eGROUP LESSON PLAN
WEEK 2: APRIL 9/10
Stopping to give thanks, no matter what.
Stop to adjust your attitude.
MEMORY VERSE: 1 THESSALONIANS 5:16-18
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Parable of the Vineyard Workers
Engage is a time to welcome kids to your eGroup with a fun activity to help them feel comfortable and get to know each other.
RACE CAR CHALLENGE
BASE CAR KITS, BALLOONS (1 per base cart kit), POWER UP PART CARDS, POWER UP CAR PARTS PACK, PAINTERS TAPE, DON’T FORGET THE ENGINE … SHEET
DO: Start by introducing yourself and welcoming kids to the eGroup. Ask them about their week and interests. Once you have five to six kids begin the Engage activity.
SAY: “During Pit Stop we’re going behind the scenes to see what it’s like to drive some of the fastest cars around. Let’s see who can build the fastest car today in the Race Car Challenge!
Explain racing teams will be make a balloon powered racing car. Have kids form racing teams. Teams can be an individual kid or a pair.
Give each racing team a base car kit and balloon. Racing teams can only blow up their balloon ONCE before the race. Teams who blow up their balloon more than once will lose the use of their balloon and have to push their car during the race.
Allow racing teams to choose one Power Up card. NOTE: Racing teams cannot start building their car until Power Up cards and parts have been distributed and you give the ‘green light’ to begin.
Each Power Up card earns racing teams one or more additional car parts for their car.
Teams who choose to NOT use their Power Up card will get an extra try when racing their car.
Allow racing teams to redeem their Power Up card and collect car parts from the Power Up Car Parts bag.
Say, ’GREEN LIGHT’ and give racing teams five minutes to build their race cars. Encourage racing teams to use the Don’t Forget The Engine sheet if they need help. While teams are building their cars use the painters tape to mark a START and FINISH line in your eGroup space.
If racing teams finish building their car before time runs out have them place their car on the start line so they aren’t tempted to play with their car before the race.
After five minutes have racing teams place their cars on the starting line. Have all racing teams blow up their balloon and get ready to race their cars. Say, “Drivers, start your engines. Ready, set, go!” and encourage teams to release their balloon. The goal is to get your car across the finish line the fastest or go the furthest distance.
Any racing team who did not use a Power Up card can repeat this last step to try and get their car to drive a further distance.
During this time introduce your eGroup to the series virtue and memory verse. Spend time teaching and practicing the memory verse.
SAY: “Welcome to eGroup! My name is _______ and I’m your eGroup leader! As an eGroup we will hang out together during Motion, hear stories from the Bible, learn what it means to live for Jesus, and play games!
During the Pit Stop series we’re getting a behind the scenes look at the fastest sport around – Nascar! Even with cars exceeding 200 mph, drivers have to make pit stops to maintain their cars and keep them running at peak performance. Sometimes our lives feel like they’re flying at 200 mph, too: school, activities, friends, family … in the midst of all we have going on in our lives, it’s important we make pit stops to show gratitude.
Just like NASCAR drivers have pit crews, we all have our own pit crews; people around us who help us succeed – parents, teachers, coaches, eGroup leaders, and friends. It’s important we stop and give thanks for the people and things God has placed in our lives. A verse in the Bible, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, helps us remember we should take time to give thanks, no matter what. Let’s memorize this verse to help us remember to stop and give thanks.
Read the verse out loud:
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16 (NIV)
Help kids look up the memory verse in their Bibles. Encourage children to use the pens to underline the verse in their Bible.
As time allows, practice the verse with your group. You can use the following methods to help kids learn the memory verse:
REPEAT AFTER ME: Have kids repeat the words after you.
PAIR UP: After practicing the verse as a group, have kids pair up to practice the verse.
MOTIONS: Come up with motions to help remember the verse as a group. Practice it together.
MY PIT CREW
CONNECT ACTIVITY: Kids will connect the idea of gratitude with the weekly Pit Stop episode and connect with each other.
PIT CREW CARDS (4), STICKY NOTES (4)
SAY: “In today’s episode we learned how important it is for pit crew members to exercise and stay in shape so their team car does well in races. There are lots of ways the pit crew stays in shape. Let’s take a look at four pit crew positions and exercises they might complete.”
NOTE: Before the activity, grab four sticky notes and write one exercise on each sticky note: sit-ups, push-ups, jumping jacks, and sprints. Place one sticky note on the back of each pit crew card.
