Are You Crafty?

So we all know VBS and crafts are almost synonymous. Crafts are one of those things in VBS that people remember until they’re 80! C’mon, you know I am right. I bet if I asked you right now you could tell me all about those pictures you made from dried beans. Or the coasters you made from craft sticks and the necklaces from uncooked pasta. I still remember a plaster of paris plaque made with my handprint. (I am pretty sure my mom still has it!)

As for me, sometimes I have a love-hate relationship with VBS crafts. I love editing the VBS Crafts Rotation Leader Guide. It’s fun to be creative and work with a great team of ideators and writers as well as making samples in my office. But here’s the hard part, trying to come up with these absolutely fabulous ideas that kids will remember when they’re 80 and cost around .50 cents a kid. Oh, and then you have to remember that about 100 kids will have 20-25 minutes to make said craft. And you have to use supplies that are readily available in all areas. Whew, can you see my struggle?

So that’s why I ask, “Are you crafty?’ If you said yes and have just been waiting for your chance to share one of your fabulous VBS craft ideas, you’re in luck.

Help me end my love-hate relationship! Leave a comment with your idea. Include needed supplies, brief directions, approximate cost per child, and time frame for completion. Your comment will enter you into a random drawing for a free VBS 2012 Amazing Wonders Aviation Sampler.  All comments must be posted by midnight on October 14 to be eligible for the drawing.

Comments

  1. Melba says

    I have taught VBS for a number of years and last year took on the role of Craft Rotation Leader. Wow! Was that a rush! I love seeing the children do crafts and I try to use ones that they will USE and not toss in the trash by the end of the month and are easy, cheap and fun to do for all ages. One thing that I think fits the bill all around is to create a Christmas ornament.

    Way back when the teacher’s did their own crafts, I started having my children make an ornament to fit the theme. For example: For the lesson God created the sea and all the creatures of the sea a sea themed ornament. I happened to buy a lot of sand dollars and tiny shells on vacation that year, so they glued the shells on the sand dollar and added a little white glitter. Then I hot glued a ribbon on the back. They were adorable!
    As a mom and grandmother I keep all the paper and glue ornaments my children have made in school over the years and we put them on the tree every year. I pray that the children will keep their ornaments for years and will think of VBS and what they learned there every time they hang it on the tree.

    I posted my proto-type for VBS 2012 and the ornaments for the Big Apple VBS on the VBS Facebook page this summer (and I’d be happy to repost them if you cannot find them). So, if you ask have you planned your ornaments for VBS 2012, the answer would have to be of course!!! I have several ideas that I am looking for the materials for.

    The first is a paper coaster ornament. Cover the paper coaster with light blue steamers back and front, being sure to cover the edges and let dry. I used a glue stick, liquid glue make the ornament bow up as it dries. You may have to flatten the ornament under books. I would do this before VBS so they would be ready to decorate. I then printed a map of one of the locations we will “visit” and cut out a curved shape (to be the earth or globe). Then paste it on the paper coaster and trim the edges to fit the coaster. Paint some white fluffy clouds over the curve of the earth with white paint using a cotton ball. Do this very lightly and it will dry quickly. Then add stickers to fit the theme (airplane, arrows, etc.). I am having problems locating bi-plane stickers that are affordable. I am hoping that the VBS or O.T. people will have some available by the time VBS comes around. I’d love a banner that the bi-plane would pull and that had VBS 2012 pre-printed on it. I plan to put a VBS 2012 logo sticker on the other side of the ornament. Costs: The paper coasters cost me $1.07 for 30. Streamers are $1 a roll and one did 30 ornaments for me last year. The stickers should be in the $7 range. White paint is usually on hand. Be prepared to use for or more glue sticks for 30 ornaments. So, way less than 50 cents a project.
    The other ornament is also a paper coaster and is designed to fit the Craft Session theme, the Great Barrier Reef. Again start with a paper coaster covered with light blue streamers. Decorate the front to look like a barrier reef with stickers. Again the hardest part of doing this is finding AFFORDABLE reef stickers. Again my hopes are some will be released by VBS. I’d love to see glossy paper stickers with coral, fans, etc. and fish you would find there. The paper glossy would stick fine to the ornament and would be more colorful and appealing to the eye than one color foam stickers. This ornament would be a great way to use those self-adhesive foam squares in the scrapbook section to add some 3D effects.

