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Need vaction bible school ideas

Moms View Message Board: General Discussion: Archive June 2004: Need vaction bible school ideas
By Amyj on Friday, May 14, 2004 - 08:30 pm:

I am directing vaction bible school for three and four year olds this summer and I was hoping some of you might have some great ideas for activities. They will be there from 9-12. We will do free play, songs, snack, and outside time, but I am looking for some great craft and game ideas. Thanks!

By Coopaveryben on Friday, May 14, 2004 - 10:17 pm:

What is your theme and/or lessons?

By Tink on Friday, May 14, 2004 - 11:40 pm:

No matter what the theme is if Kenna (Ladypeacek) sees this she'll come up with great ideas. My advice is keep it VERY simple. Last year the preschool VBS teacher had crafts that were waaay too difficult and all the kids were frustrated. You'll do great, Amy.

By Ladypeacek on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 08:02 am:

LOL Tink... Well my best suggestion would be to combie the crafts with snack times, such as fruit loop necklaces with yarn. Keep alot of coloring pages handy, you can find bunches online. Father Abraham is a very popular song similar to the hokey pokey. Making some puppets out of small brown lunch bags is a cute idea. I am sorry i don't have much more! I teach kids from 6 to 10 so my stuff is a little harder. If i think of more i will let you know!

By Ladypeacek on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 08:06 am:

This is a link to Preschool bible crafts, this might be very helpful!

By Amyj on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 09:54 am:

Thanks for the ideas. The older program is using a video series called, The Gospel According To St. Bernard. It is about a St. Bernard dog who is an angel sent to help two children. I am not using the videos, but following the same themes.

Mon.- God gives us strength and courage. Tue.- do not judge others. Wed.- the Golden Rule. Thurs.- responsibilities. Fri.- obey our parents.

The themes are really geared older than my group, but I'll make it work. I teach music and movement part time during the year, so the poor kids will be singing alot if all else fails!

By Amyj on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 10:16 am:

Kenna, thanks for the link to the preschool crafts! I found some great ideas for unity hand print wreaths and doves made from TP rolls. Now I need ideas for obey your parents and Monday. On Thursday for responsibilities I think we will do some cooking and let them help make part of their dinner for that night. I might also have them create a caper chart(from my Girl Scout years)that they can fill in chores for each family member as a family. Thanks again for the help.

By Ladypeacek on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 11:03 am:

For learning to obey try simon says, or jesus says, lol! Then tell them to let their parents know to say mommy or daddy says and they have to do it!! LOL

By Amyj on Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 03:00 pm:

How funny that you came up with that! I just told my husband that idea 20 min. ago!

By Mrslbarron on Monday, June 7, 2004 - 10:40 am:

I have been put in charge of directing next summers VBS. I do not knw where to start. This will be our churches first ever. If anyone can give me helpful pointers, PLEASE HELP!!!! I don't know where to start. You ladies sound like you can help.

Thanks alot,
Mrs. LBarron

By Amyj on Monday, June 7, 2004 - 04:15 pm:

I am doing the VBS for 3 and 4 year olds. I can tell you what I am doing and maybe that will help. Also, many churches around here use a curriculm produced by Group Publishing. This year the theme is, Lava Lava. Our church doesn't use it, but almost all others do. The stuff is a little commercial, but the kids seem to love it. The following are the themes for each of our days and some of the activities:
Mon.-God gives us the strength and courage to face even the most difficult situations. We are painting ceramic crosses and having them fired.
Tues.-We should not judge others. Each of us is different, but we are all special to God. We are making unity wreaths.(using the children's hand prints on various colors of paper and making a wreath).
Wed.-The Golden Rule-We are doing community service projects.
Thurs.-We should mind our responsibilities. The children will do a cooking activity, something they can take home to be part of their dinner.
Fri.-God wants us to obey our parents.-I bought foam Bilble Bee Magnets from Oriental Trading Company (they put them together). I also bought unfinished, small chalk boards. THe children will decorate them and take them home to write their family rules on them. THe following is our schedule each day:
9-9:15-songs and prayer with all groups
9:15-free play in classrooms with stations
9:45-gross motor activities(parachute, relays...)
10:00-Bible lesson
10:45-outside on the playground
11:45-closing prayer with all groups
I hope this helps. I know how much it helped me to talk to others doing something similar.

By Coopaveryben on Monday, June 7, 2004 - 05:02 pm:

I would spend this summer visiting and offering to help at every VBS I could. That is what has always been helpful to me. I would also consider what program you want to do while you are looking at other VBS, other churches would be more than willing to give you their left over decorations and supplies from this year.

I start recruiting the church around February/March I put up bulletin boards, sign up sheets, things in the newsletter and bulletin.
Around Mid May I have a training session for volunteers, we learn the songs, play some games, look at the crafts, review the lessons, and just get excited about what we are doing. At this time I give the teachers all their materials and give them the dates to return to decorate and hand out flyers/door hangers etc. After this meeting they are usually so excited!

The hardest job I have ever had is recruiting volunteers.

I have always done a site rotation which has worked very well. They all start in a general opening, learning VBS theme songs, doing American Pledge, Christian Pledge, and The pledge to the Bible, we usually do a skit or puppet show, the memory verse, etc. it last about 30 min. Then the kids split into their age groups and then each group stay together some groups go to crafts, lesson, music, skits, recreation, and snacks each "block" last about 20- 30 minutes and they just rotate from one to the next(which can be a very tricky scheldule to figure out).

I have always had fun planning VBS but let me warn you it is very time consuming but very rewarding.

By Mrslbarron on Tuesday, June 8, 2004 - 11:23 am:

Thanks for all the helpful information. So do they do a different theme each year? Is it best to use the theme of the year or just do your own theme? Do you need board memebers? Or do you just rely on the volunteers? What kind of snacks would be best to provide that is not costly? How many groups is usually in the VBS and what are the age groups. I am so sorry if I am asking too many questions. I just really need to get a full understanding. I know this is going to be time consuming. I am going to schedule my vaction next year the week of VBS so that I can be there to help. So am I planning in enough time or is it to early?

By Coopaveryben on Tuesday, June 8, 2004 - 10:02 pm:

There are Tons of themes to choose from. Usually each denomination comes out with their own, which of course you are welcome to use, our church always wanted us to do the one put out by the synod. There are lots of great themes out there and everythig you do revolves around your theme.

I relyed on volunteers but I had to recruit, recruit, recruit...starting about February/March.

For snacks I asked our congregation to bring in items that I requested...graham crackers, kool-aid, etc. I didn't have to purchase any snacks.

The groups should be split up depending on the number of children. For a smaller group of kids I would put two ages in each group, usually starting at age 4 or Kindergarten and going up to 6th grade so you should end up with 4 to 5 groups.

I also do a closing "family" night. On the last night I have the kids put on a program-they sing the songs they learned, watch video from the week, hand out certificates etc. and then we serve dinner and usually an activity of some sort (pinata's, blow up slides, etc.). This works really well because you get a chance to meet the parents and welcome them into your church.

Ask as many questions as you want. I usually start the real planning in January. I stongly suggest you visit some VBS's over the summer, they would really welcome you and help you out.

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