Three New Psalms Lessons Just Added!
The Psalms unit is now 15 lessons instead of 12. Please feel free to comment on the lessons as you use them so that we can use that feedback to make improvements. :-)


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Glanbrook Schedule 2017 Jan -Jun

2017 January to June Schedule:

Date Lesson Leader Dec. 25 NT1 – Jesus is born Tianna + Megan Jan. 1 NT2 – Jesus as a child Tessa Jan. 8 NT3 – John the Baptist Jess B. Jan. 15 NT4 – The Disciples Melissa Jan. 22 NT5 – Miracle in Cana Amanda Jan. 29 NT6 – Jesus the healer Arynn Feb. 5 NT7 – Jesus the teacher Carling Feb. 12 NT8 – Jesus teaches us to pray Jessica A. Feb. 19 NT9+10 – Jesus, the storm + walks on water Erica Feb. 26 NT11 – Parable of the sower Emily Mar. 5 NT12 – Bread + fish Tianna + Megan Mar. 12 NT13 – Good neighbour Tessa Mar. 19 NT14 – The 2 Sons Jess B. Mar. 26 NT15 – Palm Sunday Melissa Apr. 2 NT16 – Lord’s Supper Amanda Apr. 9 NT17 – Jesus dies for our sins Arynn Apr. 16 NT18 – Christ has risen Carling Apr. 23 NT19 - Ascension Erica Apr. 30 NT20 – Pentecost Emily May 7 NT21 – The Apostles Tianna + Megan May 14 NT22 – Saul/Paul Tessa May 21 NT23 – Missionary journeys Jess B. May 28 NT24 – John + Revelations Melissa Jun. 4 Psalm 1 Amanda Jun. 11 Psalm 8 Arynn Jun. 18 OT1 - Creation Carling Jun. 25 OT2 – Adam + Eve Erica

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Sunday Afternoon Bible Story Hour

1.What is Bible Story Hour?

Sunday Afternoon Bible Story Hour is a year long Bible Story program originally designed by a group of mothers from the Ancaster Canadian Reformed church, with the lessons written by Tessa Malda. The program is designed to familiarize young children (ages 3 to preschool) with characters in the Old Testament, major lessons of the New Testament and a selection of much loved Psalms in a thematic way through stories, songs and crafts. “ Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” (Deuteronomy 11:19) Our primary intention is to familiarize the children with people and events in the Bible at an age appropriate level and with the songs that we may sing regularly in church to support the teaching that takes place at home and to prepare them for full-time church attendance. To this end, we felt that many available evangelism programs for preschoolers were not appropriate for our purposes.

2. How does this program encourage family worship?

We believe that families should worship together as much as possible.  Our church provides a nursery for infants so that parents are able to attend church services together (with their older children). Many people choose to use the nursery service, and some choose to stay home with their infants. Our program is meant to be an extension of the Nursery, allowing parents of restless preschoolers, who would otherwise have stayed home with them, the opportunity to attend a second service, knowing that their preschooler will be busy, happy, and learning.


3. How does this program benefit children?

All of the preschoolers in our congregation are God's little lambs, and God made them in many different ways: some quiet and calm, some restless and noisy. Preschoolers who cannot sit still in church are not “naughty” children. Parents of busy preschoolers are not “negligent” mothers and fathers who ought to “lay down the law”. Some children are capable of sitting quietly through two services each Sunday – and we do not desire to draw them out of the worship service – but many are not, and we believe that this program also will help children to transition more easily into regular church attendance with their families by teaching them to associate church with a quiet time to learn about God, as opposed to noisy play time in the Nursery.


4.What will you teach?

Our program has three main units: Unit 1: Old Testament, Unit 2: New Testament, Unit 3: Psalms.

Unit 1 is based around the theme “God works among his covenant people to prepare the world for the Savior.” using our theme text: Hebrews 12:1&2 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us… look to Jesus.” We teach lessons on: Creation (available as a single lesson or a mini-unit), Adam and Eve; Noah; Abraham; Isaac; Jacob and Esau; Joseph; Moses; Israel in the Desert; Joshua; Gideon; Samson; Ruth; Samuel; David; Solomon; Elijah; Daniel; Esther; Jonah; and Micah.

