12/13/15

Christmas Treat

Here's a fast, simple, and cheap gift for the kids:

A Cup of Cocoa in a Bag



I found the cutest hot chocolate kits at Michael's this week! Each kit comes with designed marshmellows. The vanilla (blue) candy canes come with snowflake marshmellows, and the peppermint candy canes come with snowmen face marshmellows. Michael's also had a set of 16 pre-printed "have a sweet HOLIDAY" ziplock treat bags for just a few dollars. I had to go to the grocery to get the hot chocolate pouches.

It all made for a cute holiday happy for the kids.


Each bag contained one hot chocolate pouch, one candy cane, and one marshmellow.




NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!


Christmas Lanterns

Luke 9:5





I made a few changes to this old craft. It was a good idea, but honestly, I was disappointed. Here's how to not make the same mistakes....

In an effort to cutesy up this craft, I decided to use colored gift bags with handles. The colors were nice, I thought. The handles will be ...handy, I thought. The "on sale" price made them almost as cheap as the standard lunch size paper bag, so why not, I thought. My reasoning was good; however, I did not realize is these bags are significantly thicker than the traditional cheap lunch bags. Big deal, right? Well, it was a big deal. Not catastrophe big, just "I won't do this again" big.

The bags were thick (especially in the area where the handles attach), and our child-safe scissors were dull, so making neat cutouts was impossible. We laughed it off and did our best, but next time I'll go back to the cheap lunch bags. The middle bag with baby Jesus is mine. It looks ok from a distance but, believe me, up close it is a jagged mess. LOL

Instructions:






1. Using a pencil, lightly draw shapes onto on side of a bag. Large, simple shapes are best, i.e. stars, hearts, circles.


2. Cut out the shapes.













3. Place a battery operated votive candle inside. I opted to skip the rocks/sand usually used as weight in the bottom of the bag because I reasoned that these lanterns will more than likely be displayed around the house and the weights won't be necessary. I told the kids they could collect a few rocks from their yard to put inside if they have trouble with it falling over. 


















NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!


10/27/15

Jesus Heals Blind Bartimaeus

Mark 10: 42-56



Today we learned that blind Bartimaeus was healed by Jesus because Bartimaeus had such strong faith.

An easy activity to go along with this lesson requires very little prep. and allows the children to explore the challenges of being blind.






Materials:

One scratch kit found at Hobby Lobby:              



Blindfolds found at Dollar Tree:


This was a great lesson to talk about many topics. We first discussed people we encounter in our lives today begging on the side of the road. This is who Bartimaeus was—a beggar.

Next, we moved into sharing our experiences with people who are blind. Blind people typically have extraordinary hearing. This is probably how Bartimaeus knew it was Jesus who was walking nearby.

We wrapped up the lesson by talking about what it means to have faith.

I'd like to take a moment for a word of caution here. I would not suggest ever blindfolding all the students at once, unless there are other adults around as, hmmmm, witnesses. As a parent, I would be very upset with any adult who blindfolded my child, and everyone else in the room, except themselves. As a teacher, I wouldn't ever want my actions to appear questionable. Therefore, I asked two other adults to step into the room for the few minutes we were working with the blindfolds.

Each child was given a scratch card & a wooden stick. They were asked to draw any picture they liked, blindfolded. They enjoyed the challenge and we had a great time seeing how talented they all were without the help of their eyesight. 

This would also be a great time to talk about what sounds they heard while blindfolded. I planned to have that discussion, but we moved on into a game and I forgot. I'll post the game another time.



NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!


10/3/15

Create a board game in minutes!

Mark 10: 13-16
Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me...."







In today's lesson the disciples try to turn the children away when they come to see Jesus. Jesus becomes agitated with them saying, "Let the children come to me...."

Even though this story is only three verses long without many details, it can still be turned into a fun board game. And with the help from a few online sources, it can be done in a matter of minutes!

