Object lessons are lessons in which the instructor uses a physical object or prop as a visual aid. The object provides the audience with a visual cue to process, understand and recall the lesson. Object lessons are especially suited to visual learners, who tend to remember what they see, rather than what they hear or do. There are different quick and easy object lessons to use for a youth group.
Display a toolbox. Open the toolbox and show a few of the different items, such as a hammer, nail, screwdriver or measuring tape. Explain that the toolbox is a collection of tools, each of which has a different purpose and function. Explain that each person is uniquely created with different talents and skills. Everyone has something to offer, just like each tool in the box. Further, observe that tools -- a hammer and nail, for instance -- can be used in tandem to accomplish what one tool alone cannot. By working together, people can achieve more.
Inflate and tie the end of a balloon. Explain that the balloon is durable because it has the right amount of air. Too much air or pressure will cause the balloon to burst. Inflate a second balloon, this time pumping too much air into the bump so that it pops. Explain to the youth that a person functions best when not under the burden of too much stress or tension. Discuss the kinds of stresses that cause a person to "pop," such as family tensions, school pressures and conflicts with friends. Explain methods to reduce stress and cope with tasks, such as exercise, prayer or quiet time, fellowship with friends and other healthy recreational activities.
Show the youth a bottle of super glue. Explain that super glue functions as an adhesive, bonding together different objects. Challenge the youth so reflect on the "super glue" that bonds relationships. Encourage the youth to consider different kinds of relationships, including relationships with God, parents, siblings, friends, teachers and community. Discuss the different kinds of glue that bond people and provide for a solid relationship, such as trust, loyalty, faith, respect or kindness.
Use a bag of seeds to teach a lesson on the cultivation of talents. Explain that seeds, like people, are filled with potential. If properly tended and cultivated, seeds engender something bigger than themselves. If neglected, seeds scatter and die. Discuss that each person, likewise, must not let his skills and talents go to waste. Encourage youth to think about the talents that they have been given, how these talents can be developed and cultivated, and what these talents, if cultivated, may yield.
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