How can we already be approaching the close of another school year??
Let’s preserve a”milepost moment” with a tradition!
Our kindergarteners are looking forward to graduating to first grade!
To mark this occasion, each child received a gift from the church. Since reading together is an important activity, ahead of time their family chose a Bible storybook, or a book of devotions. These gifts were presented to the children. They had a few minutes to have a first look. Watch the slideshow below. (If you are reading in an email, you may have to click over to the blog to see the photos.)
This particular milestone event is also important because moving up to 1st grade means that next fall their Sunday’s Cool experience will be a bit different. The kids had a chance to view these differences in action, as we took a tour of the “Older Children” Cool Disciples!
Here are a few notable differences:
- They will be rotating!
(This method that we use for Sunday school is, after all, called the Workshop Rotation Model™, which you can learn more about by clicking on the logo on the right.)
While in Kindergarten, the workshops came to the kids. As 1st graders they’ll be visiting the workshops – physically moving – to a different workshop each week.
- How do we figure out where they go each week?
Starting in 1st grade, kids attend worship until the Children’s Moment. After that, they are dismissed (with a song!) to their workshops. Check out the Children’s Ministries page (it’s usually buff colored) in the bulletin to see where they are headed. Remember, your child’s workshop location changes every week!
OR (here’s a better way) look ahead of time at home. (Or from your smartphone on your way to church – not the driver of course!) Check out the latest schedule post on this blog. Listed in the schedule post are descriptions of what each workshop will be doing. To generate a little bit of excitement I’d say, make a new habit: check it out on… Wednesdays!
- But after the children’s moment in church, there is a large mob of kids – how does my 1st grader survive the crowd?
We’ve got a system! First graders are big kids, but the older kids can look bigger! To help out with this, the 1st graders gather in the hallway outside of the Sanctuary. This allows all of the older kids to
run excitedlywalk ahead to their workshops. A volunteer Shepherd greets the 1st graders outside of the Sanctuary. After the older kids have disbursed, the first grade goes as a group to their workshop.
On the first few weeks next fall, you may want to help your child find the group and say goodbye in the hall; then once they are familiar with the process, you can let them leave the Sanctuary by themselves.
- Do I need to sign them in and out?
Nope. 1st and 2nd graders will wait after class with an adult in their workshop, for pick-up by a parental unit. (3rd grade and up are dismissed to meet their families.) When you pick up your child do at least make eye contact with your child’s Shepherd!
- What is a Shepherd (and how else can I get involved in this great program?
Glad you asked! Shepherds rotate with the class. Thus, they get to know the kids and help out as directed by the Workshop Leader (by taking attendance, forming groups of kids for a game, or assigning roles to puppeteers). Ideally Shepherds would serve twice a month from Sept. through May. There are many other ways to get involved. Email to ask more questions!
- Anything else?
Why, yes! Continue to nurture your family spiritually. You know you have a hand in this?
I realize it can be hard to teach kids how faith fits into life. That’s where this blog comes in…
Helping you build disciples with everyday moments.
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Have fun “homeschooling” in the ways of faith and grace!
Photos are from my archives with the exception of the “blog button” which was adapted from this Creative Commons photo.
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