Review the pit crew cards: tire changer, gas man, jackman, and crew chief. Read the name and description for each position. Place the pit crew cards in separate sections of the eGroup area.
Have kids sit around the cards of the job they would most like to have if they were part of a pit crew.
Once kids are sitting around the card have them introduce themselves to their group and turn over the pit crew card to reveal the exercise.
Each team will have one minute to complete the exercise on their card.
SAY: “Now image doing that, but for another 60 minutes. Keeping our bodies in shape is really hard work! Just like the pit crew members worked on their muscles, let’s talk about what happened in today’s episode and how we can get our minds and attitudes in shape, too.”
Ask the following questions and have kids discuss in their groups. Share answers from different groups after each question.
What exercise in the video looked the hardest? What exercise looked the most fun?
What is something you already take time to practice? (sports, instruments, hobbies) What is something you’d like to spend time getting better at?
We heard it takes time and practice to adjust our attitudes. Think of one of your close friends. What is something you appreciate about his or her attitude?
Do you know someone who always has an attitude of gratitude? How have you seen them adjust their attitude?
Collect the cards before moving on to the next activity.
3 … 2 … 1 …
BIBLE STORY ACTIVITY: Kids will hear the Bible story and have to retell it in 3 … 2 …. or 1 sentences!
BIBLES, NOTE CARDS, PENS
SAY: “Just like the Ganassi Racing Team has to train hard to win races, we have to train ourselves to have an attitude of gratitude. In Matthew 20, Jesus shares a parable about a group of vineyard workers who struggled to have attitudes of gratitude.”
Have kids sit in a circle with their Bibles.
Instruct kids to turn to Matthew 20 in their Bibles. NOTE: This may take time, but it helps them learn skills for reading the Bible on their own.
Give each kid a note card and pen. As you read the passage kids will write down the times the vineyard owner hires each group of workers. (Answer: early morning, 9:00, noon, 3:00, and 5:00)
Read Matthew 20:1-15 from your Bible.
SAY: “Not all the vineyard workers had an attitude of gratitude. Those who worked the longest were paid the same amount as those who worked the shortest. The winner in a NASCAR race is the car who does the most amount of work (drives the furthest) in the shortest time. Since racing is all about time, let’s see how fast you can retell the Bible story in 3 … 2… 1!”
Assign each kid a number between one and three.
Have kids get in groups based on the number they were assigned.
The group assigned “3” has to summarize the Bible passage in three sentences, the group assigned “2” has to summarize the Bible passage in two sentences, and the group assigned “1” has to summarize the Bible passage in one sentence.
Allow groups 2-4 minutes to work on their sentences then share their sentence with the eGroup. Group 3 will go first, then group 2, then group 1.
SAY: “Jesus used this parable to teach us how important having the right attitude is. How much did the vineyard owner agree to pay the early morning workers? (one denarius) Did the workers who were hired last deserve more or less than one denarius? (less) Instead of giving each worker what they deserved, the vineyard owner was generous and gave the workers more than they deserved! The vineyard workers needed to adjust their attitudes and be grateful for what they were already receiving.”
APPLICATION ACTIVITY: Kids will be issued the Pit Stop Challenge of the Week. The challenge encourages kids to apply gratitude to their own lives and this week identify who they can be grateful for.
SITUATIONS SHEET, YELLOW STICKY NOTES, BLUE STICKY NOTES, SHARPIE MARKER (2), GREEN FLAG CARDS (10), CHOCOLATE CARS
SAY: “It’s not easy to stop and adjust our attitude to show gratitude, but God wants us to train ourselves to recognize the good things in our lives and be grateful for them. Today’s Pit Stop Challenge of the Week is to take a little step to adjust our attitudes to that of gratitude.”
Explain you are going to read five situations to the group. For each situation the group will discuss and brainstorm three different ways the person can adjust their attitude.
Read an example situation from the situations sheet. After the group has discussed and determined three different ways the person can take a little step to adjust their attitude, write the three ways on three yellow sticky notes AND three blue sticky notes. Call these the attitude adjustment sticky notes.
After the five example situations have been discussed, divide the group into two pit crews, the yellow pit crew and the blue pit crew.
Have the pit crews sit in a line with their backs to each other.
Give each pit crew their corresponding colored attitude adjustment sticky notes and have them arrange their sticky notes on the floor in front of their pit crew.
