Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Experience God - Think Before You Speak

When I first started with Mother Goose Time I heard about their Experience God curriculum.  I ordered the God Asks Me to Listen curriculum which talks about the story of Noah and the Ark and the months verse is James 1:19 Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.  The way that they have it set up makes it super easy to work into your daily routine, however, I have been horrible at doing so.  I have completed week 3 in probably close to 4 or more weeks.  Each week has 6 activities.  One of those activities is to read the story card that comes with the kit each month and one is a craft that comes in a bag for each child, then 4 others.  This way you can do one each day if using this material at home or do all lessons on a Sunday morning if used for Sunday school.  I have been so impressed with the lessons and love doing them.  I still am trying to figure out why then, I keep putting them off.  None the less, let me tell you about some of the lessons.

First the lesson called Out Forever.  First it has you ask a question: What happens if you say something mean?  Then we were to share stories about when someone said something mean to us and how it made me feel.  Then they had us get out a tube of toothpaste.  Have the kids imagine that the toothpaste are our words and have the kids take turns squeezing the tube.  Then have them imagine that those words were mean, hurtful and angry.  Ask the kids how we could put the words or toothpaste back in the tube.  We can try, but we can not take them back.  Each lesson has an "Explain" strip through the middle.  On this lesson it said: In the same way it is impossible to put the toothpaste back in the tube, it is impossible to take back words we have said.  Therefore, we should think first and be slow to speak. 

Next was the lesson Cover Your Mouth.  Question: What should you say when you are angry?  We drew two faces on two pieces of paper.  A happy face and an angry face.  When the happy face is shown they were told to say their own name.  When the angry face was shown they were instructed to cover their mouths.  Then we took turns going back and forth between the two faces and the two responses, sometimes repeating one to see if they were really paying attention.  The Explain strip says: God wants us to be silent when we are angry.  If we speak in anger we might say hurtful things.  What an amazing visual and physical way to remember this lesson.  Maybe when they are angry, they will actually remember covering their mouths during this lesson and remember to hold their tongue until they calm down. 

For Listen, Listen, Speak we played a game.  It was just like duck, duck, goose but we said listen, listen, speak instead.  Explain:  God loves when we are good listeners.  Sometimes it is difficult to sit still, be quiet and listen, but God can help us to be patient. 

The last lesson was Sit Silently.  I have always dreamed of playing this game with my children.  The question: How long can you be silent?  First have the children estimate how long the thought they could sit silently.  Choose an amount of time for them to sit silently.  Then repeat the same amount of time but this time have them walk around the room but still stay silent.  Then ask children which one was easier.  Explain: It is easier to walk with God and follow his commands than simply trying to be good on our own.  For my boys we just simply set a timer to see how long they could stay silent.  Peter's record was 45 seconds and Lachlan's was 1 minute 15 seconds. 

The craft that came with week 3's lessons was a dove.  It also had a question: Why did Noah send off the dove?  It was great to review the reason Noah sent out the dove.  Explain: When we are unsure if we are doing the right thing or don't know what to do next, God will always show us if we are headed in the right direction. 

The dove was made out of a folded in half paper plate, green paper cut up for the olive branch and a coffee filter cut into a wing shape.  A hole punch in the top for hanging and a beak and eye colored on with crayons. 

Speaking of God . . . check out the sunset He painted in the sky the other night.

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