Materials:

Card stock (for the board)
Printer
Blank board game printable from Lovetoknow 
Clip art of Jesus 
     Two of my favorite bible clip art sources:
        Bible People from The Activity Mom
        Free Bible Clip Art from Phillip Martin Clip Art
Small items for game pieces
A spinner or die

Instructions:

This is so easy! 

1. Follow the above link to the blank board game selections from Lovetoknow. Choose the game board desired and download. 

2. Go to one of the clip art sources above. Download a clip art of Jesus.

3. Open the game board in Photoshop or similar program.

4. Open the clip art of Jesus file and drag to the game board, placing it in the last game space.

5. Add items to the game board to make players lose a turn, go back, go ahead, etc.

It may be difficult to read the ones I used in the picture above. They are listed below in the order they appear on the game board:
            
             Your mother guides you to Jesus. Slide ahead
              3 spaces.

             There are so many people in the crowd that you
              trip, losing your place in line. Go this way.

             One of the disciples tells you to go away. Go
              around.

              A kind old man steps aside to let you through.
              Go ahead 5 spaces.

              Jesus calls you forward. Move ahead.

              One of the disciples chases you. Go back, but 
              do NOT take the detour.

               A disciple returns you to your mother. Go back.

               You can almost see Jesus. Slide through the 
               crowd, advancing 4 spaces.

               Jesus tells the disciples to let you come to Him.
               Move ahead 3 spaces.

6. Print your newly created game on the card stock.

Playing The Game:
Each player takes turns spinning the spinner, or rolling the die, to determine the number of spaces to advance. The first player to reach Jesus wins.


We used peg people I painted a few years ago for another game as our player pieces, but anything could work. Our Bingo Buttons would work just as well.







NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!


9/13/15

Jesus asked, "Who do people say that I am?"

Mark 8:27-38



I found something on Pinterest that I thought was extremely cool: The Puzzle Project started by Jeff Kelly, Sandy Taylor, and Marie Maber. One day maybe I will send off for my own puzzle piece and join their collection, but for now, I think it's a great exercise to go along with today's lesson. I pulled up The Puzzle Project website and talked to the kids about the originators and their traveling project after we talked about the above scripture and Jesus' words. We then talked about who we are spiritually. I asked, "What kind of a person are you? What is important to you?" I encouraged the kids to draw something they felt strongly about.


Materials:  

 


     Card Stock  
   
     Puzzle Template (free download from
                                   clipartbest.com)
   
     Scissors
   
     Pencil & eraser
   
     Markers and/or other decorative items







Pre-Class Prep:

Print one puzzle piece for each child onto the cardstock. Cut out the pieces so they will be ready for the kids to decorate.


I originally tried using art board for the puzzle pieces because there has been a large stack of it in the classroom at church for years. I thought this would be a good way to use it up.
 Wrong! Ideally, yes, the art board would be more sturdy... but it is very difficult to cut without slanting the edges in various directions which will alter the way the pieces fit together. I spent hours trying to get clean, straight cuts through the full thickness of the board to no avail. I finally gave up and went to card stock. The downside to card stock is it curls slightly when completely covered in markers. All in all, it was fine. I used ample tape on the backside to hold each piece flat against the wall. If anyone finds something better than card stock, please leave a comment below.

This is my test piece:

I allowed the kids to use whatever materials they wanted.The resulting textures were a nice touch.

TIP: I made the mistake of handing out the pieces in the same orientation to each child. Some pictures will end up upside down or facing one side or the other in order to get them to fit together unless the kids have different sides as top and bottom. For example: looking at the first picture in this post, one will notice the piece I decorated is positioned sideways on the wall. As more children add their pieces, I will spin their piece around before they decorate it so everyone can have their artwork right side up.






NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!

