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SSTN # 42 - May 9, 2005

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--> Super Heroes ... a two semester series!

1) How To Discipline?
2) Kids Out of Control
3) Kids Didn't "Bug" Jesus
4) Youth leader
5) Campfire skits?

* Celebrate Pentecost Sunday, May 15th

6) Ladies Devotional?
7) Bible Counting Song?
8) Kids Out of Control ...rewarding bad behavior
9) 7th - 9th grade youth lessons
10) Youth Lessons
11) Rotation Syllabus
12) Rotation Syllabus
13) Repeating Rotation
14) Repeating Rotation
15) Kids Out of Control

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--> Super Heroes ... a two semester series!

"Super Heroes of the Bible" is a two-semester series
which seeks to develop FAITH, COURAGE, and OBEDIENCE
in the lives of children and to change our world for Jesus Christ.

To learn more, go to this page:
(you may need to copy and paste this address to your browser)

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1) How To Discipline?

I was just reading all your helpful hints for unruly children and I SOOOOO
AGREE that discipline should start at home, with the parents/guardians. 
This is not only being felt in our sunday school classes and church, but
also in so many other activities in life (i.e...school, shopping in
public, restaurants, etc.).  I do not advocate spanking or raising your
hand in any way to a child, but we are guided by God's word that
discipline is a must!!!
I could use your help.  I teach sunday school for 4-16 kids per Sunday;
90% of which the parents do not attend sunday school or church. 
Furthermore, these children are from extremely dysfunctional homes (drugs,
alcohol, unemployment, homelessness, etc.).  I know that these children
need and crave the discipline as they receive none outside of church;
however, I am very skeptical about how far to go as having this unruly
child in class is so much better than them maybe never returning.
In Christ's loving arms....kat smith (bobkatjosh@aol.com)

--from SSTN: check the archives too at:

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2) Kids Out of Control

I noticed this has been a hot topic since I rejoined this list a few weeks
ago. It's rather ironic (God's humor??) as I have been "retired" from my
Sunday School class for pressing a discipline issue. Of course, that is
not the excuse they used except to say because I "complained" about this
boy (which I didn't, I complained I needed help with him and 30 other
children in the room!) that I did NOT have Christ love for the children
and therefore needed a rest to maybe get back where I can have that
feeling again.

I have noticed it before, church's shooting themselves in the foot because
as a church, someone, somewhere decided that we should never say no to
children because we should be as Jesus, bring the children to us. Um, the
Israelites were called the children of God and well, God disciplined them
rather harshly at times. I do not understand why church's can't "demand"
respect. I am not for kicking children out but having rules, following
rules that is all part of being in the kingdom. I have heard some really
awesome ideas here on the list for discipline issues and reminders to pray
for these children and their parents. And in most cases, that is all we
get as discipline in church is such a hairy thing.

Now about the 4th grader, have you considered having her co-teach??? How
many children are her age??? If she is "stuck" with mostly younger
children, would she feel a part of the group if she were leading more??
Have her help you direct a song?? Have her read a verse she has memorized
as an older child??? If she cried during the singing maybe she doesn't
feel like she belongs, isn't a part of the group and maybe it's the age

Hang in there with the first grader. Get with your church leaders and
decide your discipline policy and stick with it. It may or may not work
but that might be all you can do. Perhaps finding an awesome older couple
to shadow this boy and redirect him so you don't have to focus on him. If
he's a handful his parents must be tired to. Maybe someone they respect
can get them some good books on how Christians parent their children. No
is not a dirty word. God says no alot!

It sounds like you have been doing the best you can.


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3) Kids Didn't "Bug" Jesus

> I cannot find anywhere in this story that the kids were "bugging" the
> adults OR disrupting anything. They simply wanted to see Jesus. I think
> we are adding our own ideas here.

I think you're right. "They" didn't want to see Jesus, but some adults
were bringing "them" to Jesus to have him lay hands on them and pray for them.

I apologize. Scripture doesn't say that the children were bugging anyone.
I interpreted it that way because scripture says that some of the disciples
"rebuked them." Apparently the disciples rebuked the adults who brought
the children to have Jesus stop what He was doing (teaching and healing) to
take the time to pray for them. "Rebuke" is a strong word. It made me
assume that the disciples were "bugged" (for lack of a better word, I
guess~ LOL)

Take a look for yourself:

From Matthew, chapter 19: "Then little children were brought to Jesus for
him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples
rebuked those who brought them. Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me,
and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as
these.' When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there."

From Luke, chapter 18: "People were also bringing babies to Jesus to have
him touch them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. But Jesus
called the children to him and said, "Let the little children come to me,
and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I
tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a
little child will never enter it."

To me this simply says (and I am TOTALLY paraphrasing here) that some
people were bringing small children to have Jesus touch them and pray for
them and the disciples got upset about this to the point of reprimanding
them for "bugging" Jesus, but Jesus told the disciples to let the children
come to Him. Then He went a step further and said that ANYONE who doesn't
accept and receive all that God has to offer in the same way a child
accepts things, he is in danger of never entering heaven. In my view Jesus
surprised them all with an answer they weren't expecting--not only did He
want to touch the children and pray for them and have them come to Him
freely (like they are) but He wants us as adults to do the same. Imagine
it! He loves us just like we are!! (Of course we know that He doesn't
leave us that way any more than a two year old will play on the altar when
he is twenty-four! Life is about changes and growth.) I was merely making
the point that Jesus accepted the children as they were brought to Him and
we have to love people in that same way...

