Saturday, November 24, 2012

Pre-Christmas Easy Lesson Plans # 1 - Luke 1:5-25



Luke 1:5-25 - (NKJV) "There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name wasElizabeth.  And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.  But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years.


So it was, that while he was serving as priest before God in the order of his division, according to the custom of the priesthood, his lot fell to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord.  And the whole multitude of the people was praying outside at the hour of incense.  Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense.  And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him.

But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.  And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

And Zacharias said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years.”

And the angel answered and said to him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and was sent to speak to you and bring you these glad tidings. But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words which will be fulfilled in their own time.”

And the people waited for Zacharias, and marveled that he lingered so long in the temple. But when he came out, he could not speak to them; and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple, for he beckoned to them and remained speechless.

So it was, as soon as the days of his service were completed, that he departed to his own house. Now after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived; and she hid herself five months, saying, “Thus the Lord has dealt with me, in the days when He looked on me,to take away my reproach among people.”

Purpose: This is the First Lesson in our Christmas Lesson Plans, and it prepares the children for the birth of Jesus, buy telling the story of John The Baptists birth and his mission to prepare the way for Jesus' birth too.

Opening Drill: Balloon toss Game: Have them experience the benefits of being Prepared by teaching them how to "win" a game before the play the game.


Materials needed:  As many balloons as you have or expect to play, pairs of children.

How to Play the Game:  
1) Have half the class, or 1/2 of the people playing the game, leave the room, or go to some place where they will not hear the rules or get to practice.  When 1/2 are prepared, bring the other half back.

2) You say go.

3) You need to make sure the prepared group knows how to pass the balloon and play them game. This is how the game is played. "Two children face each other, and toss, slap, punch the balloon to their partner. The partner catches it, and steps back.  Then repeat the process until the balloon hits the ground, or the person catching it has to move FORWARD to catch it.  The one who is still playing wins."

How to Explain the Game

Ask them who won, and why.  If the ones who were not prepared won, ask them how they knew how to play.

Once they have established that knowing how to play, and what the rules are, ask them how it feels to be prepared. 

Ask them what else they might want to be prepared for. Lead them to the answer as everything.

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This is the part of the service where we do praise and worship, and take an offering.
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Teaching Luke 1:5-25 - (NKJV)

1) Read them the Verse using the team reading method. Have 2 or three adults or helpers who like to act sit in a chair, and select 1 child who can handle re-interpreting the verse.  Have someone who can read well read a line or 2 at a time, and then the people in the chairs take terms retell the line.



2)  Ask them what the most important parts of the story were.

3) Ask them how John prepared the people for Jesus coming.

4) Ask about any miracles they heard about in the verse. Then ask them why there were any to begin with. (God is directly involved with John's life.)


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If you have time replay the game with everyone being prepared.  With each winner, have them scream, "Prepare the People for Victory."

We print up postcards, or purchase them from www.GoodJobNotes.com, and give them to the winners.  If you want to download them for free, you can get them by clicking Here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Psalm 107:1 - Thanksgiving Easy Sunday School Lesson Plan



Psalm 107:1 - (NIV1984): "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever."

Purpose:
 Teaching the children what they need to be thankful for, and how to express there thankfulness.

Opening Drill: Have the play Random Dice, and have them experience success of failure with no control over the outcome:


Materials needed:  You either need some dice, or make some. If you want to make some, click Here to go to a website on how to do this.

How to Play the Game:  Start the game with two children, each with a single die or multiple dice.  Have them both roll the die (dice) at the same time, and have the lowest number lose.

Continue to have the winner play those in the class who have not played yet.  When you are done, make a big deal about how awesome the winner is.

How to Explain the Game
1) Ask the winner how they won and the losers how the lost. Make sure when you have gotten all the ideas out of them, that they realize that it was Random.  Nothing they did had any effect on the outcome, other than playing the game to begin with.
2) Ask them if there is a way to insure they DO NOT WIN.  You will get many strange answers.  Lead them to DON'T Play.
3) Explain that the feeling that they have when they win, that they are lucky, that they did something, perhaps their best, but in the end, they were not in control. This is the feeling we are talking about today.
4) Ask them if there is anything in their lives today that they have they did not earn, but they did participate in.  You will get strange answers, and you might get some to point out salvation.  (I have given an example of the difference between earn and getting with respect to God's interaction in our lives, and you can read that by clicking here.) Once you have played this out, get them to understand that Salvation is a unearned Gift, that they have to accept, but they have no reason to think they have earned.

