Holiday Ideas

Overview

Over 200 festive ideas for cranking up celebrations for every holiday imaginable! - Christmas . . . Here's your one-stop Christmas programming center. You'll find everything you need for the merriest Advent and Christmas season ever -- goofy games, crazy carols, outrageous outings, and silly skits to fill even the biggest Christmas stocking. And, of course, Christmassy meetings and lessons to help your kids focus on the real reason for the season. - Easter and Lent . . . Worship activities, reenactments, Bible ...
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Overview

Over 200 festive ideas for cranking up celebrations for every holiday imaginable! - Christmas . . . Here's your one-stop Christmas programming center. You'll find everything you need for the merriest Advent and Christmas season ever -- goofy games, crazy carols, outrageous outings, and silly skits to fill even the biggest Christmas stocking. And, of course, Christmassy meetings and lessons to help your kids focus on the real reason for the season. - Easter and Lent . . . Worship activities, reenactments, Bible lessons, meeting plans, and service projects, all designed to commemorate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Plus games, puzzles, craft projects, and scavenger hunt ideas -- all tied to an Easter theme. - Valentine's Day . . . Play a memorable February 14th with these icebreakers, games, songs, activities, and Bible lessons -- all about love, whether human or divine. - Thanksgiving . . . Wait until you see the potful of ideas that youth workers from Cape Cod to all points west have cooked up for you -- Thanksgiving craft projects, skits, outings, parties, service projects, and Bible lessons. Plus More . . . All kinds of party and meeting ideas for St. Patrick's Day, New Year's, Halloween, Super Bowl Sunday, April Fool's Day, Mother's and Father's Day celebrations, and graduation. Whether you're a youth worker or a recreation director in a church, school, club, or camp -- Holiday Ideas is your storehouse of proven, youth-group tested ideas.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310220367
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication date: 10/1/1997
  • Series: The Ideas LibrarySeries Series
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

For over thirty years, Youth Specialties has worked alongside Christian youth workers of just about every denomination and youth-serving organization. We're here to help you, whether you're brand new to youth ministry or a veteran, whether you're a volunteer or a career youth pastor. Each year we serve more than 100,000 youth workers worldwide through our training seminars and conventions, resources, and on the Internet.
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Read an Excerpt

Holiday Ideas


Zondervan

Copyright © 1997 Youth Specialties
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-310-22036-X


Chapter One

New Year

Dissolve those post-Christmas blahs with these fantastic ideas for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. The weather outside may be frightful, but you'll find plenty of games and activities to warm up your kids' hearts.

PARTY IDEA

Funfetti

This idea gives a New Year's celebration or birthday bash a beautifully festive touch (as long as you can clean the floor easily). Fill medium-sized latex balloons with a handful of confetti per balloon. Inflate the balloons, tie them off, then attach them to (or suspend them from) the ceiling. When the clock hits midnight, puncture the balloons with pins or sharpened pencils, then watch out-confetti flies everywhere.

For real celebrating (and a real mess when it gets in hair), add glitter to the balloons. Michael Capps

EVENT

New Year's Day Football

Marathon

For a wild and crazy day, and to give your kids something to do on New Year's Day, open your home for a Football Marathon. Have two televisions set up so you can watch two games simultaneously: the Fiesta and Cotton Bowls, then the Rose Bowl, then the Orange and Sugar Bowls. Make a poster with all five games listed, including team names, national rankings, and seasonal records. Allow the kids to pick winners ahead of time, and award a prize to the one with the best record of picks.

To help relieve some of the energy built up by sitting around for so long, organize a quick touch football game outside during halftimes or between games. Admission to the event can be a bag of chips or a six-pack of soda. For a simple meal, send out for pizza. Ken S. Williams

COLLAGE

The Year-in-Review Banner

This is a simple yet effective way to build group unity and to make some lasting memories. Take a long sheet of paper (butcher wrap or newsprint) and hang it on a smooth wall surface. Draw heavy vertical lines to divide the banner into 12 equal sections, and label each section with the names of the months in order. Then let the kids go to work decorating the banner, collage-style, to show what they did as a group each month of the preceding year. Use crayons and markers. Attach photos of group events, copies of the youth newsletter, movie posters, handouts, lesson outlines, letters, charts, publicity materials, ticket stubs-anything that would symbolize or remind them of what they did.

