Worship In Spirit & Truth

Tomorrow we start our Vacation Bible School.  I really enjoy doing these every year.  They can be stressful — especially the week just before — but the kids enjoy it and learn a lot.  We try to have our Vacation Bible Schools on subjects that might not get enough attention in our regular Bible classes.  We have always written our own material.  Our teachers are great to just jump in there and do the best with what they have.  Of course, with the internet and computers, finding material and visual aids is a lot easier than it used to be.

This year our theme is Worship.  Our schedule for the week is:

  • Monday — The Lord’s Supper
  • Tuesday — Giving
  • Wednesday — Singing
  • Thursday — Prayer
  • Friday — Preaching/Teaching

My helper, Sherry, and myself have pretty much worked up material for the whole week but I can never seem to really concentrate on the details of Thursday and Friday’s lessons this early.  I think it’s just too much for my brain to handle at one time.  We have a direction we want to go but there are a few things that still need to be done.  But, I think we’re ready for tomorrow and that’s what counts.

I’ll be teaching the 5-7 year olds.  I believe I’ll have 10 in attendance but you never know for sure until the first day.  I hope to have pictures of the room and activities as well as links to files of some of the activities available later this week.  For now, I need to write a lesson plan.

Our VBS lasts 1 1/2 hours.  Part of this time will spent in the auditorium with everyone else, part of it will be spent in the art/activity room.  The rest is up to Sherry and I.  I estimate that we’ll have about an hour.  The lesson plan that follows is just a guide — mostly so I won’t forget something we intended to do.  There will probably be a break when the kids get restless to walk around the building, get a drink and go to the restroom.  We’ll also be singing whenever it seems appropriate.

Monday’s Lesson Plan:

 Introductions/Name Tags — we are having several visitors from the community this year.  I think name tags will make things a lot easier for the teachers.

Introduction to our Theme — The first few minutes of class each day, we’ll discuss worship in general.  Today we’ll talk about what worship means.  Throughout the week we will talk about who the object of our worship is, where we should/could worship, what our attitude should be towards worship and why it is important to worship God.  Some of the days these topics may overlap but this is our general plan.

Sing: We Worship God 

Week In Preview:  Each day I want to go over the 5 things we’ll be talking about each day.  During this time I will briefly show them visuals to help them understand.  For instance: Lord’s Supper — communion trays, Giving — contribution plate, Singing — songbook, Prayer — Bow head/hold hands as if praying, Teaching/Preaching — Bible.

Art/Activity room: Each year one of our ladies here takes on the job of coming up with relevant artwork.

Life of Christ:  Each child will have a little booklet with the story of Jesus in it.  I have the same pictures and text in a flip chart format.

Jesus Story Wheel:  The children will put the pictures in order and then glue them to the story wheel.  After help putting them brad in, let them tell the story.  These story wheels will then be glued in the lesson book.  The story wheel emphasizes the death/burial/resurrection of Christ.

Lesson Book:  This is a booklet with an activity for each day, memory verse to trace and a pocket to store the little booklets.  Glue Story Wheel in it’s place.

Memory Verse:  Read entire verse (found on front of lesson book).  Trace portion of verse for the day.

Read Matthew 26:26-30

Lord’s Supper Flip Chart:  A simple flip chart discussing the basics of the Lord’s Supper

Color/Activity Book:  This book has a color page and worksheet type activity for each day.  Today’s activity is a dot-to-dot of a cup containing fruit of the vine.  The color picture is a cross with bread/drink for communion in front of it.  The time they spend working on this will allow us more time to discuss the Lord’s Supper.

Read Bethany Learns About The Lord’s Supper.  This is a rather lengthy book for 10 kids to sit and listen to together.  It may work out better to take half the kids to another room to read to them while the rest do their color and activity sheet, then switch.  We’ll see how it goes.

Prayer


Day one is done and it was a lot of fun.  We had 8 kids in class.  They are all so sweet and behaved very well.   I believe they left class having a good understanding of what the Lord’s Supper is and what it we’re to remember when we partake of it.

Tomorrow’s lesson is on Giving.  We’ll be using 2 Bible stories to help teach this subject — The Widow’s Mite and Ananias and Sapphira.

We will talk a about who it is we are to worship.  This will give us the opportunity to talk about some of the wonderful things God has given us and done for us.

Tuesday’s Lesson Plan:

 Introduction to our Theme — Discuss who it is we are to worship.