    I am looking for some non-breakable (safety first!) light blue ball ornaments to use in place of the coasters (or for a new desgin!), but have not located one with a SMOOTH surface. For these ornaments foam stickers will adhere better and be more moldable than glossy paper stickers. I hope to see both kinds.

    This year I used a combo of ornament bases as I did not know I’d be teaching crafts. But this year I am already looking for what I need. I am buying now and have a special box to put things in.

    I also have LOTS of other great ideas that I will share on FB as they a fully developed.

    I also have LOTS of other great ideas that I will share on FB as they a fully developed.
    One thing I do want to say is to start off with prayer that the Lord will reveal an idea to you and when He does, thank Him immediately. And be prepared for the ideas He send to pop up almost anywhere!!! The whole Big Apple Christmas ornament idea for 2011 started in a second hand store when the Lord sent me back down an aisle to take another look at something I had already passed over – red satin ornaments that could become an apple when a re-purposed leaf (could NOT find any apple leaves so I made my own with a few snips of the scissors).

    Hope this inspires you!

  2. says

    Wow, great idea! Thanks for sharing. It’s exciting to see how you are already planning to touch kids’ lives in 2012. Looking forward to seeing your ideas on FB. Keep them coming!

  3. says

    The first is a paper coaster ornament. Cover the paper coaster with light blue steamers back and front, being sure to cover the edges and let dry. I used a glue stick, liquid glue make the ornament bow up as it dries. You may have to flatten the ornament under books. I would do this before VBS so they would be ready to decorate. I then printed a map of one of the locations we will “visit” and cut out a curved shape (to be the earth or globe). Then paste it on the paper coaster and trim the edges to fit the coaster. Paint some white fluffy clouds over the curve of the earth with white paint using a cotton ball. Do this very lightly and it will dry quickly. Then add stickers to fit the theme (airplane, arrows, etc.). I am having problems locating bi-plane stickers that are affordable. I am hoping that the VBS or O.T. people will have some available by the time VBS comes around. I’d love a banner that the bi-plane would pull and that had VBS 2012 pre-printed on it. I plan to put a VBS 2012 logo sticker on the other side of the ornament. Costs: The paper coasters cost me $1.07 for 30. Streamers are $1 a roll and one did 30 ornaments for me last year. The stickers should be in the $7 range. White paint is usually on hand. Be prepared to use for or more glue sticks for 30 ornaments. So, way less than 50 cents a project.
    The other ornament is also a paper coaster and is designed to fit the Craft Session theme, the Great Barrier Reef. Again start with a paper coaster covered with light blue streamers. Decorate the front to look like a barrier reef with stickers. Again the hardest part of doing this is finding AFFORDABLE reef stickers. Again my hopes are some will be released by VBS. I’d love to see glossy paper stickers with coral, fans, etc. and fish you would find there. The paper glossy would stick fine to the ornament and would be more colorful and appealing to the eye than one color foam stickers. This ornament would be a great way to use those self-adhesive foam squares in the scrapbook section to add some 3D effects.

    +1

  4. says

    I love crafts that the kids can keep or that have duel purposes. From what I have seen of the theme my first idea would be a backpack craft for your travels. This could be a craft that could be added to all week by having different stamps for different travel destinations stamped on the outside of the bag each day thus decorating it day by day. Luggage Tags or Backpack Zipper Pulls. I also think that crafts that incorporate Science can be a great addition to VBS that is inexpensive. Volcanos that the kids could decorate that they could make erupt and than reerupt at home. How about decorating shoe laces to remind us to walk with God everyday. I am thinking some kind of LIon Game. Maybe a ball catch of some sort.

  5. Suzanne says

    I love using popsicle sticks to make puzzle pictures. For younger kids, 6 larger sticks makes a good background. For older kids, I use 10. I package them in a little snack bag so they can carry them home. I temporarily secure the back with a piece of painter tape while they are decorating.
    This is a task any age group can do, and if they don’t finish in the craft time, it can easily be taken home, and has minimal cost. (you can buy 100 jumbo sticks for under $7). We have used markers and crayons.

    Plus it is a great travel game that can be used again and again.For older kids, you can even challenge them to make a picture on each side.

