Object Lessons for Kids: Our Top 10 Examples for Youth Ministry

Researching Object Lessons for Kids? Here, we detail our top 10 interactive Bible studies to keep energy & passion in your church. ✓ Click to read now!

Grant Glas
September 17, 2021
Kids Ministry Leadership

Object lessons for kids are an entertaining way to spread the lessons of the Bible to kids, in a way that will last. A solid kids ministry curriculum is necessary, and you can learn about our favorite ones here, but you can spruce up your classes with some object lessons too! Rather than sitting down to study passages of text, why not play games with the children, where they are learning without even realizing it? Read on to learn our top 10 examples of object childrens church lessons for kids, perfect for keeping energy and passion in your church.

Forgiveness – Carrying Weight

Excellent for teaching kids about the weight of negative emotions, this is one of our favorite object lessons for youth. Have several empty buckets in the center of the circle, and ask a volunteer to pick them up.Tell them to walk around the circle, and they will be able to do it easily as the empty buckets weigh very little – this is how we navigate the world when we don’t hold on to our negative emotions.

 

Next, ask some students to fill up those buckets with water, explaining that the water represents the weight that we hold when we don’t forgive someone. Now, the volunteer will find it a lot more difficult to walk around the circle. This demonstrates that when we forgive and let go of anger and resentment, we lessen the weight on ourselves. When we hold on to anger and upset, it makes life more difficult only for ourselves.

Rather than sitting down to study passages of text, why not play games with the children, where they are learning without even realizing it?

Turning Water into Wine 

Bring the story of this New Testament miracle to life with some cordial or powdered flavoring. A young volunteer will transform a jug of boring water into tasty juice for everyone to drink, while learning about the power of Jesus. Introducing kids to the rituals of holy communion too, this is a great way to show them the power of this miracle.

 

Incorporating interactive Bible study lessons for youths with your daily kids’ ministry is crucial in teaching lessons that will last. Adding a splash of fun to your children’s church lessons will not only enable the information to sink into their minds that little bit more deeply, but also make an impression that will last.

Trust Fall – Faith in God 

Teaching to trust in God, even though we can’t always see Him, this adaptable children’s church object lesson is one of the most powerful. You are probably familiar with the concept of a trust fall, but it can also be a beautiful demonstration of how to have faith in God. The classic trust fall, accompanied with prayer, is a great object lesson for teens.

Used as a team-building exercise in countless different situations, the trust fall is a great Bible study lesson for children of all ages.

 

As much as the thought of falling back blindly is terrifying at first, facing the fear while focusing on faith will not only teach your students a lesson about God but strengthen community bonds within your ministry too. Used as a team-building exercise in countless different situations, the trust fall is a great Bible study lesson for children of all ages.

Trust Sit – Faith in God for Little Ones

For younger kids, use a chair and a blindfold for a safer experience. Direct them to the chair, and ask them if they know a chair is there, they will say no. Next, ask them to trust in God, and sit down. While they will likely feel the fear beforehand, the relief that they can trust in God will be powerful.

The act of questioning what you cannot see is something that is learned later in life, so get your youngest students engaged with faith from early on.

 

Teaching faith in even your littlest of learners is the perfect way to set them up for a life filled with prayer, and trust in God. The act of questioning what you cannot see is something that is learned later in life, so get your youngest students engaged with faith from early on, so that they never feel the need to question the presence of God.

Paper Fan – God is Everywhere

Doubling up as an arts and crafts activity, this Sunday school object lesson is great fun for younger kids. Show them how to make a simple style folded fan out of paper, and get them to partner up and fan the other person. Showing kids that there are forces in this world that we cannot see, this experiment is a great way to deepen their faith in God.

 

Not only does this object lesson teach about God, but it doubles up as a fun craft for your little learners. Kids learn more quickly when they do rather than simply listening and repeating, so why not focus more on the fun and exciting ways to incorporate craft activities with studies of Christ.

Float or Sink – Faith Lifts Us

Using an orange to show the power of God’s protection, this experiment is simple yet effective. Describe how God’s love is all around us while slowly peeling the orange. Next, describe what can happen if we stray from faith, and drop the peeled orange into a clear tub of water. The student swill see the outcome – the orange will sink.

 

The tub of water can represent a troublesome time or a difficult situation where we feel like we might sink. Afterward, drop anon-peeled orange into the water, and compare the situation. This orange will float because it is still carefully wrapped in God’s love and protection. It is still wearing the ‘armor of God’ and so is toughened to external situations that may affect us otherwise.

