Monday, November 28, 2011

Safety First in Your Classroom

Safety Guidelines for Preschool Teachers

To ensure that each child’s experience in your class is a safe and happy one, each teacher and helper should know and practice these simple safety guidelines:
  • Beware of balloons. A piece of broken balloon or an uninflated balloon can easily be sucked into a child’s windpipe and cause suffocation.
  • Make sure all leaders and helpers know basic first-aid techniques and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, including rescue procedures for choking. Encourage them to learn CPR for children also.
  • Have an established way of summoning the parents out of their class or activity in case of an emergency or inconsolable crying. If the parents are not in the church at the time your class meets, know how to reach them.
  • Do not release children to anyone but the designated parent(s) at the close of the class, unless the parent has notifiedyou in advance. 
  • Do not ever let a child out of your sight. Do not allow a child to go to the bathroom or leave the room without an adult.
  • Latch the classroom door with a latch that is above the children’s reach but can be opened from both sides of the door.
  • Attach chimes or bells to the classroom door so you will hear when it is opened.
  • Keep all electrical plugs capped when not in use.
  • Keep all plastic bags high above children’s reach. When using plastic bags for dirty diapers, be sure to dispose of them out of reach.
  • Do not carry any medications into the classroom in your purse or pocket. Put your purse, including makeup, nail files, sharp objects, and the like, on a high shelf.
  • If you have plants in your classroom, be sure they are not poisonous.
  • Do not allow children to run with anything in their hands.
  • Do not give any medication to someone else’s child. Ask the parent to come back at the appointed time to give the medication. 
  • Do not have any glass bottles, drinking glasses, or other breakable objects in the room. 
  • Toys and supplies should be no smaller than 1½ inches in any dimension to prevent swallowing. If the object can fit through a cardboard toilet paper tube, it is too small.
  • If a child is injured, however minor, administer first aid and call the parent to the classroom immediately.
  • Wash a cut under running water, letting the cut bleed. Cover the cut with gauze and call the parent to apply antiseptic.
  • You should have a fully equipped, standard first-aid kit in your room.
  • For additional safety tips, including first-aid and playground safety, visit the National Safety Council website at

Sunday, November 13, 2011

FREE Elementary Thanksgiving Lesson

The Thanksgiving season is upon us. Stores have begun selling pumpkins, dried gourds, and cranberries. Leaves on trees are turning from green to red, gold, and brown. These colorful leaves are starting to fall, creating soft piles to jump into. This is a wonderful season to teach your students about giving thanks to God for the many blessings He's given us. Of course, we also want to emphasize that we should be thanking God every day of the year—not just on Thanksgiving!

Try this Thanksgiving lesson with your elementary students. It's completely reproducible and includes student sheets, visuals, and lots of creative ideas. Download your FREE elementary Thanksgiving lesson. Then check out the other 10 lessons for elementary children we've developed as part of our Online Bible Activity Lessons series. Each lesson is just $5.95. Save $1.00 per lesson when you order 10 or more lessons (use Coupon Code BACT10). Save even more when you order 25 lessons (with Coupon Code BACT25). You can print as many teacher's guides and activity sheets as you need so there's never any waste. Click on the image on the right to go to the free lesson page.

We hope you enjoy sharing this lesson with your students. May God bless you and grant you a memorable Thanksgiving season.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

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Let Your Light Shine Bible Lesson

Help your students understand what it means to let their lights shine. Use these verses from Ephesians for a quick and easy Bible lesson. For more lessons similar to this one, take a look at Bible Foundations reproducible Bible lessons for Early Elementary.

Copy and cut apart the Ephesians verses from below. You will need a large round mirror, a strong flashlight, and a ball or round piece of cardboard. Brace the flashlight on a table or stool so that it is shining on the mirror. Hold the ball while you speak, moving it between the flashlight and the mirror.

Say, "We’ll pretend this flashlight is the sun and this mirror is the moon. This ball will be the earth. See what happens to the moon when the earth comes between it and the sun." Move the ball slowly, stopping a couple of times to make a half-moon, etc. Let several children try it.

"God’s Word (hold up your Bible) tells us that when we receive the Lord Jesus as our Savior, He becomes the light in our life. Jesus is like the sun shining on the moon. Jesus’ light shines on us. When we do kind and helpful things, other people can see the light of Jesus shining in our lives.Those who don’t have the Lord Jesus in their lives are living in darkness."

"God tells us to live as though we have His light in us. Do you have the Lord Jesus in your life? Are you living a life that obeys God and lets His light shine? When God’s light shines, then the kind things you do and say remind people of Jesus."

"The bad things we do and say cause a shadow to hide our light. When we do not obey God, the light of Jesus does not shine through us."

Give each Ephesians verse slip to a student to read in turn. Prompt the children at the appropriate time.

Dark Shadows Hide the Light 
(Ephesians 4:25-32; 5:1-2, 4, 6) 

God says we should have nothing to do with bad things that are done in darkness. Now we will take turns reading some verses from Ephesians 4 and 5, which are paraphrased (worded so you can better understand them). After each verse is read, I will ask if the things mentioned would shadow, or hide, the light of Jesus. (Explain that wrong actions hide the light of Jesus from shining in our lives. Good, kind, and helpful actions help Jesus’ light shine in our lives.) If the action is not good, the person who answers may move the earth (ball) to make a shadow on the moon. Listen carefully so you will know the correct answer.

Ephesians 4:25
“Therefore each of you must stop lying and speak truthfully to others, for we are all members of one body.”

Does lying hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:26
“If you are angry, do not let it become sin. Get over your anger before the day is finished.”

Does anger hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:27
“Do not let the devil start working in your life.”

When Satan works in your life does he hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:28
“Anyone who steals must steal no longer, but must work, doing something good with his own hands, that he may have something to give to those in need.”

Does stealing hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:29
“Do not let any bad words come out of your mouth, but only say things that help others grow as Christians.”

Do bad words hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:30 
“Do not make the Holy Spirit of God be sad about the way you live. The Holy Spirit has put a special mark on you for the day you will go to heaven.”

Does making God’s Holy Spirit sad hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:31
“Get rid of all bad feelings about other people, temper and anger, loud talk, and talk that hurts others.”

Do bad feelings toward others and mean words hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 4:32
“Be kind and nice to one another. Forgive other people, just as God forgave you because of Christ’s death on the cross.”

Does forgiving others hide your light? (No.)

Ephesians 5:1
“Do just as God would do, as God’s dearly loved children. Live a life that shows love to others.”

Does doing as God does hide your light? (No.)

Ephesians 5:2
“Live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a gift on the altar to God.”

Does loving others hide your light? (No.)

Ephesians 5:4
“Do not tell bad stories or talk foolishly. These things are not for you to do. Instead, give thanks for what God has done for you.”

Does telling bad or mean stories hide your light? (Yes.)

Ephesians 5:6
“Do not let anyone lead you in the wrong way with foolish talk. The anger of God comes on such people because they choose to not obey Him.”

Does disobeying God hide your light? (Yes.)

Say, "In order to let our light shine for Jesus, we must not do many of the things we just read about. These are called “worldly” things, because people who do them love the things of the world more than the things of God. Maybe you only do one of those things. Would that hide your light? (Yes.) What can we do to let our light shine?" (Stop doing things that don’t please God. Confess your sins to God — let Him help you get rid of those sins.)