C H R IST C O M M UN I T Y C L O SE -UP
Children & Youth Ministries Julie Valeski, Director of Christian Education This Fall our Sunday School participated in an exciting 28day program: Fill the Ark Giving Calendar. Each child received a calendar and a bank. The calendar is divided into four weeks, one week on each page. Each day has a different emphasis and lesson and presented an opportunity to add different amounts of money to their bank. Each week in Sunday School class we reviewed the week’s lessons and did some fun crafts and activities based on what they learned! As kids filled their ark-shaped bank with coins, they met the animals in Heifer’s Ark: alpaca, bee, camel, chicken, cow, donkey, duck, fish, goose, guinea pig, horse, llama, pig, rabbit, sheep, water buffalo and the wonderful yak. Our kids learned how these animals help families through wool, honey and milk and in dozens of other ways. Plus they learned more about the environmental benefits of using animals wisely on a small farm.
As they filled the ark bank with money, they learned how their gifts can share God’s love and end human suffering around the world. And they had some fun, too! We heard from a number of families that the kids really enjoyed this project. For instance, one day we were supposed to add coins for every jar of honey we had in the cupboard. Well we didn’t have any actual jars of honey—but that didn’t stop the kids! They went through the cupboard and found honey-mustard and honey graham crackers and counted those instead!
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Banks should be returned to church on October 18. On that day Sunday School classes will be utilizing Heifer International’s Read To Feed and Get It! curriculums. Read to Feed® is a reading incentive, global education and servicelearning program. Students obtain sponsorships from parents, friends and relatives, based on the number of books they read. At the end of the program, the classes will pool their funds and donate them to our Sunday School’s Fill the Ark Ministry. The Read to Feed program encourages reading skills, while teaching students how they can empower families around the world with the gift of livestock, heightening awareness that their actions are making a difference in the lives of others. GET IT! Our flexible curriculum for middle school includes a standardsbased academic unit that can be integrated into lesson plans. Choose to teach one lesson, a three-unit course or a four-lesson unit. The units all feature flowers, coffee and bananas, common products that people in the U.S. buy from Latin America. Teach students about their roles as consumers and the effects their choices have in the global marketplace, while emphasizing reading comprehension, audience-based writing, high-level thinking and research strategies. Students are challenged to apply fundamental skills in geography, economics, history, science and language arts.
Christ Community United Methodist Church magazine