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Vacation Bible School 2014

VBS 2014

We understand Vacation Bible School is a major event in your church and that it is one of the greatest opportunities we have to reach all people, especially children and preschoolers. Even in this age of high-tech toys and busy summers, VBS continues to be one of the most fruitful special events in terms of both finding prospects and leading them to the Lord. We are here to help as you plan VBS 2014 in your church!

Jungle Safari
Where Kids Explore the Nature of God - God is Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior and King! Kids will KNOW what’s so great about God, EXPLORE the nature of God, and SERVE God in practical ways. (Includes special needs adaptations.)
Weird Animals
Where Jesus’ Love is One of a Kind. God filled the world with a lot of crazy creatures…including you! When kids feel weird, different, or even lost in a crowd—nothing compares to the extraordinary love of Jesus.
Wilderness Escape
Where God Guides & Provides. Caravan with Moses and The Israelites and discover firsthand what it was like to live in the Israelite camp. Kids join one of the 12 Tribes of Israel for games, music, crafts, and manna.
SonTreasure Island
At SonTreasure Island, your treasure seekers will play cool island games, create colorful island crafts and enjoy tropical island snacks. But more importantly, kids of all ages will discover the eternal treasure of God’s love expressed through Jesus, based on 1 Corinthians 13.
Gangway to Galilee
Don’t Miss the Boat! At Gangway to Galilee, kids visit exciting sites around the Sea of Galilee and discover how Jesus saves us now and eternally. Dare to make this an amazing grace adventure – VBS with Purpose!
Blast Off
  • Easy for Volunteers, Just two 2 ˝ hour sessions, plus a 1-hour celebration on Sunday…that’s it, no one needs to miss work!
  • Easy for Families, Less time commitment and fewer conflicts with families’ busy schedules.
  • Easy on your Budget! Fewer days, fewer supplies, lower cost. Any church or kids ministry can pull off this VBS!
Your Weekend VBS Kit comes complete with all you need to get started. Director and leader Manuals provide step-by-step instructions. Plus, you’ll get student resource samples and essential media tools.
Introduction to Vacation Bible School 2014

Does the responsibility for organizing your church's summer Vacation Bible School program fall on your shoulders? If this is your first year of and you have no idea where to begin, or maybe you have lots of experience and look forward to checking out the new 2014 VBS programs – we've got what you're looking for with information and samples for each 2014 VBS Program, along with an online Easy Order Form of all products for each 2014 VBS Program and a general planning overview.

Compare the various programs by looking at samples, videos and other information in our 2014 VBS Program Overview here. Program Overview

Use the "Easy Order Form" links above to access our VBS Program product lists for Easy Ordering. Access our general overview we put together to help you create an outline for your planning schedule this year. General Planning Overview

2014 VBS Program Overviews

The Bible school publishers have released their new VBS curriculum and we'd like to help you choose the best VBS for your needs. Beyond all the information offered here on our website, we would be glad to assist you personally with any additional questions you may have. Call or visit us in store today!

We offer all the new 2014 VBS programs from...

Jungle Safari: Where Kids Explore the Nature of God!

By: Standard Publishing
Jungle Safari
Theme: Kids will Know what's so great about God, Explore the nature of God, and Serve God in practical ways.
Bible Theme Memory:
Psalm 86: 9-12
Bible Translation:
Standard VBS materials are compatible with all Bible translations, so you may use your church's preferred version.
Ages: Preschool to Teens, Adult Bible study also available.

Teach children five essential characteristics of God as they explore His Nature and the wonders of the natural jungle He created. Standard Publishing's Jungle Safari VBS features 8 new songs by Yancy and new kid-friendly mission videos with Beth Guckenberger and Back2Back Ministries, where you meet Ben and Joseph, orphans in Ethiopia. There is also a new Serve & Missions site (Slug-a-Bug S.W.A.M.P.), focused on outreach and special service projects just for kids. Program adaptations for special needs learners are also included.