Self-Control – How to Let Anger Run Through Us

Showing youngsters the importance of self-control, this exciting activity doubles up as a science experiment. Fill a clear drinking glass with warm water, and add a few drops of food coloring, followed by 4drops of liquid dishwashing detergent. Gently add 2 tbsp of baking soda before adding the final ingredient – vinegar.

In this experiment, we are the water, and the baking soda is our anger.

 

This will make it bubble up and get out of control. In this experiment, we are the water, and the baking soda is our anger. If we don’t react to it, it has no power. But once a lack of self-control (vinegar)is in the mix, we will explode. Show your students how to handle their emotions head-on, before they bubble up to the surface and erupt.

We Are What We Absorb – Celery

Simple yet effective, this object lesson involves celery, food coloring, and time. Place several stalks of celery into glasses of different colored water, root down. Come back the next day, and the celery will be different colors, showing us that what we accept into our lives will change us.

 

Due to its visual appeal and its simplicity of execution, this is one of the most popular objective lesson for Sunday School. It is important to teach your students from a young age that the content they feed to their minds will have an incredible impact on the person that they become. We are what we do, read, think, breathe, and say each and every day.

Breathe, Pray, Appreciate

Requiring no apparatus, this bible object lesson for kids is great to bring the tempo down. Teach kids that once they learn how to focus on their breathing, then they can easily pray throughout their day. The bible teaches us that we can "pray without ceasing,” so teach the children how to feel God in every single breath.

Teach kids that once they learn how to focus on their breathing, then they can easily pray throughout their day.

Helping to instill positive habits of prayer and mediation in kids is a great way to teach them about managing emotions, relieving anxiety, and processing their thoughts. While it does apply to children of all ages, this simple activity is most appropriate as a Bible study lesson for teens, who often need the excuse to slow down and breathe.  

Additional Bible Object Lesson Ideas:

The Vine and the Branches

Demonstrating to the kids of your church that they need to remain connected to Jesus (the vine) in order to flourish, this simple lesson doubles as a healthy snack! Use this fruity object lesson to demonstrate to your kids how they need to stay connected to God, through daily worship practices, if they want to remain as a part of the community, constantly growing and developing.

Ask them what happens when a grape falls off of the vine, and they see that when disconnected from those around them, the grapes die. They turn brown, start to fester, and become less and less appealing. Do they want that for themselves? Teaching kids that we are not only connected to God, but also to nature, this is a wonderful lesson for children of all ages.

Teaching kids that we are not only connected to God, but also to nature, this is a wonderful lesson for children of all ages.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Teach kids to live their Christian truth instead of simply talking about it through tying a shoelace. No matter how much you talk about it, a shoelace isn’t tied until you actually do it. Demonstrating important children church object lessons, like obedience and the value of practicing what you preach, this is an excellent way to show that every little thing matters.

Teach kids to live their Christian truth instead of simply talking about it through tying a shoelace.

Why not use the sermon from Matthew 21:23-32 to highlight this point even further? It isn’t enough to merely talk about things, we must live our truth and make it real every single day. It is powerful to show the same message with an instrument if you have one available. Is simply showing it enough to prove you can play? No – you must show it to make it real.

Fairness

People of all ages love to lament the injustices of life, but no one more so than young children. While it is important to keep things fair within the classroom, as that’s one of the important roles of leaders in kids ministry, it is vital to highlight the inherent hypocrisy that is presented through constant complaining. To show this, pass a bag filled with different objects around the circle and let each kid take one. Some of the items should be great, such as a small toy, and others should be more disappointing, such as a plain pencil. Ask them, was this fair? The children will certainly exclaim that it wasn't, but afterward, ask everyone to return their items. We were all forgiven for our sins which wasn’t technically ‘fair,’ but Jesus didn’t complain. Use this lesson to teach humility.

Sticks and Stones

Teaching kids how to live their lives with kindness is one of the greatest gifts we can give. Those who spend their time consumed by bitterness are far from happy people, but when you teach a person to put others first, share, and be compassionate, they will find happiness in even the darkest corners of the world. One of the best children’s church object lessons to demonstrate this involves a tube of toothpaste. Let your students squeeze some out of the tube – it will spill out easily enough. Next, ask them to try and put it back into the tube with toothpicks. Just like harsh words cannot be unsaid, the toothpaste cannot be put back. We must be careful what we put out into the world.

