Help kids identify the importance of a strong foundation for the PATH, and the pillars that will uphold this lifelong journey.
- 12 index cards, normal (not thin) thickness, per team
- A roll of scotch taper per team
- A lot of good sized textbooks…20 or more
- Prizes for the winning team, optional
Make a foundation out of pillars. Roll index cards into tubes of equal length and secure with tape. Stand the rolls up in a close square about the size of a text book. Test its strength by placing books on it; you may even be able to stand on it.
Disassemble the structure and set the parts aside and out of sight.
Kids usually don’t think of this structure. As you explain the task to them, do not give this idea away (or any idea, for that matter).
Process and Set up:
– Exhibit the pile of books. Ask a burly (or not!) student to come forward and fill his/her arms with books, adding a few at a time, to exhibit their weight.
-Explain the challenge: Each team (five people at most) will be given 12 index cards and a roll of scotch tape. Using only these items, they are to create a raised foundation on which textbooks will be piled. The foundation that can support the most books will be victorious.
– Build up the pressure and suspense by establishing a few rules and review them:
- Must be a self-standing structures–no human support allowed
- Tape may be applied to the work surface
- No testing of foundations during building time.
– Allow and time 4 minutes for group planning (no touching of materials allowed) followed by 5-7 minutes for building
– After groups build, the foundations are tested by placing books on them, one at a time. Keep a tally. If a foundation takes all the books, try having someone stand on top of it. If it is built well it can take the weight of a person.
(Note: If a team created a pillar foundation, use theirs as the model for the following reflection. Likewise, if some other structure proved amazingly strong, use it.)
When all the foundations have been tested, construct your pre-made pillar foundation (if needed) and one by one add books to it. If possible, stand on it to show it’s strength.
As you build, lead the kids in a reflection about the need for solid foundations in their life. Have them call out or create a list of weak foundations that are guaranteed to lead to the land of the LOST. As your tower grows, shift focus to living on the PATH. Invite them to take a moment of silence to identify three solid pillars that will help them build a strong foundation of faith for a living a life of holiness. Make a new list.
Bible verses to support this session:
Matthew 7:24-27 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.”
1 Samuel 2:2 “There is no one holy like the LORD, Indeed, there is no one besides you, nor is there any rock like our God.”