Jungle Safari Bible Points (and Bible Story):
Day 1: God is Creator (God creates an amazing world. - Genesis 1)
Day 2: God is Provider (God provides for Elijah. - 1 Kings 17)
Day 3: God is Protector (God protects Daniel. - Daniel 6)
Day 4: God is Savior (God saves us through Jesus. - John 3, 19, & 20)
Day 5: God is King (God rules forever in heaven. - John 14; Revelation 1, 2, 21, & 22)

Jungle Safari Sites:

Toucan Jam: Sing, shout, praise, and pray as kids discover the greatest treasure of all. High-energy music, engaging skits, video mission moments, and fun large-group challenges will start your safari party off on the right foot as kids explore the nature of God together. Then they’ll journey back at the end of the day for powerful reminders that they can always count on God…the greatest treasure of all!

Zip Line Bible Time:
Zip right to the point with hands-on activities and small-group discussion to help kids work through how and why they can always count on God. High above the jungle floor, amid a dense tangle of treetops, kids experience the sights and sounds of the jungle canopy as they learn who God is. They’ll dig into Bible stories to discover that no one but God could be their Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior, and King. Hands-on activities and meaningful small-group discussions will help kids work through how and why they can always count on God.

Slug-a-Bug S.W.A.M.P.: Serve With A Mighty Purpose through activities and projects that help kids put their faith into action and impact the lives of others. Slug-A-Bug S.W.A.M.P. is a one-of-a-kind destination where kids impact the lives of others—in their communities, countries, and around the world! As they learn what it means to count on God, kids have the opportunity to put that faith into action by participating in practical mission projects to help out kids across borders or friends just down the block. With daily and weeklong service ideas designed for all ages, and accompanying discussion material, you’re sure to find something that meets your needs—and someone else’s!

Jaguar Junction: Fuel up, jump up, and get moving with games that focus on what’s so great about God. Run with the big cats and eat like them too! Fuel up on a wide variety of yummy, low-prep snack options at the Jaguar Junction snack hut, then jump up and get moving with games that challenge the mind and muscles. Food and fun are designed to pair up just right with the theme and keep kids focused on what they can KNOW—they can count on God, their Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior, and King! Choose from indoor and outdoor games, and even special science-based fun! Whether they are getting soaked, running relays, or testing their Bible memory might, kids will learn to count on God while building teamwork, confidence, and excitement!

Lizard’s Leap: Jump to the jungle beat and make musical crafts while learning lyrics and matching motions. Watch kids’ imaginations grow by leaps and bounds as they take creativity to new levels—sound levels, that is! Through the challenge of creating instruments, learning lyrics and matching motions, kids will stretch their talents and strengthen their passion to praise God—the greatest treasure of all! And with affordable options for all age levels and lots of flexibility, you won’t strain your budget!

Lily Pad
: Preschoolers will explore the nature of God through Bible stories, songs, games, crafts, and service projects designed just for them. Big things happen for all the little people of Lily Pad Playland! It’s a preschool paradise, with enough fun to fill a giant lily pad! Preschoolers will understand God is their Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior, and King through Bible stories, songs, and games made just for them. Simple crafts and service projects will remind them what they KNOW (I can count on God!), help them EXPLORE the nature of God, and learn to SERVE Him with every inch of their preschool hearts, minds, and hands.

What’s NEW?
The Jungle Safari Super Simple VBS features:

NEW special needs adaptations
It doesn’t take a miracle to teach kids who learn differently—just a teacher or leader who is willing to take a chance and shape a heart. Jungle Safari gives you confidence to welcome children who have special needs into your church. Partnering with Vangie Rodenbeck, special needs expert, your team will be equipped with teaching tips, informational forms, and ways to encourage families during VBS. The Director’s Guide, Leader’s Guides and Site Cards feature lesson and activity options so you can include children with special needs at your VBS.
Bring everyone along on the safari and make a difference in the lives of children with special needs this year!

NEW service & missions site featuring
Share compelling, kid-friendly mission videos during your Opening & Closing time to help kids see how they can serve other kids around the world. Partnering with Beth Guckenberger and Back2Back Ministries, kids and adults at your church will hear the incredible true video story of Ben and Joseph, orphans in Ethiopia. Show kids how they can count on God no matter what—that He always has great things planned for them! Jungle Safari can get your church involved in caring for orphans around the world.
Additionally, Jungle Safari features a new Service & Missions site, Slug-A-Bug S.W.A.M.P. In this site, kids will learn to Serve With A Mighty Purpose! Through activities focused on outreach and missions, special service projects and videos, kids will put their faith into action and impact the lives of others….here and around the world.

