Ready for Kids Day 2014!
by Diane Stortz
Imagine children enjoying activities just for them while their parents shop for Christ-centered books and gifts for Easter. Imagine laughter and happy chatter as children have fun, explore faith, and realize “This Christian bookstore is a place for me. I like it here.” Imagine parents’ gratitude to the Lord for a store that invites children to come in and feel at home, remembering that Jesus said, “Let the children come to me.”
The scene you’re imagining will become reality on Saturday, April 12, the date set for the eighth annual Kids Day sponsored by your local independently-owned Christian bookstore. With special signage, giveaways, decorations, a coloring contest, and other indoor and outdoor activities, select stores will help families prepare for Easter and help children learn more about just how much Jesus loves them.
Again this year, CAN (Christian Authors Network) authors are helping retailers develop plans for stores for a great Kids Day.
Activities from Authors
Marsha Hubler, author of the Keystone Stables juvenile fiction series, created four different horse-themed activities, including a maze, a crossword puzzle, and two coloring pages. Especially for the boys at Kids Day, Jesse Florea, editor of Clubhouse magazine, created a short story and puzzle based on the book he coauthored with Bob Smiley, Devotions for Super Average Kids.
Karen Whiting, CAN treasurer, whose newest book for children is The One Year® My Princess Devotions, provided four fun activities based on her books, including figures for making stick puppets and a rhyming Easter story for children to tell with them. She also created a page of “Going Green” ideas, an A-to-Z scavenger hunt for signs of new life at springtime, and an easy diorama craft about the cross.
Other activities include a page of fill-in-the-blank rhyming devotions from popular children’s author Crystal Bowman, based on her new book My Mama and Me, coauthored with Teri McKinley. Ava Pennington, CAN secretary, whose newest book is Daily Reflections on the Names of God, created a word search based on the names of Jesus associated with Easter. And Diane Stortz, author of The Sweetest Story Bible, provided a scrambled word list of sweet treats—including the Bible—for kids to decipher.
Sherry Kyle, author of The Christian Girl’s Guide to Style and The Girl’s Guide to Your Dream Room, provided directions for a simple craft based on Matthew 16:21-28, as well as ideas and resources for extending the fun at home after the event. Sherry created a short story with questions for family discussion about heaven and Jesus’ resurrection. She also provided a pita-pizza recipe for a fun family-night dinner.
For parents this year, author and speaker Grace Fox provided two helpful articles, “Strike Out Temper Tantrums,” which is an excerpt from her book 10-Minute Time Outs For You and Your Kids, and “Tuck-Me-In Time: A Bedtime Tradition with Long-Lasting Results,” which tells the story behind Grace’s new book Tuck-Me-In Talks with Your Little Ones and encourages good bedtime routines.
Making Plans, Working Together
Retailers who have participated in the event in previous years know just how beneficial and enjoyable it can be, and many are already making plans for Kids Day 2014.
To help them prepare for Kids Day, retailers can receive a strategy kit with a planning calendar, social-media tips, and all handouts and activity pages from CAN authors. With everyone working together and praying together, Kids Day 2014 is sure to reap benefits for all—and especially for the children.
“What a special blessing and honor it is for CAN authors to love on our retailers and the children they serve through events like Kids Day!” says author and speaker Angela Breidenbach, CAN president. “To partner with retailers and call little children to the feet of the Lord is a precious opportunity. We stand in prayer with you that these little ones will be raised up as mighty men and women of character and faith.”
Diane Stortz, formerly children’s acquisitions editor for Standard Publishing, now writes to “tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord” (Psalm 78:4). She is the author of The Sweetest Story Bible and A Woman’s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year. Visit Diane at www.dianestortz.com.
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