We’re currently in a strange new world where schools, activity centres, churches, and youthwork activities have all closed. Parents and carers are suddenly at home with their children and looking for activities to do to pass the time in lockdown.

Girls’ Brigade Ministries (GB) is producing free weekly activity sheets for parents/​carers and youth workers/​GB leaders to use, providing hope and fun for all children and young people, not just GB members, during the time they’re restricted to home due to the coronavirus pandemic.

These resource materials, which are part of a free resource zone open to all on GBM’s new website, are fun and offer ideas for educational, spiritual and social action activities in a positive and hope-filled way.

The activity sheets are aimed at four age groups:

  • The 4 to 8s age group sheet is called n:vestigate – helping children explore and develop their understanding of themselves, the world around them and the Christian faith.
  • The 7 to 11s age group sheet is called n:gage – based on positive values which our children need and introducing them to Bible characters whose stories reflect these values.
  • The 10 to 14s age group sheet is called n:counta – equipping young people with life skills which will help them to face up to the real issues that are part of their everyday life experiences as they enter their teenage years.
  • The 13 to 18s age group sheet is called n:spire – empowering teenagers to engage with challenges which will help them learn new skills and find opportunities to serve, whilst discovering God’s relevance to every aspect of their life.

The resources include activities such as games, craft, Bible studies, prayers, and discussion points. The younger three sheets can be led by parents/​carers/​youth workers/​GB leaders, but the n:spire sheet can be worked through by the young people themselves.

The sheets are themed and topics covered so far include prayer, kindness, listening, and friends around the world. Parents/​carers can work through the sheet with their child, encouraging them do as much or as little of it as they want in one sitting or over the week, until the next resource is released. There is also a free certificate template to download and print to celebrate children and young people’s achievements as they use the resources.

The website also contains a link to GBM’s koko blog, which stands for Keep On Keeping On, and on that a new video entitled My hope for a new normal’ has just been released. This is aimed at teenagers, encouraging them to think about their hope for the future post the coronavirus crisis, or can be used as a discussion starter for youth workers/​GB leaders.

The GB@home activity sheets are being used in a variety of ways: people are printing them off and posting the relevant sheet to the parents/​carers of children in that age group or sending them the link to the website via email or on social media. 

Some GB community groups have been using them as the basis for a video call with the children they work with, whilst ensuring they meet safeguarding requirements.

One GB community group volunteer leaders says, Thank you for the wonderful new GB@home resources. This is a real answer to prayer as we’ve been thinking what we could do to keep in touch with our GB members in these difficult times, so this is perfect.”