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SSTN # 76 - August 23, 2004

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Curriculum for Fall Session

1) Songs in sign language
2) Jesus' Ascension?
3) Children's day at church
4) Children's day at church

"His Name Shall Be Called..."

5) Songs in sign language
6) Songs in sign language
7) Children's day at church
8) Songs in sign language

"Spirit Gifts...An Introduction For Children"

9) Right VBS Date
10) Right VBS Date
11) Right VBS Date
12) Children's Day
13) Construction VBS?
14) Odd Dinner Menu

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--> Curriculum for Fall Session *

What will you be teaching this Fall? Why not choose from one of the
"Hands On Lessons of the Bible" (for Kindergarten - 5th grade)? They are easy to
implement and are great for midweek lessons. They can be incorporated into
rotation-type programs too!

Available at:   http://www.christiancrafters.com/curriculum.html   

* All sales help to support SSTN and ChristianCrafters.Com.

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1)  Songs in sign language

>I have seen in the past where the youth will perfrom a
>song in sign language. Where can I find information as to
>how to learn and teach this to our youth?

I have picked up a some sign language from a friend that is deaf and
assisted in a hearing impaired room as a TA but, for Christian words for
songs at church the most luck I had was the Library....there is a sign
language book for Christian sign ....which can be a little different then
the usual meaning of a word

example: Jesus Lover of my soul.....signed out in Regular sign language
the word "Lover" would be the wrong version....just like in other language
translations can have the wrong meaning....if you were to have a deaf
person around you wouldn't want them offended by the wrong use of a
sign....So I suggest you look into books that are geared towards sign
language in Worship.

Most words are the same however there are some that would be wrongly

Most of the books available in Libraries are well illustrated of the
proper hand motions etc....

hope this helps

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2) Jesus' Ascension?

Could you help me in finding a story for all ages on the Ascension of
Jesus to Heaven from Acts 1: 1-11.  Our Bible verse is John 14:2.  Also
where could I go to find some music, mainly choruses.  Thanks for your

--from SSTN: check out the "Jesus Ascending Mini-Movie" craft at:

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3) Children's day at church

As for your children's day in church, Our Sunday school children's day is
in Sept. What we do is have them Hand out stickers for
a. Birthdays in the weeks that was pass.
b. Wedding Anniversary stickers.
c. Welcome Stickers.
d. A skit that they can mime while you read the scripture.
e. Kids actions songs.

You could also teach them a welcome song that they can sing to welcome the

Wishing you a blessed day
Hope Awood
Calvynist Protestant Church
Cape Town, South Africa.

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4) Children's day at church

For Karen:
I have seen several different churches do actual children's days, or even
teen days, where the kids run the entire service.  I think the best way
the services work in this respect, is where everything doesn't rely fully
on the kids, but allows the kids to take a major part.  Consider having
someone from your church - a teacher or assistant or teen - sing a song
about children and have the kids sit around them on the stage (Twila Paris
has some great songs about kids).  Have the kids pick the songs for the
congregation to sing.  They may pick hymns or even fun kids songs like
"Zaccheus was a Wee Little Man" or "Only a Boy Named David".  You'd be
surprised at how much fun adults have in singing old kids songs,
especially when they have actions with them.  The best website I've found
for song links is from the MSSS website: 
http://mssscrafts.com/drama_music/musiclinks.htm.  Use an overhead
projector for the words and you'll have more participation.  I'm kind of
surprised that your pastor has asked your group to do everything including
the sermon.  If I was in this situation, I would do a regular lesson for
the kids and give the adults a chance to hear what the kids are learning. 
Have the kids sit in the front pew of the church and be sure you have an
adult sit with them so they are sure to be on their best behavior.  Since
you have a small group, you'll obviously be doing most of the leading, but
you'll have plenty to do - opening prayer, songs, lesson, and maybe do
other things like saying the pledge of allegiance, pledge to the Bible,
and pledge to the Christian flag.  But most importantly, I'd discuss your
concerns with your pastor and make sure that you know exactly what he
expects from you.  At least you have lots of time to plan.  Best of luck. 
In Christ, Elizabeth

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--> "His Name Shall Be Called..."

The God of the Old and New Testament is known by many names. These names
help us to understand his nature and reputation. They define him as
Protector, Defender, Friend, Advisor, Judge, and Savior to name just a
few. The Third Commandment says, "Do Not Misuse God’s Name". It is my
desire that this study will help you to teach respect and honor for God to
the children in your ministry. Free USA shipping!

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

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5) Songs in sign language

There are some excellent books out there on sign language for church.  One
is called
"Signing at Sunday School" and the other "Signing at Church"  distributed
by Garlic Press. The Sunday School book has many popular songs for
kids; both offer illustrations and are reasonably priced. They can be
found in many bookstores.

--from SSTN:  Type the titles into the search box to locate them at:

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6) Songs in sign language

>I have seen in the past where the youth will perfrom a
>song in sign language. Where can I find information as to

"With Heart and Hands and Voices" shows sign language to about 20
familiar songs. I purchased it some time ago and it's been quite helpful. They also have
some others which you might like.