Unit 2 is based around the theme “God sends his greatest gift, Jesus Christ our Savior” using our theme text, John 1:14 “we beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.” We teach lessons on: Jesus is born; Jesus as a child; John the Baptist; The disciples; Miracle in Cana; Jesus the healer; Jesus the Teacher (sermon on the mount, etc); Jesus and the Storms; The Parable of the Sower; Bread and Fish for Everyone; The parable of the good neighbor; The parable of the two sons; Palm Sunday; The Last Supper; Jesus dies for our sins; Christ is Risen; Ascension; Pentecost; The work of the Apostles and John and Revelations.

Unit 3 is based on the theme “Our Joy in the Lord” using our theme text “Sing a Psalm of Joy!” We teach lessons on Psalm 1 - focusing on praising God, who loves his people; Psalm 8 - focusing on praising God, the Creator; Psalm 16 - focusing on praising God for his abundant blessings; Psalm 23 - focusing on praising the Lord, our Great Shepherd; Psalm 42 - focusing on praising the Lord for providing for our needs; Psalm 47 - focusing on praising God, our King; Psalm 50 - focusing on praising God who rules over all creation; Psalm 81 - focusing on singing our JOY to the Lord; Psalm 100 - focusing on praising God in our worship; Psalm 116 - focusing on praising God for hearing our prayers; Psalm 119 - focusing on praising God for being a light to our path; Psalm 121 - focusing on praising God for keeping our feet from danger; Psalm 136 - focusing on praising God for his steadfast love and Psalm 150 - focusing on praising the Lord with instrument.

We also have lessons available for Christmas and Easter that will be taught each year at the appropriate times of the year.


5.Who will teach the lessons?

A group of 5-7 mothers take turns teaching the lessons. This is a small enough group that we have opportunity to build good relationships with the children, and provides us with a similar rotation frequency as the Nursery List.


6.What do your lessons look like?

All of our lessons have a very similar structure. We begin each lessons with a welcoming activity that the children join in as they arrive and for a few minutes after the service starts. The point of this activity is to engage the children’s interest and establish an atmosphere of learning, and not just play. Next, we gather the children around the table or in a circle and sing our welcoming song (and possibly some additional songs appropriate to the lesson, or requests). Then, we pray with the children and talk about our theme and introduce the lesson for today. The center of every lesson is the Bible Story. We follow up the Bible story with an opportunity to ask/answer questions, and we recite the text together. We then reinforce the Bible Story with a simple craft (or two) that the children can take home to encourage them to share the story with their families. If time permits, we may retell the story once more after the craft is completed. We close the lesson by reciting the Lord's Prayer together with the children. Depending on how much time is left, we often close the lesson with a follow up activity.

7.What kinds of activities will you use to support the lesson?

Preschoolers have unique learning needs – they learn by listening, by watching, by talking/singing, but especially by doing. These little lambs need to get their hands and bodies engaged as often as possible to maximize learning. Therefore, we build our lesson around the core of the Bible Story, and support that with as many different hands on activities as we can to make the story more memorable and to bring the Bible Story deeper into the hearts and minds of the children. The craft is an essential part of the lesson because it allows preschoolers to be active in cutting, gluing, coloring, painting, etc. Some examples of welcome activities or follow-up activities:a) songs (including finger plays and songs with actions) b) musical instruments b) play dough c) building blocks d) toy animals e) puppets of animals or non-specific people f) a felt board with pictures of OT and NT characters and scenes and g) coloring pages.

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This program is designed to teach the children of believers who are also being taught by their parents to love God, and to know the history of salvation as revealed in the Bible. The lessons are not designed for evangelism - and so are well suited for use at any Bible Study sessions aimed at "covenant" preschoolers.

The program includes 28 Old Testament lessons, 24 New Testament lessons, 2 Christmas lessons, 1 Easter lesson and 15 lessons on the Psalms.  Each lesson is designed simply with minimal supplies and a short preparation time.

This blog is designed to provide access to the lessons for those moms who are running the program, as well as to allow us to share suggestions for what works, craft hints, photos of finished crafts and offer support to one another as we teach God's little ones.