NEW music and videos by Yancy
Sing, shout, and praise with all-new, all-reproducible worship by Yancy! Connect with kids through music as they discover the greatest treasure of all! Written and produced specifically for Jungle Safari, Yancy returns with 8 new, fun jungle beats that focus on the nature of God to get your VBS worshipping God! Everything you need is in the kit, including reproducible songs, split tracks, music videos, sheet music, MP3s and MP4s. With a variety of styles to choose from, kids will love the songs, fun motions, and relevant videos at your VBS.

Weird Animals: Where Jesus' Love is One of a Kind!

By: Group Publishing
Weird Animals
Weird Animals VBS connects with children when they feel different by introducing them to wonderful animals around the world. When "weird" means special, unique, and one-of-a-kind, kids are reminded of Jesus' special love for them - even when they feel different!

Jesus loves you even're left out, you're different, you don't understand, you do wrong, and when you're afraid.
Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)
Ages: Preschool to Youth (Teenagers)
  • Day 1: Even when you’re left out...Jesus loves you!
    • Bible Verse: "I am with you always, even to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:20)
    • Bible Story: Jesus heals the lepers. (Luke 17:11-19)

  • Day 2: Even though you’re different...Jesus loves you!
    • Bible Verse: "For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus." (Ephesians 2:10)
    • Bible Story: Jesus reaches out to a Samaritan woman. (John 4:1-30)

  • Day 3: Even when you don't understand...Jesus loves you!
    • Bible Verse: "Do to others as you would like them to do to you." (Luke 6:31)
    • Bible Story: Jesus washes the disciples' feet. (John 13:1-17)

  • Day 4: Even though you do wrong...Jesus loves you!
    • Bible Verse: "God...loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins." (1 John 4:10)
    • Bible Story: Jesus dies and comes back to life. (Luke 22:47–24:12)

  • Day 5: Even when you're afraid...Jesus loves you!
    • Bible Verse: "Don’t be afraid...Take courage. I am here!" (Matthew 14:27)
    • Bible Story: Ananias bravely helps Saul. (Acts 9:1-19)
Are you ready for a VBS that’s a whole different animal? Your Weird Animals Ultimate Starter Kit is packed with everything you need to get started on your VBS adventure. Get ready to transform your church into the perfect habitat for some of the most marvelous creatures on earth?your VBS kids!

At Weird Animals vacation Bible school, kids experience God’s Word in surprising and unforgettable ways! Each day, leaders reinforce one simple Bible truth—which makes it easy for kids to remember and apply to real life! Each day, kids move through field-tested activity stations with their Zoo Crews (small groups of up to 5 kids and one leader). Every station is designed to reinforce the daily Bible point in a hands-on, interactive way that keeps everyone engaged.

Daily Activities:
  1. Sing & Play Stampede: Kids start the day together singing a fun mix of classic worship songs and brand-new praise songs.
  2. One-of-a-Kind Bible Adventures: Kids experience the Bible in wild and wacky ways, and then they circle up with their Zoo crews for thought-provoking discussions.
  3. KidVid Cinema and Missions: Kids watch films about real kids living the real-life adventure of knowing and following Jesus. Each day kids at Weird Animals VBS will meet a new friend that will remind them how much God loves them
  4. Imagination Station: Imaginations soar as kids experiment with Sciency-Fun Gizmos„˘ that reinforce the Bible point for that day.
  5. Untamed Games: Kids run, jump, and even splash through games that connect with the daily Bible verse.
  6. Critter Cafe: All the Crews comes together to eat snacks that connect with that day's Bible verse.

Group's Weird Animlas VBS is:
• Easy for leaders: Each leader preps only 20 minutes of daily material!
• Easy to remember: A single Bible Point is reinforced daily at every station!
• Easy for making friends: Small mulit-age groups stick together!