Strength and Balloons

God is always around us. He is there when we are dealt a hand that feels like more than we can bear. For kids, this can be especially difficult to understand, due to the faith that it takes and how challenging the extremity of their emotions can be. Use this object lesson in one of your Sunday school lessons to highlight that something as fragile as a balloon can take more than we might think.

Afterward, let them try and pop it with a cocktail stick, they will enjoy the act of popping it and will have a lot of fun.

Get each child in the group to blow up a balloon. Afterward, let them try and pop it with a cocktail stick, they will enjoy the act of popping it and will have a lot of fun. Next, tell them to stick two small pieces of scotch tape onto the same part, representing God’s protection. Now when they try to pop it with a cocktail stick they’ll see that it simply won’t pop, just like we won’t when we have God on our side.

Explosive Egg

Kids love it when things get messy. So, use this object lesson to allow the kids to let loose and feel like they are breaking all the rules! Split the class into smaller groups, as three or four works best to maximize the visual effects of this one. But, ultimately, this lesson is to teach your little learners the importance of letting go, and of not holding on to negative emotions. When heated in a microwave, the egg will look fine. But suddenly, the kids will see the egg explode inside the microwave, creating a massive mess. This represents our emotions when they are pent up – they will find a way out, and it won’t be pretty. As this experiment only requires an egg and a microwave, it is one of the easiest kids’ church lessons.

Trinity in an Apple

Doubling as a snack time activity, cutting up an apple can help to explain to kids how the skin, the flesh, and the core are three parts of the same whole. While this may sound simple, a lot of children struggle with the notion of the Holy Trinity. There are several discussion points to help this message sink in even deeper.

An apple can help to explain to kids how the skin, the flesh, and the core are three parts of the same whole.

First, ask them to explain each part of the apple in detail. What are the properties of the skin? Do they like it, or do they prefer it peeled? Then, highlight the fact that we cannot eat the core or the seeds, but they are vital elements of the apple that make the apple the fruit that it is. This is the same with the Holy Trinity, they are inseparable and inextricably linked.

Half Full

Teach the value of a positive mindset with this fun science experiment. Have two glasses in the center of a circle, and ask a couple of volunteers to fill these glasses up with some Coca-Cola. One is a negative mindset, where the glass is always half empty and the other is a half-full positive one. Ultimately, the glasses will both look the same. Next, ask the children to discuss what the difference is until someone says ‘positivity’ or ‘optimism’. When they do, allow them to take a mento (to represent it) and add it to the glass that is half full. The coke will pour out of the glass, demonstrating that our glass is never half empty when we have God by our side – all we need is optimism.

Lies Will Last

This object lesson teaches kids about the importance of honesty, and the inescapability of lies. Mix salt with a little bit of water and allow it to dry in a bowl; repeat this step until there is a significant amount of dried salt that cannot be easily removed. In separate bowls, prepare ice cream for your kids, and let them take a bite.

‘Accidentally’ sprinkle salt over the ice cream, and tell them that the salt represents lying.

Then, ‘accidentally’ sprinkle salt over the ice cream, and tell them that the salt represents lying. Next, cover it with syrup and ask who wants a taste – you’ll be surprised how many kids say yes! Ask them how it tastes… it won’t be good. Afterward, pour out the ice cream to represent covering up the lie, but then show them your bowl from earlier. The hardened salt cannot be removed; the bad taste cannot be hidden, just like lies.

Foundations of Faith

Teach kids to build their house on a rock like the Parable of the Wise and the Foolish Builders tells us, using popsicle sticks, a watering can, sand, and two identical containers. Simple yet effective, this is a fun activity that can get kids’ creativity involved too! Before you begin, get them to create a square-shaped structure out of popsicle sticks. Next, they can place a rock in one container and sand in the other – you can even split them into teams based on what they think will happen. Next, it’s time to put their popsicle structures on their foundations. But, what will happen when the rain comes? Use the watering can to pour down a storm, and watch the house built on sand melt away, while the stone one stands strong.

