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SSTN # 91 - October 13, 2004

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1) David Spares Saul's Life Preschool Craft
2) Teacher appreciation gift idea
3) Praise streamers
4) Rally day

--> Amazing Miracles of the Bible

5) Children in the Sanctuary
6) Un-Halloween Book
7) Operation Christmas Child
8) Unused Sunday School Resources

Instant Christmas Plays

9) Decorating Walls
10) Birthday Party for Jesus
11) Decorating Walls
12) Alternative Halloween Ideas

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1) David Spares Saul's Life Preschool Craft

I thought a cute idea would be to give each child a small patch of
material and let them decorate them with fabric paint. You could then punch holes
along the edges and tie them all together to form a "mercy quilt" to
display on the bulletin board.


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2) Teacher appreciation gift idea

I just received a teacher appreciation gift I'd like to share with you. 
It really surprised me, and I think I'll hot glue it to a plaque and put
it on my wall at home.  When I get tired or otherwise, it will remind me.
A soup spoon was tied with a ribbon to a card with the following message:
All silverware is made to serve, but different pieces sere in different
Knives:  cut, shop, dice, slice
Forks:  stab
Spoons:  hold and cradle those delicate and not yet formed items
Spoons say, "Here, let me help you.  We can manage together."
Thank you for being one of the "spoons" of ___.  The children, teens, and
adults are being ministered to each week because they are delicate gifts
of God.  Everyday in the world they get stabbed and chopped up.  Each week
we are able to hold and cradle them with God's Love because of you.
Vicki Logan, Indiana

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3) Praise streamers

>When I made praise streamers with my pre school class we used chopsticks
>that were donated from a local restaurant and glued streamers to them. It
>worked very well. Mary

Hi  Mary,
I am Anne Liew from Malaysia . I am presently teaching 8 year old kids . I
just want to share with you that i did a similar craft with my students
and that they also  enjoyed this craft tremendously.
Instead of praise  streamers , i did a prayer request streamer , which
they could take home and hang it some place where they would be reminded
to say their prayer request to Jesus everyday.
This was what I told them to do. Each kid was told to write their own
personal prayer request with a  black marker pen onto a  3 feet long
coloured paper ribbon ( they could choose any colour that they fancy )  ,
and then staple  the ribbon ( with the written prayer )  onto  one end of
a wooden Japanese chopstick .
The kids were encouraged to write anything that they would like Jesus to
help them to do  .This craft was in relation to the Bible story about
Jesus obeying his parents  ( Luke 2 ) . The kids were told that Jesus set
the example of obeying his parents when he was a child , and that Jesus
expect every kid to follow his example. The kids were then taught that
Jesus had the power to help them be like Him , and that they could ask Him
for His help by praying to Him. . To start them off, I discussed a couple
of prayer requests that they could say to Jesus. Then, I left them to
write their own personal prayer request onto their ribbons.
And amazingly, they had no problem ( except for spelling problems ) with
what they wanted to say to Jesus .  Some  kids wrote, "Dear Jesus, help me
to obey my parents ." Dear Jesus , help me not to  fight with my parents.
, " Dear Jesus, give me the courage to always tell the truth and not lie
to my parents " , " Dear Jesus, help me not to make fun of my friends ."
"Dear Jesus, help me to be kind to Amy eventhough I don't like her " ,   "
Dear Jesus, help me to show respect to my school teachers at all times " ,
"Dear Jesus, teach me to understand what is written in the Bible ."  ,
"Dear Jesus, help me to remember to pray to you everyday ."
I could tell that the kids loved the craft , because  they were excitedly
reading each other's prayer request , and happily waving their prayer
streamers  about in the air, at the end of the class .

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4) Rally day

just thought that I'd let all of you know that our sunday school rally day
went pretty good, we didn't get as many children as we thought we would
but more should becoming as the seaons goes on. the next time i was
supposed to teach i coudln't becuase i was getting over a virual infection


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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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5) Children in the Sanctuary

