You’ve packed away the Christmas props and programs, rung in the New Year, and begun the new season. By now the weekly pace has returned and order has been restored. Although everyone appreciates peace after a busy holiday season, by February things can seem a bit too quiet! Break up the long winter weeks by incorporating a “Beat the Winter Blahs” day into your season! Why? Because it’s a great way to connect as a teaching team, kids love to see adults having fun in unexpected ways, and experiencing joy at church always makes sense!
Read through the following ideas and choose the ones that would work for your program, select a date, and invite teachers and kids to participate. (You can still teach the regularly scheduled lesson; you’ve just added more smiles!)
Create an Oasis
- Place picnic tablecloths on your tables.
- Put crayons and markers in plastic beach pails.
- Hang streamers in the doorway to your classroom.
- Purchase a paper palm tree from the dollar store to hang on the wall.
- Lay a beach blanket or beach towels on the floor of your classroom.
- Teach in a lawn chair!
- Smell the scent of a sea breeze! Place an air freshener in your class before the kids arrive! (Check that there are no perfume allergies first!)
- Pass out leis (available at dollar stores) as kids enter.
- Dress like a tourist: shorts, sandals, and sunglasses!
- Carry your teaching supplies in a beach bag or cooler.
Taste the sunshine
Buy some paper mini-umbrellas at a dollar store and a package of oatmeal or sugar cookies. Insert the end of the umbrella into each cookie to create an edible beach scene!
Eat ice cream sandwiches. Squish a scoop of ice cream between two graham crackers, freeze and serve.
Make fruit kabobs. Have a selection of fruit—strawberries, bananas, and grapes are easiest to prepare—and have kids slide them onto skewers. Tip: While you’re snacking, see how many different fruits you can name—and then thank God for them!
Promote your upcoming “Beat the Winter Blahs” day by inviting kids and your teaching team to bring in favorite photos of them selves in the summer or at the beach. Hang these in the hallway on the week before your day. Ask your pastor to contribute a childhood at the beach shot--kids will love it!
Down South? Enjoying balmy weather?
Have fun doing things backwards! Invite kids to wear hats, gloves, and scarves. Decorate your room with a cozy blanket or quilt blanket spread on the floor, a portable electric fireplace and paper snowflakes dangling from the ceiling! Make snow-ka-bobs by alternating pieces of fruit with mini-marshmallows on skewers or toothpicks and serve hot chocolate.