Sins: Revealed

Use buttons (or anything you have handy) to represent sins in this Bible object lesson. Ask kids about something they would consider to be a sin and get them to drop it into a container that’s half-filled with water. Whether or not you’d like to use this activity to encourage kids to be honest, or to just speak hypothetically, is entirely up to you. Discuss how the sins are clear for everyone to see in the water, and ask if they think we should add something else, to try and hide them. When you add some coke to make them disappear, the buttons will simply rise to the surface, just like our immoral actions will. This lesson teaches that we cannot hide any of our sins from ourselves, or from God.

Fake Flower

Get your students invigorated with a touch of floristry when you use this object lesson. Bring in a bouquet of flowers, or even get the kids to help in picking them, and set them into a vase. Introduce a light discussion about which is their favorite, and why they like that flower the best. Next, bring in a supply of fake flowers, some obviously fake, and some more realistic. Ask your kids to identify the fake ones with their eyes, and ask them why they think it is fake. Now ask them to smell them while blindfolded – can they tell the difference? The answer is that it will be easy to notice the fake ones. Just like we can tell who is a true Christian and who simply goes to church and claims to believe, we can spot a fake flower among a bed of roses.

From Sour to Sweet

This activity is especially fun, as it even piques the interest of adults too! Did you know that there are magic tablets that transform how our taste buds perceive sour things? Miracle berries do just that, and as you guessed, they are an incredible way to teach kids about the miracles offered to us by God every single day.

First, ask your students who want to try a slice of lemon. Only a few will volunteer as the taste is known to be bitter, and their reactions will be clear. Afterward, give a few students a miracle berry to dissolve on their tongue – the rest of the class will be awe-stricken when they are able to eat it without wincing! This shows how God can create sweet situations for us – we just need to have faith.

With or Without Him

This incredibly simple activity can be used to demonstrate to children how much stronger we are when we have God by our side. Laminate a piece of white paper that says ‘with God’ and you will be able to write additional words on it using a whiteboard pen. This is a great way to get the kids involved, as you can ask them exactly what they have when they are with God. Next, write ‘without God’ on a regular piece of paper, and ask your students what they associate with when they are without God. Get two volunteers to try and rip both pieces of paper, and only ‘without God’ will be breakable; without God you are vulnerable, with Him you are unbreakable.

Love

Ask your class if they have ever experienced a toy running out of battery while they were in the middle of using it. You will likely hear a great selection of answers, highlighting the necessity of batteries. See if they have an answer as to ‘why’ they need the battery to function, and now they might struggle to reach an answer. Like electronics need a battery, human beings need love. Use a toy and a battery pack to show that no matter how successful, wealthy or talented you are, love is what will keep you going. As soon as we remove the battery from the toy, it will cease to function.

Be Like Jesus

Nothing shows things how they really are more clearly than a mirror, so use one to show kids how they can reflect the goodness of Jesus. In pairs, ask the children to hold a mirror to their partner, and the partner can say what they see. From eyes and ears to hair and freckles, get the kids to identify the details of their faces. Now, ask them what the mirror is inside of us. What keeps us seeing ourselves for what we truly are? The answer is God and the knowledge that He can see us, wherever we are. For this reason, we must live life in the reflection of Jesus, and  inspire others to do the same.

Friendship

Salt and pepper are found together in every restaurant but are complete opposites. They complement each other in incredible ways and are a staple of almost every meal, but they could not look or taste more different. Friendship can be seen in a similar way – it does not matter if we look different to our friends.

It is important to teach the lesson that we do not need to be exactly the same as our friends, as it is our differences that make us work so well together. Teach the kids of your childrens’ ministry that they can be the salt to their best friend’s pepper by staying by their side despite their differences, and they will turn bland things exciting together.

Look Closer

Take the class outside with this object lesson, and use a pair of binoculars to see what details you can see that would have been missed without the added magnifier. They will be able to see incredible things that would otherwise have been missed, like insects, birds, plants, and leaves. The same can be said for the Bible. When we simply read the Bible out of duty, but spend little time trying to truly understand, we miss so much of what is there. Sometimes, when we feel lost or confused, we just need to take out our little pair of binoculars and look deeper into the Bible.

Clean Your Sins

Great for teaching kids about repenting, this is one of the best object lessons for youth after an art class. Make the most of the mess made during a creative activity, and follow it directly up with this fun, and informative, lesson. Ask a child to paint using a dirty paintbrush, and they won’t be able to. It might be dry and stiff and might even have residue paint spoiling their current work. Next, ask them to use some warm water to clear off the dirt and grime, and it will slip away easily, just like our sins are forgiven when we truly repent.