  6. Melba says

    I love the travel ideas Amber. Also could have a passport prayer journal. The destinations are stamped each night and then to make it useful it could double as a prayer journal. Maybe to pray for people living/visiting that local??? We did a prayer journal this year for VBS and I posted the content of it in the craft idea bank for VBS 2011. I had intended for them to paste the sheets in their journal each night, but that just didn’t work!

    So, for next year I will change it up a little and have the sheets preprinted and ready for them to put together in an album. I may combine the memory book idea I saw on the share site with the prayer journal sheets I developed to make an “uber” album!

    I will definately keep the choose a missionary to pray for a week aspect ot the journal I created and have them decorate cards to send to the missionary throughout the rest of the year (I used state missionaries to keep the postage costs down.). I am still sending out cards to those missioinaries and won’t finish up until Christmas! I think this time I instead of doing all the cards VBS theme, I will have some harvest, birthday, Christmas, etc. so that I can send them out until next VBS. I may even use the same missionaries and just get an update from them. These are very low cost ideas. The cards were about $0.87 per student including postage (which was most of the cost and your church could probally absorb this expence under “mailing costs”, so maybe $0.39 each.) and the journals cost me only the foam stickers (I had the foam craft sheets for the covers on hand in the Children’s Ministries cabinet) and I plan to use paper stickets and cardstock for the covers this year. The biggest expense for these will be the book rings we used to put the journals together. This was so much easier than lacing the albums!!! And it lets them put in extra sheets easily. You could even have a sheet they did every night in class and then they’d put it in thier journal (or it would be super easy for u to do it after class the last night). If you can’t afford book rings, then simply tie it together with ribbon or raffia (you could even have this done before VBS to give you more time for reviewing the CONTENT rather than just putting the journal together.

    I hope the children witll use these books during the year. Have thought about announcing in TeamKids that if you bring your journal (WRITTEN IN) to VBS next year to show to the class you will get a specal reward. Just lots of great ideas and I can’t wait!

  7. Karli Land says

    Love the Passport Prayer Journal idea. I plan to do something very similar. Ours will be more like a passport scrapbook. I want the children to be able to have something to take home and keep that will draw them back to the scripture that they learned. I plan to have verses and the motto in the book as well as pictures of the children with their friends and classmates.

    Supplies: Paper Bags (lunch sack size)
    Stamps, stickers (all that follow the theme)
    Markers
    Double sided tape
    Hole punch and ribbon
    Camera
    If you fold the paper bags together, you have slots from the bag tops where you can store “stuff” that can be made in other craft sessions. Allow the children to decorate their passports and carry them to be stamped at their different “destinations”

  8. April F. says

    I love this year’s theme! One idea that came to mind for “Amazing Wonders” was to make a “Travel Dry Erase Board”. When my kids were little, we were always packing activity books, look & find books, etc. to keep them busy on long car rides. With this year’s theme of traveling to God’s Amazing Wonders, I thought a home-made dry erase board might be a fun craft for the kids at VBS.

    Supplies:
    Clear sheet protectors – found in office supplies (1 per child) 100 for $7.44 or 50 for $4.24
    Dry erase markers (1 per child) 4 for $1 at some dollar stores
    1 Piece of cardboard to fit inside sheet protector (recycled cereal boxes) (1 per child)
    VBS themed stickers
    2 (or more) pieces of light colored cardstock paper
    3 foot length of sturdy string
    Optional: 4 or 5 colored beads per child

    Directions:

    Prep Work – On pieces of cardstock, photocopy VBS images, clip-art, map of the U.S., travel games (tic tac toe grid, dots game, word searches, etc.) onto front and back of the cardstock. Place images in the middle area of the paper so the kids can decorate the borders.

    During Craft Time – (approx. 25-30 min.)

    Have kids decorate just the borders of the cardstock paper by adding “Amazing Wonders”, Bible verses, VBS motto, stickers, etc.

    Once the kids are finished decorating the borders, they can assemble their dry erase board. Place the activity pages inside the sheet protector and slide the piece of cardboard in between the papers to give some sturdiness. Thread the string through the holes of the sheet protector and secure with a knot at the bottom of the page. Using one end of the string, add beads and tie with a knot. Use the other end of the string to attach a dry erase marker by tying it tightly around the marker. Add a piece of tape to secure, if needed. They can use the dry erase marker on the outside of the sheet protector to do their activities and then wipe it off with a kleenix.

    Hope you all like the idea!

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