We have the same concerns in our church (Episcopal) about having children
in the service.  Once a month our children (sunday school age) attend
Children's Church in our parish house chapel (an unused classroom) and
then join the adults for communion.  They learn a lot and are able to ask
questions without disturbing our service. 
As the Sunday School Superintendent I have tried a few ideas, for
instance:  to distribute a children's bulletin.  It worked at times but
obviously didn't last long enough and was too old for toddlers.  Our new
Pastor came up with an idea to hold the attention of little ones attending
our regular service.  He asked me to prepare several inexpensive tote bags
that each family can pick up on the way into church, use during the
service and return.   A visit to the local "dollar store" provided items
to fill the bags, such as coloring books, fun pads and reading books
(religion based, of course), crayons, small  pads of paper, pencils, and
small (noiseless) toys.  Sunday School staff is responsible for upkeep of
the bags and will add more as needed.  The bags are ready for a test run. 
We think he had a great idea and hope it works!
I do like the idea of the cart and the Pastor's word that you mentioned. 
It is very interesting.  After reading your note I think I would also like
to add some children's bulletins and some little cars and possibly stuffed
animals to the bags. 
Thank you for your ideas and hope ours will help someone else.
Gloria B

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6) Un-Halloween Book

>My church will be having a fall festival this Halloween. Any ideas for
>fun, safe, cheap games/activities we could use?

In reply, I would like to suggest the The Un-Halloween Book.  We used this
at our church last year and the kids had a blast and the event was really
easy to set-up for. 

--from SSTN: the Un-Halloween book is available in the Holidays section of
our bookstore:  http://www.christiancrafters.com/bookstore.html 

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7) Operation Christmas Child

I saw a post about Operation Christmas Child and a person who was
wondering about the performance CD.  While I don't have the CD, we have
done some interesting things for different parts of worship that could be
helpful to others.  I am in my fourth year of doing this for our church
and am a full time college student, mother, wife, and community servant,
along with holding down a part time job!  So, needless to say, my mind is
having a hard time coming up with new ideas for this year. 
Could we start a thread on ideas for OCC for worship here?  I would be so
interested in what others have done.  A couple of things we did for short
skits and children time were:
We took a Penny's catalog and cut out pictures of expensive clothes and
shoes people might buy....then a couple of "luxury" items, like an
expensive set of luggage, or a lovely lamp, trying to find things that
might seem excessive to those who have nothing.  Then we used the theme of
the old Master Card commercial.  We stood up and showed the pictures and
said.....A lovely pair of such and such brand knee high women's
boots....$145.00....A pair of "Nike Air" men's
sneakers.....$129.00.....A stunning set of Samsonite "executive"
Then we picked up a prepared OCC box and said:  A small plastic, reusable
box filled with toothpaste, a washcloth, crayons, etc...etc.....PRICELESS.
This visual worked VERY well.  So many people commented on how it played
on how we take so many things for granted and it would be so simple to go
spend a few dollars to put together this box to spread the love of Christ
and follow in his teachings.
Another thing we did for children's time was to have a large laminated map
and we used the information from the packet that told us what countries
the packages go to.  We had the kids volunteer to point out where the
countries were if they knew them and then to place a sticker of a wrapped
gift on each spot on the map.  Then we discussed how many boxes they send
around the world.  I think last year it was about 5 million, and we had
measured the height of the boxes before hand and then determined how many
times those boxes would stack up in our church to the ceiling.   This was
another thing the kids could really visualize and it brought it home to
their own church as well.  They were all clamoring to have their parents
help them put a box together. 
I would love to hear other ideas because after four years, I'm fresh out! 
thank you so much to all of those who dedicate their time and efforts and
hearts to this mission.  Operation Christmas Child is a wonderful program
and every year we wrap a little box to put on our tree, we take it down
first thing Christmas morning and pray for the child or children who
receive the box we have prepared as a family.  It is a blessing to help in
this way.
Yours in Christ,
Beth McGee, NY

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8) Unused Sunday School Resources

There is an organization called Book-Link that sends books, bibles and
resources to many countries  you can contact them at (606)379-2140  
We first heard about them through a story where a pastor in another
just had a few pages of a bible that he used. Your church members probably
have bibles and Christian books on their
bookshelves that seldom get used. This is a great mission project but
costly on the mailing.
They also need teaching pictures- Sunday school material just about

Lynette Story
Broadway Baptist Church

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Instant Christmas Plays

The following easy-to-produce, instant Christmas Plays are available
in our Bookstore-Skits section:

The Mouse's Tale,
Operation Baby King,
The Not-So-Silent Night,
Live From Bethlehem,
Wee Three Kings, and
The Fumbly Bumbly Angels.

For product descriptions, go to the Games & Skits section of the Bookstore


Please remember, by purchasing items from ChristianCrafters.Com,
you help to keep SSTN and the website alive! Tell your friends, won't you?

