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Activity time: 5 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Wonder Box
  • A toy barn

Preparation for Activity

  • Place the toy barn inside the Wonder Box.

Description of Activity

With the children still in a circle, ask them to guess what could be in this big, beautifully wrapped box. Take some guesses. Then, open the box and take out the toy barn. Say:

Who has seen one of these in real life? Who has been inside of one?

Allow some conversation about barns. Then say:

Every time we meet in Wonderful Welcome, we talk about an intangible gift. You might be wondering what kind of intangible gift we will find in a barn. I will give you a clue: Even if you are a very good builder, it is very hard to build a barn all by yourself.

If children have comments or guesses, allow some. Then tell them:

When many people lived in the countryside on farms, a family that had cows, sheep, horses and chickens needed a good barn to house the animals. When a family needed a new barn, friends and neighbors from all around would come together and help build the barn. Someone who could saw would cut logs into boards. Someone who could hammer nails would put the boards together to make walls. Together, a lot of people would lift the big heavy beams up to make the barn roof. The hard work of lifting up the frame for the walls and roof gives this project its name: barn-raising.

Confirm that the children can visualize a barn-raising by asking them what else people might do to help out. For example, some people might make lunch for everyone, or take care of the animals until the barn was ready. Then tell them:

When the barn was raised, everyone would celebrate. When people work and celebrate together, they are a community. When we are together here in Wonderful Welcome, we are community. We put a lot of pieces together to help us learn together. It is kind of like a barn-raising.

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