Sample Beginning Explorers Teacher Guide Fall

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Sep | Oct | Nov 2020

Beginning Explorers LEADER GUIDE


Bible People

Beginning Explorers Leader Guide Ages 3–6 (not yet in 1st grade)

Volume 42 Number 1 Sep • Oct • Nov 2020

Quarter Theme: Bible People

• TEACHING HELPS Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. Scripture quotations marked (NCV) are taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright ©2005 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. BEGINNING EXPLORERS LEADER GUIDE (ISSN 1076-9889) is published quarterly by Gospel Publishing House, 1445 N. Boonville Ave., Springfield, MO 65802-1894.

The ABCs of Salvation. . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Steps to a Successful Children’s Church. Learning Styles. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Teacher Skill Builder: Letting Them Learn.. Beginning Explorers Resources.. . . . . . . Sycamore Sam. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I am a . . . Preschooler. . . . . . . . . . . . . Quarterly Information. . . . . . . . . . . . . Optional Activities. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Little Missionaries.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Notes Page. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Coming Next Quarter. . . . . . . . . . . . . Feedback Forum. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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For information on quality discipleship resources for all ages, visit or call toll-free 1-800-641-4310.

September 6—Samuel Works in the Temple. . . . . September 13 —God Calls Samuel.. . . . . . . . . . September 20—Solomon Builds the Temple. . . . . September 27—The Ark Is Brought to the Temple..

© 2020 by Gospel Publishing House 1445 N. Boonville Ave. Springfield, Missouri 65802 Printed in U.S.A.

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Lessons with Rusty and Raspberry Raccoon Skits:

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to BEGINNING EXPLORERS LEADER GUIDE, 1445 N. Boonville Ave., Springfield, MO 65802-1894.

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UNIT 2: DANIEL AND ESTHER October 4—Daniel Obeys God. . . . . . October 11—Daniel in the Lions’ Den.. October 18—Esther Is Chosen Queen. October 25—Esther Saves Her People.

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November 1—Peter and John Help a Lame Man. November 8—Peter Escapes from Prison.. . . . . November 15—God Protects Paul. . . . . . . . . . November 22—Paul and Silas in Prison. . . . . . . November 29—Paul Is Shipwrecked. . . . . . . . .

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Cover photo: ArtMarie/E+/Getty Images

The ABCs of Salvation Leading a Child to Christ

Evangelism is a privilege. There’s nothing quite so exciting as helping a child accept Jesus as Savior. As you teach, look for opportunities to lead children to Christ. When a child responds to a salvation invitation, use this plan to guide them as they accept Jesus as Savior.

Admit you are a sinner.

• Read Romans 3:23 with the child: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” • Say, “Everyone disobeys God. That is sin.” • Ask, “Do you understand that you have sinned?”

Believe in Jesus.

• Read John 3:16 with the child: “‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.’” • Say,“God hates sin but loves each of us—even though we all sin. He loves us so much that He gave Jesus, His Son, to die and take the punishment Photo © by ruizluquepaz/iStock/Getty Images Plus for our sins.” • Lead the child in the sinner’s prayer: Dear Jesus, I am a sinner. I have disobeyed You. Please forgive me. Come into my heart and life. Help me love and follow You. Thank You for the gift of salvation. Amen.

Confess that Jesus is your Lord.

• Read Romans 10:9 with the child: “Confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord.’” • Say, “Asking Jesus into your heart is the start of a new life, a life where Jesus is your Leader, your Lord. He will never leave you alone.” • Ask, “What has happened to you?” and let the child respond. • Encourage the child to tell someone about his or her new life with Jesus.

What Now?

• Encourage the child to: • Talk to Jesus every day in prayer, asking Him for help to live for Him. • Readers: Read the Bible every day. Start by reading the Gospel of Mark. • Non-readers: Ask someone to read Bible stories to you. • Ask yourself, “What would Jesus do?” when you’re not sure what to do. • Go to church.

Teaching Tip

Tell the child’s guardian the good news of the child’s salvation. Ask if the child would like to be baptized in water as a sign of his or her decision to live for Jesus.



Steps to a Successful Children’s Church

Start with Curriculum

You’ve made the right choice in choosing this curriculum. It provides solid biblical teaching at a level your children will enjoy and understand. The lessons are designed for easy preparation, and the

activities will keep your children interested and reinforce your Children’s Church lesson. As you begin your preparation, make a list (either mental or literal) of all the curriculum pieces you will be using.

 Beginning Explorers Resource Packet— reproducibles, posters, CD, stickers, and more  Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals—fun-to-use Bible characters bring the story to life  Beginning Explorers Coloring & Activity Book— a great hands-on connection to the lesson  Rusty and Raspberry Raccoons— warm, cuddly puppet friends ready for lifelike interaction  Sycamore Sam— velour puppet who tells pre-recorded stories from the Resource Packet CD


Think about Your Class Consider what you already know about your Children’s Church.

 Time—How much class time do you have? Be sure to consider total time as well as actual teaching time (after games, activities, etc.). Estimating the time it will take for each activity will help you decide which ones to use.  Setting—What is your classroom setting like? Do you have a table and chairs, or is your room arranged in centers? Is there a kitchen nearby? Are the bathrooms close? (For example, if there is no kitchen nearby, you may decide to not do snack time. If you have to trek down the hall for a bathroom break, you will want to include this in your estimated time.)  Teachers—How many teachers and helpers do you have? You may want to choose activities based on the amount of supervision required or modify them to fit your needs.  Children—Who are the children that attend regularly? How do they learn best? Do you frequently have visitors? It’s a good idea to plan your lesson for the children who regularly attend, but be prepared in case of visitors. Now consider what you know about your regular attendees. You may want to keep notes (see sample) on each child describing how he/she learns best.

s old Nate—boy, 3 year hearing. d an ng by touchi

Learns something, easily He’s always holding to songs, listens remembers words attentively. 6 minutes. He stays Attention Span: 2– s , but doesn’t alway on task if interested ay. get started right aw

years old Michaela—girl, 4 es pretty e by seeing. Sh lov

Learns dressed up, colors things, getting all neatly, etc. 10 minutes. She Attention Span: 5– . activities she starts likes to complete

ars old Austin—boy, 4 ye ic, enjoys moving. He’s athlet Learns by s ugh—play, rarely sit energetic—even ro down. ly 4 minutes. He rare Attention Span: 0– at th ity tiv n ac finishes—or starts—a he doesn’t like to ; him t es er doesn’t int color or do crafts.

