Introductory Activity—Water Spray Outlines
Materials: large pieces of brown paper, assortment of plastic items with distinctive shapes (items that will not be damaged by getting wet), spray bottles with water
Spread pieces of brown paper on the floor. Form groups of kids for each piece of paper. Lead kids to gather a few items and arrange on their paper. Then they can spray the water over the items. Tell them to remove the items to leave an outline where the object was. Tell groups to go to the other pieces of paper and try to guess what objects that group used. Tell kids that they saw evidence of the objects even though the objects were not there anymore. Tell kids that they will hear a Bible story about something that was gone in the Bible story.
Live It Out
Game— Team Bowling
Materials: 6 large plastic bottles, 6 foam balls, masking tape
Use masking tape to create the borders of the playing area; tape a center line through the playing area. Set up 3 plastic bottles at the back of each playing area in a triangle formation. Group the kids into 2 teams. Give each team 3 balls. Kids can spread throughout their team area. On your signal, teams can roll the balls and try to knock down the other team’s pins while protecting their own pins. Call: “Stop!” All balls and kids should stop. Ask a review question. If a team gets the question correct, they can roll a ball toward the other team’s pins while the team remains still. Say: “Go!” and general game continues. When a team knocks down all the other team’s pins, award 5 points. Say the Life Point. Reset all pins and begin again.
If you have a large group of kids, create four teams and create four squares in the playing area. Put team’s pins in each corner. (You will need 12 bottles and 12 balls.)
Materials: poster board cut into 9-by-12-inch pieces, liquid glue, food color in water, paintbrushes, gel pens
Guide the kids to create a 3D cross on the paper with glue. Sprinkle salt generously over the glue cross. Instruct kids to dip the paint brush in the colored water and drip some on the cross. The color should spread without kids even having to paint it. Encourage kids to use the gel pens to print the Life Point and Bible verse around their crosses If possible, consider leaving the crosses in your space until the next week to dry.
Introductory Activity—Hunt for J
Materials: foam alphabet letters, alphabet tiles, or cards with letters of alphabet
Remove the letter J from your set of letters. Hide all the other letters around the room. Tell kids to search around the room and find the letter J. They may see other letters but must only find and bring back the letter J. After a few minutes, call the kids back together. Tell kids that in today’s story, people searched for Jesus but could not find Him.
Live It Out
Game—Pass the Pen Relay
Materials: white board, dry erase markers
Group the kids into two teams. Tell teams to stand in single file lines. Give a marker to the first player on each team. Say the Bible verse together. On your signal, the first players run to the board, write the first word of the verse, and run back to teams to hand off the marker. The next players run to write the next word, and so on. If a player needs help, the team can tell him the next word. (To increase the difficulty, place a Bible by the board. Kids must look up the verse to find the next word if they do not remember it.) After teams complete the verse, talk about the Bible story. Erase the board, mix the teams, and play again.
Materials: smooth rocks, acrylic paints, paintbrushes
Talk about the Bible story with preteens. Say the Life Point. Give each preteen a rock. Tell them they can choose to paint symbols on the rocks to remind them of the Bible story. Discuss possible symbols that could be used to remember Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. As kids paint their rocks, remind them of the rock that covered the tomb. Tell kids that the rock was moved away and the tomb was open and empty. Say the Bible verse together. Tell kids to place their rocks where they will see it each day this week. Each time they see the rock, they can thank God for Jesus and His death and resurrection.