaves and Three Fishes
Put out baskets and make "loaves and fishes" (bean bags) that the kids try to toss into one of the 12 left over baskets from a distance that will make it challenging. Jamie Morrel
Make an "I WILL GUESS YOUR HEIGHT" booth. A leader tries to guess kids heights, if right within two inches, the leader wins, if not, the kid gets a prize. Jamie Morrel
Fishers of Men
Our church recently held a Fire Fest in our city with Teen Challenge. We had a booth set up advertising our KIDS Club. We had several games there for children in the neighborhood to win prizes. We had a boat set up with a blue tarp underneath representing water. We cut out different sizes and shapes of fish (Catch at Caperneum) On each fish we had a Bible scripture verse written and a hole punched in it with a paper clip through it. The kids used a fishing pole with a magnet on the line to catch the fish.
Fruit of the Spirit Mini Golf Game
We did a Hallelujah party on Halloween. One of the most successful games we had was a 'fruit of the spirit' mini-golf game. I cut out fruit shapes from plywood, then an artistic friend painted them to match. We then painted the different 'fruit's' on each one. We cut a small hole on the bottom, for the golf ball to go through. We then built simple triangle support & attached them to the back; these served double duty, as they caught the ball too. The kids had a lot of fun with this, plus the older ones learned the fruits of the spirit! The 9 fruits were all cut out of one sheet of 3/4 inch plywood. Total cost was about $45, this includes the acrylic paint we used. I even had enough plywood left to cut out Noah's ark, for a Noah's ark beanie baby toss. (see picture above) This project took a little time, but we will be able to use them for years to come.
Natalie from Julesburg Christian Church, Julesburg, Co
Carve Pumpkins Using the Pumpkin Prayer
As I carve my pumpkin, help me say this prayer:
Open my mind so I can learn about You; (Cut the top of the pumpkin)
Take away all my sin and forgive me for the wrong things I do; (Clean out the inside)
Open my eyes so Your Love I will see; (Cut eyes shaped like hearts)
I'm sorry for turning up my nose to all You've given me; (Cut a nose in the shape of the cross)
Open my ears so Your Word I will hear; (Cut ears shaped like the Bible)
Open my mouth so I can tell others You're near; (Cut mouth in the shape of a fish)
Let Your Light shine in all I say and do! Amen. (Place a candle and light it)
Sent in by Nance from Reno
Have each kid fill out a registration card (name, address, phone, and age) to win door prizes. The cards will then be used as a follow up outreach for Sunday School and church prospects. Jamie Morrel
We used this as an outreach from the church and got the biggest crowd ever. They came just to see what in the world we were doing with pickles!! Kathy
1. Decorate with green balloons and green crepe paper.
1. Use the movie “Dave & the Giant Pickle.” It is about 30 minutes.
1. Pickle Person Contest - Give each child a giant dill on a paper plate with pins, yarn, beads, etc. (Seat the children according to age groups – have plenty of helpers for small children!) Be sure to provide pencils so they can write their names on the paper plates. Try to keep these “Pickle People” grouped together by age group and move them to a different table where they will be judged. There should be a winner for each age group. Special note: Instead of using straight pins to decorate the Pickle People, let your pickles sit out for a period of time and dry out. You can then use Tacky glue to attach the decorations.
2. Pickle Spitting Contest - Have a long roll of butcher paper rolled and taped to the floor for each age group. Line the children up according to ages and give each child one slice of dill. On their turn they spit their pickle as far down the white paper as possible. Have helpers ready with a pencil ready to mark each child’s “hit” and their name. Have a winner in each age group.
3. Pickle Eating Contest - Each child should have a paper with sliced pickles on it. Have a race to see who can eat all their pickles first and then whistle. (younger kids can raise their hand if they can’t whistle or you could provide toy whistles. Ages 2 yrs. – K:6 slices, Ages 1st gr – 5th gr.: 10 slices
4. Pickle Relay - Have 2 teams: boys on one side, girls on other. Give each child a toothpick. Each team is given a small sweet pickle and they must pass the pickle down the line using only their toothpick. No hands!
