Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Sunday School - January 17, 2020

This week we are heading into the Old Testament to explore the story of Samuel's call from God. 

 

Today's Scripture - Read the NRSV version here: 

1 Sam. 3:1–10 (11–20)

or share the story sheet from this week's lesson



Following the story, here are some questions you can ask: 


Questions after the story: 

  • Who did Samuel help at the temple?

  • When did this happen to Samuel?

  • How many times did God call to Samuel before Samuel knew who it was?

  • Who helped Samuel figure out who was calling his name?

  • Why didn’t Samuel recognize that God was calling his name?

  • Why do you think God didn’t give the message directly to Eli?

  • How do you think God gives messages to people today?


Story Activity:  


Things you can do at home!  


Stick Puppets: 

For the children to experience the story in another way use the photo to cut out pictures and attach them to pencils or popsicle sticks and have them act out the story with the puppets.  

Color Pack 14    



Pillow Craft:  The pillow will remind the children that one time they can listen to God is

when they lie down at night. Make fleece pillows, following the directions on Resource

Sheet 2  (No-Sew Pillow). 





Samuel Coloring Sheet 



Storybook to share:

"The Night Gardener" by The Fan Brothers


 



Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Sunday School - January 10, 2021

We begin the new year by sharing the story of Jesus's baptism from the Gospel of Mark. 

 To begin exploring the topic of baptism take a look at and discuss the following pictures:

Color pack 11
Sixth’s Baptismal font

Jenny’s Baptism

Questions to ask: 

  • What are the people doing in these pictures?

  • When have you seen a baptism?

  • Have you seen a baptism in our church?

  • Do you know anything about your baptism?



Today's Scripture - Read the NRSV version here: 


or share the story sheet from this week's lesson



Following the story, here are some questions you can ask: 


Questions after the story: 

  • Who baptized Jesus?

  • What did you learn about John the Baptizer in the story? 

  • Where was Jesus baptized?

  • What special thing happened when Jesus was baptized?

  • What was your favorite part of the story?



Story Activity:  


Things you can do at home!


Paper bag puppets - Make puppets out of paper bags to illustrate the story. Ask kids to e them make puppets for John, Jesus, and other parts of the story. Put on a puppet show for their telling and describing the story.







Dove craft 


Coloring Sheet




Story book to share:

"The Rain Came Down" by David Shannon 





 





Friday, December 18, 2020

Sunday School - December 20, 27, and Jan. 3

 Hello! We are taking a break from our Sunday school zoom sessions for the remainder of the year. Sunday school zoom sessions for preschool - 6th grade will resume at 10 a.m. on January 10.  Link to the session will be sent via email.  Please email me at Jennyrunew@gmail.com if you need a resend. 

In the meantime! Light your Advent Candles! We light the peace candle on Dec. 20 and the Christ Candle on Dec. 24.  Videos and coloring sheets below: 








 














Below are Sunday school scriptures, stories, and activities for Dec. 20- Jan3. Share them with your family! Also, visit the church website to watch our weekly worship and Christmas Eve services together! 

December 20 


 

Questions you can ask after sharing the story and picture: 
  • Who was the surprise visitor?
  • What part of the story is shown in this picture?
  • What made Mary feel differently about Gabriel?
  • What special thing did God select Mary to do?
  • What might God select you to do?
Story Activities:
Angel Ornament: 
The children can be messengers of God’s love. Use the angel ornament template to cut out an angel from thick paper or cardstock. Don't forget to cut out the sections inside the Angel! Cut tissue paper slightly larger than the open sections to glue on the back of one of the angels. Glue or tape a ribbon hanger to the top of the angel. Glue the other angel to the back. Children can print a Christmas message of God’s love on the angel. Suggest that they think of someone who would like this ornament with a message of God’s love.

Christmas Prayer:
One way children can explore what God wants them to do is to pray with their families. Talk with your family about prayer and write a Christmas prayer together. 


December 27 

 

Questions you can ask after sharing the story and picture: 
  • Who are the people in this picture?
  • What do you think each one is saying?
  • How do you think each person is feeling?
  • Who tells good news in this story?
Story Activities:

Candleholders: 
The children will make candleholders for votive candles as a reminder of Jesus and that they are included in the church.  Follow the steps on the activity sheet. As the children work, talk with them about the welcome Jesus received at the temple and how they are welcomed at the church. Place a small piece of masking tape on the bottom of each candleholder on which to write the child’s name. Set the completed candleholders somewhere in your house where you can see them daily and light them to see the effect of light through
the tissue paper.


