Children’s Ministry Edition
July 2012 Emphasize Manners and Respect To the delight of many parents, manners are making a comeback. As part of their bullying-prevention efforts, many schools now emphasize civil behavior and social-interaction skills. Some parents are even sending their kids to “manners camps” to brush up on etiquette.
Manners are necessary for more than just social graces, however. They’re an important part of how Christians show love and kindness to one another. Jesus gave us the Golden Rule, instructing us to treat others as we want to be treated (Luke 6:31). By putting other people first and considering their feelings and needs, we shine as lights in a dark world.
ASK GOD: 1. To help your family members honor and respect one another. 2. To remind you to set examples of courtesy and good manners— both at home and away. 3. To make the Golden Rule the basis of your home life.
The character trait of respect should be foundational for children as they grow and mature. Kids will typically demonstrate as much respect as we ask of them, while letting them get away with rude behavior only breeds more of the same. In a world where respect is rarely modeled, it’s essential that adults do all we can to instill this value in children’s lives. INSIGHTS • Recent polls indicate a manners revolution, with 81% of mothers saying it’s more important than ever to teach children manners. The top reason they cite is wanting to give kids “a stronger moral compass to guide them in this ‘freewheeling’ world.” The manner moms say is most important is “treating adults with respect.” (babycenter.com) • Manners aren’t just an issue in the U.S. Three out of four Australian parents think kids are less well-behaved now than in previous generations. (heraldsun.com.au)
“Do to others as you would like them to do to you. … Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. … You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.” (Luke 6:31, 35-36) The Golden Rule is just the beginning. Jesus also commands us to show love and respect when it’s tough to do so.
TEACHABLE MOMENTS 1. Mother, May I?—With younger children, play games such as Mother, May I? and Simon Says to reinforce listening skills and following directions. Add your own rules to help children practice saying “please” and “thank you.” 2. Mirror, Mirror—Help children look in God’s mirror to recognize behaviors that are disrespectful to themselves. If they can’t treat themselves well, they’ll have difficulty treating others well. Tell kids they’re created in the image of God, who loves and forgives them unconditionally.
3. What’s the Manner?—Roleplay various situations that require good manners. Examples include someone cutting in line at a drinking fountain, not having enough snacks to go around, being called names on the playground, and accidentally breaking something that belongs to someone else. Then brainstorm and act out possible ways to deal with each situation.
Start a (polite) conversation about manners by asking children these questions: 1. Why are good manners important at home? at school? in other public places? What are some examples of good and bad manners that you’ve seen? 2. What do your manners say about you? What impressions do you make about people who are rude or polite, and why? 3. How can good manners help us share the good news of Jesus with other people?
FAMILY EXPERIENCE These fun activities will help family members put their manners into action. • Helping Hands—Make fun placemats as reminders to show good manners and helpfulness. Give each family member a sheet of construction paper. Print the words “My hands can help” at the top of each sheet. Help children cover their hands with acrylic paint and then press them on their papers. Or have kids lay their hands on the paper and trace around them. On the place mats, write your name and some ideas for showing good manners and serving others. After the place mats dry, cover them with clear Con-Tact paper. • Love in Action—After worship, stay in your church clothes and enjoy a special brunch or tea as a family. Practice formal introductions and topnotch table manners. Discuss ways that people in the Bible showed kindness and hospitality toward others. For example, read aloud Genesis 18:1-8, about Abraham welcoming three men. Also read aloud Luke 19:56, about Zacchaeus welcoming Jesus into his home. Ask: “What did these people do to show good manners?” Say: “When we use good manners, we treat people with kindness. When we’re polite at the table, when we welcome and include people, and when we don’t interrupt others when they’re talking, we’re obeying Jesus.” Close in prayer. Then plan another brunch or tea where you invite friends or neighbors.
MOVIES Title: Ice Age 4: Continental Drift
Genre: Animation, Adventure
Album: So far, Shealeigh has released only singles, not albums.
Cast: Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary Synopsis: When Scrat’s acorn pursuit has major consequences, Manny, Diego, and Sid must use an iceberg as a ship. They explore a new world and meet all kinds of friends—plus pirates! Our Take: Parents as well as children enjoy this franchise. The film can lead to discussions about adventures and the good—or bad—results of trying new things.
Artist Info: This 14 year old from Chicago won season four of Disney’s N.B.T. (Next Big Thing) with her song “What Can I Say.” Summary: Shealeigh’s first nonDisney single is called “Strangely Beautiful.” Not only does she have amazing vocal skills, but she wants to be a role model for teenagers. Our Take: So far, this singer appears to be a good, clean alternative to edgy pop starlets.
GAMES, SITES & APPS Title
• Children are a hot commodity in the workplace—and not just on Take Your Child to Work Day. More companies are using kid “testers” to provide feedback on everything from toys and food to family cars. (parenting.com) • Not only are some parents-to-be hosting “gender reveal” parties, but some are even having “trying to conceive” parties. Another trend is delivery room parties, with games and favors. (babycenter.com)
QUICK STATS Rating & Platform
In this first-person puzzle game, players help a boy navigate his uncle’s mazelike lab—while alternating between dimensions.
E; PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Go Go News
This site offers international news tailored to early-elementary learners. Children can have fun while “exploring” other countries via computer.
Best for children ages 6+; gogonews.com
Painting With Time
With this award-winning iPad app, children can use their fingers to adjust how a scene looks in changing seasons or passing decades.
Best for children ages 4+; 99 cents at itunes.com
CULTURE & TRENDS
• Nearly 36,000 kids are treated for bunkbed-related injuries every year. (nationwidechildrens.org)
This page is designed to help educate parents and isn’t meant to endorse any movie, music, or product. Our prayer is that you’ll make informed decisions about what your children watch, listen to, and wear.
• Most kids take their first puff of a cigarette between ages 11 and 13, and the earlier they start, the more likely they are to get hooked. (American Cancer Society) • In a survey of 300 kids ages 8 to 14, 42% said they’d rather play video games than sports. When asked for reasons, 74% said video games are more fun, and 28% said sports can get too competitive. (i9Sports)
4th of July
2:00 pm or
6:00 pm 8
9 Infinity Kids Camp
Infinity Kids Camp 9-4
11 Infinity Kids Camp 9-4 Movie in the FCC 6:30 pm
12 Infinity Kids Camp 9-4
Infinity Kids Camp 9-4
Art Night 6:30 pm Claymation
Rising 1st graders to visit Children’s Worship and New Teachers
25 Art Night 6:30 pm Watercolors
For information on the New Christian’s Class this month, please call Jane at 770-978-5759 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org