This activity is especially good for watch-night services or New Year's lock-ins. Just have the kids bring everything they've saved from youth group events over the previous 12 months, and add to their collection whatever you yourself have saved. It's also a good way to purge your office files! Randy D. Nichols

PARTY

New Year's Eve Eve Party

With the holidays becoming more and more dangerous on New Year's Eve, why not have a New Year's Eve Eve Party instead? Celebrate New Year's Eve Eve at midnight. The kids can have all the fun of New Year's Eve and then stay home to babysit on the real New Year's Eve. Dallas Elder

DISCUSSION STARTER

New Year's Resolutions

First discuss the meaning of the words New Year's resolution. Ask kids to share some resolutions they have made in the past and what happened to them. Did they last? How long? Next, introduce the word covenant, and ask kids to compare that word with the word resolution. What is the difference between the two? (One important difference is that a resolution is generally a private thing, and a covenant is a promise or agreement made publicly between two or among more people.)

After some discussion, have the kids form groups of three, preferably with friends they know fairly well. Then give them 10 minutes or so to write a few New Year's covenants. After they are completed, each person shares his or her covenants with other members of the small group and asks for feedback. Are they too vague? Impossible to keep? Too easy? Inappropriate? Kids are then allowed to rewrite their covenants based on the feedback they received. Last, they share their rewritten covenants and perhaps discuss practical ways they plan to put them into practice. J. Richard Short

BIBLE STUDY

Scripture Resolutions

To create scriptural New Year's resolutions, have your kids go through the Bible and find their favorite verses. For those who claim they don't have a favorite verse, have them open their Bibles to Proverbs and start reading until they come to a verse they like. Make sure you have some extra Bibles on hand for this.

Tell the kids to paraphrase the verse they choose by putting it in their own words. Next they should personalize it by putting themselves in it. For example, Matthew 6:33 reads: "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." Someone who chooses that verse might paraphrase and personalize it this way: "I will always seek the things of God in all I do. And if I do this, all that I need here on this earth God will give me."

Let the kids write the paraphrase in large letters on a sheet of colored paper, then post it where they'll see it often. This personalized verses can then become their New Year's resolutions. Ron Kostedt

LESSON APPLICATION

Turn or Burn

This idea works well at the first meeting of a new year or the last meeting of an old year. It involves the making of New Year's resolutions. Students are asked to "turn" (over a new leaf) or "burn" (an old habit).

Each person is given a few sheets of paper and an envelope along with a pencil. For effect you could print the shape of a leaf on one paper, and burn the edges of the other paper. Participants are then asked to write down on the leaf some resolutions for the new year (a good habit that you propose to begin doing). The papers are then folded and put into self-addressed individual envelopes and sealed. The envelopes are collected and will be mailed out to these people in June to remind them of their resolutions.

Next, the kids are asked to write on the "burn" paper a bad habit that they would like to discontinue. After some discussion on how one goes about ridding himself or herself of a bad habit, and after some prayer and mutual commitment to each other, each person brings their bad habit to the front and symbolically burns it in a little bonfire. You can probably build a fire inside a washtub, or use a small hibachi. Be sure to have adequate ventilation or just do this part of the meeting outside.

The best way to make a program like this effective over the long haul is to plan some ways to follow up on this during the year. It can prove to be a very meaningful way to approach on old idea. Ed Skidmore

PARTY

New Year's Prophecies

This could be the funniest thing your group does all year! Get a copy of a sensational tabloid that makes predictions for the New Year. As you read it, circle the most outrageous predictions you can find.

Read aloud to your group what you find-this will be a scream in itself. Then have someone pass out index cards and pencils. Tell the group, "Anybody can do better than that," and let kids write down their own zany predictions for the next year. Then let everyone read them aloud. Some will tend to be about other members of the group, and they're guaranteed to be hilarious. Todd Capen

(Continues...)