I still feel the same way, but I promise to quote more scripture and less
opinion in the future :o)

Angie <><

--from SSTN: I think the problem in this situation was not the child's
behavior, but the parents that didn't respect the pastor, the others in
the church and ultimately their own child by teaching him what was

Your webservant,
Sarah <><

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4) Youth leader

For the person on post 10...i am youthleader at my church as well. i
havethe same problems u mentioned. If u would like to correspond and
bounce ideas email me . thanks... Connie... Tenuhcmama@wmconnect.com

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5) Campfire skits?

Hi, Iam the camp director for a bible camp we need some quick campfire
skits ones that just 4 or 5 teens could do without alot of props. Thanks, 

--from SSTN: check our skits page at:

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* Celebrate Pentecost Sunday, May 15th

Your kids will have fun making and playing
with the Pentecost Rusher. An Easy Make & Take Project. 

Find it in the Curriculum section at: 

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6) Ladies Devotional?
Hi,  I have been asked to give a short devotional at a ladies retreat. If
you have an idea for me I would love to hear it. Thanks , Kim

--from SSTN: devotionals that have been the most meaningful to me are
personal testimonies. Share how God has changed you and is faithful to
keep working in your life. Is there an event that you know God led you
through? Maybe one that you've failed in, but God was still faithful and
you've learned important lessons as a result? Is there a favorite
Scripture passage, one that God has impressed on your heart? How has that
Scripture been molding you to change? I also like when speakers interact
with their audience so that it becomes a dialogue, rather than a

YSIC, Sarah Keith <><

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7) Bible Counting Song?

Hi, I am wondering if anyone has the words to a song we used to sing as
children. It is a counting song, and each time you sing the song through
you add another number starting with the next highest number. This is as
much of it as I can remember:  Two, was Paul and Silas, One, was a little
bitty baby, Born, O! Born, Born in Bethlehem.  I think it goes up to 10 or
maybe 12.  I know this isn't much to go on, but maybe someone recalls the
song and the words?  Thanks,

In Christ's Love,
Carolyn Chapple

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8) Kids Out of Control...rewarding bad behavior

>We have tried time out have a corner for the young boy to work on
>special projects when he does not want to sing. Other craft ideas for the
>girl ......

It seems to me you are rewarding their bad behavior by giving them other
crafts to do. Let time out be time out, not fun time out.It sounds as
though the parents have given up being parents and are trying to be
buddies to their children, be that as it may, you have to deal with the
fall out.I suspect that these children are actually craving boundaries,
since it sounds like there are none at home.Kids need boundaries to feel
safe, and loved.
    My suggestion is to not let the older child run the classroom, when
she rolls her eyes or acts bored, tell her that not everyone will like the
craft/activity but this is the craft/activity we are doing today.Then let
her decide if she is going to do it or not.If she mopes, fine, if she
fusses fine.These are not going to hurt anyone.If she hits, remove her
immediately from the room and call her parents.
How about having an exercise time before music to release some of the
energy for the younger child.I find that some kids need to move and that
exercise actually helps.Here is another  idea that I have used that works,
Move, Rest,Move, Rest.Kids that have difficulty sitting for long periods
of time do better if you mix movement with rest, they can focus better.
For example start with a few exercises then go to a quiet song, then do a
song that has some movements in it,or march around the room, then
something quiet, etc.Hope this helps.


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9) 7th - 9th grade youth lessons
 This can be a difficult age group to reach, they are not ready to be on
their own, but feel like they are.How about having are brainstorming
meeting with the kids?It may be hard to pry some ideas out of them, but it
may be a great place to start.Tell them the truth, that you've run out of
ideas and want some input, after all this is for them.
Service projects:
a.Start some seedlings and sell them to raise money for a animal
shelter,or to buy a new book for the library.
b.Have a tea party for their mothers and/or grandmothers.
c.Do yard work for the library or church
d.Deliver cookies to shut-ins.
Other ideas:

e. Have each student prepare a lesson for the class.
f.Career night.(Have some people  come and tell about their job.)
g.Pizza night!!
h.Go bowling.
I hope these ideas are helpful.Edan

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10) Youth Lessons

Begin by building community, friendships and fellowship amongst these
Get together for extra curricular activities, then sprinkle in short Bible
lessons and instructions. Make it a natural flow of conversation. Gain
their respect.

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11) Rotation Syllabus

>Has anyone thought about creating a syllabus (different stories) for EACH

Even though we have a very small church, our Sunday School is very
active.  We've been doing a "modified" rotation plan for four years.  Our
15-25 children (ages 4 through 6th grade)who attend are doing almost all
lessons together.  When we started this plan, my original intention was to
divide into two age groups - the older and the younger - but we have
gradually evolved into a "one" group SS and we love it.  Of course, we are
careful about what activities we choose. 

