Hi Godly Play Teachers!
Welcome to the Ark and the Tent, the Godly Play story scheduled for this Sunday, Sept. 29, based on Exodus 25-31, 35-40.
Children always get so excited about this story. They love the little
pieces belonging to the tent, I think partly because each piece comes
with a tradition. We all know how kids LOVE traditions--knowing the
proper way to do things and the reasons behind why we do them. Bringing a
sacrifice for the altar, washing at the laver before entering the tent,
burning incense, placing 12 pieces of bread on the table, lighting the
menorah...it all has meaning, centered upon being ready to meet God.
There are different approaches to this lesson that teachers can take. Of
course we can all go through a study of each of the steps of getting
ready and the tools mentioned above to help them get ready. Many
churches still use several of these today. Are there any that we use?
Are there new ones not included with the tent?
We can also think about how we get ready to do different things in our
lives--to go places that are important to us, for example. How do we
get ready to hear our Godly Play stories? Why is that important? How do
we get ready to be with God? What do we do? How exactly do the routines
we do help us get ready? Can we practice getting ready to be with God
when we're at home too? How would we do that?
One thing that the Godly Play script doesn't highlight which you may
want to include is the idea that all the people of God were invited to
give something of their own to creating the tent of meeting--not just
jewelry or fabric or wood, but their own craftsmanship. It was created
by the people of God, for God.
Ideas for Activity Time
This story is practically BURSTING with ideas for little hands--and big ones too!
I can easily see the activity time for this story beginning this Sunday,
but continuing at least one other Sunday. Soon we'll do the Ark and the
Temple, so the work could easily continue with that story too.
Here are some that I came up with to add to your own. (And please, do feel free to write a comment to share your own ideas!)
Children might like to make their own collection of getting ready
pieces like a menorah, an incense holder, a laver, an ark. They could
make tiny pieces with clay or boxes or pieces of wood or whatever
materials we have.
Or they could spend more time on making individual pieces. The menorahs above are made from a big clay "worm" in which popsickle sticks (which have been colored with crayons) are inserted. Sequins and beads have also been pressed into the clay.
Here are some websites with more great ideas and directions:
How to make a potato menorah:
How to make a menorah from clay:
Of course our children will come up with more creative ideas than we can!
Some things to ask them:
How could we make a laver?
What do we have in our classroom which might make a good altar?
A table for the 12 slices of bread?
An ark of the covenant? How about decorating a box with gold wrapping paper for the ark?
(Wouldn't it be fun to light some incense and see what it smells like?)
If we're going to make all those pieces, why not make a tent of meeting in which to put them?
A table turned on its side could give us the framework.
There are a few tablecloths folded up in the art supply room to serve as the tent fabric.
Once the tent is made, we could put all the pieces we created inside it. How would we separate the Holy of Holies?
There's so much to think about. I can't wait to see what your classes
create! If you take photos, please share them with me. I'd love to add
them to the parent newsletter!
Have fun, y'all!