If your regular children cover all the learning styles* (like the sample note), you won’t have to plan other activities for less frequent attendees. If your class has primarily one or two learning styles, you may want to have variations or additional activities ready for visitors. *To learn more about learning styles see page 5.


Beginning Explorers


Plan Your Lesson At this point, sit down with your Beginning Explorers Leader Guide and adapt the lesson to fit the needs of your Children’s Church. Highlight, circle, or mark the activities that the children will enjoy and, most importantly, will meet their learning styles. Here is a lesson overview with a sample way to teach the lesson.

A. Welcome Time - Play Dough

B. Worship

• Targets Nate (touching) • Targets Nate & Austin (hearing & moving) • Use Rusty and Raspberry Raccoon Puppets.

• Make lions. • Ask: —Have you ever seen a lion? —What sound does a lion make? —Where do lions live? Today we’re going to learn how God protected Daniel from the lions.

C. Snack Time • Also prayer time.

• Move prayer time to snack time. You may have a standard way to welcome the children and begin your lesson. For example, having play dough available helps children get comfortable quickly. You can also use the activity to introduce the lesson.

D. Bible Time Targets Michaela & Nate (seeing) • Ask Michaela to pass around visuals to each child. •H ave each child display his/her visual at the appropriate time during the story.

Use the resource lists in the sidebars to see at a glance what items are needed for each activity.

Using Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals during the Bible story will target the children who learn by seeing. By allowing the other children to participate in displaying the visuals, you keep them interested and involved in the story.




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33 3

Plan Your Lesson (cont.) Plan Your Lesson (cont.) Plan Your Lesson (cont.)




E. Freeze the Lion Targets Austin (moving) E. Freeze the Lion Targets Austin (moving) E. Freeze the Lion Action activities will target Targets Austin (moving) children who learnwill by target Action activities moving while children whokeeping learnwill byall Action activities target the other while children involved moving keeping children who learn byall asthe well. other while children involved moving keeping all asthe well. other children involved as well. Extra Time Circle the Lion’s Mouth ExtraTime—Shut Time Center Time—Puzzle Circle Time—Shut the Lion’s Mouth Extra Time Center CircleTime—Puzzle Time—Shut the Lion’s Mouth It’s a good idea to have extra activities Center Time—Puzzle on in case haveextra additional It’shand a good idea you to have activities time. Plan activities and games that will on hand in case you have additional It’s a good idea to have extra activities reinforce theactivities Bible story and lesson. time. Plan and games that will on hand in case you have additional reinforce the Bible story and lesson. time. Plan activities and games that will

F. Story Time Targets F. StoryNate Time& Michaela (hearing & seeing) Targets F. StoryNate Time& Michaela (hearing seeing) Targets & Nate & Michaela Story Time helps children understand (hearing & seeing) how toTime applyhelps the lesson to understand everyday Story children life. Using the Story Time to Pictures how to apply the lesson everyday Story Time helps children understand Beginning Explorers from the life. Using the Story Time Pictures how to Packet apply the to everyday Resource willlesson also target from Beginning Explorers life. the Using the Story Time Pictures children who learn by seeing. Resource will also targetKit from thePacket Beginning Explorers children learn by seeing. will alsowho target children who learn by seeing.

reinforce the Bible story and lesson. G. Work Sheet Activity Targets Nate (touching) G. Work Sheet Activity Targets Nate (touching) raft C activities will target your Targets children who by G. Work Sheet Activity Natelearn (touching) touching and also keep those who learn by seeing Craft activities will target your children who learn by involved. Some children may not belearn interested in doing touching and also keep those who by seeing CraftIt’s activities will target your children who learn by crafts. okay to allow them to play during this time. involved. children belearn interested in doing touchingSome and also keep may thosenot who by seeing crafts. It’s okay to children allow them play this time. involved. Some maytonot beduring interested in doing crafts. It’s okay to allow them to play during this time.

4 4

H. CD Activity Targets Austin (moving) H. CD Activity * U se the memory on Targets Austin verse (moving) H. CD Activity

page 33 *Use the memory on Targets Austin verse (moving) page 33 *Use the memory verse on Reciting the memory page 33

verse while actions Reciting thedoing memory will reinforce the verse verse while doing actions Reciting the memory for children while will reinforce thethey verse verse while doing actions are hearing, saying, and for children while they will reinforce the verse moving. are and forhearing, childrensaying, while they moving. are hearing, saying, and moving. I. Review Game Targets Michaela I. Review Game (seeing) Targets Michaela I. Review Game (seeing) Games are a great way Targets Michaela (seeing) toGames revieware theastory. greatThis way will help you realize how toGames review the story. This are a great way much the children are will help you realize how to review theand story. This understanding retaining. much the children are how will help you realize understanding and retaining. much the children are understanding and retaining.

Beginning Explorers Beginning Explorers


Teach the Lesson As you teach the lesson, constantly evaluate: • Your children—What things are you discovering about them and how they learn? • Your lesson—Are the children grasping the concept and objective presented in the lesson? • The activities—Are they working well? Is the order flowing like you’d hoped? • The time—Is service running late? Do you have extra activities or games planned? Are you keeping your children’s attention? What fun activities can you do to reinforce the lesson?


