Monday, February 28, 2011

Build a Bible Verse

Play a verse builders game to help your students memorize the Bible verse for your lesson. Have the children sit in a circle. (If you have a large class, divide into several small groups.) Have a child read the verse aloud from the Bible. Pronounce any difficult words before he starts reading. Review the memory verse together several times. Begin and end with the reference since it's often the hardest part for children to remember.

Then designate a child to begin. That child places his  hand (palm down) in the center of the floor (or table) while saying the first word of the verse. Proceeding clockwise, each child takes a turn saying the next word in the verse while placing his hand on top of the previous player's hand.

Proceed clockwise. Each child takes a turn saying the next word in the verse while placing his hand on top of the previous player's hand. After everyone has his hand in the pile, the bottom hand is removed and placed on top as that player says the next word of the verse. Continue in this manner until the verse is complete. The next three children say the book, chapter, and verse. Then have everyone say the verse together as they lift their hands together. Repeat, using different children to start.

Monday, February 21, 2011

National Day of Prayer 2011

This year the National Day of Prayer will be held on Thursday, May 5, 2011. The theme is "a mighty fortress is our God."  Here's the prayer written by Joni Eareckson Tada for this year's National Day of Prayer (used by permission, National Day of Prayer). For more resources, visit the National Day of Prayer website.

2011 National Prayer
by Joni Eareckson Tada, Honorary Chairman
National Day of Prayer
Almighty God, you are our Mighty Fortress, our refuge and the God in whom we place our trust.  As our nation faces great distress and uncertainty, we ask your Holy Spirit to fall afresh upon your people — convict us of sin and inflame within us a passion to pray for our land and its people.  Grant the leaders of our country an awareness of their desperate need of wisdom and salvation in You until sin becomes a reproach to all and righteousness exalts this nation.

Protect and defend us against our enemies and may the cause of Christ always prevail in our schools, courts, homes, and churches.  Lord God, send a spirit of revival and may it begin in our own hearts.

Remember America, we pray.  Remember the foundations on which this country was built.  Remember the prayers of our nation’s fathers and mothers, and do not forget us in our time of need.

In the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, Amen.

You can do things to remind yourself and your students to pray each day of the year. Whether you give your students “God Bless the USA” Wristbands to wear, decorate your classroom with patriotic d├ęcor, place a flag at the front of your room, or anything else you may think of—just PRAY!

You can use this God Says Bulletin Board Set (#CD210008) to remind your students to pray regularly. Encourage your students to pray for people in different countries. Post a world map on the bulletin board. Surround it with the bulletin board set. Each week choose a different country. Find out a few fun facts about the country and the people who live there to share with your students. Let everyone take turns praying for the various needs of that country. (Do not force any child to pray.) Cut out heart shapes from construction paper. Let each child write a simple prayer or prayer request on a heart and add it to the bulletin board. You can use a different color of construction paper for each country's hearts, if you wish.

Print out the coloring page below for your students. Feel free to copy it and pass it on to  your coworkers and friends. Younger children can memorize the simplified verse from Proverbs 3:5, "Trust in the LORD." Older children can learn Psalm 91:2, the theme verse for the National Day of Prayer 2011. You may want to cut out the child's head and let each of your students draw a self-portrait and print "Pray every day" under the Bible verse. Let the students say the verse in unison a few times. Close with a song such as "Jesus Loves the Little Children."

"I will say of the LORD, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'"— Psalm 91:2
Click on the image above for a larger view.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bulletin Board Basics

When preparing a display for your classroom, you don't actually need a bulletin board. Just frame a large area of one wall with bulletin board borders or trims. However, backgrounds are vital. Besides colored construction paper, use textured fabrics, felt or flannel, crepe paper, newpapers, aluminum foil, sandpaper, colored cellophane, or maps.

Borders make the bulletin board. Use corrugated paper, twisted crepe paper, yarn or rope, pictures strung together, paper muffin cups, scalloped strips of poster board, wallpaper samples, and designs printed from your computer.

Lettering conveys the message. Make your letters big, and keep the message short and simple. Mounting the same letters in two colors, one on top of the other, gives a shadow effect. Cut your letters from corrugated paper, sticky-backed felt, patterned paper (such as that used for scrapbooking), textured paper,  Form letters from colored feathers, and drinking straws bent into letter shapes. You can add a short Bible verse or your lesson theme to the bulletin board.

Variety adds spice to your display. Add a third dimension to your bulletin board by placing a thick piece of cardboard or foam core behind the lettering. You can also glue cotton balls, twigs, feathers, yarn, rope, colored paper plates, holiday trims, or an old lampshade cut in half to your board. Make sure you take a photo of your completed board so you can easily recreate your artistic masterpiece in the future.

For pre-made bulletin board sets and lots of fun bulletin board ideas, visit our Classroom Decorations Store. You'll also find attendance charts, posters, borders, lettering, stickers, and lots more—many items 30% to 50% off.