The right Sunday School games and activities can take a class from ho-hum to I can’t wait to come back next week! Kids often learn best when engaged in creative play, and with these easy activity ideas, you may have the most fun of all.
So the next time the pastor’s sermon goes 10 minutes over, don’t panic. You’ve got a stockpile of crafts and games you can adapt to any Sunday School classroom. We’ve also included Bible Connection ideas to help you tie activities to the day’s lesson.
Sunday School Games
Learn the Bible
- If your class is memorizing a Bible verse, you can’t beat the Pool Noodle game (no water required)!
- Kids burn off energy while memorizing that tricky list of Biblical books with Books of the Bible Hopscotch.
- Books of the Bible Fishing is a brilliant way to teach the different genres within the Bible.
- Make connections between Bible stories with Did It Happen in the Old or New Testament? Kids place Bible character and/or story cards in the right column.
- Do your kids love The Action Bible? Try this matching Bible guessing game to help kids learn Biblical people, places, and things.
- Reach for Bible Trading Cards as fun memory tools and potential prizes.
Get to know you
- A quick game of Guess Who? doubles as a class-bonding activity. Use it next time you have a few extra minutes to fill or want to help a new group of kids get to know each other.
- Here’s a game that requires absolutely NO supplies: gather your Sunday school class and ask a series of Would You Rather questions. You can divide the room into two sides and have students group according to their answers. A fun list of Christian Would You Rather questions includes these head-scratchers: Would you rather have seen the Red Sea being parted or Jesus walking on water? Would you rather have dinner with Moses or Paul? Have fun coming up with your own questions based on that day’s theme or your group’s particular interests.
- Play Switch Sides If to get your group moving and building relationships with each other.
- All you need is a ball of rainbow-colored yarn to play The String Game. Kids learn that while God created us differently, we’re connected to Him and each other through Jesus.
- After a high-energy Sunday School game, bring everyone’s focus back with a round of Silence. Kids work together to line up in a certain order, for example, oldest to youngest or by birth month. Here’s the catch: they have to do it all without talking. This game makes a great Bible connection with the story of Zechariah in Luke 1 or any other story where someone has lost the power of speech.
Laugh out loud
- Sometimes nothing beats a good old fashioned board game. Here are a few you might want to keep handy: Chutes & Ladders, Sorry!, and Scrabble Jr. With a little creativity, you can connect these games to the Biblical ideas you’re teaching. Get started with these ideas.
- You can find dozens of Bible-based trivia and card games your group will love.
- Try out the classic game Pass the Pigs — the Bible connection with the story of the Prodigal Son is irresistible!
- Do you have some Star Wars fans in your group? Their new favorite game is going to be Who Said It: Yoda or Proverbs? You can buy this online, or create one yourself from a list of Yoda quotes and verses from Proverbs. This game makes a great Bible Connection with Proverbs, but it can also be a discussion starter on the difference between Christianity and other belief systems.
- For a Bible Connection with the parable of the lost sheep, try Finding Your Flock. All you need are some colored cotton balls.
Sunday School Crafts
- Decorate the cover of a blank notebook to use as a prayer journal. Encourage kids to record the things they’re praying for as well as the ways God answers those prayers.
- Make bookmarks for Bibles. Start out with blank paper or use one of these free templates. Have a variety of ribbons kids can choose from to personalize their bookmarks.
- Coloring sheets are a staple of any kids’ ministry. For a creative twist, check out these ideas for more ways to use coloring pages.
Go wild with animals
- Create a whole parade of animals out of toilet paper tubes (tutorial here). Bible connections: Creation of the animals, Noah’s Ark.
- Make an ant farm—without the dirt! Black beans stand in for the ants in this simple craft you make with just four materials. Bible connections: Proverbs 5:6, how God cares for even the smallest creatures.
- Create these awesome handprint fish puppets. Bible connections: Jesus and the miraculous catch of fish, Matthew 4:19
- While we’re talking about fish, what about trying this quiet fishing game to help everyone calm down before the lesson?
- For a fun Bible connection to the story of Jonah, try these easy paper plate whales.
- Paper plates not your thing? Mix it up with these egg carton whales.
- One last Jonah and the whale craft idea (this might be my favorite): an adorable clothespin whale with Jonah inside!
Make a connection
- Make paper chains–kids love seeing how long they can get! Bible connection: Paul and Silas in jail, or any other story of someone imprisoned. (You can also make a paper chain Christmas Tree.)
- At Easter, break out those clothespins to make a tomb that opens to reveal He is Risen! Bible connection: The Resurrection.
- Make your own musical instruments! Create harps out of shoeboxes and paper bands (tutorial here). Bible connections: David and Saul, Psalm 33:2, or any verse about making music to praise God.
- For more musical creativity, try out these ocean drums. The sound is very soothing, and you can make them with materials you already have at home. Bible connection: Creation of ocean, Jesus calming the storm.
Sunday School Activities
- Join “The Secret Service” — an irresistibly fun way to encourage kids to look out for the needs of others. Free printables, including Confidential Secret Service Mission Ideas.
- Encourage kids to express their creativity while building up others. Write and/or color cards for people who don’t often hear thank you. Some ideas: pastors, teachers, police officers, garbage collectors, post office workers, even your city’s local leaders.
- Go on a Service Scavenger Hunt. This works great as a team activity, or kids can complete throughout the week and share what happened next time you meet.
- Create gift bags for nursing home residents. Ideas: notecards and notepads, easy-to-grip pens, Forever stamps, calendars
- Have an assortment of blocks and/or Legos. Bible connections: the walls of Jericho, building the temple, the parable of the wise and foolish builders.
- Is building with sand out of the question? Check out kinetic sand before you answer! Bible connections: wandering in the desert, Psalm 139:18, the parable of the wise and foolish builders.
- Anytime you want to teach about the importance of a good foundation (or if you need a Bible connection to the Tower of Babel), the Spaghetti and Marshmallow Tower is your go-to for a hilarious and relatable object lesson.
- Put all those bells to good use after Christmas or Easter with the Don’t Ring the Bells Obstacle Course.
Eat Yummy Food
- Decorate (and eat…) these cute Fig Newton Bibles.
- Make Joseph’s coat out of rainbow Jelly Beans and graham crackers.
- Around Easter, host a celebratory Seder meal (traditionally the Thursday before Good Friday). This step-by-step guide helps kids see how this Jewish custom connects with Jesus’s death and resurrection. Bible connections: the Passover, the Last Supper.
- On Easter itself, enjoy traditional Hot Cross Buns. Bring the buns, and let kids decorate them with a cross. If you don’t want to bring in food, make pretend buns out of construction paper.
- Kids will have a blast creating an edible Nativy scene at Christmastime.
- For a memorable lesson illustration that doubles as a take-home reminder, plant seeds in egg cartons or Dixie cups. Bible connections: the Parable of the Sower, Matthew 17:20.
- Create a mini-greenhouse and talk about God’s creation and our responsibility to care for it.
- Grow a crystal snowflake ornament to give away as a Christmas present.
- Spread out a world map puzzle and talk about Christians in other countries while you solve it.
- Sometimes hearing a story is the best way to learn. Ask parents and other church members to visit your class and tell a story from their childhood, or maybe an experience they had with God at a young age. If you want, ask for stories that relate to your lesson theme.
- Pull out a stash of Christian children’s books and let the kids select one to read out loud. The books you choose will obviously depend on the age group (start with these ideas), but a new book is always a treat!