It has been a while since I posted…but I felt this was important. I got great feedback from the posts about teaching the bible with Elf on the Shelf. (click here to read that!) I wanted to do something similar with Valentine’s Day.
We kept is simple…we made a Valentine’s Day garland to hang up in our kitchen.
First, I read the bible to the girls. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. I had to stop as we read and explain what the words meant to the girls. I wanted to break it down to their language. I was sure to teach them the correct words, patient, envy, boast, arrogant, irritable, resentful, bears all things, endures all things, rejoice and so on. I think this is important, when we discuss the bible later, I always use the biblical word as well as an easier synonym.
I cut strips of red construction paper. On each strip I wrote something from the bible that love is. I was sure to add the word love on to each of them.
Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not envy or boast. Love is not rude or arrogant. Love does not insist on it’s own way. Love is not irritable or resentful. Love does not rejoice in wrongdoing. Love rejoices in the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Then I had the girls tell me examples of how we can show love in that way. Kares wrote her own, I wrote for Kailani. Some of the answers were great! “Love is sharing my special toys” “Love is taking turns” “Love is being a good friend” and so on!
Then I just folded the strip in half and stapled to the bottom of the previous heart. We made a chain that hangs in our kitchen/living area.
The best part of this was later in the day when the kids were acting out. One wasn’t waiting her turn, the other was insisting she was first. I said wait girls…”Love is patient. Love doesn’t insist on its own way. Do you think you can show love here?” Then we talked about how to take turns, let others go first, and really LOVE each other according to the bible.
I hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day and I hope you also incorporate some of the bible into your activities.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
This verse means so many things. Love is patient and kind, just like God wants us to be patient and kind.
Love does not envy or boast- this means that those who truly love are not jealous of others.
It is not arrogant or rude- arrogant means you think you are better than anyone else.
It does not insist on its own way- sometimes things are hard, you don’t always get your own way!
It is not irritable or resentful- irritable is cranky, resentful is when you blame others for things
It does not rejoice in wrong doing, but rejoices in truth- this means that love means always doing the right thing, even when it is hard
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things- This means that love lasts through it all! No matter what love is most important and will make it through anything!
I tried to break this one down into words my young children could understand. They were told today to make a list of people who loved them and people they loved. We found out very quickly that is a very long list! We talked about being patient, kind, and so on to show love.
Elfie was in a Barbie car with Barbie. We discussed how we love our friends too! What joy loving one another can bring.
Click here for kindness elf day 15
Matthew 19:14 says,
But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
(Message from our Elf)- This verse tells us that Jesus loved children so much! Do you remember the bible story where Jesus teaches the little children how to pray? Today I want you to go to Sunday school. I want you to be one of the children that Jesus taught how to pray. Have fun with your friends and show tell them that Jesus loves them too!
When you get home, sit down, open your Storybook Bible and read that story together. Read all about how much Jesus loved the little children!
Click here for kindness elf day 16
Day 12 was about singing! The bible verse is from
Psalm 68:4 says,
“Sing to God, sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts; his name is the Lord; exult before him!”
Our elf was in our surround sound and DVD player! I thought this was fitting for the verse about singing. He told the girls that one of the best ways to praise God was to sing to him. That day was so much fun. When we were out running errands, I blasted the Veggie Tales CD in the car and the girls (and me too) were singing bible songs at the top of our lungs. They had so much fun, they sang praise to God! As we were singing Kares asked me what some of the words meant. I realized that she has been singing all of these words, but never really knew what the song was about. So it was nice to turn down the music an explain the songs to the girls. I hope it will be more meaningful the next time we sing them.
Elfie asked the girls also to do some random acts of kindness today. He suggested going to the store to find some inexpensive ornaments. Then to hang an ornament on the doors of our neighbors. He even left a little tag to attach to the ornaments.
Okay, I am going to be honest again. We were able to go to the store to get the ornaments. But it was such a busy day and a little bit rough dealing with a cranky kid or two! So we did not get the ornaments finished and delivered. So I will post our finished product next time. I explained to the girls that things happen, we tried, and we are sorry we didn’t get it done today. It was priority number one the next day!