Evaluate After each class, evaluate the lesson as a whole using the questions from step four.


ll. * The lesson went we for all the * We didn’t have time activities. “Freeze the Lion.” * The students loved y—they loved it! Note: Use more role pla

There’s no “secret formula” for a successful Children’s Church, and there’s no guarantee that all your children will remember what you teach them and apply it to their lives. But God promises that His Word will not return void. And by following these five simple steps, you can teach biblical principles so that many of your children remember and apply them . . . and that’s what teaching is all about.

Take a closer look at . . . LEARNING STYLES SEEING (visual) Miguel likes to “see” his world. He enjoys colors, contrast, bulletin boards, and videos. He gets bored when there are no visuals.


• Display posters from the Beginning Explorers Resource Packet • Show Bible storybooks • Use object lessons

HEARING (auditory) Allison “hears” her world. She loves to hear stories and listens when you tell her to do something. She becomes bored when she hears information she already knows.

HOW TO TEACH ALLISON: • Tell Bible and life application stories • Use listening activities • Sing songs and do activities on the Beginning Explorers Resource Packet CD

TOUCHING (tactual) Stephanie likes to “feel” and “feel good about” her world. She needs to “get in touch” with new concepts and learns best when she can feel and compare information.


• Use interactive posters from the Beginning Explorers Resource Packet • Make lesson-related objects or crafts • Draw and create lesson-related pictures or collages

MOVING (kinesthetic) Zack loves to experience his world through movement. He moves a lot during class and loves participating in things like dramas, action songs, and games.


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• Act out the Bible story • Utilize action activities • Play movement games for review or memory work


Letting Them Learn by Sandy Friesen Over the years, understanding children and our roles in their development has been passionately debated. Some have said that children are born without personalities or learning preferences. It is up to the parents and teachers to create the child’s personality. Others argue that children are born with a set personality and learning style. Parents and teachers should step aside and let nature take its course. But as in most issues, the truth probably rests somewhere between the extremes. For the purpose of this article, we make the following assumptions: Children are probably born with temperament tendencies, learning styles, and personality preferences. Parents and teachers are responsible to guide, direct, and help the child fulfill Christ’s commission to love God and love others as themselves.

Where does the teacher begin in the process of developing the child?

Historically, to train a child meant that the process was emphasized and the child was adapted to the process. In recent years a paradigm shift has taken place. We began to think about “training” differently. This new paradigm emphasizes understanding the individual child. An important understanding has resulted—individuals develop learning preferences that stay relatively constant throughout their lives. We call this their “learning styles.”

Discover who the child is.

By using the latest research, we can glean some important understandings. Several learning style models are relevant to the development and teaching of children. Research has shown that children have preferences (much like being righthanded or left-handed) that they favor throughout their lives. One of the most influential factors in a child’s learning is his perceptual modality


preference. A perceptual modality is defined as the sense (hearing, sight, touch, experiential) through which a child learns most effectively.

AUDITORY children learn through hearing.

They perceive their world through the sounds that come at them. These students will listen attentively (unless they are familiar with the information, at which point they will most likely become bored). These learners rarely take notes and do not ask for a written copy, map, or pictorial presentation. The auditory teacher will use auditory language to communicate, e.g., “Is everyone listening?”

VISUAL learners process information through sight. These children “see” their world. They will notice the classroom decorations and will be enthralled with videos, TV, books, and pictures. They will notice color, design, and what people wear. They will watch what you do. The visual teacher will use visual language, e.g., “I need everyone’s eyes on me.”

Beginning Explorers

TACTUAL learners explore their world through touch. For these children to grasp new and difficult information, they need to “get in touch” with the concept. For example, if you were trying to teach a child the difference between “soft” and “rough,” he would need to be presented with a piece of cotton and a piece of sandpaper. Feeling and comparing would bring about quick, effective learning. Another aspect of tactual learners is their need to “feel good” about what they are learning. Whereas some children may not care if the information pertains to them, some tactual children find this an important aspect of the process. The tactual teacher will communicate tactually, e.g., “Are you all grasping this information?”

KINESTHETIC students prefer large body movement or an actual experience.

Large body movement would mean that for these children to grasp information, they would have to act it out (e.g., run in place while thinking about the concept; use their bodies to become a “storm at sea”). To experience learning, these children need to walk through the process for new and difficult information. For example, if you were making chocolate chip cookies, just hearing the instructions would not teach these children. Seeing the instructions would not make a lasting impression, just as touching a cookie would not help them learn. These

Fall 2020

children need to make the cookies. The kinesthetic teacher communicates kinesthetically, e.g., “Are you all getting into this?” The most commonly misunderstood children are “Touch Dominant” children. These learners exhibit several of the tactual and kinesthetic qualities of learning. These active children keep the teacher on her toes.

Young children tend to favor a multi-modal approach to learning.

Indeed all senses should be stimulated to encourage a full range of skills in the developing child. However, understanding the perceptual modality preference will help teachers understand the choices made by some of their more challenging students. For example, Joshua is an auditory child. This means that to teach Joshua is often a pleasant experience. He takes verbal instruction well. When the teacher says, “Joshua, it’s story time; come and sit down,” Joshua runs to take his seat, usually clapping enthusiastically. On the other hand, Heather is a tactualkinesthetic child. She walks around touching, pulling, and knocking over everybody and everything in sight. When instructed to sit down to listen to the story, she acts as if she hasn’t heard you. This is the child who makes every teacher (and parent) understand why they need a good dose of patience and a healthy grasp of how to deal with the tactual difficult child. The learning style of a child is as individual as his fingerprints. We cannot begin to say that each classroom should meet each student’s needs all the time. That would not be possible and is not healthy for the developing child who will have to learn to deal with incongruencies in life. What we can encourage is that as you deal with a child who does not “fit in,” does not cope well, or is labeled as “difficult”—you would take into consideration the elements over which you have some control. Moreover, while you look at these elements, decide if there’s anything you can do to help this child be a success. Our role as Christians is to fulfill Christ’s commands to make disciples. We can learn effective ways to do this.


