Many churches offer Sunday school classes to children as a way for the children to learn more about their religion and gain a closer relationship with God. But as these students get older, Sunday school teachers need to find new and creative ways to engage them in discussions. While some websites charge a small fee to view ideas for Sunday school lessons, the Internet also provides a variety of free resources. The important idea to remember is to keep it fun, creative and relevant to the students' lives.
Split the class into two teams. Hand one member of each team five balloons that are all the same color. Create two lines on the floor with duct tape. Space the lines 8 to 10 feet apart, and ask one team to stand on each line. Drop the balloons in the center of the two lines. Challenge the students to grab as many of the other team’s balloons as possible, only using their feet. After a few minutes, select one player from each team to pop as many of their own balloons as possible. The goal of the activity is to show the students how temptation and competition can cause them to break the rules in order to win the game.
Overview of Psalms
To help students understand Psalms and to help them become motivated in expressing themselves to God and religion, start with a trivia contest as a refresher. Ask questions such as which Psalm is the longest, which is the shortest, how many Psalms are in the Bible and who wrote the most. Questions can also be asked about specific Psalms. The student who correctly answers the most wins. Another activity involving the study of Psalms is to analyze modern songs and music to see which songwriters used Psalms as an inspiration. Ask students to come to class with a song that they believe uses Psalms or was inspired by Psalms. Discuss each one and how it relates to real-life situations.
Incorporating community service into a Sunday School lesson is a way to show students what it means to be of service to others. Ask the students about ways they can help others. Brainstorm potential projects that the class can do together, and ask why it is hard for some people to get into the habit of helping others in the community. At the end of class, encourage students to come up with a way to help another person by the end of the day. Discuss those service activities in the next Sunday school class. After discussing the smaller, individual projects, choose one project from those that were given in the brainstorming session to complete as a class. Through the lesson, students will begin to learn that serving those around them is a spiritual practice they must use on a daily basis.
Must Be the Money
This lesson uses the Book of James to help students gain an understanding of money. Place some money on the table. Ask students how that amount could be used for good and how it could be used for bad. Because money itself cannot be bad or good, discuss with the students how bad things can come from it. Continue with reading James and ask the class who he is speaking to and why. Relate that back to the students and have a discussion about why money is more important to some than others. Ask the class what it would do if handed an amount of money. Next, ask the students what they would do if that money were torn up. Use that scenario as a way to discuss responsible uses of money and how it should be prioritized in a relationship with God.