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Beyond Classroom Management: Training Hearts Toward the Savior, Part 1

Children Desiring God Blog // Beyond Classroom Management - Part 1

Attentive, well-behaved children sound like a teacher’s dream. However, our goal is not simply well-behaved children, but children who joyfully submit to God.

It starts with an understanding of authority structure God has put in place, which brings about calm order and joyful submission. Jesus is the best example of one living under submission (Philippians 2:5-8; Luke 22:42; John 4:34). Resentment toward authority structures is actually rebellion toward God’s hierarchy in creation.

Freedom is not being able to do whatever you want; freedom is knowing and loving God and living joyfully under the authority structures that he has ordained.
Tedd Tripp from the Biblical Parenting Conference
September 19-20, 2008

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Hope and Help for Leading a Small Group

Children Desiring God Blog // Hope and Help for Leading a Small Group

In my opinion, being a small group leader entrusted with leading application after the Bible lesson is the most challenging role in the Sunday school classroom. So much depends on following the lead of the Holy Spirit as you try to discern the thoughts and attitudes of the students and then encourage their responses God-ward and heart-ward. And what a challenge that can be…with a group of seven wiggly first graders or a group of seven sports-obsessed fifth-grade boys! So maybe this year you have found yourself in this new role and are not sure what to do. Maybe you even feel frustrated and are ready to simply let the students have their way and be squirrel-y or talk sports. Don’t give up! There is hope and help.

Here is the hope: While it is challenging, being a small group leader can also be one of the most rewarding roles in the classroom.

Here is the help: You can grow in your ability to effectively lead a small group.

Here are a few pointers… (more…)

Recruiting and Retaining Volunteers

Children Desiring God Blog // Recruiting and Retaining Volunteers

One of the most difficult jobs in children’s and youth ministry is recruiting a full staff of volunteers who are not only joyfully motivated, but also adequately trained and equipped. Along with that is the challenge of retaining these volunteers from year-to-year, if at all possible, so that there is a stable, spiritually mature core in your ministry team. How does a ministry leader do this?  (more…)

Why Students Workbooks?

Children Desiring God Blog // Why Student Workbooks

Student Workbooks are one of the most important tools for you to have in your classroom to teach and train the children in your church or school!

Children Desiring God encourages teachers to center their class on two main elements—teaching and application. To aid teachers and small group leaders with the application time, we have developed students workbooks to accompany each curriculum. Our purpose for workbooks is two-fold:

  1. Workbooks help students synthesize the information they learn during the lesson and cement that knowledge in their minds.
  2. Workbooks are a tool to enhance the application process. Students are encouraged to move from head knowledge to heart application—responding to the truths learned.

Workbook Features

Elementary workbooks include two pages for each lesson. There is a review of main ideas, memory verses and Scripture from the lesson as well as age appropriate coloring and application activities. Here are some of our favorite features and benefits of the student workbooks:

  • Children Desiring God Blog // Why Student WorkbooksWorkbooks—especially in our revised curricula—are integrated into the Small Group Application found at the end of each lesson. Students will need the workbooks in order to complete certain portions of the application section. These exercises reinforce important truths taught in the lesson, encourage Bible memory and help students consider how the concepts learned apply to their everyday life.
  • Workbooks for younger children provide them with opportunities for “hands-on” activity—coloring, pasting, stickers, etc. This helps students focus as the adult leader reviews key lesson themes and leads the discussion time.
  • Workbooks for older children provide the students with a variety of opportunities for note-taking during the lesson, small group and individual activities, personal application and further study.
  • Workbooks provide students and parents with a resource that summarizes the precept-upon-precept study, in its entirety. In other words, if a student misses lessons during the year, he or she will still have a complete outline of the study from beginning to end.
  • Workbooks provide the students with a tangible, interactive resource through which the truths presented in the lesson can be reviewed and remembered.
  • Workbooks in our revised curricula feature beautiful, full-color covers with a quick reference guide on the back to remind students what they are learning and help them review truths about God.

 

 

To view other workbook samples, download the Curriculum Samples or take a look at the Workbook Reference Copy in your Classroom Kit.

Workbook Formats

To equip you best, we have made student workbooks available in two formats—printed book or electronic download.

Print Workbooks

Our original format is the traditional printed workbook. Each workbook is printed on sturdy, high-quality paper and spiral bound. They are designed to withstand scribbling markers, glitter glue, lots of writing and children’s fingers turning pages over and over through the year. Just write student names on the front and they are ready to go.

We encourage teachers to keep the workbooks in the classroom during the year for children to work on week after week. At the end of the year, the completed books can be sent home with children as a tool for them to review what was learned with their parents.

Electronic Workbooks

The electronic version is a PDF file that you can license, download and print. Each workbook license is valid for one child for one year. This is a great option if you have the ability to print in your church office or if you are a ministry partner outside the United States who wants to save on shipping costs.

We encourage teachers using electronic workbooks to have students keep their pages in a three-ring binder or folder in class through the year so they have a full book at the end of the curriculum. If storage space is not available in the classroom, you can partner with parents and have them keep a binder at home for the weekly workbook pages.

Visitors

You are welcome to make a copy of a workbook page for one-time or occasional visitors. If your visitor becomes a regular attendee, don’t forget to give them their own book or purchase an electronic license for them.

 


 

To learn more about Student Workbooks, visit the curriculum pages and take a look at the curriculum samples. Feel free to contact us at 877.400.1414 or info@childrendesiringgod.org if you have questions about how to best use workbooks in your class, what format is best for you or how to order.

