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"For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."
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<>< <>< <>< <>< <>< Volume 1 - Number 35 <>< <>< <>< <>< <><
March 17, 2000
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* SS Discipline-"good chair"
* Sunday school discipline
* "Caught Being Good" tickets
* Children's Ministry, South Australia
* Easter Celebration Idea
* After Easter Children's Sermon: "Unpredictable"

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SS Discipline

During story time you can have a "good chair". (or call it whatever you like) Have the chairs pre-numbered underneath the seats. If you sit on the floor, you can use carpet squares that are numbered, or you can simply keep a place in mind i.e.: "third person from the right".
Before the lesson, tell the children that you have chosen a number. If the person sitting in that seat listens carefully, they will get the prize (candy, token, point on chart, etc.) when the story is over. If the child was not good, don't mention a name or number. You can simply say, "I'm sorry, we can't award the prize today. I'm afraid the person sitting in the "good seat" needs to practice better listening."
One time I fudged a little. I had one little boy who never seemed to sit in the "good seat", but was convinced he had been in it once when he hadn't behaved well. He was determined to do better. He was trying so hard that one day I decided that whatever seat he sat in was going to be the good seat. He was SO PROUD when he won!


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Sunday school discipline; what a touchy subject!!!!!! I teach 5-9 year olds and their previous teacher was young and single. I noticed that they definitely took advantage of her, behaviorally speaking. When I took over the class, I make it clear to them what my rules were, and what I expected from them. I wasn't mean, but I wasn't super nice either. Just kind, but firm. The kids have respected that. We spent several classes going over class rules and church rules. Things like not leaving trash around, don't speak without raising your hand, stay seated, flush the toilet, hands off walls, etc... We had just finished some very expensive remodeling, and I felt the kids should learn to repeat the church building. I created amusing Sunday school lessons around these rules. For example, the week I discussed not trashing the church, hands off walls, etc... each child put together a paper model of the temple/church that I had found at a bargain price at a local bookshop. We occasionally review our rules, so they don't forget. I also showed the kids that I had a disciplinary form. If a child misbehaves chronically, I send the child back to his parent with the form, informing the parent of the misbehavior. I have done that only once, and the kids take it very seriously now. They thought I would never do it!! I also publish a sunday school newsletter for the parents, in which I outline what we are working on, what the parent can emphasize at home to help in the lessons and contests, any upcoming craft needs that need to be saved, any special activities planned, and any support (discipline) requests. I make it clear that I expect the same participation and behavior that regular school expects. (maybe better!!) Believe it or not, the parents appreciate an "involved, devoted" sunday school teacher, and the kids tell me that I am their favorite and that they love the class!!! GO FIGURE!!!!

Shirley, N. Georgia 5-9 year olds

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Try giving out "Caught Being Good" tickets. If they are behaving and doing
what they are "supposed" to do, then they get a ticket. I use those raffle
tickets you can buy on a roll. Anyhow, after they collect 10 tickets, they
can turn them in for a special treat. You can use candies, or pencils -
stickers. Anything really. It let's everyone become focused on "DO's"
rather than "DON'Ts", plus enforces positivity! Today people always notice
when children are misbehaving, but when we all focus on how good they are -
it makes the day far brighter!

Good Luck!
Christy, 3rd Grade PSR, Ohio

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The Children's Ministry at our Anglican church, South Australia has had a busy weekend. There were 2 big, local community fetes one Saturday, the other Sunday. We had a stall at each and had 3 easy to make children's crafts for free. We have done this for the last few years and as usual it is very popular with children and parents. We interact with all types of families.
We made Gonks out of champagne corks, bouncy flower magnets with a message on them and red back spiders - magnetic that moved around webs. All in all 200 of each craft were made.
The leaders were tired and hot but it is great for the community to see the church in action and that we are able to give fun and enjoyment. God loves us!

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Regarding Easter Celebration...

We have a very small church as well and rent space from an existing church. Therefore we do not have access to a grassy area. However for Easter I plan to have a very Christ centered celebration in my neighborhood as an outreach. I live in an apartment community. I will make flyers to promote and pass them out promoting this FAMILY event. I plan to have a storytime where we will of course focus on the real story of Easter. I may use the resurrection egg idea and I saw a story book that goes along with it. We will have games and of course the hunt. For the hunt I plan to do some ordering from Oriental Trading for inexpensive He Is Risen prizes and of course lots of candy. I will also offer an invitation for salvation as well as attending church the next day. Face it, some families only go out on Easter Sunday. I will utilize the children from children's church as workers. It will be their first outreach.

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After Easter Children's Sermon: "Unpredictable"
1 John 1:1-2:2

Objects To Use: Two balloons not yet blown up

Good morning, boys and girls. It's past Easter now, but
what happens next in the rest of the Bible is almost
more exciting than the part about Jesus being alive.
I brought two balloons. I like to blow up balloons and
see where they go when I let them go. (Blow up a balloon
and then let it go without tying it.) Watch out and keep
your mouth closed! Where did it go? (While they are getting
it, blow up the other one and let it go.) Let's do it a few
more times. (Blow them up again as time allows and let
them go.) That's fun, isn't it? (Let them respond.) They
make a funny noise and they never go exactly the same
place. They're unpredictable. That means that we don't
ever know exactly what they're going to do.

Our lesson today is from a letter written by John,
one of Jesus' best friends. John tells the people that many
people heard Jesus and saw Jesus and touched Jesus. After
they heard 'and' saw and touched Jesus they got so excited
that they had to tell as many people as they could.
Jesus' friends wanted everyone else to be as happy and
excited as they were. So they all told lots of people and
those people told lots of people and those people told lots
of people until 2,000 years later. That's now! Look how
many people have heard the story about Jesus! The Good
News of Jesus is unpredictable just like the balloons. We
never quite knew where those balloons were going to fly
and we never quite know when we tell someone about Jesus
who else they will tell and how many places the story of
Jesus will spread. Our job is to tell the story just like
my job was to blow up the balloons. Keep telling the story
— you never know where it will travel. It's unpredictable!

From CSS Publishing -- http://www.csspub.com

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