Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Story of Moses: The Beginning

Hi Godly Play Teachers,
Welcome to our lesson for Sept 2, The Story of Moses, found in Exodus 1:8-17:7, 19:1- 40:38. The script is adapted from the story found in the pink Enrichment Presentations for Fall book, p.58-65.  Sunday school teachers, I've emailed you a copy of the adapted script. If you'd like a copy, feel free to email me and I'll try to send it out to you.

What an exciting story- and one children always love. Perhaps as we think about Moses' humble beginning, our children will reflect on their own beginnings and know that they can be used by God to do great things for God's kingdom as well. Most all of us can identify with not feeling up to the task or equipped to serve God. Moses' story shows that willingness is all that it takes, that God will take care of the rest.

The timing of this story works well too with our story schedule, since we just shared the lesson of Joseph and will cover the Exodus story next. This adapted script ends right before Moses goes to talk with the Pharaoh, so the Exodus story can be shared as written in its Godly Play script. Be sure to end this story helping the children enjoy the suspense for next week's lesson. It would be wonderful for them to go home asking what happens next, and reflecting on the story of the day.

Here are the wondering questions:

1.       I wonder what was your favorite part of today’s story?
2.       I wonder what was the most important part?
3.       I wonder if Moses ever made bad choices.  I wonder if God can use people who sometimes make mistakes.
4.       I wonder how Moses felt when God told him that God wanted Moses to set the people free from slavery.
5.       I wonder what Moses did to get ready to speak to the Pharaoh about setting the people free.

What fun the children will have in our Make A Gift for God Time!

Here are some ideas to get the children started in planning their work:

1. Children can recreate the Moses in the Reeds scene, as shown here. (Scroll down to the part showing Moses in an Egg Carton Cup) Children can make their own basket and baby Moses using an a cup cut from an egg carton- and whatever they like to make Moses (paper or a cotton ball for a head, felt for a blanket, etc). Blue construction paper could be the river and green for the reeds. They could even make the rest of the materials in the Godly Play story basket: a paper chain, a shepherd's crook, the burning bush.
So that they get more invested in their work, allow them to make as many choices as to how they create the scene as possible.
Be sure to take photos of their work! :)

 2. What would the burning bush look like? Children can use their imaginations to recreate it with tissue paper or other materials. Look here for another way to represent it.

3. Younger kids (2nd grade?) would LOVE using a water table and setting up the scene with baby baskets and reeds as shown on this precious blog, here. Really! Check it out! You'll want to join in the fun if you take a look! I'LL HAVE A WATER TABLE ON HAND. Let me know if you want to use it.

4. Older children might enjoy videoing a news reporter, interviewing bystanders who've observed different parts of Moses' life first hand. Children could even set it in modern times, if they wanted to. (How would it be different if it happened today?) My camera will be in the drawer. Be sure to video!

Thanks, y'all!
Love, Becky

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Story of Joseph

Hi Godly Play Teachers, Welcome to our lesson for August 26, The Story of Joseph, found in Genesis 37:1-31 and 49:1-6. (The script is found in the pink Enrichment Presentations for Fall book, p.51-57.)

Since we just presented the Story of Jacob last week, this is the perfect time to talk about Jacob's son Joseph.  This story will help the children answer the question of how the people of God moved to Egypt and became slaves--which will help the Moses story and the Exodus story make more sense.

I'm sure that the children will find many parts of the story interesting- like the idea of Joseph being the favorite son, the sibling rivalry between the brothers, the enslavement and imprisonment of Joseph, the idea that dreams mean something, and the repairing of the relationship between Joseph and his brothers.