We're on a five-year rotation, going chronologically through the Bible. 
I'm hoping to pare it down to four when we go through it the second time. 
That way, each child will here each story twice before they leave Sunday
School.  I keep all activities so we'll be able to use several the second
time around. 

We spend three weeks on a particular story.  (Different aspects of the
stories of Joseph and Moses took several units to cover, but it was well
worth it.)  A typical routine would be interactive storytelling the first
Sunday, the video (on large screen and popcorn) the second Sunday, and a
flannelboard version the third (Betty Luken's complete set is WONDERFUL). 
We add games and activities to round out the hour.  If we're doing a
craft, we'll just review the story quickly and move into the craft. 

This program has developed quite a comraderie among our children.  The
older ones love to help the younger children.

Obviously, this wouldn't work for everyone, but if anyone would like more
information or ideas, I'd be glad to share!  And I'm always happy to
receive ideas, too!

Sharon Anderson
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church
Adair, Iowa

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12) Rotation Syllabus

We are just ending our third year of the Rotation method of teaching. We
have age 4-grade 2, grade 3 and 4, and grade 5,6,7 class divisions. I have
a 6 year schedule which takes in 60 of the major bible stories. I keep and
store all the lessons and smaller props so that theoretically they can be
used again when we start all over again in three years. Some stories can
repeated within a schedule for example we studied Moses and the Exodus as
one rotation, but have visited that story several times in studying
Passover and communion.

What I like about rotation is that, yes, I do put a lot of work into one
class, but that class is taught three times that month. Whereas before I
put a lot of work into a class and taught it once and as you say, never
saw it again. If the rotation method stands the test of time we WILL want
to repeat the 6 year cycle again in three years and this time all the
lesson will already be there. A little tweaking may have to be done, but
basically the majority of the work will have been done already.

What I like about a 6 year cycle is that a child who enters at age 4 will
repeat some of the stories in the last years of his time with us. But he
will be more mature and will get different things out of them.

Maybe you could help me understand the benefits of having a separate
syllabus for each grade rather than the group as a whole. To me it seems
like MORE work to plan a totally separate lesson plan for each of the
different grades, but I am always open to new ways of looking at planning.


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13) Repeating Rotation

It is always a rule of thumb that if you had 1st – 6th graders in rotation
that you would be on a 6 year cycle and repeat the Bible stories every six
years, that way they get the lesson once each 6 years. If you had a 5 week
rotation, same thing, 5 year rotation through stories.

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14) Repeating Rotation

on rotation sunday school, our church is working on this right now. we
plan to start 2006-2007 school year. we are writing our material to be
repeated every six years we are doing 8 stations, so each lesson is done
for 4 weeks.
each sunday the children would go to two different stations. if you were
doing the story for the four weeks you might use tweek it for the
different ages, same for the crafts etc. i was very against rotation but
after a seminar training event at another church i really have changed my
mind and am very exceited. there is some awesome web sites out there as
well.. Brenda

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15) Kids Out of Control

Dear Ann:

Be ENCOURAGED IN THE LORD. I began working in youth ministry three years
ago with the 6-12 year olds. Each year I learn some new big thing about
the kids. The first year was ALL about setting boundaries and standards
between child and teacher.

First - setting standards had a much deep impact on kids. For instance,
our ongoing rule is that if a child is disruptive, and it's effecting the
whole class, that child has to leave class and sit with the parent. We had
one child whom had to sit with his mom for a month! Now, he's one of my
most energetic and lively obedient kids! Thee was also a time some of the
kids had problems with respect and obedience. So, to curb this habit I
took away their game priviledges anywhere from one week to a month! This
may sound harsh (I certainly thought so. I felt like the bad guy), but the
enemy didn't want me to teach the kids discipline and obedience because
that would pull them closer to God! So...I continued on. And none of the
kids hated me for it; they may have been upset for a while, but they
quickly forgot!

Second - parents are key. I honestly got tired of telling parents that
their child was being disruptive. So, I brought the question to the rest
of the Youth Ministry. And here's what we did. It worked so well that we
only had to do it once. I believe the word got out and no parent wanted it
to happen to them. When the child was being disruptive and the rest of the
class decided to join in, I left the classroom. As I walked down the
hallway I heard them getting louder and louder in the room. But when I
came back there was drop dead silence! The young man who was being
disruptive was embarrassed to see that I had pulled his mother out of
CHILD!!! Mom was not too happy that she had to miss the word, but everyone
got the point from them on.

But I can safely say, Ann...things are much much better. The kids still
have their moments, and that's okay because they're kids. And, I'm always
patient with them because I know they need to be constantly reminded that
bad behavior will not be tolerated. And my age group is enormously silly,
active and energetic. I make sure class is always full of fun so there is
no opportunity for disruption..other than when nature calls! This is a
generation that is being told by society they can do anything they want
and not face consequences. So, Ann...pray and seek the cousel of others to
help you find creative solutions to reaccuring disciplinary problems. But
no matter how you discipline the children...always tell them because you
love them, you discipline them!

Andrea :-)

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