5. Drawing - Have drawings from your registration cards for any left over jars of pickles, a Veggie Video, Larry or Larry Boy (Veggie Tales) puppets or games.
6. Play Hot Potato with a "Hot Cucumber".
7. Pickle Plunge - Kids had to take off shoes and socks and dig pickles out of a tub of ice with their toes.
8. Pickle Drop - Kids get partners and one lays on floor and the other stands above them and tries to drop dill pickles in their mouth.
How to Print or Copy these instructions.
1. Take lots of pictures, these will turn out great!
2. Have game/teacher/helper assignments done ahead of time, giving each their jobs and a schedule for each one. You have to keep everything moving!
3. You might want to crown a Pickle King & Queen!
4. Use your registration forms for follow up contacts.
5. Hand out salvation packets and green balloons to the kids as they leave. (with parents permission) Our salvation packets included: A brightly colored bag with a computer generated quarter – fold card. The first page said : Now that you have asked Jesus in your heart: (picture of heart)you need to go to church, (had a picture of a church)Page 2: Talk to God, (picture of person praying)Page 3: Read God’s Word (picture of a Bible) Page 4 :And be baptized (picture of person baptized) We then had something in the bag to reinforce each thing: (bought at bookstore) a Bible pencil sharpener,ribbon with the Lord’s Prayer or New Testament or inexpensive Bible praying hands eraser, certificate saying they asked Jesus into their life.
6. We also had a devotion and talked about people in the Bible who found themselves in a "Pickle". Shared scriptures about God being with us always. Even when we are going through times of trouble.
This past weekend we hosted an outreach for our community. We sent out flyers to a local school and hosted a parent shopping day for Christmas. I used your pickle night idea. I just wanted to thank you for all of the great ideas. The kids had a great time as well as all of the adult and youth helpers I had. Thank you again and my God richly bless your ministry. Sent in by Marchie Nehr
We had a pickle night for our TEAMKids on Wed. night. The kids had a great time! We added an idea. We printed off "medals" for the 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place winners for each activity. The "medals" were made of card stock picture of a jar of pickles with the name of the activity and which place. Hole punch the top and and use yarn for the necklace. The relay race with boys vs. girls provided an opportunity for every participant to be awarded a "medal". Thank you for the great ideas. The kids had a GREAT time. Deanna
WE HAD A PICKLE NIIGHT A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO. IT WAS REAL CUTE AND FUN. WE USED THE IDEA OF A BIBLE CHARACTER WHO FIND THEMSELF IN A PICKLE. WE PLAYED SEVERAL OF THE GAMES THAT WERE SUGGESTED ON YOUR WEBSITE AND IT WENT WELL. NANCY WATERS
We have been having “Pickle Night” for 4 years now and the Kids love it. The highlight of the evening is always pickle ball which is base ball using a tennis racket and a pickle as the ball. To tag anyone out the team must collect all the pieces of pickle. (Helps with the cleanup) We also have a person dressed up as dill pickle and another as professor gherkin. (orange coverall instead of green). The professor always saves dill pickle from a bad ending or something like that and they both give thanks to God. ~Cindy M
We did Pickle Night this past Wednesday and it was a blast. The kids had so much fun decorating their pickles. We had a pickle relay race where they had to pick up a small pickle with tongs and walk quickly to the end of the course to drop in a bowl. We had a pickle toss. We tossed the small pickles down a lane I made with butcher paper. The one who threw farthest and landed on the paper got an award. Then snacks were pickle pops, dill pickle Pringles, and of course pickles. Some of the kids even drank the pickle juice. We will do this one again!! I teach preschoolers and your lesson have a great range of skill so we can tweak to fit our group (I didn’t want spitting pickles, so we changed to gently tossing them). So glad I found your website! Lydia
Survivor: Jesus Rescued Me!
