It’s important that Christian children receive education about the word of the Bible. But this needs to be an enjoyable experience too, and at the age of 11 and 12 you need to find new ways to do this. Help the children remember Bible verses by turning it into a game of basketball, or let them throw paper balls around the room to teach them about living a sin-free life.
Purchase a miniature wall basketball set, the kind you would see on a teenager’s bedroom wall. Attach it to a wall in your Sunday school classroom. Have the class recite a verse from the bible that you want them to learn, and the split them into two teams. Line up both teams in front of the basketball net so the person at the front of each line is in a shooting position. The first child attempts to recite the verse. If successful he can shoot the basketball; if not he returns to the back of the line. Whatever the outcome, the basketball is then passed to the next team, and the game continues in this way until the time limit that you have set is up. The team with the most points – one point per basket – wins the game.
No More Sins
Crumple up pieces of paper and put around 30 pieces on both sides of the room. Now divide the class into two teams and set them at opposite ends of the room. Before the game begins, explain that the paper represents sins in our lives that we need to throw away. When you shout “go,” the children have half a minute to throw the paper balls to the other end of the room. When the time is up, the team with the least sins in its half of the room wins the game.
Divide the class into two teams and sit them back to back. Each team has a table in front of it with a pile of building blocks; there should be a block for each member of the team. One member of “Team A” puts a block down onto the table and must describe to “Team B” exactly how it was done. One member of team B attempts to repeat the action by following “Team A’s” description. Another member of “Team A” adds a block while describing the action, another member of “Team B” tries to follow. The game carries on until all of the blocks are used to build the structure. Compare the two structures at the end and discuss what happened to make them different. Explain to the children that it can be difficult following guidance without all of the information, but since we have the Bible to read and the Holy Spirit to guide us we know exactly what we need to do.
Recite a bible verse with the students a few times before you start the game. Reveal the blackboard, which should be covered with a cloth. The same verse is written on it but with a series of missing words, and a maze is drawn underneath. Read the verse but stop at the blanks. The children put their hands up if they know the missing word. Choose a child and if she gives the correct answer she can choose which direction to go next in the maze. The game ends when the maze is finished. At this point you can read out the rest of the verse in full.
Based in the U.K., Martin Cole has been writing since 2009. His articles have been published in "The Evening Chronicle," "The Journal" and "The Sunday Sun." He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Northumbria University.