Thanks so much for all the interest in this program!

In Ontario, our program is currently running in:
Ancaster Can Ref church Wednesday morning Women's Bible Study
Provindence Can Ref church Sunday afternoon service
Trinity Can Ref church of Glanbrook Sunday afternoon service
Flamborough Can Ref church Sunday afternoon service
Cornerstone Can Ref church in Hamilton Sunday afternoon service
Jubilee Can Ref church in Ottawa monthly women's Bible Study
Zion United Reformed church Wednesday morning Bible Study

In Canada, our program is running in:
Aldergrove, BC Can Ref church in the Sunday afternoon service
Abbotsford, BC Can Ref church in the Sunday afternoon service
and one church in Manitoba

Around the world, we are helping to teach children in:
the Baptist church of Bournemouth, England
a mission church in Outer Mongolia
the Damansara Utama Methodist church in Malaysia
Emmanuel Lutheran church in Adell, WI
Southview Baptist church in Richfield. MN

and the list is growing all the time!  


"Your Word is a lamp for our feet; a light for our path"

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Unit 3: Sing a Psalm of Joy - Psalm 150

1) Welcome Activity: instruments would be perfect today!

2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.

3) Prayer...

4) Theme: Remind the children of the theme of the unit: Our joy in the Lord. “Sing of psalm of joy!” Tell them that they are going to learn about a psalm today that teaches us about our joy in the Lord.

5) Reading the Psalm: In order to simplify things for the children, first summarize the main point(s) of the psalm. In Psalm 150, the psalmist is singing praises to the Lord. There are so many ways to praise the Lord: by singing songs, clapping our hands and playing instruments like the trumpet, pipe, timbrel, stringed instruments, flutes and cymbals. Ask the children to list all the instruments they know. Then, read the psalm from the Bible. Then, repeat the main point(s) again.

6) Sing the Psalm: Sing today’s psalm with the children. You may sing all or only one stanza depending on what is appropriate for your psalm. If possible, include some hand motions to highlight key words. In this psalm (stanza 1 &2), try:
praise… both hands up in the air
spacious… open your arms wide
Instruments (you can act out playing them or really play them!)

7) Text… you may use a verse from the psalm in the Bible or choose a key line or two from the stanza that you chose to sing with the children. “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!” Psalm 150

8) Crafts:
  • Any instrument craft… there are tones of ideas on the internet or in craft books and any simple instrument works well here. The only thing that you may want to be careful of is that you do not repeat any craft that has recently been done, as some of the crafts here are also in other lessons.
  • Shakers… children can choose a handful of colorful beads to put into a clear snack sized container (available cheaply at any dollar store). Use a strip of clear tape to secure lid. Practice playing music for God while singing today’s song!
  • Tambourines… put several small bells (available cheaply at any dollar store) into between two small paper plate. Secure the edges with a strip of masking tape (or lots of staples). Children can decorate the outside with stickers or you could punch some holes and tie strips of curling ribbon around the edge.  My girl decided to use pipe cleaners to make handles for the sides of her tamborine - and that worked well too!  Lots of options to be very creative here...
  • Rice Maraca… Take a toilet paper tube and put 1-3 pieces of packaging tape and put it on one end of the tube. Put a handful of rice in the tube next. (Be generous with the rice because some of it will stick to tape!!!!!) Put 1-3 pieces of tape on the opposite end of the tube. Decorate your rice maraca with markers or any thing else.
  • Horn… Cover one end of the paper towel roll with waxed paper, secure it with a rubber band. Punch a row of holes along one side of the roll with the tip of a pen. To play, sing a tune into the open end of the horn.
9) Closing Prayer... say the Lord's prayer together with the children

10) Going Home: Round up all the children around the table or sit in a circle again. Sing today’s Psalm together and then sing the closing. Then, check to see if all the children have collected their crafts and coloring sheets before they go home. Say goodbye and tell them that you enjoyed learning about God together and were happy to have them today! You were, weren’t you?

Unit 3: Sing a Psalm of Joy - Psalm 136

1) Welcome Activity:

2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.