8/30/15

Serving Others

Matthew 23:11           Proverbs 19:17          1 John 3:18          Matthew 25:35-40     Matthew 20:18           Mark 7: 1-23              Matthew 5:42      Matthew 6:1-4           1 Timothy 6:18

There are so many verses that this activity would go with that I will not bother to try to list them all.

Before we get started, I simply must tell you where I found this brilliant idea: The Fickle Pickle. The kids LOVED this activity. Thank you Fickle Pickle!



This lesson is about serving others, so we went undercover to bestow kind deeds upon our friends and family. Each child was given a Top Secret envelope containing a pair of undercover sunglasses (standard issue for a secret agent, don't ya know), a self-stick mustache (to complete the disguise, of course), a pencil and a mini notebook (to keep track of deeds performed), a Mission Possible letter, and a list of Secret Service Suggestions. I did not include a picture of my Mission Possible letter or my Secret Service Suggestion list because you really need to see the ones written by The Fickle Pickle. I changed mine slightly to fit our situation, but her examples are so fun!!



Materials:



I found the cute envelopes at Knowledge Tree. They actually aren't envelopes at all. They are Jumbo Library Pockets. I folded over the top portion and taped them shut to serve as envelopes. All others items were found at the Dollar Store. Don't forget to include a Mission Possible letter and some Secret Service Suggestions!I can't wait to hear what great things the kids did to serve others this week!





NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!




































8/16/15

WELCOME BACK!


The first day back after summer is always exciting for me. I have had two months to plan the new Sunday school year and to test drive a few new crafts. I never get as much done as I hope for, but that's okay. I like setting my goals high. Why set them low, right?!

We have a new volunteer teacher in the 3rd & 4th grade room this year. I am excited to be sharing the class with her. Having her help means I will be teaching every other Sunday. I hope this translates into more time to blog. We'll see if I can make that happen. :)

This year I chose to decorate the door using items founds at The Knowledge Tree. (I love that place!) I added sticky letters to the banner, and I made a flower pot out of poster board and border paper. It was a splurge monetarily, costing a total of $35.00, but I will reuse the individual pieces in other projects, and it was fast to assemble, so I think it was worth it.





NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!

5/10/15

Love One Another

John 15: 9-17



Happy Mother's Day! Today we studied Jesus' instructions for us to love one another as he loves us. What a perfect lesson for Mother's Day. Since LOVE is our theme today, finding a craft that would make a good Mother's Day gift was a breeze. I hope you enjoy this precious flower-in-a-pot craft. This one is suitable for all ages.


Materials:


  • Hot Glue Gun or Craft Glue
  • Colored Paper
  • Craft Sticks
  • Heart Punches, Large & Small
  • Seed Starter Pots
  • Shredded Brown Paper
  • Green Paint (optional - see Pre-Class Prep note below)
  • Paint Brush (if painting)
  • Glass Gems (or Pebbles)
  • Buttons or Pompoms
  • Labels/Tags (optional - see #10 below)
  • Pens, Sharpies, Crayons (optional - see #10 below)



Pre-Class Prep:

The only thing to do before class for this craft is one simple optional step. Originally, I planned to use the craft sticks that can be purchased already painted green for the flower stem. However, when I stumbled upon these really cool shaped craft sticks in Michele's I could not resist even though I knew they would require painting. I considered letting the kids color the stems themselves with crayons, but as time is always too short, I knew it would be wiser to do this beforehand.


Instructions:

The whole thing can be constructed with regular kid-friendly craft glue or with hot glue. I prefer hot glue because it sets up quickly making it easier for the kids to carry the project home without it falling apart. Of course if using hot glue, use with caution and do not allow the kids to handle the glue gun.

1. Apply a generous ring of glue around the bottom of the flower pot. A little more than this, actually:



2. Stand a green stem up in the middle of the pot. Add a single layer of gem stones around the base.


3. Apply another heavy ring of glue around the top of the stones. Add more stones. The stones will add weight to the pot and glueing them in with the stem holds the flower securely.



