I found myself at a loss when preparing for my lesson where Paul tells the Corinthians, “24 In a race all the runners run. But only one gets the prize. You know that, don’t you? So run in a way that will get you the prize. 25 All who take part in the games train hard. They do it to get a crown that will not last. But we do it to get a crown that will last forever.”
I have 45 minutes with K-5th graders; about 15 minutes of this is the actual lesson. How do you spend 15 minutes on these two verses with young kids? They NEED visuals and movement to stay engaged. I found plenty of lessons on the internet, but nothing had visuals. So, my solution, create it! And I figured that if I need this, others may too.
It is basic. Kids learn how runners prepare to run a marathon. They need the right equipment (running shoes). They need to eat right. They need to practice. Paul compares our race for our spiritual, eternal prize to running a race, so kids learn what equipment they need for spiritual growth. They discover the spiritual food they need. They understand that they need to practice living out God’s teachings, to love others. Most importantly, they learn that God chose them and wants them in His family. He is here to help them WIN the RACE!
Attached at the end of this post is a printable book that you are free to use. It’s not professional quality, but it does the job of keeping the kid’s attention while sharing these verses. Simply print on 8 1/2 x 11 paper, landscape mode, double-sided (short fold). It prints it exactly how you need it to fold it in half, staple down the center, and you’re ready to teach! Here’s an affordable option if you don’t have a long-reach stapler. I LOVE mine and use it all of the time! https://raisekidsforchrist.com/longstapler (If you purchase this using this link, I may receive affiliate income. I only promote products I use and love.)
I provided each child with a stack of bathroom cups for an activity at the end, about ten each. They raced to be the first to stack them without falling. After a few rounds, we reinforced that there may be one winner on earth, sometimes a few when they tie, but for God’s eternal prize, everyone can win by obeying and loving God.