The French Fry Tax

Helping children to understand the unimportance of material ownership, this object lesson is ideal for snack times. Plus, it highlights the importance of being grateful, and should even be preceded by saying grace.

This is best demonstrated by giving the kids some fries, but then taking one and watching the kids protest. Then ask them, who bought it? Are these fries actually theirs? No. They are fortunate to have this snack and to have freedom in life generally. Nothing in this life is truly ours – it is God’s.

Making Good Decisions

One of the most influential object lessons for teens involves a driver's permit, to teach them to make wise decisions. Highlighting the difference between what we can do by law, and what we should do if we are making wise decisions, this thought experiment is crucial for kids as they begin their driving journey. Ask them: as soon as you receive your driver’s permit, should you drive on the highway? Some will inevitably respond yes, but you should simply point out the dangers of this and eventually, they will agree – they absolutely should not. But, can they? Legally, yes. This is important to introduce the difference between law, and our personal decisions.

Bad Influences

As kids get older, more and more bad influences are revealed to them. Whether it’s something as small as a friend encouraging them to play instead of finishing their homework, or something more serious like peer pressure in teenage years, bad influences are everywhere. Get a volunteer to wear a shirt with an itchy tag, and ask them how it feels. It irritates and bothers them, they can’t ignore it. Next, cut the itchy tag, remove it entirely from the shirt, and ask them how it feels now – it’s much more comfortable. This shows why we need to get rid of bad influences as soon as possible. If we let them stay, the impact will get worse and worse.

Surgery for Oranges

Great for slightly older kids as it merges responsibility with lessons about the impact of being disconnected from God, conducting surgery on oranges will be a fun and engaging class. When we are disconnected from God (the peel), we are lost and vulnerable. Enter with a bag of oranges, and say that they are for the younger, kindergarten kids. Mention that you won’t have time to peel them all before it’s their snack time, and you need help. Give each student an orange and a plate, and ask them to peel the orange. Then, after a minute or so, exclaim that you’ve changed your mind, and are instead conducting a competition to see who can piece the peel back together most successfully, using various office utensils. It will be incredibly difficult, and the kids will find themselves feeling guilty about the oranges that the kindergarten kids will have to eat. But ask them, why is it so much less appealing?

Walking on Eggshells

Following a class that teaches the miracle of Jesus walking on water, use this Bible object lesson to show kids that miracles are not as far away as we might think. Beware of potential mess with this experiment – you conduct it at your own risk! Place a plastic tablecloth, or something protective, onto the floor. Next, put two dozen eggs, still in their carton, on top. Ask a volunteer to stand on them, and let all the kids have a go – the eggs will stay solid. As God created the shape of an eggshell, it is stronger than we could ever imagine. For effect, ask a child to crack one afterward, demonstrating how something so fragile has the potential to be incredibly strong.

Head Under Water

Blend physics with faith with this Bible object lesson, that uses a simple yet effective magic trick to capture the attention of your students. First, fill a glass up with water. It has to be small enough that a playing card can entirely cover the opening of the beaker. Flip it upside down, and you’ll be able to remove your hand, the card providing enough support for the water. Make it exciting and ask for a volunteer to risk getting soaked. Get the kids nervous by building up the tension, saying things like “I hope this actually works” or “I hope you have a change of clothes!”. This will help to make it all the more impressive when it does work – if we just have faith, the impossible can happen.


Different on the Outside, the Same on the Inside

Show kids that everyone is made equal with some M&Ms. Get each child to choose their favorite color, and let them eat it. Next, blindfold a few children and ask them to guess the color of their sweet – they won’t be able to as they all taste the same. Just as we look different on the outside, we are all the same on the inside.


Which ways can I teach these lessons with videos?

There are typically three ways to teach a lesson that has videos to go with it.


1. USB Sticks

2. ProPresenter

3. DVDs


All three of these ways to teach with videos have Pros and Cons:


USB Sticks

PRO = cost-efficient

CON = time consuming and prone to errors with volunteers and distribution to classrooms


ProPresenter

PRO = powerful presentation capabilities

CON = expensive and prone to errors with volunteers using it


DVD

PRO = cost-efficient

CON = DVDs are time-consuming to make and hard to present with


What is the best way to present a curriculum that is cost-efficient and saves you time, while allowing you to teach like a hero? Look into our solution and compare us against ProPresenter.

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