Why Not Have Fun with Your Kids Church Offering?

God has blessed us richly in this life, and the natural reaction to that blessing should be a desire to give back.  The Bible also tells us that God loves a cheerful giver.  So, how do you convey that excitement about giving to children and encourage them to give themselves.  Obviously, it begins with teaching them the biblical reasons and mandate for giving, but it also helps to inject a little bit a fun into the process.  If the Bible tells us that God loves a cheerful giver, there is nothing wrong with injecting some fun and cheer into the actual giving process.  By doing so, the children in our ministry get to develop the habit of doing something that God calls us to do, and enjoy the actual giving part at the same time.

With that in mind, our ministry recently ordered some miniature wishing wells from Spiral Wishing Wells to use during our offering time.  The wishing wells are those things that you find in malls and at the zoo where you start a coin rolling down a shoot and it rolls around and around until it finally makes its way into the hole in the bottom of the wishing well.  I know that every time we pass one, no matter what the cause, my kids empty their pockets and mine of any coins before we can move on.  There is just something captivating about watching the coins go round and round.  The miniature ones are affordable at only $20-$25 depending on how many you order.  We ordered two.

If you attend a large church with a larger budget, the larger wishing wells are available as well, but the small ones work just fine for our purposes.

At the beginning of our offering time, we place the wishing wells at the front of the classroom on either side of the room.  We explain why we take an offering every week and why giving is important.  We explain what cause their offering goes to, and then we invite kids to come forward and give their offering while some music plays in the background.

The first week we brought out the wishing wells to use in offering, the kids were fascinated with them.  They all wanted to rush forward to watch the coins drop into the wishing well, but we only let those kids who had brought offering come forward to use them.  By doing so, we have created some additional excitement about giving and encouraged the kids to save their coins to drop in the wishing wells at church to support another child half way around the world.

In the interest of full disclosure, our website is not affiliated with the Spiral Wishing Wells company.  That said, if they read this article, I think they should contact Tony to advertise on the site, because I think these wishing wells are an  outstanding way for children’s ministries to encourage the habit of giving in the children they minister to.


Comments

  1. Kim says

    I disagree wit this method. There are many ways to give and if kids don’t have coins teach them to give in other ways. This should not be a contest that does not sound very spiritual.

  2. Vickie says

    Kim, I’m loosing something in the translation. Who gets the points? Does one gender only get all the points for that collection? I’m thinking about using this in VBS so there would be an offering ocllected nightly. I loose something in your explanation after the point to penny instruction. You then go to using a bag with 2 chips in it. Where does the bag come in?

  3. says

    Here’s a different method entirely – been doing it off and on for years, and kids love it. “Mystery Buckets” Multiple buckets of different colors (beach buckets) on the floor. Instructions are given to place offering in any or all the buckets the individual may choose. Some will bring a bill and others a wad of change to put in all the buckets. There is no designation for boys vs girls given up front – thus the mystery. Once all offering is given, I have many methods of now designating which gender is which. I usually pick up the bucket with what appears to be the least amount, and count it as quickly as possible, and assign a point total – $1 might be worth 100 points (point per penny) – If I use the bag with two colored chips, I have a child reach in and pull a chip (Blue for boys and Green for girls) Most times I’ll use 7 buckets, and the excitement builds with each progressive point total. I’ve used a dart board with balloons and papers inside designating gender, big wheel races, speedstacks, other contest to pick winner. Also sometimes divide up into sections (1-4) and pick one of 4 sections. Big winner here. If you use this idea, please send a tithe of your take to our missions program (ha)

  4. CeCe says

    I agree with Janet AND everyone else. At my church we not only teach the importance of returning an offering but we also teach to return yourselves as a living sacrifice. You may not have $$ but you can render your heart and your talents Back to God. We do what is called an offering walk, so everyone both adult and child gets to participate and no one feels left out. There will always be someone who doesn’t have but we must as leaders, teachers, etc. show Christ in a tangible way that draws them closer to Him.

  5. dms says

    While you may disagree. I totally agree. I have been a teacher and Kids Church Coordinator for about 15 years now and have dealt with many aspects of Kids Ministries. I have also learned that those who bring offerings get rewarded for doing so. The other children see this and it in turn encourages them to bring it next sunday, whether it be a penny or a quarter or dollar. I encourage all the kids to bring something cause we will do something fun with our offerings each Sunday. I have seen through this that there are more and more kids each sunday that have started bringing their offerings. I also tell them that the church supports missionaries and other charities. Whenever we have missionaries come through and visit our church, they stay in the sanctuary for the missionary service and I explain to them that their offerings go to indivduals like them to help out in the ministry. It is great teaching. Exclusion sometimes is the only way to get them “involved”. Because you have excluded them on one Sunday, the next Sunday, I guarantee they will bring something to give in the offering. What this lady is explaining is a fun way for kids to get involved in giving offerings. Those who do not have offering for the wishing wells do not get to participate…..what are they supposed to do go to the front and stare at the wishing well, wishing they had something to put in it. If you start doing fun things with offering and some kids are excluded, then it’s no big deal. It is actually teaching them to give cause since kids really don’t like to excluded on stuff like that, trust me, they will remember offering for the next service. I know, cause it has been working for me for many years.

  6. Janet says

    While I understand the idea behind this, I must disagree with only allowing those children with $ to come forward and try the wishing well. Encouraging the children to give is one thing, excluding children who may not have $$ to give seems to me to be contrary to Jesus’ teachings. I would think there is another way to encourage them, other than exclusion.

  7. says

    This is a great idea! Promoting the fun of giving should go hand in hand with the reasons why we give. Why is it so foreign to most of us to make giving fun? We have our kids participate in the giving we do – such as making PB&J sandwiches and sack lunches for the homeless. They come with us as we had the lunches out. It works great – the homeless people perk up a lot when they see our cute kids, and the kids get a kick out of helping.

  8. says

    Joe,

    Yes, I was talking about the smaller ones. When we bought them they were $25 apiece or $20 if you bought more than one. As I recall, there was a break on shipping if you ordered more than one as well. We ordered two.

    We are a couple more weeks in since I originally wrote the article, and more and more kids are starting to bring their coins and having fun giving back to the kingdom of God.

    Good Luck!

  9. Ginger Burleson says

    Our churches Little Mission Friends (ages 1-3) class have an on going mission project. We collect money all year to go towards our Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.
    The way we collect is, each child has a “Mission Piggy”. The plastic piggy banks came from a dollar store. Each child has their name on theirs and I let the children decorate them with different stickers.
    They collect change from parents and grandparents and really look forward to filling their piggys.
    Right before Christmas we empty the piggy’s and put all the money together and turn it in as a class.
    This is a great way to teach the little ones about helping others.

  10. says

    Great idea, I’ve been looking for these for years…Only problem is, I’ve not been able to find one for less than a couple thousand dollars! Their that much on this site BUT I’ll look into their grants available. Great Find!

  11. says

    This is a GREAT idea! I LOVE it! Thank you for sharing! So much fun! We’ll have to see how we can incorporate it.

  12. says

    Great find Wayne! I think I’ll grab one for our VBS offering. Every year we do girls vs boys competition with a VBS mission offering. This might be a great angle to freshen up the event.

    Either that or I can talk my pastor into using this during the offering in big church. We make sure kids + parents are together for offering time in our order of service.

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