By Rev. Doug Forbes
A visit to your local craft store can be a lot of fun and it will provide you with hundreds of great craft ideas for your class. Try to visit a craft store when it’s not busy and talk with the craft experts who can guide you on your next Bible learning activity adventure.
An entire aisle of our favorite store is devoted to beads. Beads come in all shapes, styles and sizes, as do the strings used to join the beads together. You may wish to simply buy an assorted bin of beads and a package of strings and encourage your students to make their own unique creations. This could be followed by a Bible study on using your unique gifts, or that God loves beauty and diversity.
Beads with letters or numbers on four sides can be used in many creative ways. You could ask your young people to use their Bibles and Bible concordances to look up their favorite verses. The children could then put the reference or a short version of the verse they have chosen on a bracelet or necklace. When the craft is completed, they could share their creation and favorite verse with the class and explain what it means to them.
Lettered beads could also be used to make name bracelets or necklaces for themselves, their parents, or grandparents. They could also make “occasion” bracelets or necklaces that say: “Happy Fathers’ Day,” or “Happy Mothers’ Day.” I’m sure that you and your class can find many more applications for bead art.
Another fun activity for your class would be a craft store tour. You may wish to arrange to have one of the craft store experts show the children around and explain the many ways they can express their creativity through crafts. Craft books can also be helpful. One of my favorites is “The Big Book of Bible Crafts.” It is available at most Christian bookstores such as Heritage House in Brockton.