Week 1 objectives: to remind the children who the Holy Spirit is and what he does, and to begin to talk about the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’.
Game - 7 mins
Aim: to play a game that introduces the children to the topic: the Fruit of the Holy Spirit.
You will need: masking tape, thirty-six balloons (nine red, nine yellow, nine blue and nine green – you could use other colours but make sure you amend the ‘fruit lists’), ‘how to make sticky arms’ instructions (see Printables), the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ textboxes (see Printables), ‘fruit lists’ (see Printables), ‘how to make balloon-fruit’ instructions (see Printables), lively music and the means to play it.
Before the session print four sets of the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ textboxes and follow the instructions to make the balloon-fruit.
Divide the children into teams. You will need between two and four teams. Name the teams ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’, and ‘D’. Explain that each team should wrap masking tape around the arms of a volunteer (see ‘how to make sticky arms’ instructions). The teams should also use a small piece of sticky tape to attach their ‘fruit list’ to the back of their volunteer.
Encourage the children to sit in their teams around the edge of the teaching space. Place the pre-prepared balloons on the floor. Try and ensure each team is equidistant from the balloons. Explain that the balloons represent fruit and the sticky volunteers represent fruit trees. Encourage the volunteers to stand with their arms stretched out to their sides. When the music starts the rest of the team members should pick up the ‘fruit’ and stick them to their tree. However they must make sure they only stick on ‘fruit’ that is on their list. When a ‘tree’ has all its fruit the team should sit on the floor. The first team to sit down is the winning team. The children should continue sticking fruit to their trees until they have collected all their fruit.
If the children are happy bursting balloons allow them to burst those that were attached to their tree (removing them first from their team members arms). Bursting the balloons will reveal the textboxes inside. If the children would rather not burst balloons – pinch a small section of a balloon and cut into it with a pair of scissors; this should make a hole in the balloon without creating a loud bang. Cut open the deflated balloons to retrieve the textboxes. Ask the children to lay the textboxes on the floor in front of their team and if they are able, to read out the words.
Talk about - 5 mins
You will need: a large sheet of paper or a whiteboard, marker pens, a Bible, the ‘3 in 1’ symbol with descriptions (see Printables), the Holy Spirit arrow (see Printables) and ‘Fruit of the Holy Spirit’ info-graphic (see Printables).
Before the session write on the whiteboard or paper.
Read the verse aloud. Explain that before we learn more about this verse we are going to first talk a little bit about the Fruit of the Holy Spirit.
Show the children the ‘3 in 1’ symbol with descriptions and remind them who the Holy Spirit is. The Holy Spirit is one of the three Persons of God. Show the ‘Holy Spirit arrow’ and remind the children that when Jesus went up to Heaven the Holy Spirit came down. Explain that, a bit like the wind people cannot see the Holy Spirit, but Christians believe he lives with people here on earth; they believe that wherever they are, whatever they are doing the Holy Spirit is with them. Explain that the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit comes alongside Christians. He works in their lives changing them from the inside-out. The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit changes and guides Christians to be more like Jesus.
Tell the children that the Apostle Paul talks about the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ in one of his letters. Paul explains that when the Holy Spirit works in the life of a Christian, people begin to see them living more and more like Jesus. People begin to see a Christian being more loving, joyful, peaceful, patient and kind just like Jesus.
Show the children the textboxes and the info-graphic as you explain that the Bible calls love, joy, peace, patience etc. the Fruit of the Spirit. The Fruit of the Spirit is what ‘grows’ in the life of a Christian when the Holy Spirit is at work. You may need to explain that these things don’t grow in the same way leaves and branches grow on trees, but, as the Holy Spirit works – changing and guiding a Christian, he or she becomes more loving, more peaceful, more patient etc.
Remind the children that faithfulness is a part of the Fruit of the Spirit. Explain that this verse will help us learn more about faithfulness. Quickly explain that a faithful person is someone who can be trusted to do their best even when things get tough.
Song - 3 mins
To the tune ‘The Grand Old Duke of York’
Explain that the word ‘man’ at the end of the song is short for the word ‘mankind’, and means ‘people’.
Oh, in all the work you do
Work as hard as you can,
Work as if you are doing it
For the Lord and not for man.