Cayman Islands

--from SSTN: you can find this book in our bookstore. Type the title into
the search box to locate it:

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7) Children's day at church

> Hi, In october our children's sunday school  class is supposed to do the
> church service!!!!

Here are a few suggestions:
Kids could do some of the regular reading in the church's service (the
reading,the call to worship etc.)
For the sermon (if you're asked to do that) you could do a Sunday School
lesson complete with flannel graph, or puppets or whatever you want to

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8) Songs in sign language

Two suggestions for you. First, contact your denomination head office. I
contacted the LCMS Deaf Missions and they sent me tapes that taught bible
songs in sign which we have used with our children. Also, there is a
computer program out their that you type in what you want to say and they
sign it for you. I have used this a lot! Email me at nfsheltie@comcast.net
for more info.

SKC Director

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--> Spirit Gifts...An Introduction For Children

An inspirational midweek program that contains a variety of fun lessons,
crafts, and games to teach the children in your ministry about the
following Spirit-filled Gifts:

To learn more, visit this webpage:

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9) Right VBS Date

First of all, Praise God for your faithfulness and dedication to getting
VBS off the ground and growing.

In our area there are two VBS programs close to home and a few others not
too far away.  We generally participate in the VBS at the church where my
children attended preschool because of calendar conflicts with the
program offered at our church.  Both churches tend to offer their
programs the same week each year (4th wk June and 2nd wk July).  I think
that this is important because if people know that you are the 3rd week
of June each year or whenever, they will "get it" in two to three years,
and you will not be "competing" with sister churches.

Also, our church holds VBS in the afternoons instead of the morning so as
not to compete with swim team workouts (very popular here).  Our kids get
out of school at the end of the 2nd week in June.  The program we attend
the 4th week of June is very successful and has grown every year for the
last 15 years.

Which of the weeks that you've tried was the most successful?  Easiest
for teachers to plan?  Had the most participants?  Could you brainstorm
with some of the solid volunteers?

Good luck, and don't give up!

Rom 5:3-5

Kim in California

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10) Right VBS Date

Not everyone can go on a vacation. Have you tried opening your VBS up to
your local community? Place banners in front of your church advertising
your event several weeks before your opening date. This ususally draws
more kids than we can handle. You might even have to cut off registration.

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11) Right VBS Date

I'm not sure there is a "right date". Ours is usually in June, with the
week for juniors planned to not coincide with the week most of them go to
church camp, but there are always some people on vacation/in summer
school/at camp. Another church I'm familiar with does theirs in August -
again, there are always some people busy. And some people may have their
vacation times dictated to them by their employer (like a major employer
in a nearby city), so no matter how far ahead you schedule, they would be
in their vacation time.
Maybe a different time frame would make a difference : like if you always
have it in the morning, try evening. But again, there will still be some
people who don't make it.
I know you want to see growth, and I can sense your enthusiasm for
providing this experience for the children, but we can't make people do
things, even good things, even things they know about well in advance!
Just looking at the group I work with in church (4-6 year olds) : we meet
on Sunday morning, which should be in everyone's schedule, but out of 60
kids on my roll last year, the most I had at one time was 42 (usually
30-35) and only 1 child had perfect attendance for the year. Families have
lots of things to do (visit out-of-town friends and relatives, other
interests besides church - sports, hobbies, etc., ) and have to make
choices, and while we might prefer that they choose church or VBS or AWANA
or whatever, some won't.  We can provide good and interesting programs,
but it's up to Mom and Dad to make the decisions for their families. 
I hope this doesn't sound too discouraging to you - I don't mean to come
across that way. But having served in various children's ministries for
about 30 years, I've seen that no matter what you do, you can't make
everyone happy, and no matter how good the program or event is, some
people won't come - and we can't make them! Maybe this reminder from a
friend (yes, I needed it!) will help you : instead of worrying about those
who don't come or how few you have, thank God for the ones who are there
and do your best to love and teach them.
Linda in Ohio

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12) Children's Day

In response to Karen regarding what the children can do. Our church has
started a flag and banner team for our children ages 4 to 12.  You can
purchase small pole flags and wrist flags inexpensively from Oriental
Imports (a set of 6 for $9.95 and $5.95 respectively).  The children are
taught how to raise and wave the flags in time with the music.  This is a
very lovely and sometimes tearful sight to see and the congregation loves
to see the children worship the Lord.  It not only teaches them
discipline, but also the importance of worship.
Midland City, AL

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13) Construction VBS?

We combine churches to do our VBS.  This year, we decided to buy a VBS to
use for the fall for just our church- something different.  We purchased
Construction, Inc. and now are having a hard time finding a lot of
materials and our local bookstore has sent back all they had before we had
a chance to purchase anything else.
Any ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks.  Tons of blessings.

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14) Odd Dinner Menu

in reply to rebecca about the dinner with odd menu
we have done this as a fundraiser and its hilarious
you draw up a menu including knives, forks, spoons,
salt, pepper, sauces, drinks, even the table decorations
jumble them and give the guests the jumbled menu to
choose from one course at a time  some people end up
 with a spoon and no food, others with food but nothing
to eat it with, or maybe a glass of water -causes lots of
laughs but a bit of work for those organising it.
Norma email me if you want a menu norma5@slingshot.co.nz

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