Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Mustard Seeds

Ann Scull is a Uniting Church Minister with a passion for involving all ages in worship.

Her site, Mustard Seeds includes a range of resources which  enable you to do just that.

Every week she offers prayers, photos, movie clip ideas, activities,  and story ideas which are relevant, thoughtful and to the point.

It's worth a glance whenever you are preparing chapel services; even  ideas from previous weeks can often be rejigged for the present, or can inspire you tin other directions.

You can find it here.

Godly Play

Looking for a way to authentically engage young children with the Bible. Why not explore Godly Play?

Godly Play is a way of telling Bible stories using a method based on the Montessori approach. Developed by Jerome Berryman, Godly Play is ideal for children under eight. It uses parables, sacred stories and liturgical lessons about religious traditions to deeply engage students.

Godly play is about the way young children experience God while learning about God.

It uses a sensorimotor style of storytelling as a primary means of encountering God, so God is experienced, not just learned about. It provides opportunities for students to continue to work and play with the story using art and figurines. It enables young children to bring their lived experiences into dialogue with God in the biblical stories and enables them to tell the stories to one another.

The website of Godly Play in Australia is good place to begin exploring or by reading the book Young Children and Worship by Sonya Stewart and Jerome Berryman.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

What's in the Bible?

Another great resource suggestion by Andrew L! 

What's in the Bible a DVD series comes from the creator of  VeggieTales®, Phil Vischer. It is designed to walk kids and families through the entire Bible. At this stage DVDs 1-6 go from Genesis through to 2 Chronicles with more to come. There is also a curriculum attached to the videos.

This material is clearly geared for young students, but just like Veggie Tales, older students may also find it amusing if presented in the right way. The videos are certainly well made, engaging and fun.

There is a blog attached to the website with lots of interesting content. Of particular note (for next year)  are the posts about doing Lent with children. 

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Yes He Is

A shout out to Andrew L who told me about Yesheis.com. It has lots of great videos that could be used in a variety of settings, including worships, assemblies or in the RE classroom.

Some of the videos are good for thought provoking reflection, some will stir up conversation and debate, and some are just wonderful entertainment.

Like any of these sites where videos are contributed by a community, there is a big mix of content. There is some stuff you will love and some stuff you will probably choose not to use, but there is certainly something for everyone.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

The Source for Youth Ministry

Looking for a website with “tons of free resources, try The source for youth ministry

This website is jam packed full of all sorts of helpful resources for youth ministry including: games, team builders, activity ideas, movie reviews, youth culture windows and much much more.

One of the things I love about this website is the selection that goes into much of the material. Many websites are full of stuff you can’t use. This site has a lot of good material.

Although this site emerges from an American context it still contains a lot of useful resources but like anything there is stuff here you will probably hate and disagree with. 

One part of the website of particular value is the youth culture window that explores issues  dealing with young people, youth culture and faith.

Monday, 5 March 2012

The Big Little Easter Story

Here's a great idea leading up to Easter, to get the artistic juices flowing  with your students.  

St Paul's Arts in NZ, a kids club attached to an Anglican Church, posted this video with instructions for an art installation designed to get people reflecting on the meaning of Easter.

They challenged people to make dioramas that depicted the results of their reflections, and displayed these at the Church over Easter.

The 86 second video shows how easy it is to inspire people of all skill levels to be a part of this task.  

By the way, St Paul's Arts 'n Kids (SPAnK) was the group that made that wonderful "Christmas Story" video last year that has been viewed by more than a million people around the planet.  Here's the link to that if you've never seen it, because you will want to use it once you have!

24/7 Prayer

The 24/7 pray movement taps into some interesting currents in youth spirituality, including a focus on experience and participation, new monasticism and a desire to engage in issues of mission and justice.

The UK and international sites  have some interesting ideas and resources that might be used for inspiration within the school setting. The UK site has a section on schools and information can be found throughout on setting up prayer spaces.

The whole site is worth digging through to see how this movement is engaging young people with prayer and mission around the world.