Friday, February 29, 2008

Using my Free Sunday School Lesson Plans

From Kevin Ophoff at Sunday School Lesson Connection
for the complete resource visit my website at http://sundayschoollessonconnection.com/

Leading a Middle School Sunday School Class
Here are my tips for leading a great Sunday School or Youth Group Bible lesson time. These methods are specifically for Middle School (Junior High) age kids.

Using my lesson plans: On the "Lesson Plan" page you will find many pre-made Bible lessons to choose from. These are not the usual "bubble-gum" lessons that you normally find offered in curriculum books. Rather, they are foundational, doctrinal issues. These kids are ready to learn more detailed answers to questions like, "Where do you go when you die?". Plus they want answers to hard questions like, "Can you go to heaven if you commit suicide?". Kids will ask you these loaded questions. If you give them the same old route answers they will turn you off and mistrust whatever you're teaching. If, on the other hand, you prepare a detailed, Biblically supported answer, weather it's a tough answer or not, they will grow to trust you and appreciate your lessons. The point is to tell the kids the truth.

Age group differences:My lesson plans can be adapted to both Junior High and High School age kids but the teaching methods are quite different. Middle school kids are just starting to realize that they can make their own decisions. They are just now beginning to grow their own faith apart from their parents. It's an exciting time to teach them.

Here's a tidbit from "Frontline": "As the prefrontal cortex matures, teenagers can reason better, develop more control over impulses and make judgments better. In fact, this part of the brain has been dubbed "the area of sober second thought."

If your class is primarily 6th-7th graders I recommend having them fill in the blanks on the lesson plan worksheets. This helps them begin to be able to create a "life application" sentence drawn from reading a Bible verse. Have them sign their names, and hand them in at the end of the lesson (I let them select one item from the "treasure box" as a reward {more on that later}).
At the end of a season we spend a class making cover pages and assemble the Lesson Plans into a booklet for them to bring home to their parents. I add pages of pictures of the class that we have taken throughout the year. The booklet becomes a valuable treasure and accomplishment for many of them.

For older kids and High School age filling in the blanks is more like a tiresome chore. They're ready for a free flowing discussion debating the finer points. Just use the questions on the Lesson Plan for discussion starters. Use the verses as Biblical support for the issue being discussed. Guide the discussion to the main point the verses are conveying.
To download actual lesson plans visit the web page below:
For the rest of the story visit my website: http://sundayschoollessonconnection.com/

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