Thank you!
Your webservant,

Sarah Keith <><

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9) Decorating Walls

Question: We are looking to paint/decorate (permanent) our 1st/2nd grade

In our toddler room, a fruit of the spirit theme was used. A tree was
painted from floor to ceiling and spanned almost the entire wall, (maybe a
foot on the left and right side were not tree). Behind the tree is painted
sky. Then all kinds of plastic, decorative fruit were superglued to the
wall. Each plastic fruit had a fruit of the spirit written on it. The
fruit are high enough that the kids can't reach them to pull them off.

You could use any biblical story and have small three dimensional pieces
coming off the wall, ie baby moses being put into the river painted on the
wall, paint it so that the river itself is in the middle of the wall and
the banks are on the edges of the wall.So you are looking
"downstream".The three dimensional piece could be faux reed or other water
grass plant superglued to the wall at the banks. Noah's ark with
stuffed animals or boat itself made from cardboard as three dimensional,
etc. the ten commandments on tablets, maybe painted plywood nailed to the
wall, raised letters. The prayer in Psalm 23 or Matthew 6 written in the
middle of the wall with illustrations of the parts of the prayer
surrounding it.

One time I had the kids make a scripture quilt. We just hung it in the
sanctuary, but if you have enough kids or enough verses you could cover a
wall or a large portion of a wall. I gave each kid a scripture and a piece
of construction paper. They could decorate their paper however they
wanted as long as the scripture was on there somewhere. Some kids just
wrote the scripture with a marker, some cut the words out of magazines and
did a collage type thing. Some drew an illustration of the scripture and
wrote the words at the bottom. It took maybe 2 or 3 Sundays to
complete. Then I glued all their papers onto a poster board and hung it in
the sanctuary. You could do a theme based on a story, and do a story board
illustration type thing with each square a part of a story, like Esther.(
I found that my kids loved Esther, the girls liked the beautiful women
part and smelling good, etc . and the boys liked the sticking heads on
poles part.)   

Hope these suggestions help!
Amy :)

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10) Birthday Party for Jesus

We are just in the beginning planning stages for our Birthday Party for
Jesus, and I am so excited about it!  So many churches do outreach in the
fall but so few around here do outreach around Christmas.  We are inviting
everyone from the community to our celebration. 
The first thing we are going to do is make party invitations and involve
our older kids and youth in the footwork of passing out the invitations in
surrounding neighborhoods.  The invitations will be your traditional
colorful party invitation, we might ask for a "present" to be a can of
food or something small like that, appreciated but not required.  We are
also going to put these invitations in the bags at our alternative
Halloween celebration.  We want this to be a huge outreach to the
We are going to have an hour and a half of party games at stations so the
kids can just choose what they want to do.  We decided this would be more
time effective than trying to have a strictly organized group.  We know we
are doing pin the tail on the donkey, possibly some balloon games, and
we'll have a craft table where the kids can make Christmas
ornaments. Santa will probably make an appearance at some point.  Near the
end of the activity time we will bring out a cake with candles and sing
happy birthday to Jesus as a group, have our cake and ice cream and then
we have the special treat of a local church doing a puppet show for us.  I
think it will be a wonderful event and I think it will be something the
neighborhood kids will want to participate in!  Hopefully we will then see
some of those families then coming to our church.
I am so excited about this event and feel that it will really help our
growing church become more visible to the community.  We want the
community to really see God at work through this outreach!

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11) Decorating Walls

We used these 2 ideas in the past:
a) had kids put their hand (foot for babies) prints  all over the
walls.  We used stamp pad inks (would suggest using a paint or
something that can be washed).
b) Stenciled verses on the walls.  Found about 20 verses that were
appropriate and stenciled them on the walls.  Also a great way to pray
verses over the children in class.

God bless!

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12) Alternative Halloween Ideas

Our church has a "Fall-A-Bration" each year. The children take bites from
apples hanging from strings (with their hands behind their backs), wrap
each other with rolls of tissue paper (the mummy), and wrap up warm for a
hay ride!  The hay ride is great fun - for the adults, too.  When they
return, there are hot chocolate and hot dogs waiting.  Oh, and we're
blessed to have a place next to the church for a huge bon-fire.  As the
children leave, we hand out "treat bags".  A great alternative to
God Bless,
Janet @ dlp99@earthlink.net

--from SSTN: for more alternatives, check the archives at:

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