Using the Theme Throughout the Year 2011-2012
Starting the Church School Year:
- Assign each classroom a book of the BIBLE for the year. During the year each class could research and study their book, use the data to act it out and learn to sing the hymnography that is in that book.
- Decorate with banners of quotes from the BIBLE.
- Use the icon logo on their room sign.
- Use a pattern of an open book for your bulletin board displays.
Through the Year:
- Halloween - Celebrate Fall and the BIBLE with a costume party of BIBLE characters.
- Thanksgiving - Find out what the foods of the BIBLE are and try them in a recipe.
- Nativity/Christmas – Compare and contrast the narratives from Matthew and Luke.
- Pascha - For the Gospel reading in different languages organize volunteers to read.
- March – National Reading Month: Have students write a book report on a book about the BIBLE or a book of the BIBLE.
- Challenge class, or entire Church School, to read the entire BIBLE in a year, a chapter a week, a book a month, etc.
- Ask your priest to start a BIBLE Study for teachers, students, families or the whole parish.
- Personify a BIBLE Story – write journal entries as if you are the main character.
- Challenge the students to find an upcoming feast in the BIBLE, read aloud, act out or report on to the parish, write a bulletin entry or ask to give a sermonette in church.
- Prayer Before Reading the BIBLE, St. John Chrysostom
- Prayer Before the Gospel, Service Book
- Scripture Verses
- List of the Books of the BIBLE
- Match BIBLE quotes with appropriate chapter and verse.
- BIBLE Trivia, BIBLE-opoly, BIBLE versions of popular games.
Incentives: Using a chart with each student’s name on it, place a sticker for each objective you are trying to encourage (attendance, being on time, memorization, class participation, attending extra services, etc.). When this chart is filled up, reward the student with a small gift or use a points system to save up for bigger gifts or outings. For inexpensive gift items check out U.S. Toys (1-800-255-6124 or www.ustoy.com) or Oriental Trading Company (www.oriental.com).
Crafts & Projects: make BIBLE covers, bookmarks, or ribbons.
Service Project Ideas: Have a fundraiser to provide BIBLES to a charity in your area. Some of these charities might require audio BIBLES or BIBLES in different languages.
Creative Festivals: see downloadable lesson plans provided by AODCE.
End of the Year/Recognition: Use the theme and logo as the central part of the certificate or award being given. Any gifts given to teachers or students can reflect this year’s theme: icon, Study BIBLE, Children’s BIBLE Reader, BIBLE accessories, etc.
- Children’s Bible Reader Online - http://cbr.goarch.org/
- Antiochian Gospel Program -http://www.antiochian.org/christianeducation/letusattend
- Questions to Ask Throughout the Church School Year (Word Document)
- Progress Chart (Word Document): Either print and enlarge this into poster size or make a similar poster. As you teach various Bible stories throughout the year, record them on this poster and allow the students to comment on how that particular story gives the students eternal joy, recording their comments. Finally, check off if you were able to complete a project related to that particular lesson. If so, you may want to keep the project for possible use in the Creative Festivals. When it is time to send out CF projects, students can choose a project to send from their collection of art work. (This is just one idea in which you can implement participation in the CF).
These ideas are submitted by Kh. Leslee Abud as suggestions that link the year’s theme with Church School activities. If you have additional suggestions, please share them with the rest of us! E-mail the Christian Education office at AODCE@aol.com.