Introductory Activity – Roll the Test
Materials: one or more number cubes
Choose a volunteer to roll a cube. If the number rolled is even, test kids’ knowledge. If the number is odd, test their physical abilities. Use the following questions or come up with your own.
How many states can you name?
What is 12,345 + 678,910? (691,255)
How many presidents of the United States can you name?
Who can run the fastest?
How many squats can you do in one minute?
How many jumping jacks can you do in fifteen seconds?
After each round, choose another kid to roll the cube. Play as long as time allows. When you finish, gather kids and remind them that there are all kinds of tests in life. In the story they’ll learn about in this session, three men were tested on whether or not they would be able to stand up for what was right.
Live It Out
Game – Play “Mother, May I?”
Play Mother, May I? using the traditional rules. If you are unfamiliar with how to play, look up the rules online before the session. Choose a kid to be mother. If your group is bigger, consider creating multiple groups of kids. Play as long as time allows. When time is up, gather kids together and ask, “Who had the authority in that game?” Help kids to understand that in this game, the person playing, “Mother” had authority. In our lives, however, God has the highest authority. Sometimes people on earth will ask us to do things that go against what God has said, but God gives people strength to stand up for what is right.
Craft – Handprint Fire
Materials: red, orange, and yellow construction paper; markers; scissors; copy paper; glue
Give each child one or two pieces of construction paper and tell them to trace their hands on the colored paper then cut out those handprints with scissors. Kids can attach the handprints onto the copy paper with the fingers up to resemble fire. Somewhere on the paper, kids can write the Life Point: “God gives people strength to stand up for what is right.”
Introductory Activity – Pressure Circle
Form all kids, except one, in a circle with their arms on each other’s shoulders. The remaining kid should stand in the middle, cross her arms, and plant her feet firmly in the ground. Kids in the circle work together by moving about to force the child to give up his or her ground. Give every child a chance to be in the middle. Ask kids how hard it was to stay firmly planted. Reveal to them that in today’s story, they will learn about men who were pressured to disobey God. But through God’s help, He empowered them to stay firmly planted in what was right.
Live It Out
Game – Pass the Weekly Verse
Materials: copy paper, pencils, dry erase board or poster board
Invite kids to sit around tables and give everyone a pencil. Write the Weekly Verse at the front of the room on a dry erase board or poster board. Then erase the verse or remove the poster and invite volunteers from your group to recite the verse from memory.
Give a piece of paper to one kid at each table. Instruct him to write down the first word of the verse and pass the paper to the person on his right. That person will write down the second word, pass the paper to her right, and so on. Kids will pass the paper around the table, writing one word at a time until they finish the weekly verse. When everyone finishes, say the verse together.
Craft – Watercolor Paint Fire
Materials: cardstock; red, yellow, and orange watercolors; paintbrushes; cups of water; black permanent markers
Encourage kids to write the Life Point on a piece of cardstock using a black permanent marker. Kids can then paint over the writing with the watercolors to resemble fire. As kids paint, remind them that they can still see the letters through the “fire.” God protected Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fire, and He gives people strength to stand up for what is right.