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SSTN # 27 - March 31, 2004

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Resurrection Egg Holders ... QUICK & EASY DOWNLOAD!

1) Recyclable items?
2) 40 Days of Purpose?
3) Armor of God ideas?

Fruit of the Spirit Spinner ... NEW...QUICK & EASY DOWNLOAD!

4) Lessons for 2-5 year old
5) Wanting to teach
6) Lessons for 2-5 year old

Amazing Miracles of the Bible

7) Lessons for 2-5 year old
8) Heritage Sunday Skit
9) Aggressive Helper

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Resurrection Egg Holders ... NEW!

Use the twelve Resurrection Egg Holders to tell the Easter story. Each egg
picture is numbered to correspond with its explanation. For a onetime
download fee of $5.00 your class can color and cut their own set!

Get the f-r-e-e "Palm Branches" pattern with explanations at:


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1) Recyclable items?
Do you have ideas for using recyclable items in children's ministry? Then
submit them on the "Take the Creative Challenge" page at:
Your webservant,
Sarah Keith <><
"Home of The Sunday School Teacher's Network"

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2) 40 Days of Purpose? 

Has anyone done the Sunday School Curriculum that goes with the 40 Days of
Purpose church campaign?  If so, do you have any suggestions or ideas?
thank you, Karen Young

--from SSTN: the 40 days before Easter is traditionally known as Lent. If
you type Lent or Lenten season into the archives search box, this might
help you find some ideas to coincide with the 40 days of purpose program:

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3) Armor of God ideas?

I am looking for lots of ideas for using the Armor of God for VBS.  I have
looked at the ideas on this site but would still appreciate any other
ideas used by others.  I can be emailed directly at

Thanks to all!!;)
Joyfully Serving Him,
Sonia Williams
Director of Children's Ministries
Argos United Methodist Church

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Fruit of the Spirit Spinner ... NEW!

Children will learn the Fruit of the Spirit in a fun new way. Each
characteristic is illustrated with a whimsical cartoon fruit for kids to
color, cut, and spin. Download an unlimited supply of patterns for a
onetime fee of only $3.00.

Get a lesson and learn more here:

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4) Lessons for 2-5 year old - management

>  I have been asked to teach the smaller children (ages 2-5).  I'm having
>trouble in getting their attention and keeping them focused on the lesson

Hi Barbara, I have been teaching a mix of 2-5 years olds for several
years. First if at all possible try to find a teenager that could help you
with your lesson. I leave them play until all arrive. They then sit around
me on the floor, story time. I ask them questions about the story. Then I
have a craft, I have two very young children that wonder off and play,
when another child asked me why I let them; I answer, they are so much
younger then you, so I help you while they play, you are good at making
things, they will be when they are your age. It gives them self
confidence, I always provide a snack and drink; which by the way is one of
the first things they make sure I have. We always pray, sometimes all the
children do some times just a few. One of them always makes a silly
prayer, but God needs a laugh to. Just be your self, Love them and I never
discipline, when they act wrongly I always ask them why and to apologize.
Your a teacher not a disciplinarian.God Love, Peg

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5) Wanting to teach

>My greatest wish is to be a sunday school teacher. I am a 30 yr old
>mother and live in South Africa and really enjoy and love children.

I think that getting involved with a children's church/children's ministry
is probably the easiest step in everything that you mentioned. Most, if
not all churches are desperate for people who truly want to teach and want
to get involved. For such an important ministry as teaching young
children, it is often the ministry that people, especially newcomers in
most (not all churches) shy away from because they immediately think of
too much work, too many problems, headaches, noisy classrooms, diapers,
and a host of other things. When in fact, in an organized children's
ministry serving is an absolute blessing and joy week after week, and
rarely looked upon as work (at least in my opinion). To get involved, I
would suggest volunteering for awhile, have them put you in a classroom
where help is needed until you find the age group that you are comfortable
with. It may not seem like a big deal, but being placed with the right age
group is a HUGE deal, so much so in fact that if you have a real gift
working with babies, and you are placed in something like a middle school
ministry you will quickly become tired, even irritated with it at times
perhaps, and you may see it as more of work or an obligation than a gift
and a blessing to serve.

