Simple and not expensive, as we are using mostly ideas from internet sources, crafts and so forth.
We will use the Calvary Chapel Curriculum for some fun pages. I love these...they cover several age groups, verse, coloring pages, games, etc all in one nice printable booklet. Several hundred stories covered, Old Testament and New Testament alike.
We are putting up the first decorations tonight -- a jungle. Nothing fancy at all. Could have been better, I think, but we have what we have and we'll have a lot of fun with it regardless. We aren't a big church -- stretching to gather 25 children is difficult enough for 4 nights. We are a creative church, though :o)
Our props for the jungle include green and yellow crepe paper streamers, some poster board animal faces drawn by a dear helpful friend (Hi Sheila ;o) some carpet rolls and cardboard sheets for trees with some tissue paper 'fluff' to give the tree some more dimension, lots of plastic critters hanging from the ceiling (large bugs, frogs, lizards, etc) and a couple of inflatable birds for the corners.
Like I said, nothing overly fancy. We're a small church with simple and basic needs for fun ;o)
Snacks for the jungle will be just as simple...jungle mix. Teddy Grahams, M&Ms, goldfish crackers, pretzels, mini marshmellows...whatever else strikes my fancy as I dump it together. And juice, of course.
Our crafts are equally simple...rainsticks and bird feeders. Yeah, I know, very Biblical, right? The VBS program I actually bought didn't do much better for projects either. We sort of created some ideas on our own. The rainsticks are those plastic Lay's Stackables cans, spray painted green (they are blue...we just wanted green) holes drilled to match the size of our wooden skewers (skewers cut off flush and hot glued in before-hand...I have visions of that part not really fitting in with young children...). We'll fill them with rice and dried beans. The children will glue on some leaves we've cut from construction paper with the 10 Commandments written on them, then fill them and we will hot glue the lids on.
Our second day of Jungle will be bird feeders. This was in the curriculum. We are using those wicker paper plate trays, 3 wooden skewers criss-crossed through, twine to hang it with, and some large birdseed selection (the wicker trays are a bit loose-woven, small seed would filter right on through). LOL...if I get loopy on the spray painting this week, we might spray the wicker trays as well, but I think the birds might prefer them au naturale instead.
The final 2 days will be Hawaiian Island. I totally cheated -- we hit a sale on the last couple wall murals at WallyWorld. A Hawaiin Luau Island all ready for hanging :o) It's layered, so we can choose what we want -- just the sandy beach and coastline, or add the tikis and huts overlay. We have 4 hanging palm trees/streamers from the Luau stuff at WallyWorld, inflatables from the pool section (balls in a couple sizes, floaters, animals, etc), table toppers in palm trees, huge cut-outs of tropical fish and flowers...and lei's, of course. Plastic sand buckets and pails, fun foam stuff, etc.
The snacks are still in the works. Thinking a large jell-o beach...blue jell-o, graham cracker crumb beach, gummi fish, gummi lifesavers, sugar cookie beach blankets, and Sheila even sent some of those cute little paper umbrellas :o) Tropical juice something or another to drink. LOL...I have until Tuesday to work out the food details :o) No pressure.
Crafts again are simple...we have wire hangers to bend out into circles for weaving looms, lots of yarns to choose from (thank God for that yarn stash addiction I seem to have!) and then a fun foam picture frame, we'll glue paint some colored sand on them, and we have tons of foamies to decorate them -- flowers, bugs, etc. I'll take a picture of each child in front of the fancy store-bought mural and have them printed in 4x6 photo's.
Now to finish the fine details...put together the stories we're using and verses, grab from all sorts of sources like this one, or this one, or this one. (note: I do not endorse any site I share, I pick and choose what might be of general use on these sites. I am not going to debate various doctrinal presences within the sites. Use your God-given common sense and proof everything against The Word so you can winnow out the weeds) make our 10 Commandment tablets, get the pre-work done on the various crafts and prep things needed for printing.
Here are some odds and ends I gleaned various ideas from -- again, I have not made any endorsement of any particular site listed, I am just gleaning for ideas and crafts and games:
Christian Printables -- Ten Commandments
honestly, there are TONS of things at this site I've gleaned from, including thoughts for some other classes this year
I gleaned alot from their various links within the site...look around a bit and get some fresh ideas
I like the idea of the Holy Land Tour
Danielle's Place, Bible Themes
there are some good things here free, but alot of the really good stuff is subscription fee membership. I have not joined. I like free :o)
Calvary Chapel Curriculum OT & NT
can't say enough about this one...I love it and we use it A LOT!
Some Lesson Booklets from Calvary Chapel Utah -- NOT the same Calvary Chapel with the curriculum
Keep Ten Commandments site -- lots of little things here, magnets, those 10 Commandment yard signs, etc.
these are just flat out NEAT! you have to purchase them, but it would certainly be well worth it. They have several to choose from and could be a great tool to help children memorize Scripture, get the Gospel out in a fun and unique way...they are just neat.
Grace Church Catechisms, 10 Commandments
didn't look over the entire site at all...just the 10 Commandment ideas
And then I found this...Son Harvest County Fair VBS and boy that got my juices going. I don't see spending close to $200 for a VBS program, but I can glean alot of ideas and plans just with a few pushes in the right direction. I have all sorts of ideas rolling around for a County Fair kind of theme...
What VBS themes did you do yourself, or take notice of this year?
Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.
Blogs I Love to Visit...
- 5 Acres & A Drean
- A Pondering Heart
- Ask Jackie @ Backwoods Home
- Bateman Homestead
- Bible Version Comparison Chart
- Busy B Homemaker
- Caffeinated Homestead
- Choosing Voluntary Simplicity
- Down To Earth Blog
- Fruit of Her Hands blog
- Granny Miller blog
- Growing up Herbal
- Half a Hundred Acre Wood blog
- He Sows, She Sews
- He Sows, She Sews
- Herbal Academy of New England Blog
- Homestead Honey blog
- It All Matters Mom blog
- Just Plain Marie
- My Journey to Separation
- Nourishing Days blog
- One and a Half Acre Homestead
- Outside the Box Homeschool blog
- Ozark Mountain Family Homestead
- Reflections from Drywood Creek
- Sabbath Mood Homeschool
- Small Farm Girl
- Simple Green Frugal Coop
- Snowfall Academy blog
- Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth
- Sufficient Graze Farm blog
- The Caffeinated Homestead
- The Crunchy Chicken
- The Nerdy Farmwife
- The Prudent Homemaker
- The Unplugged Family
- The Wild Garden
- This Life I live
- Vaccination Information website
- Vintage Remedies DIY & Articles
- Wellness Mama
- Wood Cookstove Cooking blog