Beginning Explorers

Preschool Children’s Church (ages 3–6) Children will love coming to Preschool Children’s Church when you use these Bible-based, fun Beginning Explorers resources!

Beginning Explorers Leader Guide Young children learn best through guided learning. That’s why this leader guide has interactive stories and activities that will instill the Bible’s stories and principles in the hearts of the children in your Children’s Church.

Bible Verses A fun Bible verse activity is given with each lesson.

Circle Time

Welcome Time

Greet each child with a smile and a welcome song.

Provides an action verse for each unit and other activities that involve large-muscle movement. Also provides a discussion time activity. This is also a good time to use the Beginning Explorers Coloring & Activity Book.

Prayer Time

Story Time

Take prayer requests, and pray for each need mentioned. Give thanks to God. This is a good time to include a missions emphasis. The Little Missionaries page provides songs and activities the children are sure to enjoy.

Worship Time

Using the CD, lead the children in singing fun worship songs. Encourage them to do motions as they sing.

A fun life application story or puppet skit is offered each week. Story Time Pictures are mini-posters that illustrate the stories.

Center Time

Center Time provides opportunities for children to freely move from center to center. A variety of guided learning center activities and options come with each lesson, including activities from the Resource Packet.

Snack Time

A snack that relates to the lesson is suggested for each week.

Bible Time

Bible Story Preview

Bible Time begins with the arrival of Sycamore Sam. Sam introduces the Bible story in the preview.

Bible Story The interactive Bible story can be told by a teacher, played from the CD with the Sycamore Sam puppet, or told by a person playing Sycamore Sam. Each Bible story can also be enhanced by using visuals.


More Leader Guide features: • leading a child to Christ article • training articles • characteristics of preschoolers • quarterly information page • optional activities • activities that emphasize missions • note page • postage-paid feedback form • Coming Next Quarter overview

Beginning Explorers

Beginning Explorers Resource Packet

The images on this page are a random sampling of Beginning Explorers items.

The cover provides a brief description of the packet contents, and can be used as a classroom display poster.


The posters may be used for games, bulletin boards, wall displays, and more!

Chart Poster and Chart Stickers

Use the chart and stickers for attendance, saying Bible verses, rewarding behavior, etc. FALL 2020 Beginning Explorers CD


White is a knock-out. Chrome shows through where there is white. 2 colors: Pantone 160C, Pantone 141C

Sep • Oct • Nov 2020

Beginning Explorers

The CD features audio tracks of Sycamore Sam telling the weekly Bible stories, songs, activities, and puppet skits. Also included is a downloadable form of reproducibles which can be printed from your computer.

2020 Produced in U.S.A.

Bible Stories 1–13. Bible Stories

Also included Work Sheets (pdf files)

Adobe Reader® available from

Songs 14. We Praise You, God 15. God Loves All the Little Children 16. God Is Great

Visit to buy downloadable music.

© 1994 John H. Morton

17. Esther’s Song 18. God Is Wonderful

© 1994 Laurey Berteig

19. Sam’s Theme 20. Little Missionaries Song 21. Little Missionaries Sound Off Rusty & Raspberry Skits 22. Listening Game 23. God’s Special Plan 24. Sam Talks about Prayer 25. God Helps Peter 26. Rumble, Rumble, Rumble

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. COPYRIGHT © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Unit Activities 27. Building 28. Name That Job 29. Peter Escapes from Prison

Work Sheets





Each resource packet contains reproducible teaching helps. The lesson Work Sheets, music pages, a parent newsletter, and bonus sheets are provided.


Story Time Pictures

each circle Find and Raspberry. Rusty and picture. the Color

Eight colorful, two-sided mini posters come in every packet. These pictures illustrate the life application stories told in Story Time.

Beginning Explorers Coloring & Activity Book

The children will love this coloring and activity book! It has Bible story and life application pictures based on the weekly lessons.

Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals Sep • Oct • Nov 2020

Each Beginning Explorers lesson uses flannel-backed, lesson specific Bible visuals.

Beginning Explorers Puppets

You and the children will love the Rusty, Raspberry, and Sycamore Sam puppets! Use them with skits, the Bible stories, and more!

Little Explorers CD

All of the Beginning Explorers songs are available on CD.

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Sycamore Sam Sycamore Sam is a character leaders can use to enhance Bible learning and make the repetition of Bible themes meaningful and memorable. Sam helps the children have fun as they review the Bible story they heard in Preschool Sunday School. He uses explorer props and activities to help the Bible stories come to life. He enters the classroom in costume and helps prepare the children to review the story. During the story, he involves the children. Sam is forgetful and must rely on the children to help him remember Bible information. He has favorite sayings upon arrival, when he forgets, and when he interacts with the children. Sycamore Sam can be played by someone in your church. Or, you can use the Sycamore Sam puppet* and play the Bible stories on the CD that comes in the Beginning Explorers Resource Packet*.

Sycamore Sam’s Costumes and Props:

Sam’s standard costume includes a plaid shirt, cap, khaki pants with pockets, and boots. Optional costumes could be career clothing (chef, fishing vest, detective, scuba gear, etc.). Be creative! Sam uses Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals* in his presentation. He also uses props such as toy animals, fishing equipment, cooking utensils, detective supplies, carpentry tools, diving equipment, etc., to capture the children’s attention and introduce Bible people, places, and events.

