One of the mothers of one of our pre-schoolers, who has herself been a pre-school Sunday School teacher in the church she grew up in, said to me last Spring: “With all these little kids around, we should have something more than just nursery for them. We should have a pre-K Sunday School class.” She went on to say that she and her husband want their kids to be getting a good Christian education, but they are going to need help from the church.
She is right. We have traditionally had Sunday School for children 6 years of age and up… to Confirmation Class. But right now, most of our young people are either pre-K or post confirmation (I am not forgetting the Farrell-Michel girls who are in-betweens!) Church should always be able to shift to the circumstances it finds itself in, so as to be able to minister to people where they are… (We are also getting a post-confirmation youth group organized again!)
Pre-K Sunday School isn’t very complicated because it’s tailored for its young students. And it needs to happen after the Time with the Children in worship and before we are finished. But it’s fairly simple:
A Bible story told at the kids level.
An art project that reinforces the story that little kids can do and take home with them.
A snack (maybe that is even themed).
And maybe they work on learning a simple song or prayer.
I think of the story of the 99 sheep Jesus left behind to find the one last sheep. And then a simple sheep outline that they color in and glue cotton balls to. And sheep cookies and juice. Oh, and maybe a two line word prayer, like, “Good Shepherd, I am your sheep. Carry me on your shoulders. Amen.”
I am asking people who are not parents of our current little ones to take turns leading this class. I am thinking that I would like at least 8 to 10 people to volunteer. I can provide easy Sunday School lessons for each week. I already have a good host of volunteers: Amy D., Billi C., David K., Ian McC, Ibudun A., Jane A., Kris F., Maranda P., and Robin G. I still need a few more; if you are interested, please sign up for a Sunday here. Or you can contact Michael about it.
I am being bold and challenging the families of our young kids to make a commitment to getting the kids here for Sunday School. I know how busy everyone is. But I believe our Pre-K Sunday School Class can help families make the basic Bible stories a part of their young ones’ lives, imaginations and hearts.
We get started this Sunday. Ian McC. is going to be our first pre-K teacher, ably-assisted by his girlfriend Jess, who is a cardiac research assistant at CHOP (these kids will be safe!). And the lesson will be about God as the potter — it will be a play dough lesson (that Yajeh is helping us put together!).