3) Prayer... thank God for his steadfast love.

4) Theme: Remind the children of the theme of the unit: Our joy in the Lord. “Sing of psalm of joy!” Tell them that they are going to learn about a psalm today that teaches us about our joy in the Lord.

5) Reading the Psalm: In order to simplify things for the children, first summarize the main point(s) of the psalm. In Psalm 136, the psalmist is singing about the steadfast love of the Lord. Steadfast means strong and dependable. God promised to love his people no matter what we do. God loved us from the beginning of the world when everything was created. God loved his people when he rescued them from slavery in Egypt. God love us today- remembering our tears and providing us with all good things. Then read the psalm from the Bible. Then, repeat the main point(s) again. Point out the refrain in this psalm and encourage the children to say it with you as you read the psalm through again.

6) Sing the Psalm: Sing today’s psalm with the children. You may sing all or only one stanza depending on what is appropriate for your psalm. If possible, include some hand motions to highlight key words. In this psalm, try:
thanks… fingertips on lips, then bring your hand out palm up in front of you (this is the ASL sign for thank-you)
Lord… point upwards to heaven
Love… draw heart on chest, or use arms to “hug”

7) Text… you may use a verse from the psalm in the Bible or choose a key line or two from the stanza that you chose to sing with the children. “For his steadfast love is sure; it shall evermore endure” Psalm 136

8) Crafts:
  • His Steadfast Love... You'll need:red construction paper,scissors,markers,heart stickers, string. Directions:Take a red piece of construction paper and cut a big heart out of it. Glue the text in the center. Have the children decorate with heart stickers and markers. Punch holes at the top of heart and tie about a foot of string to each heart so that the children can hang the heart around a doorknob.

  • His Steadfast love stamp painting… Cut firm sponges into various shape hearts. Give each child a sheet of paper with the words:  God loves me!  “For his steadfast love is sure; it shall evermore endure”  Psalm 136...in the center. Provide several different colors of paint and allow the children to dip the sponges into the paint and stamp the hearts all over the paper. If you like, you could sprinkle glitter or valentines theme confetti over some of the hearts while the paint is wet. When dry, you could glue this onto a sheet of construction paper and add string as well.


  • Give Away a Heart... cut out for each child: a large heart, two small hands, two small feet, and four long strips (for arms/legs). Show the children how to glue the "heart person" together with arms and hands on the sides and legs and feet on the bottom. Draw on a face and use googly eyes if you like. To make this really special, put some chocolate "hugs and kisses" in a snack sized bag and staple to the heart person. Tell the children to share the hugs and kisses with someone they love!
9) Closing Prayer... say the Lord's prayer together with the children.

10) Going Home: Round up all the children around the table or sit in a circle again. Sing today’s Psalm together and then sing the closing song. Then, check to see if all the children have collected their crafts and coloring sheets before they go home. Say goodbye and tell them that you enjoyed learning about God together and were happy to have them today! You were, weren’t you?

Unit 3: Sing a Psalm of Joy - Psalm 121

1) Welcome Activity:
  • cut out child sized footprints and use clear tape or clear contact paper to stick them on the floor following a path around the room.  Challenge the children to follow the path by stepping on all the footprints.  This takes a bit of time to set up, but could stay on the floor for a few weeks of fun!

2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.

3) Prayer... ask God to guide our feet down paths of righteousness.

4) Theme: Remind the children of the theme of the unit: Our joy in the Lord. “Sing of psalm of joy!” Tell them that they are going to learn about a psalm today that teaches us about our joy in the Lord.

5) Reading the Psalm: In order to simplify things for the children, first summarize the main point(s) of the psalm. In Psalm 121, the psalmist is singing about how the Lord guides, protects and leads us. The Lord watches over us so closely, that our foot cannot slip from the path unless God allows. What comfort to know that the Lord is our keeper! Then read the psalm from the Bible. Then, repeat the main point(s) again.

