We made this simple take home resources for kids (my new way not to say “craft!”) to help them learn to pray the fish way. F=Faithful I=Integrity S=Salvation H=Holiness. All we did was use a clip art fish and add our acrostic in. Never underestimate the power of simple to help make the message stick.
October 6, 2013
Using Printoons to Teach
Today I taught a lesson in KidZChurcH using the idea of Printoons. Printoons simply uses fingerprints to create characters and art. Using them to tell a story is just part of the fun. I got the idea from a video clip I saw on youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbCakKYq6Io The kids loved getting to be involved in the story, and watched intently as it unfolded before their eyes. The printoons web site can be found at http://printoons.com/Printoon_1./Home.html and their activity packs are available through amazon.
You can see above that we brought the story and the truth of young David, from I Samuel 16 & 17, to life by using the kids’ fingerprints and drawing around them. I’ve already heard from a parent how much their child remembered from the day’s lesson! Gotta love that!
Duct the Halls. . . or the Trees
Tomorrow night HiSKidZ are making these “super cute” duct tape ornaments for the tree that sits in the foyer of our church. Each year when we make ornaments for the tree, we “teach into” the moments. This year’s ornaments connect with our “Stickin with Jesus” theme–hence the duct tape! But they also connect with our lesson theme of Compassion for December–the best present of all is the love of God. Our fall season has been great! We’ve got our own little “Duct (tape) Dynasty” going on!HiSKidZ are using one of their favorite things to stick the truths of God’s Word into their lives, and that makes me “Happy, Happy, Happy!”
October 26, 2012
Today I was reminded of a simple lesson I taught this summer at a week of 5th-6th grade church camp. (See BARF blog post for the whole story) To help the kids remember how to live faithfully after making their decision to become a Christian, I used these letters to remind them to give everything they have, everyday, to Jesus.
We said that every day you need to
B–Believe. Belief or faith is not a one time thing. We need to guard our faith, and our heart, and we need to choose every day to believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God. Too many people wander from the faith because they fail to do this very thing, and that belief needs to have some action behind it because “faith without works is dead.”
A–Accept. We need to accept God’s way over our way every day. Why? Well, duh! Because He is God and He knows better than we do. We live by truth and not by our feelings and desires. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.” God’s way is life. Easy choice, if we remember to make it.
R–Repent. Repentance is not an option, and repentance is not just saying you’re sorry. Repentance is change. Repentance is the big 180. And as soon as God makes us aware of sin in our life, we need to be doing some repenting. “Shall we go on sinning so that grace will abound more? Surely not!”
F–Follow. Every day we need to follow–wherever He sends, wherever He leads. We can trust Him. We don’t have to be afraid to follow, we have to be afraid not to. Man named Jonah, big fish, BARF,’nuff said!
So every day we choose to BARF–not real barf–and I made that very clear in this lesson. But we need to keep on believing, keep on accepting His way, keep on repenting when needed, and keep on following. Every day until He returns.
October 18, 2012
As part of our lessons on Individuality, we had a scarecrow building contest last night. We made available different pieces of clothing that might be used on a scarecrow and then asked the kids review questions based on the lesson. The first team to answer the questions correctly got to choose a piece of clothing from the pile. (Things like boots, hats, hair, shirts, etc–some were traditional, some were silly) After several rounds, additional items were passed out and the scarecrows were created. An independant panel of judges, (our tech guys) judged the scarecrows and a winner was chosen. The game was an easy reminder that even though we may not all look alike or act alike, we can all make a difference, just like each scarecrow make not look alike, but each one makes a difference when used in the garden. HiSKidZ loved dressing up, it helped them to work together in their small groups and it helped reinforce the truth of using their lives to make a Kingdom difference.
We did this game twice. Once with our older kids and then again with the younger ones, gearing some of the questions to their appropriate ages and giving them each good opportunity to participate on a fairer playing field.
October 16, 2012
Stickin with Jesus
This fall we are using the theme, “Stickin With Jesus,” to help HiSKidZ keep in their mind that wherever they are and whatever they are doing they need to be, well, “Stickin with Jesus.” To help our theme stick, we are using duct tape, and lots of it! Recently we made these duct tape backpack tags as a take-a-long reminder of what we are learning each week. It’s been really great to see kids wearing them not only on their backpacks, but on their shoes–“Every step I take I take in You, You are my way, Jesus!”
These tags were simple to make by covering rectangle shaped pieces of cardstock with duct tape. Then we punched a rectangular shaped hole in the top, and made a strap out of a piece of tape folded in thirds. We finished up by making the cross decoration and attaching mini velco squares to the strap. All told, it took about 20-25 minutes for each group to make theirs. Each small group had about 8-12 kids in it and we worked with groups of 25-30 kids at a time.
Next week, we are decorating pumpkins with duct tape, and soon we will begin work on our church’s KidMin Christmas tree ornaments–you guessed it–made with duct tape! HiSKidZ are learning and seeing that “Sticking with Jesus” is something that needs to be a part of everything we do.
