Kindergarten VBS Day 1 Lifeway Submerged

Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016 Kindergarten leader guide

Kindergarten VBS Day 1 Lifeway Submerged

So for the 3rd year in a row I will have the privileged of overseeing the Kindergarten class for Vacation Bible School. Sadden that I won't have my best partner to help (My hubby =  Nursing School) I have to over prepare. I am all about decorations and creating an environment of excitement. That is what I am good at and God gave me that talent, however the most important aspect of VBS week is that the children really, really learn God's Word and that they hide it in their hearts and know for themselves God's Love.

I can teach but I am not the energetic man my hubby is. With that said I have to prepare and you might say over prepare. I am fully aware that no matter how much I prepare what I think will happen may not go as planned, but I can be grounded in the lessons and activities which will give me the ease to be flexible each day of VBS week.

With that said, Lets get started. Below you will find my Day 1 VBS planned out. This is the timeline of the lesson given in the Lifeway Leaders guide for Kindergarten. Can I just say, having taught kindergarten, my favorite age group, I am always disappointed that this age group gets placed with Preschool and not with the grade level kids. I personally think they are able to understand the worship rally theme video and learn those songs. I don't think it is necessary for them to learn a different set of songs, that is just my two cents!

So as we bring our Deep Sea Divers to the classroom we are to explain to them that during the week we will be learning about Jesus and pretending to explore underwater in a submarine. Check our my submarine classroom and other decoration Ideas. Help set the mood and boost excitement by transforming your classroom (Bible Study) into a submarine.

Observation Window

You will invite your divers to look out the observation window and ask them to tell what they are observing. Use pack item 9 or create your own Observation window. This will be used all week so make sure you place it in a sturdy area.

Pack Item 9 Observation Window Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Sea Movements

While playing Track 6 (Sea Exploration Music) have your divers stand and encourage them to move like the music sounds, Show them moves like the backstroke, walking with flippers, etc.

Time to Introduce the Bible Story - Fish Tall

Have your classroom setup and prepared as much as possible. Get the attention of your divers and invite them one at a time to stand next to the Fish Measuring Tape (Packet Item 16). Starting at the floor count how many fish tall each child is. Print out the Fish Cards I made here or make your own with the words " I am ___ fish tall" and give to each child at their turn.

Tell the divers that "Each one of us is different. We are all different heights. We like different things and have different names. But Jesus knows each of us."

As you hold the Bible explain that today the man in the story was not tall enough to see over  crowd of people.

Fish Tall Kindergarten Submerged VBS 2016

Puppet Sticks

Open the Bible to Luke 19. Tell the story if your own words while using the stick puppets (Zacchaeus Puppets pack 17) but here is a summary. Zacchaeus was a tax collector from Jericho. He heard that Jesus was coming and tried to see over the crowd. He decided to climb a tree so he could see Jesus. Jesus called Zacchaeus by name to come down from the tree and that he would be going to his house that day. The crowd whispered among each other about Zacchaeus doing wrong things. Zacchaeus knows he did wrong things and decides to help the poor and give back what he took. Jesus tells Zacchaeus that He comes so people like him will learn about God's love.

Now choose 5 volunteers one for each puppet to retell the story using the puppets. Have the divers act out the story.

Zacchaeus Puppets Kindergarten Submerged VBS 2016

Cut the puppets out and tape the craft sticks to the back. I recommend using 2 craft sticks for the free as shown below so it won't bend over as shown below.

Zacchaues Tree Submerged VBS 2016

Zacchaeus 2 sticks Puppet

Bible Story Picture

Have your divers retell the Bible story while holding up the Bible Story Picture - Pack item 1.

Zacchaeus Bible Story Picture Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Tree Trunk

Tape the paper "Tree trunk" to the wall and scatter the leaves (Cut out leaves and add the Story words; Zacchaeus, Jesus, tree, house and love on the floor. Point to the word Zacchaeus and remind the divers that they learned many things about him. Choose some volunteers, one at time to pick up one leaf and tape it to tree. Read each leaf fact and tape to the tree. Have additional leaves to add additional facts that the kids may want to share that they know about Zacchaeus. Tape the leaves to the tree.


Story Words/Observation Window

Show the story words one at a time and encourage your divers to read the word if possible. Ask them to tell about that word and attach the word to the Observation Window (pack 9).