Sycamore Sam’s favorite phrases:

When arriving: “Hi! It’s me—your good buddy, Sycamore Sam!” In response to a child: “Is that a fact?” About a Bible event: “Imagine that!” When pretending to be forgetful: “Oh, what to do; I can’t remember who.” “Oh, dear, tut, tut; I can’t remember what.” “Oh, do you care? I can’t remember where.” “Oh, there I go again; I can’t remember when.” “Oh me, oh my; I can’t remember why.” “Oh, let’s see now; I can’t remember how.” * Sold separately. If you prefer, present the Bible story in a traditional manner without Sycamore Sam.


Beginning Explorers

I am a . . . Preschooler SPIRITUALLY • I like stories from the Bible, especially when you teach me in different ways (listening, acting, puppets, etc.). • I think God is like you. When you love me and make God’s house a nice place to be, you are teaching me about God. • I like to imitate adults who are showing me how to pray, worship, and obey God.

PHYSICALLY • I have lots of energy. • I like to run, climb, and move around. • I am getting better at using my hands to color, do puzzles, practice stirring, and pick up small things. • I am learning to use the restroom independently.

SOCIALLY • I am learning to obey, but I can’t always remember the rules. • I understand more than I can say, and I communicate through body language. • I like to say “no” when asked to do something. Let me choose between two options. • I am learning to share.

INTELLECTUALLY • I am curious, and I like to use my senses to explore my world. • I like being challenged with a variety of questions. • I have a short attention span for each activity, ideally 1 minute for each year I am old plus 2 (3 years old = 5 minutes). • I can remember simple facts, songs, and finger plays.

EMOTIONALLY • I am usually happy, but I can have strong feelings. • I might be afraid to leave my parents, meet strangers, and try new things. • I want you to like me.

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Quarter Theme: Bible People October 25 • Esther Saves Her People Unit 1: Samuel and Solomon “Hear the word of the Lord.” 1 Kings 22:19

“I will trust and not be afraid.” Isaiah 12:2

September 6 • Samuel Works in the Temple

Unit 3: Peter and Paul

Samuel served the Lord. 1 Samuel 3:1 (NCV)

September 13 • God Calls Samuel

God is my help. Psalm 54:4

November 1 • Peter and John Help a Lame Man

“Speak, for your servant is listening.” 1 Samuel 3:10

Prayer that is said with faith will make the sick person well. James 5:15 (NCV)

September 20 • Solomon Builds the Temple

November 8 • Peter Escapes from Prison

September 27 • The Ark Is Brought to the Temple

November 15 • God Protects Paul

Lord, I love the Temple. Psalm 26:8 (NCV)

The glory of the Lord filled his temple. 1 Kings 8:11

“The Lord sent his angel and rescued me.” Acts 12:11

The Lord will protect him. Psalm 41:2

Unit 2: Daniel and Esther

November 22 • Paul and Silas in Prison

October 4 • Daniel Obeys God

November 29 • Paul Is Shipwrecked

[God] . . . protects the way of his faithful ones. Proverbs 2:8 God gave knowledge and understanding. Daniel 1:17

“Believe in the Lord Jesus.” Acts 16:31

Pray for each other so God can heal you. James 5:16 (NCV)

October 11 • Daniel in the Lions’ Den “God . . . shut the mouths of the lions.” Daniel 6:22

October 18 • Esther Is Chosen Queen The Lord will always lead you. Isaiah 58:11 (NCV)

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


Scripture quotations marked (NCV) are taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

© 2020. Permission to duplicate for classroom use only.

Beginning Explorers

Unit 1: Samuel and Solomon

Samuel Works in the Temple


September 6, 2020

Bible Text: 1 Samuel 1:21–28; 2:11,18,26 Unit Bible Verse: “Hear the word of the Lord.” 1 Kings 22:19 (NIV) Weekly Bible Verse: Samuel served the Lord. 1 Samuel 3:1 (NCV) Objective: The child will be able to tell that Samuel helped in God’s house.

Life Application:

Good Helpers

Provide cleaning supplies and tools, such as handheld brooms, dustpans, dustcloths, and water in a spray bottle. Let the children use the tools to help clean up the room. Thank them for being good helpers in God’s house.

HELP: To encourage the child to help at church.

Welcome Time

As children arrive, allow them to give their offerings and add Chart Stickers to the Chart Poster. Sing this song to the tune of “Jesus Loves Me.” Use different names each time you sing the song. If you have a small group, use the same name in each line of the song and repeat for each child. Welcome (José) and (Marcy); Welcome (Marco) and (Johnny); Welcome (Hannah) and (Debbie); Everyone is glad you’re here! Today we will learn about a little boy named Samuel who helped in God’s house.

Prayer Time

Let the children mention their prayer requests. Pray for each need. Name people who help at church, such as the janitor, the organist, and the secretary. Lead the children in this prayer to thank God for these people. Can you name some people who help at church? Thank You, God, for people who help us at church.

Lesson 1 - September 6

Offering container Chart Poster* Chart Stickers*

Suggested prayer: Thank You, God, that Samuel helped in God’s house. Thank You for people who help at our church. Help us to be helpers too. Amen. *found in Resource Packet


CD* Song Poster*

Happy Birthday

Recognize the children having September birthdays. Sing the chorus of “Jesus Loves Me” changing the word me to the name of each child celebrating a September birthday. Graham crackers Water Cups Napkins

Listen and Snack

Read the story from Story Time while the children eat their snacks.

CD* Cleaning bucket Spray bottles Cloths Paper towels Handheld vacuum Mop

*found in Resource Packet

Worship Time “We Praise You, God” (track 14) “God Loves All the Little Children” (track 15) “God Is Great” (track 16) Use the Song Poster throughout the quarter when you sing “God Loves All the Little Children.” Allow the children to hold up the pictures as the song mentions each character. Also use this poster to emphasize missions. What do you like best about coming to church? We are learning to worship in church by singing and praying.

