Last week was one of my favorite weeks of the year, VBS week! At my church we do our VBS a little differently than the typical format. We call our VBS Kid’s Camp, and at Kid’s Camp each teacher comes up with a theme for their class and then comes up with their own activities and Bible lessons for the week. I have done many different themes over the years including legos, pirates, and superheroes. This year I chose TMNT as my theme and had a blast with it!
I taught a preschool level class, so all of the activities and Bible lessons are designed for 3-5 year old children. During the day I had 3 different groups of children for 45 minutes each. Due to these time constraints all of these activities can be completed in a small amount of time, making them perfect for a kid’s party or other event where you may only have the children’s attention for a short period of time.
Every ninja turtle needs a special weapon to fight off the evil Shredder. For our weapons we created nunchucks out of pool noodles. The nunchucks were super easy to make. All you need are pool noodles and duct tape.
All of the pool noodles were pre-cut to 6″ in length. I was able to get enough sets of nunchucks for four children from one pool noodle. After the pool noodles were cut, each child was given a piece of duct tape approximately 8″ long which they folded in half and crinkled up. Finally, the end of each pool noodle is wrapped in a piece of duct tape just big enough to fit around the top of the noodle, with half of the tape sticking up. Lay the folded piece just on top of the noodle and fold the tape down over it to create a connector for the two nunchucks.
The original version came from All For The Boys blog. Here is our version:
The kids absolutely loved their nunchucks and they were practically indestructible. All of the kids were having a blast staging TMNT fights and the softness of the pool noodles kept the kids from hurting themselves or each other.
No ninja turtle is complete without their mask. Each child got to create their own TMNT mask one day, which was a big hit. The template for these easy to create, no mess masks, originally came from Paperblog.
To create the masks you will need:
To create the masks I began with felt in the four TMNT colors (red, blue, orange, and purple) and cut them into 2″x9″ strips.
Once the strips were cut I then cut off all 4 corners and cut out a small triangle in the top center and bottom center of the strip. I did not measure this part out, just cut them all freehand.
The next step was to let each child choose their color of mask. After they chose their color, I marked where each child’s eyes were with a sharpie, and then cut two ovals out to create the eye holes. On each end of the mask a small slit was cut to attach the ribbon to the mask. The final step is to tie ribbon onto each slit to hold the mask in place. Make sure to measure the child’s head with the ribbon before cutting to ensure it will fit the child.
The masks were so much fun that even myself and my helpers got in on the action!
TMNT Finger Puppets
I found the cutest TMNT finger puppets from Little Bins for Little Hands. For these finger puppets you will need:
- Green Cardstock
- Party Streamers (in TMNT colors)
- Wiggly Eyes
- 1″ Craft Hole Punch
- Black marker
To begin we traced and cut out all of the TMNT shapes ahead of time. To get the head shape we traced a bowl and added little bumps on both sides. Each child chose what color streamer they wanted for their ninja turtle. The streamers were a little wide, so we added a bit of glue and had the kids fold in down in half. They then glued the streamer onto the turtle head to create their mask, and added two wiggly eyes on top.
The final steps were to draw on a mouth and then punch two holes in the bottom for the child’s fingers.
The finger puppets were so much fun for the kids to make and play with!
When I came across an idea to create TMNT slime, I knew it would be a big hit with the preschool boy crowd. I began my first class calling this ninja turtle slime, but the boys quickly taught me it is not called slime but mutagen. The slime/mutagen was super easy to make a so much fun to play with!
This recipe came from WonderHowTo.
To make the slime you will need the following:
- Clear School Glue
- Green & Yellow Food Coloring
- Two Large Bowls
- Two Mixing Spoons
The first step in creating the slime is to mix 1 cup warm water and 1/2 tsp. of borax in one bowl. Try to dissolve the borax as much as possible. Set this bowl aside, you will come back to it later.
In the second bowl mix 1/2 cup water with 5 oz. clear school glue.
Once mixed, add the food coloring. I used 2 drops of green and 5 drops of yellow to create a perfectly slimy shade of green.
The final step is to mix your two solutions together. Pour the contents of the borax/water mixture into the other bowl and stir.
Some of my batches of slime seemed to be watery compared to the others. If yours seems to have too much water in it, just knead it with your hands. The more it was worked with the slimier it got.
The kids all had the best time playing with the slime! This was definitely one of the highlights of the week!
Everyone knows the ninja turtles all love to eat pizza. For the last day of VBS the kids got a special treat. They each got to make their own pizza!
The pizzas will need the following ingredients:
- Pizza Sauce
- Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
To begin, each child was given half a bagel. I placed a spoonful of pizza sauce on the bagel and let the kids spread it around themselves with a plastic utensil. Then each child added some cheese and pepperoni if they wanted it. I used the mini pepperonis and they worked perfectly for little hands.
Once the toppings were on some of the kids were ready to eat the pizzas as is. For those who wanted their pizzas heated up, I placed them in a toaster oven at 350 degrees for about 5 minutes or until the cheese was melted.
When cooking the pizzas, I covered the pan in foil and used a sharpie to write on the foil the name of the child whose pizza I was cooking. This way I could put multiple pizzas in the oven at the same time and not remember whose was whose.
I’m sure you are wondering what each of these activities has to do with the Bible. Well here is how I tied each activity to a lesson from the Bible:
- Nunchucks – Story of David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17)
- Masks – Armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-20)
- Puppets – Jesus’ Death & Ressurection (Matthew 27:45-50; 28:1-8) This story is the only one that really has nothing to do with the activity we did. I just felt this was an important story to share with these kids.
- Slime/Mutagen – Jesus’ Baptism (Matthew 3:13-17)
- Pizza – Jesus Feeds the 5000 (John 6:1-15)
I have had so much fun creating, planning, and teaching these TMNT activities and I hope you will have just as much doing them with your little ones!
-Heather & Angie