Pack Item 9 Observation Window Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Fish Beanbag Toss

Explain to your divers that Jesus know Zacchaeus. He knew his name and everything about him. Tell them Jesus know each of them to by name and everything about them. Toss a fish beanbag (pack item 18) to a diver and ask them to say their name and to toss the beanbag back. Toss to another diver. Continue until each diver had a chance to say their name.

Pack Item 18 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Now change the game up a bit by tossing the beanbag to a child and have the group say the divers name together. Go around the group of divers until each diver's name has been said. For added fun continue and have the diver say a nickname, middle name or other names they may have.


Invite your divers to pray and thank God with you. Explain that when someone prays, we all sit quietly and listen. Politely tell the divers that many will bow their heads and close their eyes so they can think about what the person is saying to God.

Pray, thanking God for the Bible and for Jesus. Thank God that He know each and everyone of us by name and His love for us.

Verse Game/Feed the Shark

Open the Bible to Psalms 139 and read. Show the Verse Poster (pack item 11) Encourage the divers to say the verse with you. Say, "God knows us, each one of us. He knows all about us." Tell your divers they are going to feed the shark as the say the Bible verse. Say" When someone tosses a fish into the shark's mouth, we will say a word of the Bible verse." Say the Bible verse again.

Pack Item 11 Lifeway Submerged Kindergarten

Help kids line up, facing the shark. Give a fish beanbag to the first diver. When the diver tosses the beanbag into the sharks mouth everyone will say "God". Diver will move to the end and the next in line gets the fish beanbag and when tossed everyone will say "knows". Continue on until each diver has had at least 1 opportunity to toss and you complete the entire verse. If more divers than words start the verse from the beginning again.

Shark Mouth pack item

About Me Trees

Remind divers about the facts Tree about Zacchaeus. Divers now will make a tree about themselves. Guide the divers to write their own name on the brown strip of paper (tree trunk) and then on the green square pieces of paper write or draw something about them. Then cut them into leaf shapes and glue to their tree trunk. Write before cutting so their is enough room for words or the pictures. Provide extra brown strips to cut into branches as well as extra leaves to add additional facts about themselves.

For something different give each diver a small brown paper bag and have them cut 1 cm width apart slits. Open the bag to create the base and then have the divers twist their trunk and each individual branch to make a paper bag tree pictured below. Glue on the leaves like above. Make sure divers write their names on the bottom of the trunks before cutting.

Submerged Zacchaeus Tree

Show the Bible story picture and talk about how Jesus knew Zacchaeus and Jesus knows them each as well.

Zacchaeus Bible Story Picture Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

For added review pull out the Zacchaeus puppets to retell the story and invite the divers to recall the things they learned about Zacchaeus.

Zacchaeus Puppets Kindergarten Submerged VBS 2016 Pack Item 17

You can also sing "Jesus Loves Me" (track 4) and substitute each child's name in the song.

Sand Dough

Make sand dough according to instructions on the recipe on pack item 20. Place all materials on the table or trays. Place Bible Marker at Luke 19.
Pack Item 20 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Invite the divers to press, mold and cut the dough. Offer suggestions as to what the divers can do with their dough. Allow the kids to explore the dough on their own.

Mention the Jesus walked on the sandy roads to Jericho. Talk about the Bible Story while you open to the Bible Marker. Point to the name Zacchaeus and tell the divers Jesus knew Zacchaeus' name. Suggest that the divers make the letter "Z" with the dough.

For added fun you can provide the kids with the Alphabet Letter Cutters to cut out letters in their names. Also suggest the mold a Bible times house. Say: "Jesus went to Zacchaeus' house. Jesus knew him and loved him"

Walk on Verse Path

Place a Bible verse marker at Psalm 139.

Pack Item 6 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

Read the verse to the divers and guide them to step on the verse words in order. Give hint such as the word to start on and the first letter the the next word. Have them say the verse with you. Challenge your divers to step on the words while wearing swim fins and goggles. Demonstrate walking using a slow-motion bounce type walk (as if walking under water).

Point to the verse in the Bible and help your divers find the word God.

Play "Everything about me" (track 1). Lead your divers to sing along to the Bible verse words.

Extended the activity by playing a version of Twister by having a few divers at a time put their right hand of "everything" and left foot on another word.

You can also provide paper and markers for kids to print the verse. If they desire they can write the words out of order and then draw lines to connect them in order.

