Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Chalice Children: A Program about Our Unitarian Universalist Community for Preschoolers

Activity 5: Bear Blankets

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Felt or fabric squares, one for each child
  • Items to glue on the blankets for decoration, and glue in squeezable bottles
  • Trays to hold decoration items
  • Moistened paper towels
  • Optional: A shawl or blanket from your congregation's Prayer Shawl Ministry or Blanket Ministry
  • Optional: Digital camera or smartphone

Preparation for Activity

  • Collect or purchase the felt or fabric, and cut it into bear blanket-sized pieces. (Note: Session 25, Activity 5, Bear Beds also called for felt and blankets. Today, you can have the children decorate the blankets they used in Session 25; these may already be in the bear beds they made.)
  • Gather items and supplies to decorate the blankets-cloth scraps, ribbons, buttons, bows, and bits of lace; and glue. Set these on trays for children to share.
  • Make sure you have extra stuffed animals and extra boxes for bear beds (e.g., shoeboxes) for children who do not have their own.
  • Optional: If your congregation has a Prayer Shawl Ministry or Blanket Ministry, invite a participant to join the children for this activity and talk about how they make or provide warm, comforting wraps for people who are sick.

Description of Activity

Children create a blanket for their "sick" teddy bear.

Invite the children to bring the bears in their beds to the activity table. Say, in these words or your own:

Let's pretend that our teddy bear friends are sick. We've already put them in bed. Now let's make a nice, soft blanket for our bears. This will help our teddy bears feel warm and loved. Maybe they'll start to feel better!

Show them the materials available. Invite them to decorate a blanket for their bear. As the children work on their blankets, engage them in a conversation about feeling sick. Ask, for example:

  • What are some things that make you feel better when you're sick?
  • Do you like to be in your own bed when you're sick, or somewhere else?
  • Do you have a special blanket that makes you feel better when you're sick?

Optional: Show them a shawl or blanket from your congregation's Prayer Shawl or Blanket Ministry. Have someone from that group talk briefly with the children about what they do, or, describe the group yourself, as people who knit shawls or blankets for folks in your congregation who are sick or sad or otherwise having a hard time. Say that a gift of a warm blanket can be a good way to let a sick person know you are their friend.

Invite the children to tuck their finished blankets around their teddy bears.

Optional: Photograph the children with their bears, beds, and blankets.

Engage the children to help clean up. They can sort and put away the supplies or wipe glue from the table with moistened paper towels.

Including All Participants

If any children have fine motor challenges, suggest that children work in pairs and help each other glue.