Interactive Group Activities
by Carol Williams & Charles Kirkpatrick

Sermon Title: "New Beginnings"

Scripture Reading:  Luke 3:15-17, 21-22

HIDE AND SEEK FAMILY: Children will scatter and hide, except one person. As the other team players are found, they are "added to the Family" and will hold hands as they SEEK others for their family. Continue to SEEK until everyone is found and holding hands as a FAMILY.

FOLLOW LEADER: When people want a new beginning with God's family, they FOLLOW JESUS! Let children take turns being the LEADER, and everyone follow the leader around a designated area. Encourage children to go different ways and places and to do various motions for the "family" to follow!

SYMBOLS CIRCLE: Have the children form a large circle. Pass a bag around containing objects that have a "logo" or a "symbol" for something, such as a T shirt or cap with a logo that represents a team or a product. Let children know that Baptism is a SYMBOL that lets other people know that we are followers of Christ and have asked Jesus into our hearts. "Baptism" is a SYMBOL that we are in God's family!

SIGNS OF NEW LIFE CRAFT: Using a paper plate that is divided into several segments, draw pictures or use stickers in each section to signify new beginnings: butterflies, babies, kittens, calves, baptism, etc. Attach a ribbon to hang the plate on a door or wall.

CALENDAR BEGINNINGS: Have a calendar available for each children or a print out from the computer for kids to decorate and draw little pictures or to have stickers to place on their calendars of new beginnings that THEY would like to start.... prayer, Bible reading, more faithful in church attendance, sharing with others, smile stickers, etc.

"LOOK FORWARD" GAME: Have the children line up against the wall and facing the wall. The teacher will say something which represents a MISTAKE that children might make in their lives. After the teacher says each thing, one child will turn around and say, "JESUS SAID TO FORGET THE MISTAKES AND LOOK FORWARD TO NEW OPPORTUNITIES." The teacher will continue until all of the children are facing the front.

HEAVEN AND DOVE ART: Have the children draw a cloud formation and glue on a little bit of cotton for effect. They will then draw a dove coming down to earth and write the words (coming from the clouds), "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased. Luke 3:21-22. If the teacher could find little feathers from a craft store, that could be used in place of the dove.

DOVE NAME TAGS: Have the children cut out a traced dove that the teacher will supply. The children will decorate the dove and write their name on the dove and pin or tape to their shirt.

HAND PRINT WREATH: Each child can be given a large white sheet of paper. Children will use paints or finger paints to color their hands and then children can place their hand prints in a circular pattern to form a "wreath". Cut a small hole in the middle of the hand prints where the heel of the hands all meet. Add a ribbon bow at the top! Children can write, NEW BEGINNING, or NEW LIFE IN CHRIST, etc, at the top of the wreath if desired.

The teacher can hide words from today's lesson around a designated area for the children to find, discuss each word and then tape to a blue poster board, representing the water of baptism.

NEW LIFE ACROSTIC: On the blue poster board, the teacher can write NEW LIFE down the left side of the board and let children suggest words for each letter, that would explain our lesson today and to make the lesson a little more clearer for the children.

SING A SONG: Let children divide into small groups and make their own music tunes for part of today's Bible verse. Then each group can share their song with the words that they have chosen. Children can make up their own tunes or put a few words to the tune of a song that they already know.

SHARE A SNACK: BLUE JUICE for the water symbolism and some crackers and cheese.

Song:  "To Be Like Jesus"

Music: Words and music in PDF format. 

MP3: Piano - 2 measures introduction, 2xs through

About Carol Williams
Carol and her husband have served churches in Illinois, Minnesota, Mississippi, Michigan, and Indiana.  Carol loves to work with children so you will find her teaching in Junior Church and children's Sunday School.  She also has clowning ministry in which she is known as Bubbles tc (the clown).
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