Ideas for our Make A Gift for God Time:
Remember that the activity will mean more to the children the more choices they have in how they decide what "work" to do and how they will accomplish it.
Children could recreate the story in some way.
1. Children could make a coat of many colors.
          There are lots of ways they could do this. Several are described here.
2. You could let the children pick scenes from Joseph's life to draw out and put them together to   make a mural of the different scenes. You could include in these the dreams he interpreted.
 3. Kids could make Egyptian costume pieces and act out parts of the story. Costume pieces are shown here.
4. You could also help the children explore what God is teaching us through Joseph's story--how he mends his relationship with his brothers, despite everything, how he remains faithful to God in the middle of his troubles, and how God uses Joseph throughout his life. Could the children sketch and then paint with water colors ( or use marker or crayon) the scene of Joseph reuniting with his brothers? Maybe this could be a class project.
5. Don't forget that one choice for a child's work can always be to retell the story (using the materials that the teacher used) to another child. They love to handle the materials themselves and can use the laminated card to check themselves, to make sure they include all the parts of the story.

Hope these ideas help!
Love, Becky

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Story of Jacob

Hi Godly Play Teachers,
Welcome to our lesson for August 19, The Story of Jacob, found in Genesis 25-33,35. (The script is found in the pink Enrichment Presentations for Fall book, p.44-50.)
What a perfect time to present this story. When we finished last week's story, The Great Family, Isaac and Rebekah were married, Abraham died, and we shared that Isaac and Rebekah had children-who had children, who had children, etc. So who were their children? We can pick up right here with the Story of Jacob, ending with the formation of the 12 tribes of the Great Family, Israel.

As you know, we have two purchased sets of this story. I've made up three more sets, so each class will have a set of their own to use on Sunday. It will be in your room.

Jacob's story is so rich with topics that children will want to explore, like sibling relationships, fairness and trickery, making choices, what is a blessing, the idea of wrestling with God. Hopefully there will be plenty of time in your wondering time to hear their thoughts on these and to help them explore their own ideas.

Ideas for their Give a Gift to God Time
1. Recreate some of the story materials so that the children can tell the story themselves at home.
A bowl can easily be made out of quick dry clay, a ladder could be made from popsickle sticks, veils from netting. Children can come up with their own ideas of how to make the objects if they have access to materials.

2. Act out the story!
Our children LOVE doing this. Why not break the story into scenes and let the children act them out? Simple props could be a bowl, the animal skin from the story basket, and netting for a veil (I'll have some in the resource room.) I'll have my camera ready to borrow to video if you like.

3. Make a Jacob's ladder snack out of marshmallows, pretzels and marshmallow cream, as described here Yum!

4. Teach the children how do to Jacob's ladder with a piece of string, as shown in this video. While you're practicing, talk about what the dream meant.
Thank you for all you do!
Love, Becky

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Great Family

Hi Godly Play Teachers,
Welcome to our lesson for August 12, The Great Family, found in Genesis 12-15, 24. (Script is found in the yellow Fall book, p.57-64.)

What a wonderful lesson, to learn that we are all descendants of God's great family, and that God is with us no matter where we go. The wondering questions are at the end of the script. I'll be especially curious to hear how the children respond to the wondering question, "I wonder where you are in the story or what part of the story is about you?"

Idea Starters for the Give a Gift to God Time:
1. Stars! Check out these GORGEOUS stars shown here, which would be easy for all ages to make. Children could write on the other side a Bible verse from this story, perhaps Genesis 15:5 " See the many stars. There are so many you cannot count them. Your family will be like that.”

2. The beginnings of the great family: make Sarah and Abraham and Isaac out of play clay or clothespins. Or make finger puppets of the family.

3. Each child individually- or all children together- could make a drawing of their part of the great family-- their birth family and church family, all on one piece of butcher paper.

4.Sand drawings or sand art - to remember the desert in the story. Make a simple drawing- or the child's name written in cursive- and cover the lines with glue, (I have new glue bottles in my office)  then sift colored sand over the glue. The glue will stick to the sand. Children could also include names of others in their family.

5. Act out the story: Abram and Sarai walking toward Haran, sleeping in their tent, walking along the Euphrates, Abram being with God and knowing God wanted them to move on, Abram building an altar in Shechem and then in Bethel and Hebron, God's promise to Abram, Sarah hearing she would have a son and laughing, Isaac and Rebekah.

6. Make a door hanger to commemorate Abram and Sarai's willingness to go where God led them. You could use 1 John 5:3: This Is Love for God:to Obey His Commands.

7. Let children who wish to make a map of the area of the story.

Love, Becky