Wilderness Escape: Where God Guides and Provides

By: Group Publishing
Wilderness Escape
Children learn to trust God as they join Moses on the incredible journey through the wilderness and discover what it was like to live in the Israelite camp. The Holy Land Adventure includes project ideas and tips for integrating preschool children into each activity, requires only three stations needing decorations (Celebration, Moses' Tent & the Israelite Camp), and runs with three station leaders (Celebration, Moses, and Games) plus tribe leaders.
Bible Translation: New Living Translation
Ages: Preschool to Adult (Multi-age groups of 5 children and adults is recommended, but you can also group children by age.)

Daily Course Overview

  • Day 1: God is with us, God!
    • Bible Story: The Israelites cross the Red Sea. (Exodus 14:1–15:21)
    • Key Verse: "God answered, 'I will be with you.' " (Exodus 3:12)

  • Day 2: Bible Point: God gives us what we need, God!
    • Bible Story: God provides manna and quail. (Exodus 16)
    • Key Verse: "For your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!" (Matthew 6:8)

  • Day 3: Bible Point: God gives us strength, God!
    • Bible Story: Israel defeats the Amalekites. (Exodus 17:8-16)
    • Key Verse: "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:13)

  • Day 4: Bible Point: God saves us, God!
    • Bible Story: Moses remembers Passover. (Exodus 12:1-30)
    • Key Verse: " 'For I am with you and will save you,' says the Lord." (Jeremiah 30:11)

  • Day 5: Bible Point: God guides us, God!
    • Bible Story: God gives the Ten Commandments. (Exodus 20)
    • Key Verse: "I will bless the Lord who guides me." (Psalm 16:7)
Get ready to take an incredible journey into the wilderness with none other than Moses himself! Your Wilderness Escape Ultimate Starter Kit is packed with everything you need to get your Holy Land Adventure VBS started; and now it’s easier than ever with all new preschool options, new format that requires fewer trained volunteers and more!

VBS is easier than ever:
  • Only 3 Trained Station Leaders: Celebration Leader leads Celebration and Tribe Time; Moses leads the Moses’ Tent rotation; Fun & Games Leader leads each activity rotation
  • Preschool Friendly Options: Tips for integrating preschoolers into every activity; Age appropriate project ideas
  • Only 3 Main Stations to Decorate: Celebration (main stage area); Moses’ Tent; Israelite Camp
Totally Immerse Kids in the Bible:
  • Learn straight from a well-known Bible hero—Moses.
  • Discover firsthand what it was like to live in the Israelite camp.
  • Join one of the 12 Tribes of Israel for games, music, crafts, and manna.

At Wilderness Escape VBS, you’ll reinforce Bible truth in a big way because the daily Bible Point is carefully integrated into each activity. God’s Word comes alive through engaging interaction with Bible history!

How it Works: In small groups of 5 (called Tribes) kids and adults travel through field-tested rotation stations and experience what happened after Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt.

  1. Start off with Worship and Celebration
  2. Journey with Moses: Create cool craft projects in the Israelite Camp and play high-energy games
  3. Discover Bible truths in Tribe Time; Wrap up with celebration

SonTreasure Island: Where Kids Discover God's Love

By: Gospel Light Publishing
SonTreasure Island
Bible Theme: 1 Corinthians 13
Bible Translation: New International Version (NIV)
Ages: PreKindergarten to Grade 6 (ages 3 -12); PreK & K have a dedicated curriculum leader guide & student activities, specifically for young children.

Set sail for an island adventure in search of the world's greatest treasure that is worth more than the purest gold! Feel the ocean breeze, hear the island music, taste tropical fruits, play island games and create colorful crafts. But at SonTreasure Island, there is much more than meets the eye because children discover God's love is treasure forever! Every day, kids learn of God's love expressed through Jesus, based on 1 Corinthians 13. Ships Ahoy Maties!