Sing: We Worship God 

Week In Preview:  Each day I want to go over the 5 things we’ll be talking about each day.  During this time I will briefly show them visuals to help them understand.  For instance: Lord’s Supper — communion trays, Giving — contribution plate, Singing — songbook, Prayer — Bow head/hold hands as if praying, Teaching/Preaching — Bible.

Art/Activity room: Each year one of our ladies here takes on the job of coming up with relevant artwork.

Widow’s Mite:  Read flip chart.  Pass out pictures for the kids to place in order and glue into their lesson book.

Giving Cup:  I know that’s a strange name for this activity but I can’t think of anything to call it.  The kids will learn to make a paper cup out of plain paper.  They will get to put some fake money in the cup.  The cup will be glued into their lesson book.  Click here for instructions

 Memory Verse:  Read entire verse (found on front of lesson book).  Trace portion of verse for the day.

 Ananias and Sapphira Flip Chart:  The students will have a booklet with the same pictures and story as my flip chart.   After reading and discussing the story the students can put their booklet in the pocket in their book.

Color/Activity Book:  We didn’t get to this yesterday.  I hope we can get to it today.

Read Bethany Learns About Giving.   We took the kids on a walk around the building yesterday so we could get to a classroom that was not being used.  We used this room as our story time room.  It seemed to work well.  It gave all of us a chance to get outside for a little bit and the change of scenery was refreshing.

Prayer


Today’s lesson will be on singing.  This should be a fun lesson because we’ll get to sing quite a bit.  I don’t have a Bethany book for singing.  As far as I know there is not one.  These books have been perfect for this series of lessons and this age group but since there isn’t one for singing we’ll have a little extra time.  One of the older classes always puts on a skit during the week.  They usually just do it for themselves — not a big production — just something to help the kids remember the lesson better with.  The teachers asked if I would like my class to come in an watch them do the one they worked on yesterday.  It was on Ananias and Sapphira.  Since we don’t have the Bethany book, we’ll use that time watching their skit and getting some review from yesterday’s lesson.

Wednesday’s Lesson Plan:

Introduction to our Theme — Discuss who it is we are to worship. Sing: We Worship God Week In Preview: Each day I want to go over the 5 things we’ll be talking about each day. During this time I will briefly show them visuals to help them understand. For instance: Lord’s Supper — communion trays, Giving — contribution plate, Singing — songbook, Prayer — picture of praying hands, Teaching/Preaching — Bible.

Sing: We Worship God 

Art/Activity room: Each year one of our ladies here takes on the job of coming up with relevant artwork.

Songbook:  We have a small songbook with 3 children’s song in it that we’ll sing from as we talk about singing.  This booklet will then be glued into their lesson book.

Memory Verse: Read entire verse (found on front of lesson book). Trace portion of verse for the day.  Since the memory verse is getting longer it is getting more challenging but they are hanging in there and doing a great job.

Paul and Silas Flip Chart: The students will have a booklet with the same pictures and story as my flip chart. After reading and discussing the story the students can put their booklet in the pocket in their lesson book. The pictures were taken from Sermon4Kids.com.  I wrote text to go along with the pictures.

Color/Activity Book: We finally had time for this yesterday.  The kids really enjoyed working in the books.  They were able to choose which activity (coloring or worksheet type activity or both) that they wanted to do.  I think they really liked being able to choose.  The older ones did the worksheet first and the younger ones just wanted to color.  I’m not usually a big fan of coloring in class but these color sheets seemed to be productive and gave the children a chance to work independently and quietly for a few minutes.

Watch skit on Ananias and Sapphira

Prayer


Today’s lesson is on prayer.  It will go pretty much the same as the previous days.  I find that in a VBS setting — where there are new kids that may not ever come into our building again or kids that only come during VBS each year — it is reassuring for them to keep a simple plan and stick to it everyday.  I don’t mean to be mundane and routine but predictable.  We’ve fallen into a nice flow with our class.  The kids all know pretty much what’s going to happen next, they are comfortable so they can spend their energy learning new things.

Thursday’s Lesson Plan:

Introduction to our Theme — Discuss who it is we are to worship. Sing: We Worship God Week In Preview: Each day I want to go over the 5 things we’ll be talking about each day. During this time I will briefly show them visuals to help them understand. For instance: Lord’s Supper — communion trays, Giving — contribution plate, Singing — songbook, Prayer — picture of praying hands, Teaching/Preaching — Bible.

Sing: We Worship God 

Art/Activity room: Each year one of our ladies here takes on the job of coming up with relevant artwork.

Memory Verse: Read entire verse (found on front of lesson book). Trace portion of verse for the day. Since the memory verse is getting longer it is getting more challenging but they are hanging in there and doing a great job.

