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Are you the kind of person who
- Loves ice breaker activities?
- Is looking for a creative way to get to know a group of people?
- Has a Sunday School class that could use a fun prayer time activity?
- Is often negligent and forgets to plan lessons, thus requiring you to come up with activities on the spur of the moment?
I am definitely not a #1, but the other three options describe me pretty well. This activity was a brain child of #4 above, to be honest.
I’ve seen M&Ms used in lots of activities over the years, including teaching fractions and graphing, and in ice breakers. So my mind was primed one Wednesday afternoon last fall when the ‘perfect storm’ occurred:
…a class of 5th and 6th grade students looming that evening at church
…our regular lessons completed a couple of weeks shy of the end of the quarter
…and bags of M&Ms (I think from post-Halloween sales) at the ready
We did a couple of different things with the candy I’d like to share with you. First, we did the ice breaker activity. Even though the kids in the class have known each other for years, it was a good opportunity to get to know one another even better.
I gave each student a mini-bag of M&Ms (if you have a large bag, just have each student take a small handful). They dumped out their bags on the table in front of them. But they didn’t get to eat them yet!
I explained to them how we were going to go around the room and tell some things about ourselves, based on the colors of candy we had. (You can get all of the printables at the end of the post).
The group can take turns going around and sharing one thing at a time, choosing the color they’d like to share. Or, you could do what we did. I had the kids sort their M&Ms by color. Then we went color by color, and we counted how many of that color we each had, and went around and shared that many things. Either way could work really well. Do what you think will work best with your group.
As we shared, we got to eat those candies.
Guided Prayer Activity
After spending some time getting to know one another, we moved on to our next M&M activity: prayer time. Again, I handed out mini bags of candy to everyone and we dumped them out in front of us on the table, sorting them by color.
This time, we followed the prayer chart to say short, sentence prayers.
Admittedly, this one was more challenging for the students. It was a good learning opportunity. It also was eye opening to think about all of the people that we can be praying for. One of the ways I helped students that struggled with these was to get them to talk about the category, and then I would model a one sentence prayer.
These activities could really be customized for any group. I’m thinking ladies groups, retreats, homeschool study groups, youth group, pretty much any class…What comes to your mind?
Because you may want to change up the categories in the ice breaker depending on the kind of group you’re using it in, I’m including a blank template for that below, along with the two we used. I’m also including an all together blank template in case you have a super creative idea for another way to use the M&Ms. (If you do, please comment and tell us about it!!)
Where do you think you’ll use these activities?
Downloads for you to print: