Hi Friends! I bet you weren’t expecting to hear from me so soon after my previous month long hiatus, but here I am! I previewed on Instagram & Facebook a snippet of our church’s version of VBS that we call“Kid’s Summer Bash”. Originally this week was designed as a sport camp for grades K-4th, but the name “sports camp” wasn’t really jazzy enough for my team’s taste, so we redesigned it with “Kid’s Summer Bash” or “KSB” for short.
KSB varies from a traditional VBS in one major way. Children choose one elective for the week. This year we offered Art, Cheer, Rec Games & Science. We began each night in a fun, energetic large group and then dismissed kids into their elective time. At the end, they ate a snack and their group leader led them through discussion questions. It’s a pretty simple schedule, that focuses on having strong volunteers to the lead the elective times, God sent us some pretty amazing leaders this year!
In fact, we were stocked with adult and teen leadership from registration, small group, worship leaders and snack preppers! The biggest blessing from the week was more than just the kids coming, but all the adults–women AND MEN, who invested in our children for the cause of the kingdom. I was blown away by how bought-in and excited these leaders were.
Our pastors were also team players, joining in for crazy games with kids every night during large group. We did a whole “Pastors vs Kids” game series and the kids loved it! They couldn’t wait to play against the pastors in all the wacky games. That’s my husband getting made into an ice cream sundae below. (I’ll share the games I used in my next post and a few comments on how to make them run smoothly.)
The theme we chose this year was “Camp Parks: Getting S’More of Jesus”, the tagline we borrowed from an old VBS curriculum. What made this year very simple, was using Children’s Ministry Deals “Campfire Stories” curriculum. I edited the large group lessons for each night (and added our own skits) and printed the small group questions for our leaders. This was a solid curriculum choice that was easily adaptable, matched our theme and saved me a lot of time and energy lesson prepping.
Our worship leaders were a great group as well. They chose their own songs, practiced and even showed up in crazy outfits to help make worship more fun! The kids (and adults) loved singing and doing the motions each night. They even chose a few kids to help with the songs through the week. These leaders didn’t do anything fancy, except came prepared and had lots of energy. They played YouTube videos with lyrics in the background, but the kids enjoyed that just as much as having a guitar or band.
Before I wrap up this post, I have two additional fun things we did. First, our community project was to collect canned food for our local community outreach. We do this girls versus boys style and the winning group got to “paint” the pastor’s beards. So fun! The second fun thing we added were name tags that kids added beads to throughout the week. When leaders caught kids going above and beyond they gave them a green bead to add to their necklace. Our pastors and kids team had gold beads if we saw someone doing something extra special. There was no special prize for the most, but they were so proud to add the beads to their necklace. (I ordered the wood slices here)
All in all it was an awesome week, with very few hiccups. We had a great team of leaders who loved serving alongside one another and the kids participated all week and had a ball. On Thursday night we ended our closing rally with s’mores for the kids and parents. We brought in a portable fire pit and had volunteers roasting marshmallows and assembling s’mores for our families. Such a fun way to end a great week!
Please let me know if you have any questions about Kid’s Summer Bash or feel free to share details about your own VBS experiences. I’ll share more next week on the crazy games we played that can be great for any Kidmin event.
Thanks for letting me share,