 

The Lord’s Supper and Children

Children Desiring God Blog // The Lord's Supper and Children

Sooner or later, a child who is regularly sitting through a Sunday morning worship service is bound to ask something like, “Why can’t I have a ‘snack’ like everyone else?” So it is not surprising that the second most-frequent question I am asked in children’s ministry is, “When should my child take the Lord’s Supper?”

A General Response 

When people inquire about children taking the Lord’s Supper, I have two perspectives to share with them. The first is that our communion services are open to all present, including children, who are trusting in Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of their sins and the fulfillment of all His promises to us (including eternal life); and therefore, children are welcome to participate in the Lord’s Supper: (more…)

Navigating the Changes in the Nursery Curriculum

Children Desiring God Blog // Navigating the Changes in the Nursery Curriculum

There are some wonderful updates in the newly revised A Sure Foundation nursery curriculum, but some of our customers have had questions about what to order from among the various resources offered. See this blog post for specific information on how we have refreshed and expanded our nursery curriculum.

Some of our customers have asked what they should order to add to their current resources. Many appreciate the new format (with thumbnails of visuals and actions clearly marked in each lesson) and choose to replace their original leader’s editions with the updated Teacher’s Guides. Others decide to continue using the original leader’s editions and just want to add the new material. We have created a “Nursery Coordinator’s Volume 2 Supplement” to make this an easier option. The Nursery Coordinator’s Volume 2 Supplement contains:

  • 1 Older Toddler Volume 2 Teacher’s Guide (with the 16 additional lessons)
  • 1 Nursery Coordinator’s Brochure
  • 1 updated Curriculum Resources DVD, including the following PDFs:
    • Coloring Pages
    • Growing in Faith Together: Parent and Child Resource Pages
    • The Resource Packet
    • Truth Statement Posters
    • Story Pictures (for Young Toddler, and both Older Toddler Volumes 1 and 2)
    • The curriculum logo
    • A training video
    • Other teaching materials

The new 16 lessons in the Older Toddler Volume 2 can be used in a variety of ways. It was designed for toddlers 36 months and older who have not yet graduated to a preschool class. If you do not have a separate older toddler classroom, or do not need additional lessons for your Sunday nurseries, Volume 2 can be used for older toddlers as a midweek curriculum, for childcare during a women’s Bible study or small group time, or during VBS.

Another new item is the “Starter Kit” for those just beginning to use our nursery curriculum. This is a great option for those who want to use each of the refreshed Teacher’s Guides and the new visuals on the Resources DVD, and for those who prefer curriculum using the English Standard Version (ESV) translation of the Bible.

As always, if you need help deciding what to order, please contact our customer service team at 1.877.400.1414 or info@childrendesiringGod.org. Also, you should know that some past purchases may qualify for discounts, so please ask us about these options.

 

 

Encouraging Children in Prayer

Children Desiring God Blog // Encouraging Children in Prayer

What kind of pray-ers will our children be? That is a great question to think about. If we want them to be serious about prayer, they must not only be taught but also shown how prayer is to be woven throughout everyday life. Here are some practical tips from Sally Michael to encourage your children in prayer.

  • Gather your children when you hear of a prayer need and ask them to pray with you.
    • EXAMPLE: When a problem comes to your attention, pray about it… “Susie, let’s pray for the people who were in the earthquake.” ™
  • Take advantage of unexpected moments for prayer—spur of the moment prayers.
    • EXAMPLE: When you see an ambulance, pray for the person who has the medical problem.
  • Ask your child to pray for you. Give him specific things he can pray for.
    • EXAMPLE: “I’m having a hard time with a project I am working on for my job. Would you pray for me?” ™
  • Give your child a list of topics to pray for. (more…)

Will Our Children Know and Treasure the Great Hymns of Faith?

Children Desiring God Blog // Will Our Children Know and Treasure the Great Hymns of Faith?

It is amazing to me how many times—especially in life’s most difficult situations—the words of great hymns come to mind to guide my thoughts and emotions.

…though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet…Jesus who died shall be satisfied, And earth and heaven be one.—This is My Father’s World

 …The prince of darkness grim, We tremble not for him—His rage we can endure, For lo his doom is sure: One little word shall fell him.—A Mighty Fortress

 …Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love: Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, Seal it for Thy courts above.—Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing (more…)

Don’t Waste Your Holiday

Children Desiring God Blog // Don't Waste Your Holiday

What’s your plan for the 4th of July? A day at the lake? Grilling brats and burgers in the backyard? A bike ride? Camping? Time with family and friends? Getting caught up on some yard work? And fireworks, especially if you have children?  All of these can be great ways to spend your 4th, but it might also be good to consider spending 10 or 15 minutes reminding yourself and your children about God’s great gift to us called “government.” What we in the USA call “Independence Day” should, in reality, be called “Dependence Day,” as we acknowledge that it is ultimately God who establishes thrones and rulers—or removes them at His will.

It’s important to teach our children some basic things about government. Consider the words of the Apostle Paul in Romans 13. He lived under Roman rule—a government that promoted pagan beliefs and persecuted the early church—and yet he reminds us of the following… (more…)

A Summer Praise Walk with Children

Children Desiring God Blog // A Summer Praise Walk With Children

When I was a child, and even into my teens, I spent most of my free time outdoors. Whether playing active games with friends, exploring the neighborhood woods, or simply laying in the grass and trying to identify different shapes or figures in the clouds, we spent much of our summer disconnected from media or other electronics. Now that I am an adult, I have found I still benefit from enjoying the outdoors, as it evokes praise and admiration of God as I experience first-hand the wonders He has created.

One way we can encourage our children to meditate on and give God praise for His wondrous works is to go on a “Praise Walk.” How? First, read together Psalm 148. Help them identify all of the created things in the verse that are to give praise to God. (more…)

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