I'm getting this out a little bit early this week, since I'll be travelling over the weekend. Hope you enjoy it!
I don't know about you, but I am always looking for creative ways to tell a story in Children's Ministry! After many years of experience, we all have our favorites...not so favorites...and the kid's favorites to share. LOL
Storytelling's purpose in our sessions is extremely important! Let's face it, that's usually the best way to teach the main point of the day - with a Bible Story, a personal experience, or even just a made up story that the kids can relate to.
So how do we do it in such a way that we don't bore our kids to death?!
I've decided to share some of the ideas we have found that hold the children's interest, and help to get our point across. Let's go! :D
1. DRAMA Kids LOVE drama! Actually...adults do too! When there are characters dressed up on the stage, acting out the story, it's really difficult to lose their attention. So what happens when you can't find enough staff or volunteers? Here are some options: a. Teens that like drama - no need to word-for-word memorize! Let them hold a clip board and script. Just be sure they are familiar with the story, so they don't have to read it completely.
b. Monologues - if you have a volunteer that is very expressive, let them tell the Bible Story from a "first person" perspective. Make sure they have an appropriate costume! This makes it much more believable.
c. Older Children - if the story is simple enough, you could print out the script and have your older children in your class act out the story.
2. GROUP PARTICIPATION
I have found that getting the most unruly child involved in telling the story, will keep their attention and make it a great experience for them.
Gather a few costumes and props, and as you tell the story, dress up your characters chosen from the class, and move them around on the stage to visualize the story.
If there are small specific lines that could be spoken, write them on cue cards, and hand out to your child volunteers.
We have a puppet stage always set up in our Children's Church area. Sometimes, we will simply take the Bible Story/lesson, and have a puppet tell it, instead of the teacher.
Another option for puppets, is to have a puppet interact with the teacher, as she/he is teaching the story. Ad lib can be very humorous...or an awful mistake! So be sure that you have a direction you are heading, to keep the lesson on track.
4. OUTSIDE VOLUNTEER
Sometimes, the story/lesson doesn't really need a bunch of drama or puppets, etc. but you may want to ask a "special speaker" to come and share the story with your children. This could be a young minister, young adult, Pastor's Wife, elderly saint...whomever you feel could get the story across to the children, while holding their attention. Don't feel you have to stick with your current staff!
5. GROUP "ACTIONS"
Split your children into groups, and have them do specific actions along with the story. Example: For any stories with a storm, you can assign a group to be the rain, thunder, wind, etc. Example 2: For animal stories, assign groups to be the animal sounds on cue. Just be sure to practice their cues before beginning, and also show them what sign means to be quiet. :D
6. GROUP MOVEMENT