Use this 15-minute Bible activity and lesson to help
children understand and honor Memorial Day.
1. Shhh: Usher children quietly into a darkened
classroom. Keep lights off and windows covered.
Whisper: "In some parts of the world, going to church
is against the law. People who want to learn about God meet
Ask: "What do you think that's like? Are we being quiet
enough to avoid being arrested?"
Quietly, say: "This week we're celebrating Memorial
Day. This is a holiday when we remember people who died fighting in
wars to protect our country and our freedom. We're free to worship
God here, so there's no reason to be quiet."
Turn on the lights and sing a loud song.
2. Rooms in Heaven: Ask: "Has someone
you love ever died? We feel sad when we miss them. If these people
believed in Jesus, they're in heaven."
Read aloud John 14:1-3.
Ask: "What do you think heaven's like? How do you think
Jesus prepared those rooms?"
Say: "Let's create a picture of what we think heaven's
Tape newsprint to a wall and provide art supplies to create a
mural of heaven. Let children create the rooms they'd like for
themselves or for loved ones already in heaven. Talk about the
people in heaven now. Explain that while we miss them, we can be
happy they're in a wonderful place.
3. Poppies Galore: Distribute red construction
To make poppies, have children follow these steps: Trace the
bottom of a glass to make four circles; cut these out, then gently
crumple them; open the circles and poke a green pipe cleaner
through their centers as if they were beads; loop the end of the
pipe cleaner as a knot, and push the red paper circles toward this
knot to make a poppy flower. As kids work, tell them they're making
poppies as reminders of soldiers who died in wars. Red poppies are
a symbol for Memorial Day. When the flowers are finished, pray and
thank God for people who died for your country. Encourage children
to give their flowers to people after class.
Say: "When you give people your poppies, ask them to
tell you who they remember on Memorial Day."
4. Snack: In clear cups, layer sliced
strawberries and blueberries. Finish with a dollop of whipped
topping and serve to your class, reminding them to be thankful for
people who are willing to die for our country.
Say: "Why were you willing to give up your treat? How's
it feel to know others will enjoy a yummy snack because of what you
gave up? Soon we'll celebrate Memorial Day. That's when we remember
all the American men and women who died serving our country. Why do
you think they gave their lives?"
Ask: "Would any of you like to give your snack to a
student in another class?"
Say: "You gave up your treat so friends could enjoy
something special. That's like the men and women who gave their
lives so we could enjoy living in America. God gave something
special for us, too." (Read the Scripture.) "God gave his son Jesus
so we could enjoy eternal life in heaven." (Distribute cups of
Cheezits or some other snack.) "As you eat your special treat,
remember that many brave Americans gave their lives for our
country. Let's thank God for the wonderful sacrifice he made for
us, too." (Close in prayer.)
Joclyn Wampler is a church volunteer in Oregon. Please keep
in mind that phone numbers, addresses, and prices are subject to