I have seen with my own eyes that sometimes having a parent in the
classroom (especially if that parent is the teacher in the classroom) can
alter a child's behavior. This is not always the case, and some children
are perfectly fine with having their mom or dad teach. Other children are
embarrassed by it, and would rather have their mom or dad teach in a
classroom other than their own. Still others, regardless of whether their
parent is teaching in the same classroom or not, simply spend so much time
at the church that they become bored with the routine activities that are
planned week in and week out. I see this allot among the pre-k children in
my class, especially those that spend both services in the classroom, by
the time the class is handed over to the second service teacher, the kids
that have been there all morning are tired of listening, tired of sitting
still, and bored with the activities and stories that they have already
heard. My best advice on this subject is (depending on the ages of your
children of course) is to ask the children how they would feel about it.
If you have an older elementary school child who would feel absolutely
embarrassed or have his/her feelings hurt by you teaching in the
classroom, you might consider teaching at another age level.

Lastly, if your husband is not wanting to go to church every Sunday, then
you should quite honestly not make him go. We had/still have a similar
problem in our household where my step dad and myself are both very
excited about worshipping God and my mother is very stand-off-ish about
it. For a long time when she didn't go to church, I didn't go and it was
as simple as that. However, I had to realize that everyone's faith is
there own, and no one can force faith upon another person. I made it very
clear one night to my mom that whether she wanted to go to church or not
that I would still like to attend weekly services, too my surprise this
news delighted her, and come to find out, she had been feeling pressured
about attending church simply because she thought I would only go to
church if she went. It may be that your husband is not at a place in his
faith where he finds worship beneficial, or it may be that he only goes to
church because he wants the entire family to go to church, or it could be
something entirely different. Whatever the reason, if you pose the
situation as he can go if he wants to, but you are going regardless of
whether he goes or not, you will quickly see whether he is at a place in
his faith where worship is what he wants or does not want as he is given
the opportunity to choose whether he wants to attend services or not. When
your children reach the age where they are old enough to make the decision
whether they want to attend services or not, they should be given the same
choice to make whether or not him/her wants to attend services. There is
nothing worse than being pressured or forced to go to church when you are
not interested in going or worshipping, whether you are 2 or 102.
Hope this helps!
Love in Christ,
Sarah in California

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6) Lessons for 2-5 year old - management

> I have been asked to teach the smaller children (ages 2-5). I'm having
>trouble in getting their attention and keeping them focused on the lesson

You definately have a difficult task on your hands having 2-5 year olds
all in the same classroom. My pre-k class is made up of just turned four
year olds through haven't started kindergarten quite yet, and the gap
their in abilities and attention spans alone is a lot to deal with at
times. I would suggest a couple of things, the first is that I definately
agree with the reply Sarah Keith gave that you need help in teaching the
children. For 2-3 year olds, I would recommend 1 teacher or helper to

every 5 children, for 4-5 year olds, I would recommend no more than 8
children per teacher or helper. We have 8 children to one adult in the
pre-k classroom and it works really well. The second thing that I would
suggest is that if you do have additional teachers, helpers, parents, or
even older children helping out is to possibly break up the classroom
during activity time. Something simple like a coloring page, puzzles,
simple crafts like gluing cotton balls to a lamb cut from construction
paper, etc would be appropriate for 2-3 year olds, but might bore the 4-5
year olds. Since 4's and 5's are a bit closer on the age scale to each
other than say 2's and 5's are, you may want to divide the class in two
during activity time. Set up two seperate craft areas- one for the 2 & 3's
and one for the 4 & 5's. If this is not possible, or you simply do not
have the helpers in the classroom that you need, you might want to
consider purchasing a curriculum companies activity pages that are simple.
There are many different kinds out there. I know that Groups Publishing
Hands On Bible Curriculum has color in activity pages, which may be the
only activity/craft that you have for the children to take home. Gospel
Light Mover's and Shakers has activity pages that are already in color
where the kids put the stickers on them, either of these might provide a
take home alternative than trying to do an actual craft each week.

