Week 4 objective: to think about always being thankful.
Game - 7 mins
Aim: to play a game that involves doing two things at once.
You will need: 10 plastic cups, masking tape and two or three balloons.
Before the session stick two strips of masking tape approximately two metres in length to the floor of your teaching space. Make sure the strips run parallel to one another and are about one metre apart.
Divide the children into two teams. Position five cups along each line of tape. The cups need to be the right way up and equally spaced along the tape. Ask for a volunteer from each team. Explain that the volunteers will compete against each other. They will work along the line turning the cups upside down. When they reach the end of the tape they need to turn around and work back along the line turning the cups back up the right way. However both children will also be given a balloon. Whilst turning the cups over they need to keep their balloon in the air by tapping it to prevent it falling to the ground. If the balloon does fall to the ground they simply need to pick it up and continue as quickly as they can.
When the first child has completed the challenge they should pass the balloon to the next player in their team who bats the balloon into the air and begins to turn the cups over.
Talk about - 6 mins
You will need: a large sheet of paper or a whiteboard, marker pens and a Bible.
Before the session write the verse on the sheet of paper or whiteboard.
Talk to the children about the game they have just played. Talk about how, even when they were busy turning the cups over, they needed to keep the balloon in the air.
In the verse underline the phrase ‘Being thankful always’. Re-read the verse emphasising the underlined phrase.
Explain that when Paul wrote the letter to the church at Colossae he was saying ‘when you pray keep saying thank you to God for all the wonderful things he has done’.
In another letter Paul said ‘say thank you to God whatever you are doing’. Christians believe it is God’s plan for people, whatever they are doing, to keep saying thank you to him.
If you have time encourage the children to think of something they do regularly, such as eat, play a game, spend time with friends, walk to school etc. Ask the children to think about the things they regularly do, then think of ten things to do with that activity that they could thank God for. Depending on your group you could do this in silence or as part of a discussion. Alternatively, you could suggest that the children try saying thank you to God every time they saw or heard something good. For example if they saw a tree, in their heads they could say ‘Thank you God for the tree.’ If they were given a hot chocolate they should thank the person who gave them the drink then they could say ‘Thank you God for chocolate and milk.’
As this is the last week of the month cover up the Bible verse and ask the children if anyone can say it from memory. Help the children if they get stuck. If you have a rubber stamper and tickets, stamp the tickets belonging to children who can say the Bible verse. Include those who needed some help.
Song - 2 mins
To the tune ‘One finger, one thumb, keep moving’.
Keep praying, keep watching, be thankful, x 3
Colossians 4 verse 2.
Make up some simple actions to go with the song or give each child a different part to sing - as they sing their ‘part’ they should stand or spin around. You might want to find an alternative to the ‘hands-together’ action for prayer such as holding your hands out flat in front of you to help the children understand that there are many different ways to pray.