Spell Names

Print your divers names on index cards as well as Zacchaeus and Jesus. Stick an alphabet sticker on each shell. Make two shells for each letter. keep additional shells and stickers nearby if needed. Guide your divers to spell their name with the letter shells. Talk about each divers name. Tell them Jesus knew Zacchaeus's name and He knows their name too. Read the first part of the verse from the poster. Substitute a divers name in the verse. "God, you know everything about ____."

Extend the activity by encouraging divers to print their names and draw pictures of themselves on blank cards. Suggest they add their name to the observation window with the story words.

Read the book Jesus Loves Me pack item 29. Tell them that Jesus loves them.

Closing Group Time

Move to Music

Play "Creature Feature" (track 5) ask your divers to join you in the group time area. Lead your divers to move like each animal in the song.

Play a Game

Explain that divers us hand signals to talk to each other underwater. Teach your divers various hand signals from Card 1 (Dive Kit). Show how to do "Look at" and point to a diver. Lead the group to say the name of that diver. have that diver be it and start the game. Lead the divers to pretend to swim around the room until it gives the hand signal to "stop". All divers must freeze. It may then use the hand signal "look at" and point to another diver. Lead the divers to say that divers name. and they take the role of it. Give the "OK" sign when it is time to swim again. Continue the game until all divers had a chance at being it.

Dive Kit Submerged VBS 2016

Review the Bible Story

Say: Jesus knows your name, Jesus knew the name of the man in our story. What was that name? Listen as your divers respond. Use Zacchaeus puppts to recall the Bible story. Tell the story briefly as you hold the puppets or you may choose divers to hold them. Stress again that Jesus knew Zacchaeus by name.

Zacchaeus Puppets Kindergarten Submerged VBS 2016 Pack Item 17

Say the Bible Verse

Sing "Everything about Me"(track 1) Point to the words on the verse poster as you sing them. Invite your divers to sing along when they hear the words from the verse in the song. Get your Bubble and explain the divers that you will blow a bubble and have them say the verse with you before the bubble falls to the floor. Repeat this challenge several times. Remind your divers that the words are a prayer, asking God to help them. Pray, thanking God that He knows and loves every person.

Read the book Jesus Loves Me. Hold the periscope and look at the group. Say: I spy someone Jesus loves. They are wearing a blue shirt. Lead the kids to guess. Continue the game until dismissal time.

Jesus Loves Me Book Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

That is the end for the first day.

Have Paper Bags filled with all the goodies made by your divers to go home ready for easy transportation to home.

Submerged Daily Bags 2016

Summary Timeline for Day 1 Kindergarten

Observation Window

Sea Movements

Fish Tall

Bible Picture

Tree Trunk

Story Words/Observation Window

Fish Beanbag Toss


Verse Game/Feed the Shark

About Me Tree

Sand Dough

Walk on Verse Path

Spell Names

Topic: Kindergarten VBS Day 1 Lifeway Submerged

Prepare before Class

Perpare Before Class

Decorate your Classroom as a Submarine including an Observation Window! Need some Ideas get them here! Tape the Fish Measuring Tape to the Wall. Make sure bottom edge is at the floor. Print and Cut Fish Cards for Measuring. Cut and assemble Zacchaeus Puppets pack item 17 Hang Observation Window pack item 9 in the group time are so that the middle is at the kids eye level.
  • DIY Resource Pack item 18 Fish beanbags


  • Pack Item 1

Zacchaeus Bible Story Picture Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

  • Cut wide strips of brown paper (1 per child),  and cut many green paper squares
  • Place Bible Marker pack item 6 at Luke 19

Pack Item 6 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

  • Make Sand Dough using recipe on pack item 20

Pack Item 20 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

  • Gather up shells, crafts sticks or plastic knives, trays


  • Place Bible Marker pack item 6 at Psalm 139

Pack Item 6 Lifeway Submerged VBS 2016

  • Prepare Verse Word Cards and slide them in pockets of the floor mat. Spread the mat on the floor and lay fins and goggles near.
DIY Resource Pack item 18 Fish beanbags Pack Item 1 Cut wide strips of brown paper (1 per child),  and cut many green paper squares Place Bible Marker pack item 6 at Luke 19 Make Sand Dough using recipe on pack item 20 Gather up shells, crafts sticks or plastic knives, trays Place Bible Marker pack item 6 at Psalm 139 Prepare Verse Word Cards and slide them in pockets of the floor mat. Spread the mat on the floor and lay fins and goggles near.


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