- a bucket of plastic animals, animal puppet or animal shapes in play dough
2) Songs: Start the Story Hour with the learning our names song. Go around the circle or table and introduce each child.
3) Prayer... acknowledge the greatness of God who rules over all creation; how small are we in comparison with his majesty!
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 50, the psalmist is praising God;s majesty over all things. We should approach God in humbleness for he is the Lord of all creation. Then, read the psalm from the Bible (I suggest just verses 1-15 where God speaks to his covenant people). 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 5), try:
do not... wag your finger like no-no
cattle... put your fingers up like horns
beast... form hand like claws
birds.. flap arms like wings
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 the world is the Lord;s and all that is in it. Psalm 50:12
8) Crafts: Many different animal crafts can work here, depending on crafts your kids have done lately and which part of the psalm you focus on.
- every animal of the forest is mine.
- the cattle on a thousand hills are mine
- I know every bird in the mountains
- all the creatures of the field are mine
Here are a few links to sites that have lots of animal crafts to choose from: http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/animals/
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?