- Two king size bed sheets (solid bright colors of your choice),
- Bungee cords or fishing line,
- safety pins and binder clips,
- large inflatable globe or blue ball and patterns for Continents,
- five wall clocks or clock posters,
- five posters for different countries (Daily missions focus).
Canopy– This open air expo is set up for guests to come under the canopy and hear about God’s work in different countries with missionaries. Children really enjoy hearing stories about mission work but they connect to and remember the work when they participate. This classroom needs to have space for kids to experience missions and service so be careful not to over decorate causing the room to be cramped. An obvious choice and very simple would be setting up an outdoor canopy in the classroom. Be sure the ceiling height won’t be problem before you carry all that in the room. An easy canopy with no poles can be accomplished with a king size bed sheet hanging from the ceiling. If you want to have two colors for added interest, hang one square with the room and the other rotate slightly for a diamond shape so the points are off set. Begin by laying the bottom sheet on the floor, square with the room. Now lay the second sheet as a diamond on top of the first sheet. Go to the middle of both sheets, place a safety pin through both sheets. Secure a safety pin to all the corner edges. Begin hanging the sheets from the middle first. Use a hook or open paper clips to hang the middle safety pin to the ceiling. If the ceilings in your classroom a high, use fishing line or a bungee cord to lower the canopy. Next, hang each corner of the diamond color by stretching it out and securing it to the ceiling with hooks or open paper clips. Be careful to allow the fabric to dip down but not too much because there should be some space between the two sheets for a better visual effect. Finish by hanging the square sheet using the same method as before. *Note- When hanging items from the inside of the canopy like a globe or a light or whatever, just remember the amount of weight you are asking a paper clip to hold. You might want to use something stronger so the canopy does not fall down during class or find it lying on the floor when you arrive the next morning. Caution with lights next to sheets! (FIRE). This open expo will need a grassy floor for kids to sit so use an outdoor green carpet or green blanket on the floor. If on a tile floor, tape the corners of the lawn to the tile so it stays in place to avoid kids falling.
Globe– Some churches reuse decorations each year and you may already have a large inflatable globe that you could add a paper banner around the globe that reads, “Global Expo”.
*Bonus Idea– There are no nighttime scenes recommended in this VBS but Missions could be a great nighttime experience. The lights in the room are covered by sheets so turn them off and bring in clear bulb Christmas lights. Hang them around the canopy following the star shape using hooks or open paper clips. Avoid attaching the lights to the sheets since extra weight can be disastrous. Missions will have a video segment so watching a TV in a dimly lit room is often welcomed. Lamps with or without shades are helpful when children work on activities and the classroom lights can be turned on at any time if needed.