Here are some quick ideas that you could use: (Or you can always just check out the stories on this website!)
1. Take the kids on an outdoor thanksgiving walk. Do a walking trip and ask the children to notice things they are thankful for. As they mention things, ask them why they are thankful for those items: You are thankful for trees. Why? What good things come from trees? (Wood to build houses; Shade on a hot day; privacy etc. After discussing each item, you (or the children) could lead in a prayer of thanksgiving to God.
2. Read out a parable or other bible story and have the children act out the story as you read out a paraphrased version. (Parables such as the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan can work well for spontaneous dramas.) Extra: Record your drama on your cell phone and show it to them.
3. Tell you story of coming to faith in Jesus and have the children tell their story. (Be sensitive to the fact that children may not all have a polished, rehearsed testimony. When you are finished, lead in prayer, giving thanks for the many ways that people come to follow Jesus.
4. Have one of the young people share a problem or trial and facilitate a group discussion on how to help that person. What help does Jesus provide? What help can class members provide? This exercise can help develop your group’s compassion quotient.
5. Facilitate a discussion on the practical needs of your church and community. Is there a project you could all be involved in? How can you help people in need? Bake cookies and ask church members to donate to your good cause.
6. Prepare a song (an action song) or a skit that you could present to the congregation the following Sunday. (Or to an elderly shut in person)
7. Put together a quick bible trivia game and ask the kids to fill in the blanks or give the answers.
8. Play a Bible Pictionary Game. Make up a list of cards with bible names, events, or people. Divide into two groups and have a person in the group pick a card and draw a picture in front of their group without using words. If the team guesses what the picture is about, the team gets a point.
9. Use building blocks to build the Temple, Jerusalem or other bible scene.
10. Have the children work together to do a puzzle. Use this as an opportunity to speak about working together as a team.
11. Ask a member of the congregation to come and speak to the kids. If you have a young person who is a role model, all the better. Or interview them: How did you come to believe in Jesus? Do you find it hard being a Christian at school? How to you keep strong as a Christian? What are some of your favorite bible verses? Hearing a word from an older young person can be powerful.
Only a few here so far but there will be more coming! (Thank you Echo for drawing these!)
--> Check back later - more to come!