An old friend from high school brought this video to my attention via Facebook. Apparently it’s a marriage proposal video that was made with puppets and then screened at a movie theater the couple was attending in order to actually pop the question. Further proof that people love puppets!
We’re excited to announce that One Way Street’s own Todd Liebenow will be one of the speakers for the 2011 Children’s Ministry Telesummit. It’s a conference that will feature tons of great children’s ministry leaders, and you don’t even need to leave your home to attend. You can find out more at pajamaconference.com
If you’ve been following this blog you may remember that a few months ago One Way Street’s own Todd Liebenow was featured on the very first episode of the Children’s Ministry Live podcast. This podcast is produced by a college student who want to be a children’s pastor. He is trying to learn as much as he can about children’s ministry, so he interviews “experts” and shares the interviews with all of us in podcast form. It was a lot of fun to be a part of the podcast!
Well, it turns out that an interesting side note about this young man is that his family’s home is decorated each Christmas with a huge light display, complete with a soundtrack and computers running the show. He’s shared a video of this year’s display online…so enjoy! Whatever church ends up hiring this young man one day should make decorating the church for Christmas one of his job responsibilities.
This is something we hear a lot at this time of year… “The pastor just asked us to do something for the kids that’s Christmas related. What do you have that’s easy to do and I need it yesterday!” No matter how hard we try, there always seems to be some last-minute call for a Christmas lesson or performance. Here are a few of our favorite Christmas “quickies” that you may want to have on hand for this holiday season.
This follow-up to the popular “Minute Manna” collection of skits is like it’s predecessor in that all of the skits are about a minute long, and convey great messages through a unique sense of humor. All of the skits in this collection focus on holidays. There are 26 skits in all, six of them are for Christmas. Other holidays featured include Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and more. Since these skits are so short, they are easy to put together quickly.
Story bags are great tools to have around. There is a special story that the teacher tells while using the bag. Each time they turn the bag inside out it displays a different color or pattern that represents and aspect of the story. The last part of the bag also features a zipper pouch where another object lesson can be kept. Lots of different Bible stories are available, but the Christmas one makes for a quick, easy and memorable object less that’s perfect for the Holiday season.
Puppets can be made out of just about anything. A favorite technique of ours is turning household items like mops and brooms into puppets. These puppets can be made in a way that allows kids from the audience to not only be the puppeteers, but also help design the look of the puppets they will use. Since the kids are being the performers, the lesson will be even more memorable to them. This technique is outlined in a book called “Creative Puppetry with Mops and Brooms.” The book also features several plays, including two Christmas plays.
Shadow Puppet Nativity:
One of the simplest Christmas presentations I ever did was to simply read the Christmas story right out of the scripture while acting out the story with shadow puppets. The book “Sensational Shadows” gives tons of advice for making and performing with shadow puppets. You can put a lot of work into your characters, or they can be very simple. Making simple shadow puppets out paper or poster board can even be a great art project for kids and get them even more involved in your presentation.
Songs can be presented in a simple or complex way…it all depends on the creativity of your team. It’s fun to do big elaborate pieces, but when you’re short on time, there’s nothing wrong with simple. When I need a quick Christmas song, there are four CD’s I would look to first: Happenin’ Christmas Carols 1 & 2, and Righteous Pop Music Christmas 1 & Righteous Pop Music 2. The Happenin’ albums feature classic Christmas carols done in unique musical styles, like “We Three Kings” as a rap song. The Righteous Pop Music albums feature familiar pop songs, redone with Christmas lyrics.
Happy last minute lesson planning!
K! Magazine is one of the best publications out there for folks in children’s ministry. In the November/December 2010 issue, One Way Street’s founder, Dale VonSeggen, has an article about his adventures in children’s ministry. It’s about the ups and downs, victories and challenges of One Way Street over the years. You should check it out!
Are your kids going crazy for Silly Bandz? If the kids in your children’s church are like the kids in mine, then they come to church each Sunday with a collection of these strange rubber bands on their arms. They come in all sorts of shapes, from animals to symbols to cartoon characters. Kids love to collect and trade them. With all the great shapes that are available, there are hundreds of opportunities for sharing biblical object lessons based on the bands.
We’ve been working hard on this great new book which gives over 25 object lessons that can be used with “bandz.” It’s available for order now, or you can even download the book directly to your computer.
You can order here: Teaching the Bible with Bandz
You can also view a sample object lesson here: David and Goliath
Just a quick note…Our fall puppet festival season is off and running. We have, however, had to make a change for the upcoming festival in Huntsville, AL. The date of the festival remains the same (Oct 15-16) but it will now be held at The Rock Family Worship Center. The address is below…we hope to see you there. For more information on the festivals visit www.onewaystreet.com
The Rock Family Worship Center
2300 Memorial Parkway SW
Huntsville, AL 35801
We were thrilled to find out yesterday that the One Way Street Blog was listed as one of the top 100 children’s ministry blogs at ministry-to-children.com. This was a great surprise, especially since I’ve been kicking myself for not updating the blog enough lately. Plus, we’re in great company on that list! Go check out the whole list here: Top 100 Children’s Ministry Blogs
Just about two weeks ago I got a call from a young man named Brandon. He’s pursuing a path toward a career in children’s ministry…Yay! He is anxious to learn as much as he can from “experts” in the field. One way he plans on doing this is through a podcast in which he will interview folks in children’s ministry. So when he asked if I’d like to be interviewed on the podcast I was thrilled. I didn’t realize that it would be the first episode of the podcast, which is even more exciting!
Thanks for the opportunity to be on the show, Brandon, and we wish you all the best!
Check out this great blog post from kimandjason.com, which is a site where they seek to cure folks of “adultitis.” It’s about a rule that does not exist…”act your age.” I think breaking this “rule” is important, especially for folks who work with kids.