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A weekly evangelism program for pre-schoolers and their carers

Penny Morrison


Contents

I

Welcome to DynaMites Music.....................................................4 Why a music program? How the program works Why music? Who is it aimed at? What biblical material is taught?

The basics of a music group.......................................................7 Teaching music Parent involvement Form a leadership team Group experience Group management

Resources..............................................................................................9 Term 1 Term 2 Suggested equipment and sources

Program guide: Year 1....................................................................17 Term 1 outline Term 2 outline

Weekly program for Terms 1 and 2...........................................20 Setting up the room Dancing Unaccompanied singing and story time Parachute Percussion instruments Scarves Hokey Pokey Chairs Musical chairs Pass toy fruit around the circle In general

Alphabetical list of songs.........................................................46 Extra ideas for smaller groups and older groups........54 Song words and actions...............................................................56


Music is fun. Young children love to sing, dance and jump—especially if Mum or Dad joins in. Children are busy learning, learning and learning, whether it be language, social skills, concepts or physical abilities. And music is a wonderful way for a child to develop in all of these areas. Music is also a great way for children and adults to learn about Jesus. Song words stick in our memories easily and story time naturally goes with any music session. Share the good news about Jesus and have fun with DynaMites Music.

Why a music program? Many churches run playgroups, which provide the opportunity for church members to make friends and invite them to a Bible study group held at another time. With many parents of pre-schoolers working at least part-time, this outreach strategy is becoming more difficult. Parents often have extra demands on their time, such as swimming lessons and speech therapy. They may be interested in trying out a Bible group, but they are also time poor. Church members also struggle to get involved in two groups, even though evangelism and Bible study are both high priorities in their lives. How can they make new friends and involve them in a group where they can learn more about Jesus while spending quality time with their little ones? A music program for young children and their carers is an effective and enjoyable way to combine making friends, spreading the gospel and reading the Bible with a group.

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How the program works The DynaMites Music program is for 0–5-year-olds and their parents or carers. It involves: •

30–45 minutes of music activities, followed by morning tea for both children and adults, and a 1–1½ hour Bible group while the children are cared for in a creche

well-known songs plus a few songs about God each week.

There are four terms in each year of the two-year DynaMites Music program. This manual covers Year 1 Terms 1 and 2. Terms 3 and 4 are covered in Book 2, which is also available from www.cepstore.com.au or your local Christian bookstore. Why have a Bible group on the same morning? This format provides you with the opportunity to meet and get to know unbelievers, tell them about Jesus and give them an opportunity to learn more and grow as Christians—all on one morning of the week! This has an advantage over a typical playgroup because we don’t need to invite parents to come to a separate event to hear more of the gospel. A music group is more appealing to some people than a playgroup because many parents want to take their children to educational activities. The DynaMites Music format also reduces the need for one-off events which sometimes drain resources. When evangelism is a weekly activity, the resources for running and advertising the program are used more efficiently. People who may not have made it to a one-off event are often able to reschedule their The transition timetables to fit in a regular activity. The transition from attending the music program to joining a Bible group is easier than deciding to attend another event or program. If the participants have gotten to know the leader and other members of the group and know their children will be happy, it is a relatively small step to stay on for a Bible group, even if they have never read the Bible before.

from attending the music program to joining a Bible group is easier than deciding to attend another event or program.

Often it is the children who beg to stay longer, resulting in a mum, dad or grandparent trying out a Bible group for the first time. Even children with separation anxiety can find it easier to say goodbye when they have spent the previous hour in the hall doing a fun activity with a special adult. Parents who work on other days may be happier to put their child into creche if they have spent quality time with them that morning. Hearing the gospel taught repeatedly, with opportunity for discussion, is more effective than hearing it only occasionally.

Why music? Many activities, including craft and exercise, may well appeal to people without pre-schoolers when combined with morning tea and Bible study. But a music group has one distinct advantage over these other types of activities. The parents and carers attending the group hear a snippet

Welcome

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of the gospel every week through the programmed songs and stories. Other activities don’t naturally provide the opportunity to proclaim Jesus. Singing songs each week plants the gospel in the minds of the participants as well as their children. As parents hear a little bit of the gospel every week, they become increasingly interested in hearing more.