Snack Time

Always check first with parents for allergies before serving any snack. Ask a volunteer to pray for the snack. Then let other volunteers distribute napkins and cups. Give each child a few graham crackers and some water. God is happy when we help at church. Helping serve a snack at church is fun.

Bible Time

Use of the Sycamore Sam character is optional. The Bible Story may be told without the character.

Bible Story Preview Just before Sycamore Sam arrives, play “Sam’s Theme” (track 19) from the CD. Sycamore Sam enters carrying a cleaning bucket full of cleaning supplies, such as spray bottles, cloths, paper towels, a small handheld vacuum, and a mop. Sam says, “Hi, everyone. It’s me—your good buddy, Sycamore Sam. (Sam looks around the room.) Whew! There is a lot of work to do around here. The windows need to be washed. (Walk to windows and pretend to clean.) The tables and chairs need to be wiped. (Wipe furniture with cloth.) The floors need to be vacuumed. (Use the handheld vacuum on the floor for a few seconds.) It’s a lot of work to keep God’s house clean! Do you like to help clean? (Allow responses.) How can you be a helper at church? Did you know there is a story in the Bible about a boy who helped clean God’s house? (Allow responses.) I’ll tell you about him!”

Bible Story on CD Let the children listen to the Bible Story on the CD (track 1), or play the Bible Story on the CD and use the Sycamore Sam puppet. MORE THAN ENOUGH:


Good teaching resources contain more content and options than you are able to use in a normal class period. This curriculum serves a wide variety of class settings and, therefore, includes options that appeal to various formats and learning styles. Choose the concepts, questions and activity options that suit your class best. Keep in mind that anything labeled “option” can be taken or left without diminishing the lesson’s overall train of thought.

Beginning Explorers



Bible Story

(Open the Bible to 1 Samuel 1.) A woman named Hannah prayed that God would give her a baby boy, and God did. Hannah named her baby Samuel. Hannah loved Baby Samuel. Can you pretend to rock Baby Samuel like Hannah did? (Have children pretend to rock a baby in their arms.) When he was a baby, Samuel lived at home with his mommy and daddy. But when Samuel grew to be a little boy, something special happened. Do you remember where Samuel went when he was a little boy? (Allow responses.) Mommy Hannah and Daddy Elkanah took little Samuel to the tabernacle. Eli the priest met them. “Do you remember me?” Hannah asked Eli. “I was the sad woman who prayed for a baby. (Have children fold their hands in prayer.) This is my son Samuel. God answered my prayer. He gave me a son! I promised God I would give my son back to Him if He answered my prayer. (Have children fold their hands in prayer.) Samuel will live with you and help you in God’s house.” Imagine that! Samuel was to live and work at the tabernacle with the priest, Eli. Samuel would always be at God’s house. Eli was happy to have Samuel as a helper. He was also happy to teach Samuel about God. Little Samuel learned how to help in God’s house. Do you think the floor probably got dirty? (Allow responses.) What do you think Samuel did? (Allow responses.) Can you pretend to sweep the floor like Samuel might have done? (Have children pretend to sweep.) Who will put oil in the lamps so the light will burn all night? (Allow responses.) Oh, what to do; I can’t remember who. (Allow responses.) Samuel? Is that a fact? Imagine that! Samuel also may have dusted the furniture and wiped the walls so the tabernacle was clean and neat. (Let children pretend to dust.) Early in the morning, Samuel probably helped by opening the doors. (Have children pretend to open doors.) Helping care for the tabernacle was a way Samuel could worship God. Samuel loved God’s house. Samuel worshipped God by helping in the tabernacle. Samuel was a good helper. You can worship God by helping at church. God is happy when boys and girls like you help at church. Active


Bible Verses

Choose to teach either the Unit Bible Verse or the Weekly Bible Verse. The same activity can be applied to either verse. Open your Bible, and read the verse. Have the child repeat it after you several times.

Option for Visuals

Tape the Bible Visuals to toy cars. Roll out each visual as it is used in the story. Bible

Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals, Sheet 1

Bible Visuals 1a-tabernacle doors 1b-Hannah and Elkanah with Samuel 1c-Eli the priest 1d-Samuel sweeping 1e-Samuel pouring oil 1f-Samuel dusting lampstand Betty Lukens Visuals 6A cloth 21-man (Elkanah) 27M-broom 36-priest (Eli) 97A-woman (Hannah) 109-boy (Samuel) 330-lampstand 331-pot of oil Each Bible story in Beginning Explorers Children’s Church is enhanced by the use of Preschool & Beginning Explorers Bible Visuals. If you use the Betty Lukens flannelgraph figures, each Beginning Explorers lesson also provides suggestions for which figures are suitable.

Unit Bible Verse: “Hear the word of the Lord.” 1 Kings 22:19 (NIV) Weekly Bible Verse: Samuel served the Lord. 1 Samuel 3:1 (NCV) Have the children sit in a circle. Whisper the verse to the child sitting next to you, and let the child whisper it to the child sitting next to him and so on until the verse goes around the circle back to you. Then have the children say the verse out loud. How did Samuel help in God’s house?

Lesson 1 - September 6



Coloring Option

Coloring Fun

Let the children color the pages from their Beginning Explorers Coloring & Activity Books that correspond with this week’s lesson.

Paper wads Wastebasket Masking tape

Cleaning cloths

Circle Time

Young children need regular opportunities to move. Make this a fun learning time by involving them in large-muscle movements that relate to the lesson theme. Active


If I will listen (Cup ears with hands.) And then obey, (Nod.) I will please God (Point up.) In every way. (Arms out, palms up.) Active


Reward the children who participate in today’s activities with words of praise or by giving them a sticker.

