Turning your Vacation Bible School crafts budget into a plan

"1st time sewing" (child's sequined heart) by EvelynGiggles (Creative Commons Attribution license) flickr.com

Children should come home from Vacation Bible School with treasures they are happy to keep.
(A little girl made this pretty creation when her mom taught her to sew.)

Once you have your basic Vacation Bible School crafts budget outlined, it will be time to start planning. You will need to prepare a general crafts plan first, and then…your shopping list.

This is where it starts to especially get fun.

Last week, we came up with a sample crafts budget of $250 for 45 children and a 10-day Vacation Bible School program.  That works out to about 55 cents per child, per day; and should be considered a bare minimum.  We will use that budget for illustration today, as well.  (When you do your planning, just put the numbers that you came up with in place of the examples in this post.)

Always remember your focus.  Crafts at Vacation Bible School are part of our efforts to lead the children to Jesus.  While there are many possibilities for great crafts, we must be careful that we do not fall into the mistaken idea that Vacation Bible School crafts time is just a time-filler, or that just something–anything–will do.

That being said, as you consider your allotted funds and start thinking about what you are going to buy with them, 55 cents can start to look very small.  But don’t worry–we are going to work through this.

First of all, just leave the 55 cents as a number in the back of your head for a frame of reference.  It is unlikely that any of your crafts will actually cost that exact amount.  Rather, some will be more expensive and some will be less.

This actually works out to an advantage.  Try to think of a combination of various types of crafts.  Have some that use recycled “junk”–cardboard tubes, old magazines, ice cream sticks, et cetera.  These are crafts that might not even outlive Vacation Bible School, but the children will have some fun ideas that they can reproduce at home.

Then you will want to include at least a couple very nice projects–something that will take more than one Vacation Bible School craft session, and that will give the children a nice memento or gift that will be worth keeping for months, or even years.

These will likely use a bit more resources as far as preparation time and money go; but they also provide an excellent opportunity to share a new skill with the children: sewing or woodworking, for example.

Be careful not to get too extravagant.  Think, simple beauty and durability as far as possible.

Now you have your basic Vacation Bible School crafts budget, and you have a pretty solid idea for your general Vacation Bible School crafts plan.  Next, it will be time to prepare your shopping list.  Check back next week for some more budget-stretching Vacation Bible School crafts tips!

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***When you purchase a complete set of Vacation Bible School materials from Hasten Home, you won’t have to worry about figuring out the general crafts plan.  Each program comes complete with a detailed Craft Leader’s Handbook, including thorough instructions for each age-group and an easy-to-reference outline of the entire crafts plan. Check them out!***


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