4. Spread one more ring of hot glue on top of the last addition of stones and top with the shredded brown paper. Pack the paper down well.


5. Using the heart punches, cut two small hearts for the leaves and 4 or 5 large hearts for the peddles (for each flower).


6. Glue the tips of the peddles together.

7. Glue a button, pompom, or any other small item in the center.



8. Attach the flower head to the top of the stem with glue.

9. Glue the leaves in place. The leaves should go on last so the placement is easier. 



10. Another option, that my kids decided not to do, is placing a label/tag on the pot. In my Materials picture above, you will see that there are a stack of white decorative labels and a few sharpies. I told the kids they could write a note to their mother (e.g., Happy Mother's Day) on the label and then stick it to the flower pot. But, since none of them actually did that, and the labels are in my materials list, I thought I should mention it.



NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!



4/26/15

The Good Shepherd

John 10:11



Today's lesson is The Good Shepherd, but our craft will work for numerous other Bible lessons as well:

The Good Shepherd, Luke 15:307
Abraham Tested, Genesis 22
The Lord Is My Shepherd, Psalm 23
The Lamb Of God, John 1:29
And there are many others.


Materials:


1. Bathroom cups
2. Black construction paper
3. Black pipe cleaners
4. Cotton balls
5. Scissors
6. Craft glue
7. Craft sticks (i.e. popsicle sticks)
8. Pencil and pen (or sharpie)
9. Stapler (or tape, but stapler is better)
10. Googly eyes

Pre-class Instructions:

There are only a few simple things to do before class to make this craft go quickly and smoothly.

1. Cut pipe cleaners to 9 inches in length. Each sheep will require 2.

2. Draw the sheep head outlines on the black construction paper. One for each sheep.

3. I have found that it is best to go ahead and cut out the heads. Older children (3rd grade and up) are capable, certainly, of doing this themselves, but as you know, I am all about making the most of our precious class time. I knew the kids would enjoy glueing on the cotton, so having pre-cut heads allowed us all to relax and have fun with it, without me fretting over the clock. I made a variety of sizes so the kids could have a choice. I also did not try to make them perfect. Just freehand it; it'll be fine.


That's it. Let's get started!

In-class Instructions:

1. Give each child:
      - One cup
      - Two pipe cleaners
      - One craft stick
      - One sheep head
      - A mound of cotton

2. Instruct them to fold each pipe cleaner in half.

3. Next bend small feet at the ends of the pipe cleaner. Each child will do this their own way, regardless of how you show them how to make the bends. Some may choose not to have defined hooves at all. And that's just fine.




4. Staple the legs to the inside of the cup. Do not let the kids do this part. It's quick to walk around the table stapling legs while the children are folding the feet. If you have a lot of kids to get to, ask them to proceed on to step #5 until you finish with the stapling.





This is what it should look like at this point:


Note: I used tape instead of staples on the prototype, pictured above. The tape did not hold as well as the staples and it was difficult to work with in the tight space. This is when I decided staples would be better.

5. Ask the children to slightly flatten the cotton balls by pulling the cotton to loosen it. Don't overdo it. Less is more. This step is not required, but it will make the cotton balls not as heavy. It also gives them something to do for a moment while you finish with the stapling of legs.

6. Now "paint" the glue onto the cups using the craft stick as a paint brush. Start at the top and work down to the rim. The easiest (and cleanest) way to handle the glue is to walk around the table squirting glue onto each child's stick as they need it. This allows you control over the glue! :)  I like using bathroom cups because the kids can easily hold onto their project by slipping one hand up inside the cup while dealing with the glue. Very little glue ends up elsewhere this way.


Tip: Tacky Glue is thick and sticky. It works great for this project.

7. Add the cotton. Again, holding the sheep with one hand inside the cup, press the cotton all over the cup.

8. Glue eyes to the face.

9. Draw a mouth with pen or sharpie.

10. Glue the head to the body.

All done!