Paper Throw

Provide wads of paper and an empty wastebasket. Place a piece of masking tape on the floor, and have the children take turns standing behind the line and throwing the paper wads into the wastebasket. Who helped Eli take good care of God’s house? Picking up trash and throwing it away is one way we can help take care of our church. Active


Helper Rewards

Action Verse

Helping Song

Teach the children to sing the following words below to the tune of “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.” After you have sung the song a few times, let the children clean up in the room while singing. Then if time allows, give each child a cloth and let him dust shelves and tables. Consider making this song a regular part of your classroom cleaning routine. Help, help, help in church, I can help in church. I can pick up toys and put crayons away. I can help in church. Who in our story today helped in church? What can you do to help in church? Active


Let’s Share

Tell the children that Samuel was a helper. Ask them questions about helping their mommies and daddies at home. Mention such things as setting the table or picking up toys. Then talk with them about helping at church. How do you help Mommy and Daddy at home? Can you think of some things you can do to help at church? Picking up trash and putting away our toys is helping at church.


Beginning Explorers

Story Time

Use the following story and the Story Time Pictures to encourage the children to help at church. Life


Helping in Church

Juan liked Children’s Church. He loved hearing stories from the Bible and singing songs about Jesus. He also liked HELPING his teacher. Sometimes Mrs. Jenny would ask Juan to pass out coloring sheets or put away the instruments. HELPING out in church made Juan feel big, like his older brothers. “After you’ve all finished washing your hands, please come to the table,” Mrs. Jenny told the class. “It’s time to have a snack.” “I would like to HELP with the snack,” Juan said. “Can I, please?” Mrs. Jenny smiled. “I have an even better idea,” she said. “Let’s all HELP.” Mrs. Jenny held up a heart-shaped cookie cutter. “Juan, you can use this to cut the slices of cheese.” (Show Story Time Picture 1a.) Mrs. Jenny put Chloe to work peeling bananas. After they were peeled, David sliced the bananas with a plastic butter knife. Jamie set the table with paper plates and cups, and Brandon made sure everyone had a napkin. Linda counted out three crackers for each plate, and Juan placed a piece of cheese on top of each cracker. Jasmine HELPED Mrs. Jenny stir cherry drink mix in a pitcher. Maria picked out a centerpiece for the table: a flower from the classroom’s nature center. “Well done, children,” said Mrs. Jenny. “We all worked together to finish the job. Now let’s enjoy what we’ve done.” (Show Story Time Picture 1b.) While the children were eating their snack, Mrs. Jenny told them about how Samuel HELPED in God’s house when he was very young. She said, “Everyone can HELP in church. When we HELP out, it makes Jesus happy.” “We were HELPFUL,” said Juan. “We HELPED just like Samuel did.” “That’s right,” said Mrs. Jenny. “Best of all, we learned that HELPING in church can be a lot of fun.” “And yummy,” added Juan, holding up a cracker with cheese. What was Juan’s job? Who did Mrs. Jenny say can help at church? How does helping in church make you feel? How did Mrs. Jenny say helping in church makes Jesus feel?

Story Time Pictures, Lesson 1*

Do You Have Extra Time?

If your class time runs long, see page 91 of this leader guide for ideas. Also check out the Resource Packet and Coloring & Activity Book for bonus activity pages.

Reflection 1. Do the children know how Samuel helped in God’s house? 2. Can the children name ways they can help at church? *found in Resource Packet

Lesson 1 - September 6


Center Time

The following guided learning activities focus on the lesson objective and provide life application emphasis. See page 91 for additional activities.

Work Sheet 1* Crayons Tape

Handheld brooms Plastic dustpans Paper wads

Hymnals Baby dolls Doll bottles Doll cribs Toys Brooms Dustcloths

Play dough



Work Sheet Activity

Let each child color a copy of Work Sheet 1. Help each child fold her sheet on the vertical lines and tape the sides to make a 3-D triangle. Help the children “read” the words at the top of each section. Helping in church shows we love God. Can you name a way to help at church? How did Samuel help Eli in the tabernacle? Active


Large Muscle Center

Provide two or more handheld brooms and plastic dustpans. Drop crumpled wads of paper on the floor. Give each child in turn an instruction to sweep up one, two, or three wads of paper. Commend him for helping to clean. Helping at church is a way to worship God. Who helped Eli in the tabernacle? How can we help at church? Active


Drama Center

Help the children create a church—chairs in rows for “pews,” hymnals on some chairs, and a nursery with dolls, doll bottles, cribs, and toys. Let them pretend to be nursery workers caring for babies and janitors cleaning the church by sweeping, dusting, and arranging hymnals. Lots of different people help at church. How can we help in the nursery? Active


Manipulative Center

Provide play dough for each child. Help the children make simple hand shapes and churches. Show them how to make simple people figures too. Set the people figures close to the church figures. We can work together to make helping hands, churches, and people. How can we use our hands to help others? Do we worship God by helping at church? Crayons Construction paper Felt-tip pen Take-home items

*found in Resource Packet




Creative Center

Trace each child’s hands onto a piece of construction paper to create handprints. Provide crayons for the children to use to color the handprints. At the top of the paper write God loves helping hands. Can you tell me whose handprint this is? Is your handprint bigger or smaller Thanks than (Toby’s)? for teaching God is happy when we help. the children!

Beginning Explorers

Optional Activities On-the-Spot Time Fillers that Teach

At times when an adult service may run long, or during holidays or when the weather changes, children may have extra energy and need a break. Consider using or adapting some of these activities to fill time or to “get out the wiggles.”

Drop the Hanky

Children stand in circle. One child moves around the outside of the circle carrying a hanky. When he drops it behind a child, that child follows him around the circle. The first child takes the place of the second child who then becomes “It.” Application: Drop a lesson-related item.