Make a treat to share:
Children usually recognize adults who are welcoming at the church and in their neighborhood. Ask the children who they know at church and in their neighborhood other than their family members. Ask: "How do these people make you feel welcome?"  When they have identified who and what makes them feel welcome, suggest that they make a gift for some of those people. Make the treat using the recipe below and cut out the gift tags. (You can add the word "neighborhood" to the gift tag.) Have the children add the names of the recipients and their names and tape the tags to the bags of mix. 





January 3: 
Short Sheet




Share this picture in which the artist has shown the birth of Jesus in a very different way.  The stories about Jesus from Luke and Matthew are much clearer than the story about Jesus in the Gospel of John. Invite children to look closely at the first picture and see if they can find baby Jesus along with Mary and Joseph. Take a look together at the second picture and discuss what you see. 

Questions you can ask after sharing the story and pictures : 

What good news does John want you to know about Jesus?
What does John want you to know about Jesus and God?
How does this story make you feel about Jesus and God?
How does the second photograph remind you of John’s explanation for Jesus as light?
What good things come from the light?

Story Activities:

Paper Lanterns: 
These lanterns will remind the children that Jesus is light and they live
in Christ’s light. Have each child select a sheet of colored construction paper and fold it
in half lengthwise, making a sharp crease. Use scissors to cut slits on the
folded edge about 1" from the edges and about 1/2" apart. Have them unfold the paper
and write these words along the bottom and top with markers: Jesus is light. We live
in Jesus’ light. The lanterns can also be decorated with glitter glue or shiny sequins
of various sizes. Staple the short ends together to make the lantern. Punch two holes
opposite each other in the top. Thread a pipe cleaner through the holes and bend to
make a handle.


Heart Prayer:
This prayer will help children continue to ponder and wonder about Jesus
and God. It is more appropriate for children who can read the words on their own.
Recall that John wrote that we can know more about God through Jesus and that Jesus
gives us grace, a love bigger than we can imagine. Ask: How does it feel to know that love from Jesus is that big? Read the directions together and draw or write ways they can do as a child of God in Jesus’ light.












Monday, December 7, 2020

Sunday School - December 13, 2020


We begin the third week of Advent by hearing more words of the prophet Isaiah. We will also read scripture from the  Gospel of Luke know as Mary's Song. This passage is Mary's response to God. 

If you have an Advent wreath at home light the first, second, and third candle.  This week's candle is known as the "Joy" candle.  (Any kind of candle will work!)





Activity/Coloring Sheets :


download coloring sheet here  





Today's Scripture - Read the NRSV version here: 


Luke 1:46b–55


or share the story sheet from this week's lesson



Following the story, here are some questions you can ask: 


Why were the people sad at the beginning of the story?

What did they ask God?

 How did God answer them?

What good things were in God’s plan for the future?


Story Activity:  Creating your own Nativity Scene. If you have one, you can use it. If the figurines are removable start with an empty Creche or stable structure and discuss all the participants in the story as you place them. If you don't have one - create your own! Use anything you have around boxes, action figures, etc, and create your own representation of the Nativity scene.


Watch this video for some history and inspiration:




More things to share:


Storybook about waiting:





A creative telling of the Nativity Story by Kids:






Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Sunday School - December 6, 2020

 We begin the second week of Advent by hearing more words of the prophet Isaiah. We will also read scripture from the beginning of the Gospel of Mark that tells the story of John the Baptist as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus. 

If you have an Advent wreath at home light the first and second candle. 
(Any kind of candle will work!)




Activity/Coloring Sheets :


download coloring sheet here


download coloring sheet here  

 



Today's Scripture - Read the NRSV version here: 

or share the story sheet from this week's lesson

Here is some background to explain if needed:

Isaiah was a prophet of God during a time when the Israelites, the people of God, were taken to another country and forced to stay there. The verses from Isaiah in the previous session, near the end of the book, are a lament, a crying out in great sorrow and sadness referring to what they found when they returned to Jerusalem.