SonTreasure Island Bible Points (and Bible Story): See "Scope & Sequence (PDF)" for more details
  • Day 1: God’s love is shown in Jesus
    • Bible Story: God Gives Us Jesus—Matthew 1:18-25; 3; 4:23-25; Luke 1:11-60; 2: 1- 20
    • Bible Verse: “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.”ť –1 John 4:9

  • Day 2: God’s love is kind and patient
    • Bible Story: Jesus Helps a Young Girl and a Sick Woman—Matthew 9:18-26; Mark 5:21-43; Luke 8:40-56
    • Bible Verse: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.”ť –1 Corinthians 13:4

  • Day 3: God’s love is for everyone
    • Bible Story: Jesus Cares for a Samaritan Woman John 4:1-42
    • Bible Verse: “[Love] is not rude, it is not self-seeking”ť –1 Corinthians 13:5

  • Day 4: God’s love is forgiving
    • Bible Story: Jesus Forgives Zacchaeus Luke 19:1-10
    • Bible Verse: “[Love] is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.”ť –1 Corinthians 13:5-6

  • Day 5: God’s love never fails
    • Bible Story: Jesus Lives Forever Mark 14:27—16:20; Luke 22:47—24:53; John 21:15-17
    • Bible Verse: “[Love] always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”ť –1 Corinthians 13:7-8

Island Music
The enchanting music of the islands beckons curious treasure seekers to search for God’s love. Not only do great music and videos liven up your large group assembly, but we understand kids learn faster with music. Fun reproducible music means every child can have their own copy. Your kids will remember the songs and Bible lessons long after VBS is over! Plus, parents will enjoy learning the songs and singing along with their kids. It’s a fun way for families to share God’s Word!

Island Decorating
Whether your church is large or small with great decorating ideas and resources you can turn any location into a tropical paradise. Learn how easy it is to take your kids to Treasure Point, the great Coral Reef, Dragonfly Falls, Shipwreck Bay, Parrot Landing and the Coconut Snack Shack.

Gangway to Galilee: Amazing Grace Adventures

By: Concordia Publishing House
Gangway to Galilee
Theme Verse: For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God. (Ephesians 2:8)
Bible Translation: English Standard Version (ESV)
Ages: Preschool to Grade 8 (Ages 3 - 14), with Youth and Adult Bible studies also available.
  • Day 1
    • Lesson 1: Jesus Calls His Disciples Matthew 4:18–25
    • Take-Home Point: Jesus calls me
    • Memory Verse: “I have called you by name, you are Mine.” Isaiah 43:1

  • Day 2
    • Lesson 2: Jesus Teaches from the Boat Luke 5:1–11
    • Take-Home Point: Jesus teaches me
    • Memory Verse: “Lead me in your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation.” Psalm 25:5

  • Day 3
    • Lesson 3: Jesus Calms the Storm Mark 4:35–41
    • Take-Home Point: Jesus keeps me safe
    • Memory Verse: “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 1:7

  • Day 4
    • Lesson 4: Jesus Walks on the Water Matthew 14:22–33
    • Take-Home Point: Jesus saves me
    • Memory Verse: “Jesus said, ‘Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.’” Matthew 14:27

  • Day 5
    • Lesson 5: Jesus Appears to Seven Disciples John 21:1–14
    • Take-Home Point: Jesus provides all I need
    • Memory Verse: “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8
Set Sail Songs - With our theme-inspired, high-energy songs, kids will sing about Jesus’ amazing grace and dance along to our song-action videos.

Splash-tacular Crafts
- From Fin-tastick Fish Crafts to Safe Harbor Sand Art, crafts will reinforce the Bible story and engage hands in making creations that share the message of Jesus’ amazing grace!

Sink or Swim Games - Gangway to Galilee is full of energy, excitement, and some silliness! During Sink or Swim Games, kids will grow in faith, have fun, and celebrate the amazing grace that Jesus gives.

Big Catch Bible Challenge
- Kids will connect the daily Bible story, memory verse, and take-home point to their lives as they explore, learn, and memorize the Bible verse for each lesson.

Sunrise Snacks - Snacking on delicious food and learning about Jesus—what could be better! Keep bodies nourished and energized for a fun-filled day at VBS with Sunrise Snacks!

Seashore Storytelling - Journey around the Sea of Galilee to learn about God’s life-giving Word. Teams will actively engage in Bible learning as they read, see, and interact with the Bible lessons.