Who is it aimed at? Although a music group appears to be a children’s ministry, it’s primarily a ministry to parents. Of course we do want young children to hear the gospel, but this a secondary aim of this program. Our primary aim is for women and stay-at-home dads to hear the gospel in the music group, join a Bible group to hear more, and eventually become a follower of Jesus and continue to grow in him.

What biblical material is taught? The Bible can be summarised in these two statements: that God made us and that we can know him through Jesus. The program expands on these points, but it is helpful to have a simple summary of what you aim to teach participants. In doing so, it is hoped that you will whet their appetite for more.

Bible groups Short Bible studies can be encouraging and challenging to Christians, while making the gospel clear to visitors. The Youthworks New Believer Series, Eight People Meet Jesus and Eight Surprises and Stories by Jesus, are useful study books to begin with. These are inexpensive and readily available from www.cepstore.com.au Be sure to tell visitors that there is a Bible group after morning tea and that they are welcome to come, even if they have never been to that sort of group before. Briefly describe what you do in the group. Assure them that it’s OK if they choose to go home before the Bible group begins. I prefer the name ‘Bible group’ over ‘Bible study’, as the word ‘study’ tends to give the impression that the group will be formal and academic. Of course, we do study the Bible, but we want to make our groups welcoming for those who have never read the Bible before. Think through how to explain what you do in your group, and how to make a visitor feel comfortable. I was once in a group where a leader said, ‘Let’s go around the group and get prayer points’. A visitor responded with ‘Oh, I didn’t realise that we get points for praying’!

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Year 1 Term 1

Week 1

God made the world

1. Dancing (to recorded music) ‘Jump if you feel you want to’ ‘Heads and shoulders’ (Extras: ‘Everybody is clever’, ‘Kye kye kule [twi]’) ‘Who made the world?’ ‘God made me special’

‘The story of Jaws’ ‘The wheels on the bus’ (Extras: ‘Put your finger in the air’, ‘Old Macdonald’) ‘Row, row, row your boat’

4. Scarves

2. Percussion instruments (egg shakers)

‘Like a leaf or feather’

Unaccompanied song: ‘Everybody do this’ (loud, soft, fast, slow, up high, to the side, to the other side)

‘Flutter, flutter butterfly’

Dance to recorded music: ‘Shaky shaky’

Sing unaccompanied: ‘Where o where are all the children?’

3. Unaccompanied singing and story time

‘Up and down’

‘Incy wincy spider’ ‘Twinkle, twinkle, little star’ Book: My Very First Bible Stories: In the Beginning by Lois Rock ‘My God is so big’ ‘Who made the world?’ (Option: make felts to go with this song)

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‘Five little ducks’ (Option: use finger puppets or felts)

‘Windmills’

5. Parachute ‘Boa constrictor’

‘What can the parachute do?’


Year 1 Term 1

Week 2

God made ME (eyes)

1. Dancing

‘Twinkle, twinkle, little star’

(to recorded music)

Book: Hey! Is That How God Made Me? by Penny Morrison

‘Jump if you feel you want to’ ‘Heads and shoulders’ (Extras: ‘Everybody is clever’, ‘Kye kye kule [twi]’) ‘Who made the world?’ ‘God made me special’

2. Percussion instruments (mixed) Play these to music of your choice. Freeze when the music stops and swap instruments.

3. Unaccompanied singing and story time ‘Incy wincy spider’ ‘Open, shut them’

(Extra: The Eye Book by Dr Seuss) Ask: ‘Who made our eyes?’ ‘What do they do?’ (Option: use Mr Potato Head or felts on a felt board) ‘Who made’ (eyes verse) ‘Open, shut them’ (with eyes) ‘God made my …’ (eyes verse) ‘Five little ducks’ (Option: use finger puppets or felts) ‘The story of Jaws’ ‘The wheels on the bus’ (Extras: ‘Put your finger in the air’, ‘Old Macdonald’, ‘Row, row, row your boat’)

4. Hokey Pokey 5. Parachute ‘Boa constrictor’ ‘Where o where are all the children?’ ‘Up and down’ ‘What can the parachute do?’

Weekly programs

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DynaMites Music Year 1 Terms 1 & 2