Excerpted from Holiday Ideas Copyright ©1997 by Youth Specialties. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Alphabetical list of every idea in this book.....9
NEW YEAR
Funfetti.....13
New Year’s Day Football Marathon.....13
The Year-in-Review Banner.....13
New Year’s Eve Eve Party.....14
New Year’s Resolutions.....14
Scripture Resolutions.....14
Turn or Burn.....14
New Year’s Prophecies.....15
ST. VALENTINE’S DAY
Lovely Confusion.....19
Famous Sweethearts Game.....19
Kissing in the Dark.....21
Valentine Candy.....21
Valentine’s Day Scavenger Hunt.....23
Valentine Carols.....23
Parent Valentine Banquet.....23
Love Me, Loves Me Not.....23
ST. PATRICK’S DAY
Green Thangs.....29
Leprechaun Softball.....29
St. Patrick’s Gobble ’n’ Git.....30
Leprechaun Mad Lib.....30
St. Paddy’s Day Quiz.....30
St. Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt 33
EASTER and LENT
Recapture the King.....37
Bible-Clue Easter Egg Hunt.....38
Egg-Citing Egg Hunt.....38
Easter Eggstravaganza.....38
Easter Scavenger Hunt.....38
The Magic Egg.....38
Easter Dinner Dilemma.....42
Cross Word Puzzle.....42
Easter Crossword.....42
Easter Collage.....45
Back to the Garden.....45
Easter Caroling.....45
Easter I.Q. Test.....48
the Easter Quiz.....48
Easter Video.....53
Easter Week in Review.....53
Good Friday Meditation.....53
Easter Egg Hunt for Meaning.....53
Good Friday Scramble.....54
Maundy Thursday Experience.....54
Seder.....54
Good Friday Service.....54
Last Supper Simulation.....55
Easter Balloon Fest.....56
Easter Baskets for Shut-Ins.....56
The Blessed Bunny.....56
Easter on the Network News.....56
Live from Jerusalem.....60
The Night Before Easter.....60
The Tomb Revisited.....60
HALLOWEEN
Costume Bingo.....71
Bobbing for Pickles.....71
Jigsaw Jack-O’-Lanterns.....71
Creative Costume Scavenger Hunt.....73
Find the Pumpkin.....73
Halloween Scavenger Hunt.....73
Pin the Nose on Jack.....73
Pumpkin Olympics.....73
Pumpkin Push.....74
Pumpkin Puzzle.....74
Witch’s Broom Relay.....74
Monster Mad Lib.....75
Coffin Trick.....75
Shrunken Heads.....75
Costume Video.....75
Balloon-O’Lanterns.....75
Pumpkin Carving.....75
Halloween Give-Away.....77
Halloween Tunnel.....77
Tombstone Overnighter.....77
Halloween Retreat.....77
Holy Halloween.....77
Pumpkin Party.....77
Halloween Dinner.....79
Pumpkin Object Lesson.....79
Halloween Hospital Visits.....80
Traveling Halloween Costume Party.....80
Trick-or-Treat for the Elderly.....80
Ghost Story.....80
THANKSGIVING
Decorate the Turkey.....85
Turkey Gobble-Off.....85
Thanksgiving Feast Scavenger Hunt.....86
Turkey Carols.....86
Thanksgiving Graffiti.....86
Leftover Lark.....86
Giving Thanks.....86
Thanksgiving Word Association.....89
Cantastic Can Circus.....89
Thanksgiving Outreach.....89
CHRISTMAS and ADVENT
Santa’s Helpers.....95
Christmas Mania.....95
Christmas Confusion.....95
Christmas Jumble.....98
Get-Acquainted Christmas Tree.....98
Christmas Balloon Pop.....98
Musical Gift Unwrap.....98
Tip: Hum a Carol.....98
Christmas Mad Lib.....98
Christmas Poem Mad Lib.....102
Letter-to-Santa Mad Lib.....102
’Twas the Night before Christmas.....102
Christmas Carol Musical Chairs.....102
Christmas Carol Musical Charades.....102
Christmas Daffynitions.....102
Christmas Scattergories.....105
Christmas Family Feud.....105
Christmas Santa Contest.....105
Christmas Songs and Phrases.....106
Christmas Translation.....106
Frosting the Snowman.....108
M and M’s Candy Game.....108
Reindeer Games.....108
White Elephant Gift Auction.....109
Santa Claus Stuff-and-Dress.....109
One-Armed Gift Wrap.....109
Christmas Gift Guess.....109
Draw Santa Claus.....110
Stocking Stuffers.....110
Christmas List.....110
Santa, Reindeer, Christmas Tree 110
Santa’s Delivery Race.....110
Wheel of Fortune’s
Wacky Christmas Carols.....111
Reindeer Hunt.....111
Human Christmas Tree.....111
Christmas Word Search.....111
Christmas Carol Trivia.....113
Christmas Quizzes.....113
Christmas I.Q. Test.....113
5
Contents
Christmas Camcorder Scavenger
Hunt.....119
Truly Tasteless Decoration Hunt.....120
Scavenger Caroling.....120
Crazy Christmas Scavenger Hunt.....120
Adv
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First Chapter

