Thursday, April 29, 2010

VBS Coupons Plus Free Gift

Here are some Vacation Bible School coupons you can use over at Christian Ed Warehouse. Plus, this week only, place a VBS order of $100 or more and receive "50 Bible Puzzles and Word Games" ($19.95 value) as a FREE download. Just type BONUS GIFT in the memo box when you check out or mention BONUS GIFT when you call us at 1-800-854-1531. But hurry! This free bonus gift offer expires May 2, 2010. The VBS website is at Shop VBS!.

(Click image for a larger view)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Be Prepared to Teach!

A good leader is always thoroughly prepared. A concert pianist wouldn't dream of going into a recital without hours and hours of practice and preparation. Why should a Bible teacher or VBS leader feel that his performance demands less practice?

Remember—when teaching from God's Word, we're dealing with the souls of children! How this should challenge us to be more diligent in our preparation of every Bible lesson, craft, project, or game time for VBS (and throughout the year)! Don't minimize the importance of your calling as a leader by a slothful attitude toward your preparation for the task of teaching and training children.

Here are a few tips to help you feel well prepared for VBS this year:

The week before your lesson or activity, read through the Scripture passage and/or memory verse. Start praying about what concepts God wants you to focus on with your students.

Ask God to continue to give you insight as you meditate on His Word. Jot down ideas as they come to you. You may even want to keep a pencil and pad of paper near your bed at night!

A few days before your lesson, decide which activities you will be using, and collect all the necessary supplies. Modify activities as needed for your students (or your location or your class time). Make any notes as reminders of the changes you're planning.

You may want to prepare a sample craft or try the activity ahead of time so you are able to help your students. Be sure to remove any stumbling blocks. (For example, if your preschoolers cannot yet draw faces, bring wiggle eyes and mouth shapes for them to glue onto a circle or head shape.)

Pray for each child, that God would open each heart to the lesson and to His Word. Ask God to guide you so that you model the love of Jesus throughout your time with your students.

Now that you’re prepared, have fun. As you share God’s Word with your students, do it with a smile. After all, you’re serving the Lord!

Monday, April 19, 2010

VBS Bulletin Board Ideas

A simple and attractive way to decorate your VBS rooms is with bulletin boards. Place the bulletin board(s) near the door so they will catch the children's interest as they enter. The hallways outside your rooms are also great places for bulletin boards and can be handy spots to post announcements and upcoming Bible club and all-church events. Some simple bulletin board ideas:
  • Cover the bulletin board with a large sheet of butcher paper, gift wrap, or cloth for a colorful background. Add a star trim border around the edges of the board for Hero Headquarters, waves of blue for High Seas Expedition, a rainforest border for SonQuest Rainforest, and.
  • Make a colorful border by cutting construction paper strips. You can be as creative as you want by cutting the border strips in fancy or decorative shapes. Add Bible stickers or glue star cutouts around the border to make it pop.
  • A three-dimensional effect is attractive to children. Make flowers out of egg carton cups. Put a layer of thick cardboard behind some of your bulletin board figures to make them stand out.
  • Attach materials to the bulletin boards using staples, as they are much more difficult for younger children to remove and swallow. Be sure that no loose staples are left on the floor after you've completed the board.
  • Make interactive bulletin boards: Mount a mirror on the board, covered with a piece of cloth. Place a picture of Jesus beside the mirror. Guide the children to the board. Ask, Who is important to Jesus? Look and see.
  • Make a bulletin board titled, “We are special to Jesus.” Mount a picture of Jesus and let each child draw a self-portrait to post next to the Jesus picture. Guide the children to the board and help them identify their classmates by name. 

Monday, April 12, 2010

Decorating Ideas for SonRock Kids Camp

Create an outdoor camp feeling by setting up tents, rocks, and rivers. Ask church members to search their attics for artificial Christmas trees. Also ask them to loan large potted plants. Borrow camping equipment to use for your decorations. Hang some of the equipment (such as ropes and canteens) from your walls, and use the rest to create camp sites around your VBS areas. Set up a hammock or two and fill them with stuffed toy animals.

Use blue sheets to make a river. Line the sheets with rocks and/or logs. Put a couple of inner tubes in the river or nearby. A few large plants or trees (or ferns) with some small toy animals and Insect Finger Puppets peeking out from them will add to the camp feeling. A toy snake could peer out from behind a large rock. Tape the Wall Cut-Outs to a wall near your river.

For a wet play area, fill a large tub with water and let some fish squirts float in it. Have small nets with handles or strainers nearby so the children can catch the fish. Paint backdrops of trees and bushes onto large boxes and place them around your VBS site. Use log benches for some of your seating areas. 

Hang the SonRock Coloring Mural at the children's eye level in one of your hallways. Encourage the kids to color it during their free time. Let the children add Animal Characters Stickers to the mural each day of your VBS program.

Need more decorating ideas? Take a look at the Super Decorating and Resource Pack for a Clip Art and Publicity CD, Daily Truth Pennants, posters, and balloons. Also try out the fun decorating options on the Camp D├ęcor and More CD-ROM.

Now you're ready to lead your kids on the camping experience of a lifetime as they learn to follow Jesus!

Monday, April 5, 2010

SonRock Kids Camp Coloring Pages

Here are some coloring pages we’ve created for the SonRock Kids Camp VBS. There is a coloring page for each day—a total of five. Each coloring page has the daily memory verse and the lesson focus. There is a set of coloring pages for the New International Version and a separate set for the King James Version. If you use a different Bible version than the ones given, feel free to cut off or white out the verse and replace it with the version you prefer. Each coloring page shows a picture from the Bible story being taught that day.The coloring pages come in sets of 5 pages for just $1.99 for the set. The best part is, you can make as many copies as you need!

In addition, Gospel Light has a Coloring Poster you can print and copy for your students. It has a place for them to put their name and age and it features the SonRock logo. You may want to make a coloring booklet for each child with the Coloring Poster on top, followed by the coloring pages for each day. At the end of your VBS week, your students will have a booklet with all five of the memory verses—a fun keepsake reminder of their week at vacation Bible school.

Check back each week for additional VBS resources—we’re working on decorating ideas and crafts for  SonRock. Plus we've posted hints and tips for High Seas Expedition; SonRock Kids Camp; Egypt: Joseph’s Journey; SonQuest Rainforest; Hero Headquarters; and Kingdom of the Son VBS. If you have another VBS program for which you’d like coloring pages or ideas, just leave a comment.

If you’d like to take a look at any of these VBS Starter Kits or their corresponding supplies, visit Shop VBS for more information and money-saving coupons.

May God bless you as you prepare to teach children (and their families) about how much God loves them!

(Click on the images above go to the download pages—
KJV is on the left and NIV is on the right)