6) Sing the Psalm: Sing today’s psalm with the children. You may sing all or only one stanza depending on what is appropriate for your psalm. If possible, include some hand motions to highlight key words. In this psalm (stanza 4), try:
Lord… point towards heaven
Strife (fighting)… punch fists together
going out… hand leads away
coming in… draw hand inwards
deliver…outstretched arm like leading into battle

7) Text… you may use a verse from the psalm in the Bible or choose a key line or two from the stanza that you chose to sing with the children. “ The Lord is your keeper; He will not let your foot be moved.” Psalm 121: 5a ,3a

8) Craft:
  • Cut out Footprints.. Trace both feet of each child on one color of construction paper. Cut out and glue on a different color of paper and glue the text on the bottom.
  • Painted Footprints.. use washable paints to stamp each child’s footprints on a sheet of construction paper. Glue the text at the bottom. Be sure that you have the play dough handy today for the other children so that you can do the painting one child at a time.  If the weather does not lend itself to bare feet (ie. too many little girls in tights!) you can use Amanda's idea instead: trace around their feet and then let the kids paint their feet in with paint dabbers.
  • Father’s Day… if this lesson falls around father’s day, it would be nice to print out the poem in this lesson, and glue it on a sheet of construction paper. Use washable paint to add each child’s footprints on either side of the poem. Here is the poem: http://www.dltk-holidays.com/t.asp?b=m&t=http://www.dltk-holidays.com/dad/images/bfootprints.gif
  • Footsteps Following Jesus... You'll need:Construction paper,scissors,markers,contact paper,tape. Directions:Trace each child's footsteps and have them write their names on their feet and cut them out. (You can use a different color for each child) Cover each footprint with contact paper, and tape them to the wall so it looks like the footsteps are in a walking pattern. Then make a cross and cover it with contact paper. Tape the cross to the wall so it looked like the footprints are walking towards it. Make a banner across the top that reads, "Walking with Jesus"
9) Closing Prayer... say the Lord's prayer together with the children

10) Going Home: Round up all the children around the table or sit in a circle again. Sing today’s Psalm together and then sing the closing. Then, check to see if all the children have collected their crafts and coloring sheets before they go home. Say goodbye and tell them that you enjoyed learning about God together and were happy to have them today! You were, weren’t you?

Unit 3: Sing a Psalm of Joy - Psalm 119

1) Welcome Activity:

2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.

3) Prayer...

4) Theme: Remind the children of the theme of the unit: Our joy in the Lord. “Sing of psalm of joy!” Tell them that they are going to learn about a psalm today that teaches us about our joy in the Lord.

5) Reading the Psalm: In order to simplify things for the children, first summarize the main point(s) of the psalm. In Psalm 119, the psalmist is singing about God’s laws or commandments. God taught us how to live not to make our lives hard, but to lead us when life is difficult. David sings that when he suffers, he can take comfort and courage by reading God’s words and following his commands. Then, read a portion of the psalm from the Bible. Since we focus on stanza 40, you can just read a related portion or two as you choose. Then, repeat the main point(s) again.

6) Sing the Psalm: Sing today’s psalm with the children. You may sing all or only one stanza depending on what is appropriate for your psalm. If possible, include some hand motions to highlight key words. In this psalm, try:
lamp/lantern… one hand makes a fist for the lamp, the other hand spreads like rays above for light
feet… point to them
path before me… use your finger to draw a path in front of you
adore… draw a heart on your chest
suffer… let your shoulders sag as if you were tired and make a sad face
recall… remember; tap your finger on your temple
restore… like strengthen; use both arms with clenched fists like a strong man

7) Text… you may use a verse from the psalm in the Bible or choose a key line or two from the stanza that you chose to sing with the children. “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet” Psalm 119 stanza 40

