2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.
3) Prayer... praise God for his many blessings that bring such joy to our hearts
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 16, the psalmist is expressing his trust in the Lord, saying You are MY Lord. God;s faithfulness is evident by the many blessings that he pours out upon his children. Brainstorm some blessings that the Lord pours out upon us. 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 2), try:
sorrows… use your fingers to draw a frown over your mouth
lips... point to your mouth
forsake you never... hold your arms tightly around your body
cup... curve one hand like your are holding a cup
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. “You have filled me with joy” Psalm 16:11
- Cup of blessing... have the children decorate a paper cup with markers, stickers or glitter or a clear plastic cup with stickers. Have strips of paper handy and ask the children about the blessings that God has given us that fill us with joy. Write down some of these blessings and have them tape the paper to the rim of the cup (or staple if you have a paper cup) so that the blessings are overflowing from the cup. A great way to practice thankfulness!
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?