Explain teams will hear a situation and choose one attitude adjustment sticky note for how the person can stop and adjust their attitude. After pit crews have made their decision, one pit crew member will hold the sticky note in the air.
If both pit crews hold up a different attitude adjustment sticky note, each pit crew will earn a green flag.
If both pit crews hold up the same sticky note, neither pit crew earns a green flag but must trade crew members. The crew members who held up the sticky note will switch pit crews.
Read the game situations from the situations sheet. Continue until all five game situations have been read.
Give each member of the winning pit crew two chocolate cars and each member of the losing pit crew one chocolate car.
SAY: “Life is not always fair, but how grateful we are has everything to do with our attitudes. It’s a good thing God doesn’t treat us fairly because none of us deserve to have a relationship with Jesus. But each day we can show we are grateful by giving thanks.
We talked about a lot of little ways to adjust our attitudes. Which little step will you take this week to adjust your attitude?” (Allow children to respond. Lead the way and share how you will work to adjust your attitude this week.)
PRAYER AND GAME ACTIVITY: Prayer is an important way to share Jesus with passion. Spend time in prayer with your eGroup before beginning the game.
eKIDZ PRAYER JOURNAL, PENS, (2) PIT STOP GAME SETS (1 SET = 1 PIT STOP GAME BOARD, 5 GAME PIECES, 1 DIE)
SAY: “Before we begin our last activity, let’s pray together.”
SUGGESTED PRAYER: “Dear God, thank You for loving us even though we don’t deserve it. Help us recognize when our attitudes are unkind or ungrateful so we can STOP to adjust our attitudes. We have so much to be grateful and should show it with our attitudes. We love You. Amen!”
SAY: “We need to remember to stop and give thanks, no matter what. And in the Pit Stop game you’ll want to stop on the red flag spaces to help you race to finish the fastest!”
DO: Play ‘Pit Stop.’
If you have a large eGroup divide the kids into two smaller groups. Give each group a Pit Stop game board, set of game pieces, and one die.
Kids will need to form pairs if there are more than six kids in a group. Have each kid/pair choose a game piece.
Each round kids/pairs will take turns rolling the die and moving the number of spaces rolled.
Some numbers rolled and the red spaces have actions associated with them:
Roll a 2 = Move backwards three spaces then roll again.
Roll a 4 = Race around the group like you are driving a race car until your next turn.
Roll a 6 = Each time another team rolls an even number yell, “I need to make a pit stop!” until your next turn. If another kid/pair catches you not yelling the phrase you have to move your game piece back two spots.
Red Flag Space: If a kid/pair lands on a red flag space, they have to stand up and say the main point (Stop to adjust your attitude.) then move forward four spaces.
Continue until a kid/pair reaches the checkered flag (finish line) and wins the game!
BRING IT! CHALLENGE
OVERVIEW: During Pit Stop kids have an opportunity to be rewarded for refueling – coming to church to learn about God, worshipping Jesus, and sharing God’s love with others. Kids will play Pit Stop bingo and collect signatures to form a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal line to win Pit Stop bingo and pick a prize from the Nascar prize bin!
PIT STOP BINGO CARDS (2 DESIGNS), PEN
SAY: “Even though race car drivers are trying to go as fast as possible, they have to make pit stops to refuel their cars. Just like a race car needs fuel, we need fuel, too! Each week during Pit Stop you can refuel by coming to church to learn about God, worshipping Jesus, and sharing God’s love with others!”
Give each kid a Pit Stop bingo card. There are two designs to choose from.
Review the information on the bingo card.
Kids can mark off fuel spots on their bingo card by completing the following:
attending Motion = 1 fuel spot
bringing your Bible = 2 fuel spots
reciting the memory verse = 2 fuel spots
bringing a friend = 3 fuel spots
winning a large group game = 1 fuel spot
NOTE: For bringing a Bible, reciting the memory verse, or bringing a friend to church kids earn two or three fuel spots on their card. You will sign multiple fuel spots for each category completed. For ex. If a child brings a Bible, the child will choose two fuel spots for you to sign that are labeled “Bring A Bible” on their card.
Sign and date fuel spots on each child’s bingo cards. Allow kids to choose which spot(s) to mark off. All kids will be able to mark off at least one spot for attending Motion that day.
SAY: “Make sure to come to Motion each week to learn more about stopping to give thanks and be the first to win Pit Stop bingo! Keep your Pit Stop bingo card in your Bible to help you remember to bring your Bible and bingo card back to Motion every week!”