I Spy

Children sit together and close eyes as the leader hides a lesson-related item so it is visible. Children open eyes and look for item. When they see it, they raise their hands and point it out.

Hide the Thimble

Children should close their eyes as the leader hides a thimble in the room. They try to find the thimble. The leader gives hints, such as, “Amy is warm. Luke is cold.” The child finding the thimble may hide it. Application: Hide a lesson-related object. The child finding it may answer a question or name an item or person from the lesson.

Dog and Bone

One child sits in a chair with his back to other children. A “bone” is beneath his chair. One child “steals” the bone and returns to his seat. “It” tries to guess who has the bone. Application: “Steal” lesson-related item, such as the jug that David took from King Saul.


Children listen to music as they walk in a circle. When the music stops, the children freeze in place. Application: Play lesson-related music. When it stops, children freeze and say the memory verse.

Fall 2020

Musical Chairs

Children sit in a circle of chairs which have been placed back to back. Provide enough chairs for all but one child. While music plays they walk around the circle. When the music stops, all but one child should find a seat. Application: The child left standing may say the memory verse or respond to a question. Vary the game by passing lesson-related items as the music plays.

Beanbag Toss

Children toss a beanbag into a container. The container may have a lesson-related picture or object attached. If the child succeeds, he may answer a question or name a person or object from the lesson.


Make bowling pins from two-liter soft drink bottles. When a child says the memory verse or answers a lesson-related question, he may take a turn bowling.

Memory Game

Make matching picture cards. Mount them onto poster board. Place them facedown. The children take turns turning over two at a time. If the cards match, they may keep them; if not, the cards are turned facedown again. Look for other games that can be adapted to reinforce lesson truths. Consider storing supplies and games in boxes on shelves or in closets for easy access.

Teachable Treats

Cut a lesson-related shape from a piece of bread, lunch meat, and cheese slice using a cookie cutter or knife. Allow the children to build a sandwich or add toppings to their treat. (Always remember to check for food allergies before serving any snack.) Toppings could include peanut butter, shredded coconut, icing, granola, raisins, candies, or mini marshmallows. Ask review questions from the lesson as the children enjoy their treats.


Little Missionaries Missions Activities for Preschoolers

Missions is telling people about God’s love. Missionaries take the good news to people far away. A quarterly page to teach children the concept of missions and provide opportunities for them to participate in missions through telling of God’s love, prayer, and giving. The “Little Missionaries Song” (track 20) and “Little Missionaries Sound Off” (track 21) are recorded on the CD in the Resource Packet.

Words to Say


Say, “Missions is telling people about God’s love. God loves (Vanessa) and (Stephen) and (Abby) so-o-o much. God wants (Miguel) to tell others that He loves them too. Some missionaries go far, far away to tell people that God loves them. That makes God very happy.”

Cut out pieces of paper and write the name of a different country on each one. Each week, let one child pull a piece of paper from a box or basket. Take time to pray especially for the children of that country.

Giving to Missions Cover a small table with an ethnic-type table cover. On the table, beside the offering container, place coins from various countries. As the children give their offerings, explain that people in other countries may give different types of coins to God.

Little Missionaries Action Verse I can walk; I can run. (Walk in place; run in place.) I can talk and pray. (Put hands to mouth; fold hands.) I can say that God helps you (Point to self; point up; point to child.) Each and every day. (Shake finger.)

“God’s Love” Game Have the children stand up and form two lines. Give each child a paper heart with God’s Love written on it and a piece of looped tape on the back. Tape a large map to the wall on the opposite side of the room. Have the first child in line hop, skip, etc., to the map and tape his heart on a country. When he gets back, the next child in line will do the same. Continue until both teams are through. Take off the hearts and say, “God loves (Name of each country).”


Little Missionaries Sound Off (Sing as a military cadence. Play track 21 from the CD*.) Teacher Children God loves people everywhere. (Echo.) Go and tell them of His care. (Echo.) Sound off. Jesus Sound off. Loves us. Sound off. JESUS LOVES US! JESUS LOVES US! Tell the good, good news to all. Jesus loves us—one and all. (Repeat “sound off.”)

(Echo.) (Echo.)

Little Missionaries Song (Tune: “Over the River and through the Woods.” Play track 20 from the CD*.) Over the mountains, across the sea (Fingertips form mountain; wavy hand motions.) The missionaries go (Walk in place.) To tell the people about God’s love, (Hug self.) So everyone will know. (Stretch arms wide.)

*found in Resource Packet

Beginning Explorers


Š 2020. Permission to duplicate for classroom use only.

Coming Next Quarter! Theme: God Is Good

UNIT 1: God Gives Jesus

(1 Samuel 1:1–20; 2:1–10)

December 6

January 31

Baby Jesus Is Promised (Luke 1:26–38)

December 13

Baby Jesus’ First Bed (Luke 2:1–7)

December 20

January 24

Hannah and Samuel

Ruth and Naomi (Ruth 2:1–23)

UNIT 3: God Can Do Anything February 7

Baby Jesus’ Birth

Balaam’s Donkey Talks

(Luke 2:8–15)

(Numbers 22:1–6,21–38)

December 27

February 14

Baby Jesus’ First Visitors

The Walls of Jericho Fall

(Luke 2:15–20)

(Joshua 6:1–16,20)

UNIT 2: God Gives Families

God Keeps Three Men Safe

January 3

February 28

Abraham and Sarah

(Genesis 18:1–11; 21:1–7)

February 21

(Daniel 3:1–30)

Samson Has Great Strength (Judges 13:2–5; 14:5,6; 16:2,3)

January 10

Isaac and Rebekah

(Genesis 24:1–4,10–32,59–67; 25:21,24–26)

January 17

Jacob and Esau

(Genesis 25:27–34; 27:1–37, 41–43; 31:3,4,14–18; 32:3 to 33:4)

Lessons may change without notice.

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