Following the story, here are some questions you can ask: 

How did the people of Israel feel at the beginning of the story? How did they feel at the end? What helped them change? How did this change bring them peace?

Story Activity :

Sheep Craft Activity: 

These sheep with words from Isaiah will remind the children during the

week of a strong, comforting God. Give each child an 8" round paper doily. Kids can also use a regular piece of paper cut into a circle and folded in half. A coffee filter also works, too!  Have the children color the heads and legs for their sheep and cut them out, along with the verse. After they glue the head and legs to their doilies to make the sheep, they can glue the Bible verse on the sheep.


download craft template here



Additional Scripture:  Read Mark 1: 1-8 which tells about John The Baptist.

  Remember that John was born to Elizabeth, Mary’s Cousin.

and they celebrated their pregnancies together.

John was sent to tell the world that Jesus was coming and was the person that baptized Jesus.  We will be reading through the Gospel of Mark during this church year. This Gospel starts with the story of John the Baptist and begins with Jesus being baptized


Here are a few videos that tell the story of John the Baptist:















 Here are some link to storybooks about getting ready and preparing:




"Monkey Not Ready for Kindergarten" 




 


"Come on Rain"



Monday, November 23, 2020

Sunday School - November 29, 2020

We begin the first week of Advent by hearing the words of the prophet Isaiah.  If you have an Advent wreath at home light the first candle. (Any kind of candle will work!)



The First Week of Advent 


Read the NRSV version here: 

or share the story sheet from this week's lesson

Following the story, here are some questions you can ask: 

Why were the Israelites so sad?

What did Isaiah say to God?

How do you think he sounded?


Story Activity :

Have kids find some play-doh or molding clay or anything like it you have at home. Share the photo below.  Suggest that they work with the play duh as you talk together. Ask them to notice the potter’s hands on the clay. The potter learns exactly how much pressure to put on the clay at various times in molding the object. 


download photo here

Ask:

How might this play duh that you are molding be like God molding us? How difficult is it to change what you are making? What do you think Isaiah is praying in the verse I just read about the potter? How might you use Advent time to think about how God is molding you?


Advent Activities: 

download star instructions here


download coloring sheet here




Advent 2020

Download Calendar Here 
I’ve been sorting through Advent calendars and devotionals to send out for families to use at home. As I look through all the possibilities, I am getting overwhelmed and think that perhaps the best thing we can do for ourselves this year is to keep things simple.  We are zoomed out. We are frustrated with having to print this document, download that, and log in there.  As we approach Advent this year, I am personally drawn into the idea of slowing things down and participating in the waiting. I am going to revisit the book called “Learning to Walk in the Dark” by Barbara Brown Taylor and embrace the darkness.   

There are also two phrases I have been thinking about recently that I will try to use as a guide during this Advent season, and maybe they will be meaningful for your family as well.

Take your time.

What works?

Both sentences come from my friend and former first-grade teacher, Mr. Nyswaner.  “Take your time!” was his mantra to the class as we were practicing reading and writing.  I hear him say that often in my head when realizing I have been making silly mistakes and forgetting things because I am in a hurry to get something done.  (Side note: I also remember that he would promise us that if we were good listeners and were taking our time with our work, he would reward us by doing a headstand on Fridays.)  Over the years I have called Mr. Nyswaner for guidance on working with kids and parents.  In one extremely helpful conversation about managing disruptive behavior, he told me to stop asking parents what they “do” at home and start asking parents what “works” at home. Always focus on what works, he said.  

This year I am sending out a choose your own adventure-themed Advent calendar. The idea is to light a candle together with your family on the Sundays in Advent and then chose from a list of suggested ideas throughout the week or create your own. Or not! The idea is to take your time this advent season and focus and embrace what is working. What is bringing your family joy and comfort? When you identify those things focus on them – and do more of that!  

For those of you that may want to lean into Advent a little more, I am also sending a weekly Advent devotional and coloring sheets (for kids and grownups!) created by Illustrated Ministry. Due to copyright restrictions, they are now available for us to post and download. If you haven't received an Advent calendar or devotional in the mail please let me know if you would like one or additional copies of the coloring sheets or the devotional to share. I will mail them out! 


Peace and Blessings to you all as we end this crazy year. I can’t wait until we can all be safely worshiping together again!