Blast Off!: Launching Kids on a Mission of God's Love

By: Group Publishing
Blast Off!
Theme: God loves us, so - love each other.
Key Verse: Let us continue to love one another. (1 John 4:7)
Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)
Ages: Preschool - Grade 6 (K- 6th in multi-age groups; preschoolers have a separate curriculum.)
Countdown to the funniest weekend in the universe! As kids explore God's infinite love, they'll practice down-to-earth ways to love each other. Group's Weekend VBS is perfect for churches that are new to VBS or are not able to use the longer 5-day VBS format in your congregation. You will plan two sessions of 2.5 hours plus a Sunday morning celebration with the full church, for a total of 6 hours. Children in Kindergarten - 6th Grade are in mixed age groups; preschool children join the large group for the opening and closing and have their own Bible learning time. Group's Weekend VBS is easy for leaders (20 minutes of preparation), easy to remember (a single Bible point is reinforced at every station), and easy for making friends (small, multi-age groups).
Bible Stories:
Day 1: Men bring their friend to Jesus for healing. (Luke 5:17-26)
Day 2: Jesus dies and comes back to life. (Matthew 27:11-28:20)

As kids explore God’s infinite love, they’ll practice down-to-earth ways to love each other. At Blast Off vacation Bible school, kids learn one Bible Point, which is reinforced through Bible adventures, a key Bible verse, songs, and hands-on activities. Your kids will also learn about two Bible stories!

Group's Weekend VBS is:
  1. Easy for Leaders: Each leader preps only 20 minutes of daily material!
  2. Easy to Remember: A single Bible Point is reinforced daily at every station!
  3. Easy for Making Friends: Small, multi-age groups stick together!
Features of Group's Weekend VBS Programs:
  • Easy Weekend Format: Just two 2˝ hour sessions and one Sunday Celebration. You choose the time and the days—whatever works best for your church.
  • Just One Point: Every session of Group’s Weekend VBS focuses on the same simple, powerful Bible Point: God loves us, each other!
  • Projects-With-A-Purpose: No crafts? Blast Off VBS has something even better! Kids put God’s love into action by making special gifts for others in their church, community, and the world.
  • Multi-Age: Kids of all ages join Crews with an adult or teenage leader for each day’s adventures. It really works, and discipline problems practically disappear.
  • Sunday Celebration: This morning service for the whole congregation is designed to let the kids share what they’ve learned at VBS. And since no practice is necessary, your job just got even easier!
  • Preschool Space Place: Preschoolers join the other kids for the opening and closing and enjoy their own Bible-learning activities in between.
General Planning Overview

If this is your first year coordinating your Vacation Bible School Program, CONGRATULATIONS! You've got many of tasks ahead of you but the reward at the end will be more than worth it.

We have put together a general overview to help you create an outline for your planning schedule this year. Remember that you were specially chosen to play this role and we know you can do it!

VBS Planning Outline & Timeline

6-9 Months before your VBS is the time to start putting Vacation Bible School on your radar. You will want to establish the foundations of your program. Also consider including Preschoolers (2-5 year olds) in your VBS. You may want to run a separate preschool program for your little ones (same hours). The preschoolers can join the other children for your opening and then the younger children can have their own learning centers, games and age-appropriate crafts for the rest of the morning.

  • Begin praying for your VBS program. You may want to organize a prayer team.
  • Choose your dates and time for you VBS. Put them on the church calendar early.
  • Choose a VBS Director.
  • Choose a VBS Theme and Purchase your VBS Starter kit so you can begin planning.

Several Months (3-6) before your VBS get your VBS leadership team together to estimate your attendance and set dates for the program. Go ahead and publicize the dates to your congregation and to our bookstore so you can get plenty of volunteers and find out how to get the word out in the community. At this point start looking at what materials you will need for your VBS program and order your VBS materials before they are sold out, they do go quickly. Having your team brainstorm together now helps you understand which things that will need longer preparation time, put together and distribute teacher materials and begin compiling registration lists.

