28 Nov 2017
So it’s Christmas again – and as a children’s minister I groan at the list of Christmas events, parties, nativity rehearsals, assemblies, over excited children, snotty noses and diva strops from the kid who wanted to be a donkey … such a marvellous time of year… for paracetamol sales!
NO! This year will be different. We will maintain our joy in the gospel opportunities that celebrating the birth of our Saviour presents. We will serve the children and young people with great love – because of Bethlehem, because of the baby, because of our saviour! And to make it all that bit more bearable – here’s 6 ideas for Christmas games for your Christmas children’s event. In another blog, we give you 6 Christmas Children’s Talk illustrations that use these games.
Perhaps for a Christmas all age service, some of these games could be done at the front of Church by some volunteers (like Present Wrap or Decorate the tree) or by the whole congregation (like In the Bible / Not in the Bible quiz). It can be helpful to have a lighter moment like that to give everyone a brain break.
- Snowball Fight. Split the group into 2 teams. Hand each team a stack of free newspapers (remove the staples beforehand). They have to prepare their ammo by scrunching up paper snowballs. Tape a line on the floor. Teams stay on their own side. When the Christmas music starts they must throw their snowballs onto the other side of the room. When the music stops count up the snowballs on each side. The team with the least wins.
- Present Wrap. Give each group an awkward shaped item to wrap; a large teddy, a skateboard, a football, a leader (boys wrap men/ girls wrap women). Give them paper, tape and a ribbon. Award points for the best gift.
- Bethlehem Run Around. Get the children to sit in a circle. Give them each a character from Luke 2:8-16; Sheep, shepherd, angel. Recap events; there were sheep (all the sheep stand up and walk in the same direction around the outside of the circle), the sheep were skipping on the hills (sheep have to skip), the sheep were looking for food, they turned and looked the other way (sheep change direction), they sat down for a rest (sheep sit down). Repeat with shepherds, looking for sheep, running from wolves, etc. Repeat with angels; flapping their wings, zooming across the skies, singing very loud, etc. Wrap up with reminding the children that all this fuss and noise and running was about something very special (place a doll in the middle of the circle) all about the birth of Jesus, the saviour.
- Ice Ice Baby. Have bags of party ice from the supermarket with buckets ready. Split children into teams. Children run relay-style over obstacles to get a piece of ice and bring it back to their team. The winning team has the frostiest bucket. For extra challenge; see which leader can keep their hand in the bucket longest!
- Decorate the tree. Have a cheap artificial tree and give the teams unusual items to decorate it with – tin foil, toilet paper, paper plates. Whatever you can find. Best tree wins.
- In the Bible / Not in the Bible quiz. Read out some pre-prepared statements. Children have to stand up if it is in the Bible, or sit down if it is not. E.g. there were reindeer in the fields nearby; a choir of angels sang Jingle bells etc.
This is a guest blog by Amy Smith, the Children’s Worker of GraceChurch Halewood