Okay I am going to be honest here…I am tired. Tired of moving this silly elf, tired of staying up way past my bed time to research new bible verses. Then finding the time (usually in the morning before the kids get up) to update the blog about it. That being said, I find it all WORTH IT. Teaching the bible is so important! I am glad that my kids (and hopefully yours too) are responding so well. They are listening to it, talking about it, and even LIVING it. So it makes it all worth it! So if you like this blog, please share it! Share with others, so that maybe everyone will teach the bible with the Elf on the Shelf, rather than just have it be a naughty elf.
Day 11 the bible verse was about the fruit of the spirit. Our elf was in a fruit basket of course! (I am going to be honest, I did not think of this idea. I got inspiration from an amazing Mommy friend of mine. She is also teaching the bible with her elf and she shared this with me!)
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
This verse teaches so much! Rather than doing something for someone else today, Elfie asked the girls to create a chart saying how they have the different fruits of the spirit. How they can show these things. We also discussed how some are easy, like love and gentleness, but some are very hard, like self-control.
I am attaching our note and the chart that I created to have the girls discuss the different fruits of the spirit. They are all in the same word document. Click kindness elf day 11!
Day 7 is from from John 15.
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
My girls have had a hard time getting along lately (as all siblings do). So I thought this was perfect. Elfie explained the bible verse, saying that God loves us NO MATTER WHAT. Their act of kindness today was to tell each other how much they loved one another.
Click here for Kindness Elf 7
We went away for the weekend. Elfie met the girls at the hotel in the morning! What a great surprise! This verse is from Proverbs 16:24
Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
Elfie brought the girls a sweet treat for this sweet bible verse! I wanted them to have the experience of kindness too. Elfie was doing random acts of kindness for them. They were instructed to use sweet words just like Jesus today.
Click here for kindness elf day 8
Today Elfie was caught fishing! He was fishing for some goldfish next to the real pet fish!
The bible story John 6:1-14 is one of my favorites. It is about how Jesus fed thousands of people with just 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread. This is a story my girls have heard many times, but they still love hearing it! It also teaches such a wonderful lesson about sharing and about faith. These two things are so important and things that I don’t think anyone does near enough. Share what you can with others, and ALWAYS have faith in Jesus, he WILL work miracles.
To get the word document for day 6 Click kindness elf 6
For the last 3 years we have done the traditional Elf on the Shelf. This was all fine and good, but my kids weren’t learning ANYTHING about what Christmas is all about…GOD! They were so focused on the Elf, Santa, and the mischief the little elf got into that we missed the birth of our Savior. We missed the lessons on kindness, giving, sharing, generosity and so on. I decided this year was time for a change. I was inspired by this blog post here.
This year our elf, named Elfie, brings a message to the girls each morning. He brings a bible verse, an explanation of the verse, and an act of kindness for the girls to do. Not to worry, we still have LOTS of fun. Elfie finds silly places to hide, gets into things and makes for some silly mornings. I didn’t want the girls to have the fun taken out of the elf, but I did want them to learn about the bible and about kindness.
Today’s verse is from Deuteronomy 16:17 and says,
Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God that he has given you.
With this verse Elfie asked the girls to make some cookies and a note for our mailman. We will leave the cookies in a bag in the mailbox for him.
Other ideas are to donate old toys, to bring dinner to a friend, write a sweet note to a family member and so on. I am also going to have Elfie do random acts of kindness. One night he might pick up toys for the girls, or put shoes away. I want the girls to know what it feels like when someone does something kind and asks nothing in return.
Our first day was quite different than a typical day! We are going away for Christmas this year. The girls really wanted a trampoline from Santa. We decided to have Elfie bring them one early! He wrote a note about how God constantly gives us the gift of grace and forgiveness. He gave us his only son so we could be saved! Santa gave the girls a gift early too. Elfie showed up at our house that morning and there was a trampoline in the backyard! What a great way to start the Christmas season. Santa did say he would be back to fill up stockings for the girls and to eat the yummy brownies (we don’t leave cookies) that they always make him. So we will still have our Christmas morning, minus a really big present. This way they get the joy and the magic twice!
I will try my best to upload photos and templates if you are interested in doing this too! I think it is a wonderful way to still have fun with Elf on the Shelf and teach about the REAL meaning of Christmas! Subscribe to my blog by clicking the follow button on the right so you don’t miss out!