Activity 6: Circle Games

Activity 6: Circle Games
Activity 6: Circle Games

Activity time: 10 minutes

Preparation for Activity

  • Familiarize yourself with the games and songs listed in Posters for Chalice Children, under Resources in the Introduction.
  • Plan how you will pace the activity so you have time to teach children the two signs for the Goodbye Song and to end with Floating Kisses. You may wish to lead the Welcome, Chalice Children song and then move directly into the new songs and games.
  • Watch this YouTube video from Librarian Lindsey which demonstrates sign language for the Goodbye Song introduced in this activity.
  • Display any posters you have made.

Description of Activity

Gather in a circle on the floor.

Play the games and sing the songs. Keep the pace brisk to help the children stay focused.

Welcome, Chalice Children

Ask children to stand, as they are able, in their places. Sing "Welcome, Chalice Children" to the tune of "Little Rabbit Foo-Foo":

Welcome, Chalice Children,

We are Unitarians.

Jump into the circle,

Jump, jump, jump.

Welcome, Chalice Children,

We are Universalists.

Jump into the circle,

Jump, jump, jump.

Welcome, Chalice Children,

My name is [leaders' and children's names, in turn].

Jump into the circle,

Jump, jump, jump.

Alternate verses:

We are Chalice Children!

Welcome to our circle!

We are Chalice Children!

Clap, clap, clap!

We are Unitarians!

We are Universalists!

Welcome to our circle!

Clap, clap, clap!

We are Chalice Children!

Let's all welcome [name of a child in the group]

Welcome to our circle!

Clap, clap, clap!

Make New Friends

Make new friends, but keep the old,

One is silver and the other is gold.

A circle is round, it has no end.

That's how long I'm going to be your friend.

Find a Friend at Church

"Find a Friend at Church" is sung to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell." Have the children gather in a circle. Have one child walk around the outside of the circle while the first two lines of the song are sung. The child then chooses a friend. The two friends hold hands and skip around the circle while the remainder of the verse is sung. The first child returns to the circle, and the game is repeated with a second child walking outside the circle. Continue until all have had a turn to choose a friend.

I'll find a friend at church.

I'll find a friend at church.

Heigh ho, the derry oh,

I'll find a friend at church.

We'll skip around the room.

We'll skip around the room.

Heigh ho, the derry oh,

We'll skip around the room.

Variation: Instead of "skip," ask each child to choose an action, such as run, walk, hop, or jump.

If You're Happy and You Know It

Sing "If You're Happy and You Know It," leading the children in the actions noted after each line:

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. [clap-clap]

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. [clap-clap]

If you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it.

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. [clap-clap]

If you're happy and you know it, stomp your feet. [stomp-stomp]

If you're happy and you know it, stomp your feet. [stomp-stomp]

If you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it.

If you're happy and you know it, stomp your feet. [stomp-stomp]

If you're happy and you know it, shout "Hurray!" [hoo-ray!]

If you're happy and you know it, shout "Hurray!" [hoo-ray!]

If you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it.

If you're happy and you know it, shout "Hurray!" [hoo-ray!]

If you're happy and you know it, do all three. [clap-clap, stomp-stomp, hoo-ray!]

If you're happy and you know it, do all three. [clap-clap, stomp-stomp, hoo-ray!]

If you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it.

If you're happy and you know it, do all three. [clap-clap, stomp-stomp, hoo-ray!]

Variation: Sing this welcome song to the tune of "If You're Happy and You Know It" (from Channels to Children: Early Childhood Activity Guide for Holidays and Seasons, copyright 1982). As the verse is sung, the leader shakes the child's hand. Repeat with each new child:

Good morning, [child's first and last name],

How are you?

Good morning, [child's first and last name],

How are you?

How are you this special day?

We are glad you came to play.

Good morning, [child's first and last name],

How are you?

It Isn't Any Trouble

Sing to the tune of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic:"

It isn't any trouble just to s-m-i-l-e.

It isn't any trouble just to s-m-i-l-e.

So smile when you're in trouble.

It will vanish like a bubble,

If you only take the trouble just to s-m-i-l-e.

Variation: Instead of "s-m-i-l-e," substitute "g-i-giggle-e":

It isn't any trouble just to g-i-giggle-e. [giggle]

It isn't any trouble just to g-i-giggle-e. [giggle]

So laugh when you're in trouble.

It will vanish like a bubble,

If you only take the trouble just to g-i-giggle-e.

Or, substitute "ha-ha-ha-ha-ha":

It isn't any trouble just to ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. [laugh]

It isn't any trouble just to ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. [laugh]

So laugh when you're in trouble.

It will vanish like a bubble,

If you only take the trouble just to ha-ha-ha-ha-ha.

Goodbye Song

This song includes sign language for "goodbye" and "friends." Before singing the song, teach the children the two signs:

  • Goodbye: Bend your arm at the elbow, palm up and facing out, and wave your fingers.
  • Friends: Point each index finger up, cross them to make an "X" (inside finger touching inside finger), and then have the index fingers grab each other. Then re-cross them the opposite way, make an "X," and have them grab each other again. You can describe this to the children as "fingers giving each other a hug."

Sing the "Goodbye Song," leading the children in the actions noted after each line:

Goodbye, friends. [do the sign for "goodbye," then the sign for "friends"]

Goodbye, friends. [repeat]

Goodbye, friends. [repeat]

It's time [tap wrist]... to say [tap mouth]... goodbye! [do the sign for "goodbye"]

Floating Kisses Goodbye

Tell the children that a special way to say goodbye is to send "floating kisses"! Have everyone kiss their hand and then blow the kiss up to the ceiling. Verbalize the progress of the kisses as they reach the ceiling and start back down. Pretend each floating kiss is landing on a different person.

Including All Participants

If any child might find jumping and standing difficult, substitute other actions, such as clapping, stepping, or wiggling, or sing the songs from a seated position.

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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