Children’s Program News – July 2019

Happy summer everyone! Our weather was been a grab bag of everything! I’m not sure if I should put my sweaters away or keep them close at hand!🧤🧥🌨  Anyway, we have been enjoying all of God’s gifts rain or shine!🌧☀️ 

We said a sad but excited goodbye to our Sunday School friend, Adam McCall… he is off to a new exciting adventure with his mother, as they are moving to Olympia, WA! We wish Adam and his family all the best on their relocation!! 🚛🏠.

And, CONGRATULATIONS to our friend Madeline Moreno and her family, they welcomed a baby brother to their family!!👶🏻

The Children’s Garden is GROWING!🚜  We have been busy checking on the garden and caring for the fruits and veggies!  We have harvested enough bounty to offer to the grownups in lieu of donations for our Wheelchair Mission project! Our Fresh Garden table has included snap peas, basil, onions, and yet to come, carrots, garlic, pumpkin, rosemary, zucchini(maybe) and blueberries!🥕🍅

Last Saturday Warren Aney, Mary Prescott, Diane Bender, and I scavenged gardening tools and worked on weeding and trimming The Butterfly Garden! Now the plants can breathe and grow again and all butterflies, bees, and moths are welcome!🌱🐝🍃🦋🌿☘️

The last couple months in Sunday School, we have been listening to and talking about Parable Lessons for children. A Parable, is a short story meant to help us learn an important lesson.  Our UPCUSA chosen curriculum guides these lessons with stories, figurines, and settings. I add additional enhancements to these stories, that the children recognize and respond to, in the form of videos, coloring and story pages, and examples of everyday life according to the lesson in each Parable! A few of the stories we’ve discussed are…

🤑 The Rich Fool: Luke 12:16-21, “depicts the futility of the belief that wealth can secure prosperity or a good life.”

🤗 The Good Samaritan: Luke 10:25-37, “God wants us to show love to everyone, even people who are different than us, or might disagree with us.”

😔The Unforgiving Servant:  Matthew18:21-35, “we do not have a right to hold a grudge against others.” 

In everyday life, we can use these Parable stories to remind ourselves how to be the best person we can be in all eyes!

Miss Kim has been busy planning and coordinating events and outings for our children and families! We enjoyed some time outside, eating pizza, checking out the Splash Pad, and watching the ducks and fish swim in the pond at Progress Ridge! We are looking forward to a trip to the Oregon Zoo and some frolicking in the Conestoga Splash Pad!!

We are reintroducing Church Buddies!  We have a few grown-ups on our list and we would like to add more! Please consider sharing a small amount of your time with our wonderful kiddos!! 👫👫👫

We will continue to update our Upcoming Events and Activities in the email newsletter and on the Children’s bulletin boards. Thank you so much for all of the support and kindness!

~ Denise and Kim 😊

Church Buddies is Back!

What is it? A program that pairs church members with elementary-school-aged children (G. K-5) to provide opportunities for intergenerational connection and foster an atmosphere of community.

How does it work? School-aged children from our congregation are matched with church members.  Each child will be paired with an adult of the same gender.  After a short “meet and greet” in September (after service), volunteers are simply asked to take 5 minutes if they see their buddy on Sunday to ask about their week, tell a joke, give a high-five…anything that creates a sense of belonging for our children.

How do I Sign Up? Sign up with Children’s Ministry Director Denise Ackerman. The Meet and Greet Session will be held after church in September 2019. Adults and Kids will be matched up at that time and will spend about 15-20 minutes getting to know one another.

The Fine Print: Volunteers should never be alone with a child or take them on outings. Parent approval is always required.

Children’s Ministries

Nursery & Early Childhood

Infants and preschoolers are cared for on Sunday mornings from 9:00-11:15 am by a certified teacher.

Our youngest children are cared for in a warm and loving environment nested within the preschool wing of our building.

Parents are welcome to linger and join us for whatever time feels comfortable. Parents may leave items that can assist the adult in making the time soothing, safe and enjoyable for their child (e.g. diapers, bottle, favorite toy or blanket).

Elementary (Godly Play)

Children Kindergarten-4th grade begin worship with their parents at 10:00 am.

After the Time with Children with one of our pastors or Children’s Ministry Coordinator, the children are dismissed to go with Staff and volunteers to Godly Play. Our Children’s ministry director will then present a lesson through story time and music. Children will have an opportunity to interact with story, for example with finger puppets or characters, artistic expression or hands-on centers. Snacks are often provided.

Parents and Volunteers

Our work with children relies on help from our parents and volunteers in the church community. In addition to assisting our dedicated teachers, we believe it is important for parents and church members to get acquainted with various aspects of our church life. It is good for parents to develop a relationship with their children’s teacher as well as understand how their child experiences the Sunday morning learning hour. Likewise, it is good for congregants who do not have children to become a relational support system for our children as they grow within our church community.

Volunteers are needed each week. Volunteers do not need to prepare lessons or teach lessons; instead, they are there to support the teacher and children with various aspects of the activities.