Holiday Ideas

PARTY IDEA
Funfetti
This idea gives a New Year's celebration or birthday bash a beautifully festive touch (as long as you can clean the floor easily). Fill medium-sized latex balloons with a handful of confetti per balloon. Inflate the balloons, tie them off, then attach them to (or suspend them from) the ceiling. When the clock hits midnight, puncture the balloons with pins or sharpened pencils, then watch out--- confetti flies everywhere.
For real celebrating (and a real mess when it gets in hair), add glitter to the balloons. Michael Capps
EVENT
New Year's Day Football
Marathon
For a wild and crazy day, and to give your kids something to do on New Year's Day, open your home for a Football Marathon. Have two televisions set up so you can watch two games simultaneously: the Fiesta and Cotton Bowls, then the Rose Bowl, then the
Orange and Sugar Bowls. Make a poster with all five games listed, including team names, national rankings,
and seasonal records. Allow the kids to pick winners ahead of time, and award a prize to the one with the best record of picks.
To help relieve some of the energy built up by sitting around for so long, organize a quick touch football game outside during halftimes or between games. Admission to the event can be a bag of chips or a six-pack of soda. For a simple meal, send out for pizza. Ken S. Williams
COLLAGE
The Year-in-Review Banner
This is a simple yet effective way to build group unity and to make some lasting memories. Take a long sheet of paper (butcher wrap or newsprint) and hang it on a smooth wall surface. Draw heavy vertical lines to divide the banner into 12 equal sections,
and label each section with the names of the
Dissolve those post-Christmas blahs with these fantastic ideas for
New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. The weather outside may be frightful, but you'll find plenty of games and activities to warm up your kids' hearts.
New Year months in order. Then let the kids go to work decorating the banner, collage-style, to show what they did as a group each month of the preceding year.
Use crayons and markers. Attach photos of group events, copies of the youth newsletter, movie posters, handouts, lesson outlines, letters, charts,
publicity materials, ticket stubs---anything that would symbolize or remind them of what they did.
This activity is especially good for watch-night services or New Year's lock-ins. Just have the kids bring everything they've saved from youth group events over the previous 12 months, and add to their collection whatever you yourself have saved.
It's also a good way to purge your office files! Randy D.
Nichols
PARTY
New Year's Eve Eve Party
With the holidays becoming more and more dangerous on New Year's Eve, why not have a New Year's
Eve Eve Party instead? Celebrate New Year's Eve
Eve at midnight. The kids can have all the fun of
New Year's Eve and then stay home to babysit on the real New Year's Eve. Dallas Elder
DISCUSSION STARTER
New Year's Resolutions
First discuss the meaning of the words New Year's resolution. Ask kids to share some resolutions they have made in the past and what happened to them.
Did they last? How long? Next, introduce the word covenant, and ask kids to compare that word with the word resolution. What is the difference between the two? (One important difference is that a resolution is generally a private thing, and a covenant is a promise or agreement made publicly between two or among more people.)
After some discussion, have the kids form groups of three, preferably with friends they know fairly well. Then give them 10 minutes or so to write a few
New Year's covenants. After they are completed,
each person shares his or her covenants with other members of the small group and asks for feedback.
Are they too vague? Impossible to keep? Too easy?
Inappropriate? Kids are then allowed to rewrite their covenants based on the feedback they received. Last,
they share their rewritten covenants and perhaps discuss practical ways they plan to put them into practice. J. Richard Short
BIBLE STUDY
Scripture Resolutions
To create scriptural New Year's resolutions, have your kids go through the Bible and find their favorite verses. For those who claim they don't have a favorite verse, have them open their Bibles to
Proverbs and start reading until they come to a verse they like. Make sure you have some extra Bibles on hand for this.
Tell the kids to paraphrase the verse they choose by putting it in their own words. Next they should personalize it by putting themselves in it. For example,
Matthew 6:33 reads: 'But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.' Someone who chooses that verse might paraphrase and personalize it this way: 'I
will always seek the things of God in all I do. And if
I do this, all that I need here on this earth God will give me.'
Let the kids write the paraphrase in large letters on a sheet of colored paper, then post it where they'll see it often. This personalized verses can then become their New Year's resolutions. Ron Kostedt
LESSON APPLICATION
Turn or Burn
This idea works well at the first meeting of a new year or the last meeting of an old year. It involves the making of New Year's resolutions. Students are asked to 'turn' (over a new leaf) or 'burn' (an old habit).
Each person is given a few sheets of paper and an envelope along with a pencil. For effect you could print the shape of a leaf on one paper, and burn the edges of the other paper. Participants are then asked to write down on the leaf some resolutions for the new year (a good habit that you propose to begin doing). The papers are then folded and put into self-addressed individual envelopes and sealed. The envelopes are collected and will be mailed out to these people in June to remind them of their resolutions.
Next, the kids are asked to write on the 'burn'
paper a bad habit that they would like to discontinue.
After some discussion on how one goes about ridding himself or herself of a bad habit, and after some prayer and mutual commitment to each other,
each person brings their bad habit to the front and symbolically burns it in a little bonfire. You can probably build a fire inside a washtub, or use a small hibachi. Be sure to have adequate ventilation or just do this part of the meeting outside.
The best way to make a program like this effective over the long haul is to plan some ways to follow up on this during the year. It can prove to be a very meaningful way to approach on old idea.
Ed Skidmore
PARTY
New Year's Prophecies
This could be the funniest thing your group does all year! Get a copy of a sensational tabloid that makes predictions for the New Year. As you read it, circle the most outrageous predictions you can find.

Read More Show Less

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