8) Craft:
  • Candle Painting… give each child a picture of a candle on a stand. Give them some time to color the picture with crayons (not washable markers). Direct them to color the flame red or orange. Then talk about how light doesn’t stay just in the flame, but spread out all around. Put a squirt of yellow paint right over the flame. Give the children brushes or sponges and let them spread the paint outwards from the flame so that it covers the whole page!
    Ps. Washable markers will bleed, so color the picture with crayons.
  • Candle… you can do a similar sort of thing with glue and yellow tissue paper. Have the children color the picture first. Then use a paintbrush or sponge to “paint” the picture with white glue and cover with a thin sheet of yellow tissue paper for “light” all around. Or just use a circle of yellow tissue paper around the flame and rays and coat with a second layer of slightly watered glue. The color from the tissue paper will bleed so that you get an orange crayon flame, a dark yellow tissue paper circle and a pale yellow circle of dye around that.
  • Candle Holder... save clean, empty baby food jars (one per child). Have the children decorate the jars and pop in a tea light candle before they take it home. Here are some decorating options: 1) glitter glue... Allow the children to draw squiggles and shapes with the glitter glue directly on the outside of the jar. 2) jewels... use white glue to attach flat backed "jewels" to the jar. 3) stickers... decorate outside of jar with sparkling stars or other simple shapes 4) tissue paper... cut tissue paper into small squares. Paint white glue (thinned with water to help it spread thinly) on the the jar with a paintbrush and attach tissue paper squares. Caution the children to go easy with the glue or it will take days for the jar to dry.

9) Closing prayer... say the Lord's prayer together with the children
10) Going Home: Round up all the children around the table or sit in a circle again. Sing today’s Psalm together and then sing the closing. Then, check to see if all the children have collected their crafts and coloring sheets before they go home. Say goodbye and tell them that you enjoyed learning about God together and were happy to have them today! You were, weren’t you?

Unit 3: Sing a Psalm of Joy - Psalm 116

1) Welcome Activity:

2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.

3) Prayer...

4) Theme: Remind the children of the theme of the unit: Our joy in the Lord. “Sing of psalm of joy!” Tell them that they are going to learn about a psalm today that teaches us about our joy in the Lord.

5) Reading the Psalm: In order to simplify things for the children, first summarize the main point(s) of the psalm. In Psalm 116, the psalmist is singing about the love that he has for the Lord who hears his voice. What a comfort to know that God hears our cries for help in difficult times and that he also hears our songs of praise for his goodness God is always listening to the voice of his beloved people. Then read the psalm from the Bible. Then, repeat the main point(s) again.

6) Sing the Psalm: Sing today’s psalm with the children. You may sing all or only one stanza depending on what is appropriate for your psalm. If possible, include some hand motions to highlight key words. In this psalm, try:
love… draw heart on chest
Lord… point to heaven
Heard… cup hand around ear
Voice… extend fingers from lips
Cry… draw tear on cheek
Supplication… hands together in prayer
Ear… cup hand around ear
Strength… put both arms up like you’re weight lifting
Heart… point or draw on chest
Face… circle your hand around your face

7) Text… you may use a verse from the psalm in the Bible or choose a key line or two from the stanza that you chose to sing with the children. “He heard my voice” Psalm 116 stanza 1

8) Craft:
  • Praying Hands… trace each child’s hand on a sheet of construction paper folded in half. Place the thumb closest to the fold. Cut out the two hands leaving the thumbs still attached. When you open this up, you have two hands, when you close them, the hands are folded and ready for prayer. The children can color/sticker to decorate their hands if you like; there are some praying hands stickers in the craft kit. Glue the text inside the hands.
  • Bedtime Prayers: Have children color the picture of the praying boy/girl as appropriate. Cut in a circle to fit inside a large paper plate and glue on. Cut a circle of lined paper to fit on the back of the circle for the parent to write their child’s bedtime prayer. Punch holes at the top of the paper plate and loop a string through so that the plate can be hang in the child’s bedroom. Here is a template of a girl praying: http://coloring-page.net/pages/bible-14.htmland a girl again: http://coloring-page.net/pages/bible-15.html and a boy praying: http://coloring-page.net/pages/bible-39.html
  • Say My Prayers Song (sung to the tune of Row. Row Your Boat)
    I will say my prayers
    Each and every day!
    I will always talk to God
    And He hears what I say.


9) Closing Prayer... say the Lord's prayer together with the children

10) Going Home: Round up all the children around the table or sit in a circle again. Sing today’s Psalm together and then sing the closing. Then, check to see if all the children have collected their crafts and coloring sheets before they go home. Say goodbye and tell them that you enjoyed learning about God together and were happy to have them today! You were, weren’t you?