ONE MORE SIDE NOTE:
As long as the faces and pipe cleaners are pre-cut, and you don't have a huge class, or some other special circumstance, this craft should only take about 20 minutes. It goes much faster than it sounds here. I tend to be heavy on the instructions, because I want you to know everything I can possibly tell you, so that your experience will be a smooth one.


           

           





NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!

4/19/15

Doubting Thomas

John 20:24-31


Here's a super easy game to make! And it's even easier to play! The Doubting Thomas Game is basically as True or False game. 

How To Play:


-- Give each child an "I Doubt It" sign.

-- Read aloud one item from the list of unusual facts about the bible. Be sure to read the facts so the answers will sometimes be true, and sometimes be false.

-- Anyone who doubts the statement is true should hold up their sign showing the "I Doubt It" side toward the teacher. 

-- Anyone who believes the statement is true does nothing.

-- Give the players with the correct answers a point for each correct answer. Remember our Bingo Buttons? To make score keeping easier, I gave each player a button for each correct answer. At the end of the game, we simply counted the buttons to see who won. 

--The player with the most points (or buttons) at the end wins the game.



Materials:




This only takes a few things.

1. Front and Back pics. One set for each child/sign.

     Color download here: 
Front and Back.

     B&W download here: 
Front and Back.

2. Cardstock

3. Paint stir sticks
     (or craft sticks,
       or strips of balsa wood). One for each child.

4. Questions. More about this at #6 below.

5. A stapler.


Construction Instructions:

Realizing some may want to use this, when time allows, for a craft AND a game, and others will only have time for the game, I have included the graphic as a coloring page and as a full color image. If using it as a craft, I would suggest that you put the sign together yourself at home before class and just have the kids color it already made up.

1. Print the images onto the cardstock (one front and one back for each sign).

2. Cut out the images.

3. Staple the front and back together at the top and sides. No need to overdo it. I found one staple at the center-top, and one at the center-side of each side was sufficient. 

4. Insert the paint stick between the two pieces. Push it all the way to the top until it touches the top staple.

5. Place a staple on each side of the stick at the bottom. Do not try to staple through the stick. I considered placing a small line of glue on each side of the stick, but decided I wanted to have the option of re-using the stick for something else in the future if I wanted. I never know how many kids will be in Sunday school each week, so this prevented me from making fifteen, and then only using four, thereby waisting eleven perfectly good paint sticks. The sticks stayed in place just fine without the glue anyway.




6. Collect a list of bible facts. I found a website, JesusAlive, that gives a great list of little-known facts about the bible. Some of them are too advanced for third and fourth graders, but I found plenty for my game that was appropriate for my class. What I really appreciated was the way the author, Steve Shirley, gave the corresponding verse and a pop-up window with the quoted scripture. Seriously, it only took ten minutes to gather my list of questions. I opted not to give you my list of questions in a download. Mr. Shirley has done a great job with his list and it is well worth a visit to his site. He has obviously put a lot of work into it, and I don't want to get into any questionable infringements, so click on over to his list for help. 





Food for thought:
As I was preparing my lesson for today, I kept thinking about Jesus' response to Thomas, "Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." John 20:29 NKJV

Our whole lesson today revolves around the fact that Thomas was hesitant to believe what others told him. I felt it was important to distinguish between doubting Jesus' power verses doubting what others may tell us. In dealing with children, especially in today's dangerous world, I wanted to be very careful not to give them the impression we should not doubt anything, so we spent about five minutes talking about why it is good to question things we hear that may sound suspicious, and why we should trust in God completely and never doubt His power. 


NOTE:  All images, text and printables contained herein are copyright protected. This material is for your personal use only. I encourage you to print or pin from this site whenever you would like as long as it is credited and linked back to EasyBreezySundaySchool.blogspot.com. Failure to link back and credit my site constitutes a copyright violation.  Thanks so much!