Jesus Teaches How To Pray Flip Chart:  Each day so far the children have a had a miniature version of the flip chart in book form to look through as I tell the story from the flip chart.  Today we’re going to change it up just a little.  I have the large flip chart pictures and they the same picture, just smaller.  They are not bound together into a booklet yet.  After I go through the flip chart, the kids will put their pictures in order and then we’ll staple them together.  Just a little different activity that gets them more involved in the story itself.

Praying Hands:  They will have a small booklet shaped like praying hands to glue into their lesson book today.  Before they glue it down they will get to put pictures of things we need to pray for on the hands.  I have some large pictures to show them of the president, family, a teacher, a sick person and children (representing themselves) as well as the words Praise God in fancy letters.  I hope these pictures will get some discussion going about what we are to pray for.  Here is a link to a nice way to remember who/what to pray for.

Bethany Learns About Prayer:  We’ll take our walk around the building to the classroom we’re using as story time so we can read the Bethany book on prayer.

Color/Activity Book:  Give them a few minutes to do the prayer color sheet and activity sheet

Sing and Pray


Today is our last day. It’s been a good week. We’ve had smaller numbers than we’ve had in the past but that just gives more one on one time with those that came. Most of the children in attendance do not worship with us regularly or anywhere at all for that matter. They are friends, grandkids, nieces/nephews of our members. I hope, that for those in my class, I’ve given them something to think about as they grow and mature and that when they think of worship and God and the Bible that they’ll think about what we talked about.

Friday’s Lesson Plan:

Introduction to our Theme — Discuss who it is we are to worship. Sing: We Worship God Week In Preview: Each day I want to go over the 5 things we’ll be talking about each day. During this time I will briefly show them visuals to help them understand. For instance: Lord’s Supper — communion trays, Giving — contribution plate, Singing — songbook, Prayer — picture of praying hands, Teaching/Preaching — Bible.

Sing: We Worship God

Art/Activity room: Each year one of our ladies here takes on the job of coming up with relevant artwork. This has been a great addition to our VBS again this year. The activities planned so far have been relevant to the lessons, simple enough for my little kids to do and each project has been completed in one setting. I think she is going to tie it all together this morning with a small bulletin board for the kids to take home with them that has all their little projects tacked to it so they can remember the lessons of the week.

Memory Verse: This is the day we’ll see how many of the kids have memorized the entire verse. If so (and probably even if they can’t — I’m a softy), they’ll get stickers for each section that when put in their lesson book in the proper place will reveal a picture of a Bible.

Timothy Learns About God Flip Chart: Again, the kids have a miniature book and I have identical pictures in a flip chart. This book introduces Timothy and how he learned about God — his mother, grandmother, Paul and letters Paul wrote. The last few pages talk about how important it is for us to read our Bible. We can read the very letters Paul wrote to Timothy and so much more.

Child Action Figure: Okay, this is a little bit of a stretch. It’s a paper doll boy with brads attaching the arms and legs to the body. He is our activity because we’re going to talk about the things we can all do to teach others about God.

Sing: God Gave Me…

Bethany Learns About Teaching The Gospel: We’ll take our walk around the building to the classroom we’re using as story time so we can read the Bethany book on prayer.


Color/Activity Book:
I don’t think we’ll have time for this today so they can take it home and finish it there.

Get Read To Go: After gluing last attendance chart piece to chart, glue the chart to the back of the lesson book. Help children put both the lesson book and the color/activity book in their bags. Pass out Happy Day Book about Jesus to put in their bags. Pass out certificates of attendance. Help them put the songbook we’ve been using in the auditorium in their bags when we’re through out there.
Sing and Pray

Wall Decoration Pictures:

Two of these were left up from last year and were in good condition so we kept them this year. I don’t know if you can tell it or not from the pictures but the I’m Happy Today wall is supposed to look like pictures in very large picture frames.

Pictures of my sweet kids in action:

Aren’t they just the sweetest things. This is the first time in many years that I have not had one of my own kids in my VBS class. These are the only pictures I got of them all week. It’s hard to take pictures and teach at the same time.

Pictures of the Lesson Book mentioned in the lesson plans:

The lesson books were added to throughout the week. The words on the top right hand side are their memory verse (John 4:23) were done with a dashed font so the students could trace them. Each day they traced a little bit of the memory verse and on the last day got a picture to put on each part of the memory verse they memorized. If they memorized it all (and they all did with a little help) they would get a full picture.

Pictures of the Coloring/Activity book mentioned in the lesson plans:

https://picasaweb.google.com/s/c/bin/slideshow.swf

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