Children will compete one-on-one to see who can toss the most jingle bells into cups. As they shoot and miss, they will build up their determination to make the next shot–and they will also learn how Joseph’s determination grew when there was no room at the inn.


  • Two bags of small jingle bells
  • Two bowls
  • Six coffee mugs


Be the student to toss the most bells in the mugs.


We all know that baby Jesus was born in a manger. But the manger wasn’t the first choice for Joseph and his family. Joseph was searching for a room for his family, he knew that he couldn’t settle for a simple “no room at the inn.” Joseph knew he had to get Mary somewhere safe for the night so he kept trying until eventually he found the best place available! Let’s take a lesson from Joseph as we play our game.


  1. Choose two students to go first and give them each a bowl of jingle bells. Chose another student or students to be “catchers” of bells that go wayward.
  2. Five feet away from each student, line up three mugs a few inches apart from each other.
  3. When you say “Go!” the students will begin tossing the bells into the mugs. They must toss one at a time. Have the catchers retrieve all bells that didn’t go into the cup.
  4. They will have 30 seconds to get as many bells into the mugs as possible.
  5. The student with the most jingle bells in their cups when the timer runs out wins.
  6. Repeat with new students.


When you first started throwing the bells, I bet you were aiming for one cup. But when you didn’t make it in that cup, did you give up or did you move on to another cup? When searching for a safe place to spend the night, Joseph likely didn’t give up at his first, second, or even third. When you’re trying to reach your goals, don’t give up at your first “no.” Sometimes a little persistence is part of God’s plan! Remember that God will always get you where you need to be as long as you show him you believe in him and keep trying.