Noah’s ark – drawn onto wall paper (found in the church storage cupboard!!) The animals are stickers, the water is tissue and sugar paper. Very easy to set up and you can always display it afterwards.
“Hello friends, hello friends. How are you, how are you? It’s time for a story, time for a story. Come and listen, come and listen.”
We sing this song to the tune of ‘Frere Jacques’ every week at toddler group. We gather round the story chair in a semi – circle; some sit on the rugs and others on chairs and then we share a story together.
By saying ‘share a story together’ I mean that I don’t just read a story from a book or recite a story script. It is story telling – a much more interactive group activity. We are ‘in it together’, taking part, joining in.
There are different ways of creating a joining in experience when telling a story. Here are a few ideas
- Sounds to make – the sound of the storm on the lake
- Actions to do – climbing the tree with Zacchaeus
- Saying hello to the characters in the story as they come out of the story bag
- Singing a song – include ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star’ part way through the story of the shepherds and angels.
So how do you choose which stories to tell?
As a church-based group (although we meet in a community hall) we tell stories from the Bible. It can help if each story is connected to a theme for half a term. Animal Bible stories, Homes Jesus Visited, Stories Jesus Told, Creation. Choose stories that you feel comfortable with and will enjoy telling.
When to have Story Time?
Pick a time in your session when there are less distractions. If you want the children to join in, then serve snacks before or after. Try to time things so that hands are free to take part in the story actions. If possible, have a space where there are no toys or do Story Time at the beginning or towards the end of the session.
Create a space
The storyteller needs to be seen and to be on the children’s level. Choose a low seat and create a semi – circle. Clean rugs encourage parents/carers and children to sit on the floor, but chairs are good for adults who need a higher seat.
The idea is to know the story well and encourage interaction with the group. The Bible is full of the most wonderful stories. Enjoy sharing them!
(This is an article I wrote for CEF Britain’s Newsletter)
Here are some of the items I use when telling stories…
Some photos from our Biblezone week and Biblezone Build Holiday Bible Club. Great summer so far!
Our Biblezone week is a mixture of outdoor clubs and church based clubs. There’s craft, games, football and a Bible story and memory verse each day. Our Biblezone build is a mixture of lego building and challenges, craft and Bible stories, memory verses and fun competitions.
Thought you might like to see how we display our ‘Journey to Bethlehem’ paper plates at Toddler Group. The hall has a stage (very mixed blessing) and I use a Go pack table put onto it’s side as a large display space. It works really well and is very stable as the legs of the table hold it up. Each week we’ve added more plates.
This week we also had our stable scene which we bought from Costco about ten years ago. We use it in toddler group and for school classes. The toddlers are always really fascinated by it so it comes out for two weeks. Week one is The Birth of Jesus. Week two (Christmas party week) is The Visit of the Shepherds.
Here’s some pictures of our star wreath craft from this morning
Yesterday I posted a Christmas Card Star idea. Today another idea using the same star wreath. This time you can paint the star or decorate with stickers and then use tissue paper for a stained glass effect.
I used paint markers to create the dots. As with all paint check that what you use is washable and have aprons or warn parents/carers that there will be paint! I bought Washable Dab and Dot Markers. They are for 3plus years but if you put the lids out of reach and keep a watchful eye they are ok. If you don’t feel 100% comfortable with using something in your group then don’t use it.
The two ideas…