Thankful for our Bodies: Grades 1 to 3

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1. Make-A-Body-*Say: Today,
we’re going to celebrate Thanksgiving by celebrating a gift that
God has given us every day-our bodies.

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Give each child a sheet of paper. Have each child draw a
gingerbread-cookie-type person and then draw arrows from different
parts of the body to the outer rim of the paper. From the head,
have them write words that describe what they like to learn about.
From the hands, things they like to do. From the feet, places they
like to go. From the stomach, things they like to eat, and so
on.

2. Hopping-Popping Thanks-Read aloud
Psalm 139:14. Help the children better
understand this verse by using their bodies to express the
information on their gingerbread cookie papers. Have children think
about kernels of popcorn. As it gets to just the right heat, each
kernel bursts open into popcorn, but the kernels don’t do it all at
the same time. Invite children to burst open with their answers as
each part of the body is mentioned.

*Say: We thank God for our minds to think about… Have
children jump up at different times and respond. After all the
children have popped up and answered, go to the next body part.

3. Body Benders-Have children lie on
the floor. Encourage them to imagine what it would be like if their
bodies could not bend. Have them do these actions without bending
any part of their bodies: get up, walk, talk, run, and sit down.
Reread Psalm 139:14 at least four times.

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4. Snack-You’ll need: For every four
children, you’ll need a one-quart jar with a tight-fitting lid, 1
3/4 cups milk, and one small package of vanilla instant pudding.
You’ll also need small cups and spoons.

Directions: Put the milk and instant pudding in the jar
and close it tightly. Have children pass the jar around the circle
and shake it until it becomes pudding. This usually takes around
three to five minutes. Encourage students to think about how
they’re using their bodies to help each other. Serve the pudding in
small cups.

5. Circle of Thanks-Form a circle and
have children link arms. Have kids say in unison, “I am fearfully
and wonderfully made!” Then have children raise their hands and
close in a prayer of thanks for the wonderful bodies God has given
us. End with a group amen!

Bobbie Bower is a children’s ministry consultant in
Kansas.

TEACHER TIP
You may have children with physical disabilities in your class. If
you do, be sensitive to their feelings of not having perfect
bodies. Help them focus on all the parts of their bodies-internally
and externally-that work perfectly. Encourage them to thank God for
these parts of their bodies.

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