Remember all those crafts you made as a child? Macaroni shells
painted gold. Plaster of Paris handprints. These simple object
lessons are a great way to help kids create a beautiful
relationship with God.
Those artistic endeavors became treasure — not because of how
much they cost — but because of what you invested in them —
yourself! Each child’s craft was unique because each child’s view
of beauty and God’s world was unique.
Craft time is more than merely a time-filler. Crafts — when
done well — allow kids to express themselves with hands-on
activity. Crafts can also provide a break for short attention
spans, reinforce a lesson, and serve as a take-home tool to
interact with parents.
The best crafts encourage individual expression. Since
children’s ministers understand that, crafts are almost always part
of our Christian education programs. It’s a wonder we don’t run out
of craft ideas.
If there’s ever a time of year that a children’s minister can
use great craft ideas, it’s now! With vacation Bible school, day
camps, Sunday school, and other summer programs that stretch your
repertoire of crafts, Children’s Ministry Magazine knew you’d be
looking for crafts that have the right ingredients:
• low cost,
• low preparation, and
• lots of options for kids to be creative!
That’s what you’ll find in this special section of summer
crafts. Plus, we’ve included expert information on how to adapt
crafts for kids with special needs.
What You’ll Need: Poster board cut in half,
tape, overhead projector, markers various craft materials, such as
feathers, fabric, paper, beads, yarn, or glitter, and glue.
Kids will love making these fun self-portraits. When kids are
finished, hang the portraits in your hallways for engaging
decorations that parents will rush to see.
Tape a half-sheet of poster board to the wall. Place an overhead
projector across the room from the paper. Have a child stand
between the overhead projector and the paper so that his silhouette
falls perfectly on the paper. Use a marker to trace around the
Then write the child’s name on the back of the paper and give
the child the silhouette. The child can use craft materials to make
the silhouette a silhouette a sillyette.
GRASS SEED SAMSON
What you’ll need: one rinsed 1/2-pint milk
carton for each child, potting soil, grass seed, construction
paper, fine-tipped markers, and glue sticks.
Here’s a version of the Chia Pet planter! Only it’s a Chia
Give each child a ½-pint milk carton. Open the top of the milk
carton so the carton becomes an open cube. Have the children glue
construction paper around the carton to cover the milk logo. Then
help the children draw a Samson face (up to the forehead) on the
construction paper. The top of the carton is the hairline.
Fill each carton with potting soil about ½ inch from the top.
Then sprinkle grass seed on the soil and cover the seed with a thin
layer of soil.
Set the “Samsons” in a sunny windowsill and keep them well
After a few days, each Samson’s hair will begin to grow! Once it
gets a few inches long, kids can cut the “hair” and retell the
What you’ll need: potatoes, permanent markers,
knife (adults only), thick liquid temera point, small paintbrushes,
pie tins, and poster board cut in half.
This is a great way for kids to use natural ingredients to
create place mats for others, such as their families, your church,
or a shelter.
Ahead of time, cut the potatoes in half. Draw a simple nature
design on each half, such as a tree or a leaf. Use an X-Acto knife
to carve around the design. The raised area will create the printed
image. This will work better if you have at least one potato stamp
for every two children so they can share.
Lay out the poster board and the potato stamps. Pour the paint
into the pie tins or paper plates. Then have children take turns
with this process:
• Brush paint onto the design area of a potato stamp.
• Press the stamp firmly onto the paper, being careful not to move
or drag it.
• Lift the stamp carefully and repeat the process an inch or two
away from the first stamp.