Parent's Night Out
The following ideas were sent in by Kathy Foster of River of Praise Church, TX
7:00 - 7:15 - Eat Happy Meals! Song: Happy, Happy Hearts
Break the children up into age groups and teams. Hand out different colors of bandanas for each team.
7:20 - 7: 40 - Make Tribal headdress and battle cry - Have the kids decorate their bandanas with markers. (Tell the children they can't participate without their bandana on.
Have teams come up with their own tribal battle cry.
7:45 - 7:50 - Challenge #1 -Boomerang Bonus - Have the children throw boomerangs towards targets on the floor. The child who throws the boomerang closest to the bulls eye wins a candy bar and one for his best bloke! (Have a prize available for the winner of each age group) If you can't find boomerangs, use Frisbees that match each team's color of bandana. Targets were hula hoops.
Song: Survivor Theme (song #1 on CD) I bought the official Survivor sound track at Wal-mart Everyone can dress in shorts, T-shirts, ragged shorts, bandanas, etc. You can get real elaborate with jungle decorating. I didn't get too radical because it was such a late hour and we didn't want a major clean up.
7:55 - 8:05- Challenge #2 - Shark Attack! Tape animals graphics (kangaroos, koalas, crocodiles and three sharks) to the floor. Place a tire next to each graphic.(10 tires) I used rigid leather steering wheel covers that I found in the Dollar store. (They look just like a bike tire) Tires would be too large for the little to run through, so we used these like in an obstacle course. (If you put it inside the tire, the kids can slide on them or they tear up) The object of the game is to run as fast as you from tire to tire to the finish line without stepping into a tire with a shark pictures next of it. Even though the kids could see the graphics and think they can "miss" stepping into the shark tires, only two kids actually did it without stepping into a shark tire.
Song: Shark Attack! - This is a cool song that many youth will know from going to camp, it was perfect, the kids loved it. This song is probably not readily available. If you can't find it you can play the "Jaws" theme song.
8:05 - 8:15 - Campfire! Learn a memory verse and eat a s'mores! So we didn't have to heat the s'mores, we used cinnamon graham crackers, with marshmallow crème on one side and Jiff Chocolate Silk on the other side. Delicious!
Memory verse: "Call on Me in the time of trouble and I will rescue you" Psalms 50:15
Lesson: Elijah (could be any number of lessons, Israel in the Egypt, Noah, etc.)
8:20 - 8:35 - Challenge #3 - Quicksand Stand - Give each member a paper plate. They must stand with both feet on the paper plate while looking up at the ceiling. If they step off the plate with even one foot, they are out because this means they have stepped in quicksand. Have them lift one leg up, arch back, squat, etc. Plus, if they talk, they are out!
Give a prize to winner of each age group. (Play more music from Survivor sound track)
8:40 - 9:00 - Praise
9:05 - 9:20 - Challenge #4 - Snack Attack! Have different types of food such as candy, veggies, spinach broccoli, baby food, sardines, onions, horseradish, sitting on the floor on a grid with numbers on it. Have the kids draw numbers out of a sack that match the numbers on the grid. They have to eat the food and keep it down without hurlin'! Give special prizes for this one!
9:25 - 9:50 - Video - Escape From the Forbidden Matrix (Odyssey) hand out drinks & popcorn!
9:55 - 10:00 - Challenge #5 - Tootsie Pop Test. Have all kids sit in circles according to tribes. Give each child a Tootsie pop sucker. The challenge is to lick it all the way down without biting it!
10:00 - Award big door prizes
Nursery: Waa Waa Tribe
2& 3yrs: Eagle Tribe
4yrs-K : Destiny Tribe
1st gr. - 3rd gr: Judah Tribe
4th & 5th gr: Overcomer Tribe
We showed the video on the wall with our Power Point projector. We asked questions about the Bible
Verse, lesson, etc. on the Power Point. It was a blast! The kids didn't want to go home!The music really added to the experience!