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SSTN # 83 - November 1, 2006

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Pilgrim and Indian Finger Puppets

1) Video Cases
2) Golden Calf
3) Nursing Home Craft   
4) Youth Ministry
5) Mission Project

Ornaments of Faith

6) Keeping Their Interest
7) Youth Opposition
8) Rahab Lessons?
9) Family Christmas Traditions?

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Pilgrim and Indian Finger Puppets

This Thanksgiving have your kids act out the first Thanksgiving
using our Pilgrim and Indian Finger Puppets. Check them out at:

(you may need to copy and paste the link to your browser)

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1) Video Cases

Thanks for all the responses I received to my request for video cassette
cases for a Children's Church lesson.  I was able to find a website and
get what I needed, thanks to a suggestion from a reader.

I knew I came to the right place for help!

Cathy Bodell
Frankfort, Michigan'

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2) Golden Calf

Right now you can buy little containers of play dough
as Halloween treats.  They were $1.00 for 6 or sold in a large bag at
discount stores.  I gave each child one container and they made an idol,
then smashed them and they made a symbol of God or Christ, cross, heart,
etc.  They took them home to dry.  You could do this with any home made
dough and could die the dough yellow with lemon jello or food dye.

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3) Nursing Home Craft   

We visit the nursing home every year in February around Valentines Day
because they get so many visitors at Christmas but are usually forgotten
during the later months.   Last year we had the kids make a banner that is
displayed in the meeting room.  We made a craft we got from the
Sundayschoolnetwork.  It was a heart wreath with the words God loves you
on it.  They hung them on the doors.  We sing song the kids learned as
children such as Jesus Loves Me and Jesus Loves the Little Children.  Song
the elderly could sing along to.  It is always a highlight of the kids
year.  They get so much joy out of ministering at the Nursing Home.

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4) Youth Ministry

God has laid it on my heart to start a youth ministry in our area, a place
that's sole purpose is to minister to youth that are hurting and let them
have a place to call their own, a place they can meet on Wed. nights and
be ministered to and learn about Jesus.  I don't want it to affiliated
with any one church group or denomination.  A place they can come to and
learn how to praise God and worship him. A place they can bring their
problems and have them prayed about and leave them with Jesus.  A place
where they can feel loved and learn that Jesus loves them so much that He
died for them.  A place where they can have group discussions with each
other and youth leaders, youth ministers.  A place where they can have
speakers come and tell them how Jesus changed their lives. The youth in
this area are in need of this, crystal meth has took over a lot of lives
in this area. I need everyone to pray for this ministry and for God to
tell me how to proceed. Any ideas anyone might have I would certainly
appreciate.  Kathy

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Ornaments of Faith

View pictures online at: 
(you may need to copy and paste the link to your browser)

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5) Mission Project

Writing and sending gifts and letters to our soldiers would be a great
for a missions project. See the following link:

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6) Keeping Their Interest

Hi there.  I have 4, 5 and 6th grade, about 8 kids.  They probably think
that I am nuts some of the time, because I am myself with them.  We
discuss the bible stories for the week, and sometimes do written lessons,
but for me, I don't find written lessons very interesting either.  I
always try to bring the bible story into everyday life for them.  Often I
act out something, myself, giving them an idea of what it would be like. 
Then I calm down and talk to them about different ways to cope with the
circumstance.  We also try to play a short game that has to do with the
subject, or a craft.  Sometimes I use Odyssey tapes/cd's and other
Christian characters that have cd's out there, once in awhile a video.  We
used the Jesus story on video, over the 6 weeks during lent one year. 
Watched part of it each week and then discussed what we watched.  Although
our church really doesn't push being saved, I try to work it into the hour
in a subtle way.  I have a bi-monthly book that I give the kids, it is
called "Keys for Kids".  It has stories from today tied into a scripture,
and in the back are some puzzles and the ABC's of salvation.  Prayer at
the end is always about what we discussed and then let it open for them to
pray for others.  Hope this helps.  Cindy

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7) Youth Opposition

I responded to you before, but wanted to let you know that I am going
through the same thing.  I am struggling right now, because I don't want
to leave the kids in our Sunday School, but I have waited and worked for
years, at trying to get the ideas some people have about "Kids in Church",
changed.  I truly think that I am wasting my time at the church where I am
at.  And I think I will be moving on soon.  The kids make it really hard
to do.  But the stress you put yourself through takes away from what you
have to offer them.  Cindy

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8) Rahab Lessons?

We are searching for lessons on Rahab.  Do you know of any resources for
THanks so much,  
In His Grip,

Sandy Ferguson
Director of Christian Formation
Holy Comforter Episcopal Church

--from SSTN: There is a skit in the site entitled:
"Joshua, Rahab and the Two Spies". Also check the archives for other ideas
as well: http://www.SundaySchoolNetwork.com 

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9) Family Christmas Traditions?
Would other SSTN members be interested in sharing their family traditions
in celebrating Christmas? My thought is to possible put together a variety
of ideas in a handout for young couples - or young families
to help encourage them to teach and strengthen the meaning of Christmas
with their children throughout the years.
I will start us off with our tradition and how it has changed a bit
throughout the years.
When my grandchildren were toddlers, our family (Papaw down through the
tiniest) have annually participated in a simple rendition of the nativity
First year there were 3 toddlers. Costumes were created from towels and
blankets. Papaw read the Luke 2 rendition - with pause for the family to
create the different scenes. That was so much fun for them for several
As the families grew (now there are 10 grandchildren) --- scenes were
recreated per family. One family were the shepherds, on the wise men, one
the Holy family. We always finished with singing a Joy to the World and
Silent Night --- closing in prayer thanking God for sending Jesus to our
The toddlers are teens now and our tradition participation has changed
some during the years. One year, we have had a scavenger hunt for the
nativity pieces - bringing them together to tell the story of the birth of
Christ. Another year, we had a trip to Bethlehem (our yard) by pretend
caravan. We arrived at the manger scene (our barn) to find Mary, Joseph
and baby Jesus and shepherds. (A friend's family reenacted the
manger scene for us and surprised the kids that year). We have had a
silhouette cut-out puppet show telling the story. As the first toddlers
grew to preteens, we took a couple of weekends prior to Christmas Eve and
video taped them outside reenacting the nativity with no adults involved.
One of their dads put a simple graphic title page and music to the video.
The kids loved seeing themselves and enjoy viewing it again and again. And
last year - each family told their favorite part of the nativity and led
the rest of the family in a Christmas carol. 
Three things have never changed; reading the True story from the Bible,
singing carols together, and the prayer thanking God for Jesus. 
As I grow older --- I feel a bit like Mary in that I have taken these
moments and love pondering them in my heart.
Please share your ideas with the SSTN Members too.
Joyfully Serving HIM,
Emmalea Butler

--from SSTN: if enough ideas come in,
I will make a separate page in the site for them.
Your webservant,
Sarah Keith <><

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