  • Set a budget for your VBS program
  • Recruit key leaders – Music, Snacks, Games, Bible story teacher.
  • Plan publicity for your VBS – community outreach could include signage, door to door flyers, radio spots.
  • Put together a list of supplies you'll need.
  • Order all of your publicity, decorating, leaders manuals and teaching supplies.

Setting Goals: Staff should give thought to establishing the goals of the VBS program:

  • What objectives should be met for the program to be considered successful?
  • Who do you expect to participate — children at what ages; youth; family units?
  • Is God calling you to reach out in new ways to a new segment of the community?
  • Are you planning a week to enrich the church children's understanding of the Bible? Or is it to reach out to new people in and fun and inspiring way?
  • Is the program to be an outreach to the community?

A couple of months (2-3) before your VBS you will want to start distributing registration forms, create daily schedules for VBS Week, start your publicity to the congregation and community, fill all the teaching staff positions and start training your team! Make sure you have the contact information – phone numbers, email addresses and names – of the people that will be teaching and anyone who volunteers to create things.

  • Plan and schedule a VBS staff training meeting to be held 4-6 weeks prior to VBS.
  • Begin recruiting additional leaders and support staff.
  • Explore your church facilities to determine what areas you will need.
  • Estimate your VBS enrollment. Use figures from Sunday school or last year’s VBS.
  • Order student supplies if you have not already done so.

As you Recruit, look for leaders and teachers with the following qualifications:

  • Dedicated Christians who seek to live for Christ daily, who study God's word, and who know the plan of salvation – suitable role models for children
  • People tuned in to kids, able to build upon their natural interests and who will enjoy sharing in the children's joy of discovery
  • Warm, outgoing, having a genuine love and sensitivity for children, understanding them in terms of their physical, mental, and emotional development, and their spiritual needs
  • One who will appreciate and seek to follow God's command to teach children, demonstrating this by being reliable and disciplined to prepare for each day of VBS

About a month (4-6 weeks) before your VBS continue to maintain your list of registered students and stay alert to any staffing adjustments needed as you finish up the details of the schedule for your VBS Week. Follow-up with any items you have outstanding and touch base with your VBS teachers to make sure they have what they need for that week.

  • Begin pre-registration.
  • Hold the scheduled VBS staff training meeting.
  • Meet with key leaders.
  • Check your registration weekly and order any extra supplies you may need. Remember these item sell out fast.

One week before VBS will begin your final setup up before the big event – decorations, registration tables, signs, sorting craft and game supplies to the right rooms. Now you should run a check of student count versus your materials. Remember you will have last minute people show up. Provide teachers with current information about their classes including rosters and prepare any packets you will provide to the parents. Assign a place and time for all VBS staff to meet prior to each session for prayer.

The Day before your VBS begins run a final check of supplies (are the pencils sharpened?) and rooms. Then take a breath and start praying for all the kids, families and volunteers that will be involved with your VBS this week.

First Day of VBS make sure you arrive early — take time for more prayer with your teams and even in the stress remember to celebrate the opportunities to witness. Especially early in the week, watch for rough spots needing adjustment the next day and after the children leave, brief staff meeting to catch loose ends. And don't forget to take lots of pictures! Each day, continue to pray for God to move in the hearts of your children. Things that should be modified for next year, make note of in a place you will remember to pass it on the next year. And remember to have fun!

After you wrap up Evaluation: It's a good idea to collect evaluations and suggestions from the staff for future kids events at the church. Before your VBS ends, Have thank you notes and evaluation forms ready for your helpers. Make sure you display photographs for congregation and get a list to the Kids Church teachers, especially for families that came and are not already affiliated with the church so they can remember them when they show up for regular services. Be sure to let your volunteers know how much they helped to make VBS 2014 the best ever. While they're still excited about the great things that happened during VBS, ask if they would be willing to consider being a part of the team next year. (Just to get an idea, not for a firm commitment.) Then follow up just as soon as you set the next date to have them start praying about volunteering for your next VBS program.

If you need help, we have a great staff ready to serve you both online and in the store. You can find other supplies, like prices for games or attendance and Bibles for new believers in our stores as well.

We know you will have a great 2014 Vacation Bible School experience!

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