10 Must-Haves for Your Sunday School's Christmas Party

There's nothing like a fun Sunday School Christmas Party to spread the joy of Christ's birth this Christmas season! Planning for this occasion takes time, creativity, and preparation. It will all be worth it when you get to share the experience with your Sunday school class, but to make it a little easier on you, here are 10 must-haves to help make this event a success.

1. Christmas Party Theme

Choosing a theme will help make the actual preparation run smoother and keep you organized. The following are some great themes to choose from: 

A Gingerbread Town theme, where your activities and games could be centered around gingerbread cookie decorating, gingerbread bingo, gingerbread house competitions, "Run, run as fast as you can," gingerbread man races, etc. 

A Manger in the Barn theme could allow you to decorate Christmas farm style and include an impromptu manger scene skit, counting sheep game, and camel craft! 

There are so many possibilities. Finding a theme will open the door to a world of imaginative ideas! A theme is also great because it will help your Christmas party to be unique each year instead of feeling like the same old thing.  

2. Deck the Halls

Along the same lines as a party theme, decorations are a must. Without decorations, it will feel like a regular Sunday morning. Nothing sets the mood like Christmas decorations, especially when they are tied in with your party theme. Command Strips are great for temporary decorations without damaging walls. You can also try things like sticky tack or hanging items on bulletin boards, table decorations, and window cling decorations. Help get kids excited for the party by making it FEEL like a party as soon as they walk in!

3. Volunteers

If you are going to have a party, you will need extra help. Parents are often happy to help provide party supplies such as cups, plates, napkins, snacks, etc. If you have some additional volunteers on the party day, you can achieve more in less time. Volunteers can run games, help with crafts, and more. Parents are typically excited to volunteer and enjoy having the opportunity to join in the special day of fun.

4. Jesus!

No matter what Christmas party your Sunday school has, it's crucial to remember why you are celebrating…Jesus! Sometime during this celebration, take the opportunity to teach about God's gift to us. Share the story of how Jesus was born. Talk about how He was God's promise to us. Help children understand the true meaning of Christmas and why we give gifts to one another.

5. Game Time

A Christmas party would not be fun without some kind of game. Using the theme's elements, you can tie any game into your party theme. For instance, instead of playing a typical race game, if your party theme is "The Greatest Gift," you can provide wrapping paper, tape, ribbons, boxes, bows, and more for kids to team up and race to wrap a gift in the shortest amount of time. Some other fun game race ideas are a stuffing stocking race or hopping in a toy sack race. Of course, there are more games besides racing games. You can play Pin the Nose on Rudolph, snow dodgeball (with dryer balls), or Christmas song freeze dance!  

6. Party Food

Whether your Sunday school typically has snacks or not, a party is a great time to go above and beyond and have some fantastic food. We have a few great tips for when it comes to planning the "menu ." Begin by picking food that isn't too messy. Parents will often dress their kids up around the Holidays at church, so avoiding things with dyed icing is a plus, and it's much healthier for the kids, too. Choose sweets such as chocolate chip cookies, sugar cookies with sprinkles, and candy canes. Provide some delicious healthy options like berries, apple slices, and popcorn. 

Consider food restrictions and have options available for kids with health issues, food intolerances, and allergies. Avoid any allergy foods such as peanuts. Taking the extra effort to be sure everyone can eat the food will make it more enjoyable for all the kids. So many allergy-friendly and sugar-free brands like Enjoy Life, Sweet Loren's, Made from the Ground Up, YumEarth, and more exist for you to choose from.  

7. Gifts

Christmas is about giving. God has given us his son Jesus to be with us. EMANUEL! Celebrating this by giving each child a gift is a blessing and an act of love. But let's be honest, only a few of us can afford to buy expensive presents for a classroom full of kids. The gifts can be simple and inexpensive. Some excellent ideas for presents include a small gift bag with hot cocoa, marshmallows, chocolate kisses, and a candy cane. A children's book signed by you or a handwritten letter of encouragement to each student that could be attached to a small chocolate chip cookie in a bag are other options you have.

8. Opportunity to Give

Providing an opportunity for kids to learn about the joy of giving will be an excellent addition to your Christmas party. You can do this in several ways. One way would be to have a collection can where children are told ahead of time to bring any change they want to donate to a local nonprofit. Another way that you can spread the joy of giving is to provide a craft for kids to make to take home as a gift for their parents or other family members. Finally, our last idea is to provide a small table of prizes. Call kids up while other kids are busy with crafts or games, one at a time. Hand them the name of a friend who is there that day and ask them to pick out a "gift" for them. You can make this a quick process by having small gift bags already made up with the names of the kids on them. Hand the kid the bag, and ask them to pick a gift to put in the bag that they think that friend would enjoy. Then, save the gifts for the end of the day. Make sure everyone has been given the chance to give and receive a present.

9. Celebration Singing

It's not a party without music. It's not a Christmas celebration without carols! Choose Christmas song favorites to play that everyone will enjoy. One way to incorporate music into your party is to involve music in the game time. Some games revolve around music, like musical chairs; others are more fun with music playing in the background. One way to add some festive cheer is to teach children Christmas songs on Sunday mornings and practice them leading up to the party day. Invite all the parents to come for the last 15 minutes of the Christmas party to hear their kids perform and enjoy some treats.

10. Clean Up Crew

We already mentioned volunteers, but you might want to ask for another group of volunteers to be the cleanup crew. Parents helping the entire Sunday morning will be ready to take their kids home. Asking some parents to stay and help with cleanup who haven't been leading the games all morning will provide fresh energy and motivation to get things done quickly and efficiently. 

We hope these must-have Christmas party ideas will help you as you work to plan your celebration. We have so much to celebrate at Christmas time. A whole host of angels celebrated in the heavens on that starry Christmas night, so just like they did, let us celebrate the birth of our Savior!

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Children's Ministry Curriculum