If you don't have an actual craft each week, there are still plenty of
things to occupy the classtime with. You could try songs (letting the kids
play instruments, either store bought or handmade), easy Bible games,
snack time, or even letting the kids draw their interpretation of the
Bible story. Bible stories with young children can also be a challenge to
get kids to sit still, stories told through puppets, flannel grams, video
clips, paper dolls, or other visuals, as well as things like object
lessons work really well to grab the kids attention and keep it. You might
also want to try some of these resources: Playful Songs & Bible Stories
For Preschoolers- ISBN 076442534X; Bible Story Games For Preschoolers -
ISBN 0764420593; and I Can Make It Myself! Bible Story Crafts For
Preschoolers - ISBN 0764422251.
Hope this helps!
Love in Christ,
Sarah in California 

--from SSTN: check our bookstore for these items. Type the titles into the
search box:

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Amazing Miracles of the Bible

God’s glory and love are revealed through the miracles he performed and
were fully realized when he came to earth in the form of a man to save
mankind. By studying the miracles of the Bible children will gain a better
understanding of God’s love and faithfulness and how he continues to be
loving and faithful in miraculous ways to his people today. Great for
rotation-type programs!

In the Curriculum Creatives section:

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7) Lessons for 2-5 year old - management
When working with this age group, it is good to remember that their
attention span is about one minute per year they are old.
Try to inlist youth to help so there is a helper with every 5 children.
Have everything ready and cut out before class. (Youth can help with
this.  Older adults are good as stand in grandparents.)
These kids also like singing (Use some of the good videos that are out
now), listening to short stories that use puppets, objects that relate to
the story, stuffed animals, food items they can eat, etc.
Setting up centers is useful (besure to have a helper close by): simple
hand crafts (use glue sticks instead of glue), play dough (there are good
recipes to make this), puzzles,  art supplies for coloring,  A play house
and dress up things.
Start preparing your lesson the Sunday before you teach so you have the
whole week to think about it and plan.
Give them lots of movement.  (act out story, action songs, marching to
Hope this is helpful.  This is a great age to work with and studies show
that a great deal of learning takes place with these young ones.

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8) Heritage Sunday Skit

One idea is to visit a site that I use quite often in what I do with our
Teens. The site is http://www.egadideas.com/  It is a really fun filled
site with many ideas. Just a thought!

Nancy Fidler
Sunday Kids Club Director

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9) Aggressive Helper

My suggestion would also be to let her organize, plan and run a few
class lessons and you step back and assist.  Disciple her into becoming
a teacher, as it sounds that the Lord may be leading her in that

Before talking with her again, pray that God give you an open mind and
an open heart to see what He is trying to show you through these trials.
In my personal experience, every time I have struggled as you are, and
start to lose my joy, over something or someone, I have learned that God
is teaching me how to take a good look at myself and not the situation.
Our joy doesn't come from our circumstances, but from God alone.
Through such trials and hard times there has always been something that
God was bringing me to recognize about myself, something I needed to
purge out, whether it be bad attitude, difficulty with change, or
whatever, it's always been something about me and not the situation or
the person.  God is growing you and changing you to be more like Him,
I'm sure of it.  Praise Him through the good times and praise Him
through the bad times and always remember that He is your source of joy,
not your circumstance.  Be still and let God show you what type of
awesome work is at hand.  His will, not yours.  Keep your eyes on God
and not the situation at hand.  He will work it out and you will be
stronger and closer to Him.  Love in Christ, Monica from Alabama
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