September 18, 2012
Jesus is LORD
We are currently teaching through the virtue of RESPECT with our 252 curriculum. As I taught the first lesson our bottom line said to, “Respect God because He’s in charge of everything.” We took this just a step further and talked about what it means that Jesus is LORD, not just SAVIOR of their lives. We came up with this acrostic to help the kids understand what it means to have Jesus as their LORD.
When Jesus is your LORD, remember:
L–Leader. Jesus is your boss, your leader, your teacher, your guide. He’s the One in charge.
O–Only One. There can only one be one leader. While Jesus may use you to help lead someone to Him, both you and Jesus can’t be flying the plane. He’s the pilot. We are more like the flight attendants.
R–Reliable. We can rely and trust Him. When we learn to trust Jesus, it’s going to be easier to let Him be the Only Leader. We won’t feel the need to try to take control from Him, because we know He is always doing what is best even if it’s scarry or hard.
D–Do What He Says. When Jesus is our LORD. We will obey. When we disobey, we make ourselves the Lord. And when we are relying on Him, and recognizing that He is the only leader, we will be more likely to do what He wants us to do.
When Jesus is your LORD, it just makes sense to respect others.
SEPTEMBER 7, 2012
Doing some planning for our Wednesday night kick off. Just saw something on Dale Hudson’s blog about now and later, which made me decide to go out and by a big bag of Now and Later candy. Now and Later is that ridiculously hard fruity candy that lasts so long it’s good for now and later. . . .and a trip to the dentist. Anyway. I just want to remind our kids and parents that we are making differences for now and later. We are investing in them now to see results later. They are young enough and old enough to serve Jesus now and later. We can praise Him now and later. In fact, I think everyone will get two pieces of candy. . . one for now and one for later.
JULY 1, 2012
I wrote a blog yesterday about a falling rock road sign I saw when travelling from Washington State to Montana for a quick scenic road trip. There are some pretty funny road signs out there with the sole purpose of communicating to us that danger lies ahead.
My son and I got to talking about how great it would be to make a lesson or lesson series on those signs. Signs with a “soul purpose,” not just a “sole purpose.” How to make that happen in your ministry???. . . .Simply grab your own pictures you have taken of some crazy road signs or get some off the web and then match a verse or story to each one. The bottom line is that God is our protector, and He wants to keep us safe on our journey with Him. Just like we need to heed the signs on the road, we need to heed the signs He puts in our life and in His word.
You could easily add an obstacle course game, some car or race way decor, a couple of great songs, finishing by praying it out, and there you have a great lesson for your kids, or in my case, HiSKidZ!
Each spring the church I work for continues to offer spring revival meetings for edification and evangelism. A few years back we added a children’s revival to the week. and it has since evolved from some simple teaching in the backroom to a full fledged children’s teaching event. This year we have a great team coming from Ozark Christian College in Joplin, MO. Team leader, Trevor, has put together a great theme he’s calling “The Ax of Jesus.” With team members, Tiphani, Bethany, Aaron, and Cassandra HiSKidZ will be walking through the “ax” of Jesus’ ministry, learning about the “ax of a Superhero,” “ax of a Son,” “ax of Servant,” and “ax of a Savior,” all done up in a lumberjack camp theme. I can’t wait to see all they have planned and to hear what Tim Ber, Apple Jack, Flap Jack, Cracker Jack, and Lumber Jack have to teach us about Jesus.
Revival is one of the highlights of our year and gives HiSKidZ and their parents a great opportunity to learn and to invited their friends to church. If you have any questions on how a children’s revival could work in connection with your church’s revival services, I would be happy to help answer them any way I can.
March 13, 2012
Recently I taught series of lessons from our 252basics curriculum on the virtue of HONOR. The lessons centered around King David’s life, and as we finished up our series, I was looking for a way to tie up all we had been learning and take it just a step further. Since we share our facilities, we sometimes feel a bit limited in what we can do. When these feelings hit, God reminds me that truth is more than what I feel, and that with a little initiative, creativity and resourcefulness we can do some really great teaching with the things we have available to us right at our finger tips. This week in particular we took advantage of the glorious white board we have (since painting in this room isn’t always encouraged) and drew out the lessons from each week leaving empty “clouds” for the kids to help me fill in with the key truth from each week. We saw that we need to honor through David’s life as boy, through his friendship with Jonathan, through his close encounters with King Saul and with his son, Absolom. Then we looked a step further at the life of Stephen in the book of Acts and the life of Yusef, currently being persecuted across the world from us, and we “drew” out the truth that we need to honor God with all we have. Honoring God wasn’t just an Old Testament thing, or a New Testament thing. Honoring God is an everyday thing and that we can draw from His resources and power, trusting Him to lead us in the ways we should go as we honor Him every day with our lives.
The kids don’t care a lick that I can’t draw worth a darn. They just love to see the stories come to life, they love to interact with the lesson, and they learn to “draw” truth from God’s Word as they see it come to life before them.