If you get other ideas, don't reject them, just let them talk it out.

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This is the part of the service where we do praise and worship, and take an offering.
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Teaching Psalm 107:1 - (NIV1984): "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever."


Read them the Verse.   


1) Ask them what "Give Thanks" means.  

After all the ideas are out, focus on "Saying Thank You."  Have them practice saying thank you to each other and/or to you or teachers. One way to do this, is to have them cue up into lines in front of you and any other teacher you have, and as they get to the front of the line, you give them a compliment, and the say "thank you."

2) Ask them what Good is. Don't edit for God is Good; you are looking for what feels good, looks good, is good.  Once you have them understand what good is in our lives, lead them to good behavior.  Ask them to give you examples of Good behavior.

Now ask them if they know anyone who is Good all the time.

God is the only answer.


Thanksgiving Craft: If you have the time, you can download this coloring craft, the card shown above, by clicking HERE.

Print this 4 cards per sheet on white card stock, and cut it into quarter.  You can also send it to Staples or some other printer, having it printed on white card stock, cut in quarters.  You get 4 cards per sheet.

If you have many teachers and students, break into groups, and have them talk about things they are thankful for, and how God allowed that to happen in their lives. If you want a story to explain how thankfulness can be done wrong, I have written a explanation about this very verse, and you can read it by clicking HERE

Then have them color their cards.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

1 Corinthians 16:13 - Easy Sunday School Lesson Plan

1 Corinthians 16:13 (NIV1984)

"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong."

Purpose:
Teaching the students why and how they need to stand tall and be strong in their faith.

Method: Have them experience and understand what "standing through a storm is," and what it means to believe that you can and will survive the storm, so courage is easy.
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Opening Drill: Dropping You

We used a drill in an earlier lesson plan that is very similar to this drill.  The difference is, in this drill YOU rather than t he students, are holding the Right end of the Rope.

Materials needed:  A rope, 6 to 20 feet long.  You also need  someone to catch the student on the left of the rope, so they do not get hurt.

How to Play the Game:  You hold the rope and slowly lower the student to the floor.  There goal is to hold the rope, not let go, and remain perfectly straight.  They do it right, and win, if they stay stiff as a board, and make it to the floor that way.

Explain the Game: 
1) Ask them if they trust(ed) you to lower them to the floor.
2) Ask them what caused them to fail (lead them to fear)
3) If someone succeed, ask them how the overcame their fear (lead them to faith/trust in you.)

Tell them a story from your life or a story you know about, where God stepped into a human life, and made the impossible happen. ( Matthew 19:26 - (NIV1984): Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”)

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This is the part of the service where we do praise and worship, and take an offering.
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Teaching 1 Corinthians 16:13: 
"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong."


Read them the Verse.   

1) Ask them if they know of anything that is Supernatural. (Explain what supernatural is)  It does not really matter at this point what they say.  Once they say enough, to get them talking, explain some of what they said.  

You will hear that "they are saved," which is indeed supernatural.  You will hear that God created the heavens and the earth, which they are probably just saying because they know you want to hear it.  If you hear anything like that, repeat it, and ask them WHY it is super natural. You will hear magic, but they are probably talking about illusion, not magic.  Ask enough to know what they are talking about, so you don't give them a nonsense answer.

Lead them to the truly supernatural like Salvation and Grace, and Jesus' entire life.

2) Once you convince them that supernatural is real, tell them that Satan is also real.  Make sure they know that Satan can not attack them directly, if they are Christ's, but will tempt them and attack them through other people.  Give them examples of situations where you know that has happened if you feel the need.  Ask them if they know of any attacks in their lives or their families lives.  Listen, but stop the ridiculous and the dangerous.  You can get some very scary answers, and it is generally best to deal with the weird one on one.

Tell them that in their lives, like the game you played earlier, they too will be attacked by temptations and other people, and that God wants them to know that they ARE strong enough to stand tall until it passes.

On of my favorite analogies for this, is 'sometime God will not calm the storms that are all around you, but rather calm you.'  This verse is meant to give you faith that when those times come, you will be safe with him.

If you have time, play the game again, and encourage them to have faith in themselves and in you.

End with a pray to have courage and strength.