Wednesday, October 25, 2017

In the Wilderness with Jesus - Learning to Overcome Temptation


Teaching Children to Overcome Temptation from Joan Eppehimer on Vimeo.

Even though I have taught this lesson on Jesus being tested by Satan before, I found it very difficult to present. I like to think of this as the game Battleship. When you make a hit on the enemy's ship in this game, they yell, "Hit!" When I am doing something for God and I encounter a lot of obstacles, it is the equivalent of that cry, "Hit!" In other words, I am making inroads into the enemy's territory, I have made a "hit." And that's a good thing.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Jesus' Great Big Family - Engaging Children with Jesus' Genealogy


Genealogy of Christ from Joan Eppehimer on Vimeo.

A few weeks ago we began the study of the New Testament in Sunday School. The first lesson called for the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1. "Now how am I going to engage the children with this?" I thought. The curriculum suggested drawing a stick figure for each name on a board OR using post-its with the names on them. I had a better idea - how about printing stick figures with the names on card stock and using a pocket chart. You can access the printed sheets here.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

King Solomon's Dream Magic Window


This makes a great craft for the story of King Solomon's dream. You need to separate the 2 pictures to make it.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

DIY Polar Bear Cave


We made this really cute polar bear cave with crinkled up white paper (actually used same paper in 2 churches), cotton batting, "Buffalo Snow." ice chest ice blocks, blue cloth and lots of tape. You can watch the video below to see how it got put together.


Saturday, August 19, 2017

Building Through Bowling




An important aspect of children's ministry is spending time with the kids outside of church. We took our Sunday School kids bowling over spring break.

Why are times like this important? Kids need adults in their lives - and 60 minutes on a Sunday morning or Wednesday night is not enough.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Esther and Purim, the Jewish Mardi Gras

via GIPHY

Esther is the perfect story to teach children (and adults) about God's sovereignty. From Esther's becoming Queen to the king not being able to sleep the night before Haman plans to have Mordecai executed you can trace God's hand all through the book.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

DIY Foldable Bible Flashcards for Story Telling


via GIPHY
Remember the old saying, "A picture is worth a thousand words."? Well, maybe you don't and I am really showing my age, but the point is truer than ever today. This generation is by far the most visual there has ever been. Whatever the cause is, the fact remains, you should use visuals when you teach.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

His Love Never Gives Up - Hosea for Kids


I had a seminary professor who said if he ever went back into the pastorate he would preach through the Bible chronologically. Well, today many of us are TEACHING through the Bible chronologically, which recently brought me to the book of Hosea...for kids. And I couldn't have been more thrilled with the truths I discovered in the book...for kids.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Dunkin In the River with Namaan


Any Bible story with a visual "change" in it is candidate for a magic "change" bag. Namaan's leprosy is a perfect match. Here's how I told the story.

First, I made some cardstock figures. You can back these with flannel and use a flannel board. I simply used a pocket chart to save the extra work of backing them. These printable Bible character figures are free at Activity-Mom.com.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

How to Showcase Your Children's Ministry


Sunday School 2016 by Julia from Joan Eppehimer on Vimeo.

We made this video last year to show in church as a way to keep the children's ministry before the congregation. As many of you know, you never know how many children you will have on any given Sunday. This was a great way to let people see the whole picture.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

How to Make a Giant Fish for the Story of Jonah


Jonah and the giant fish is one of my favorite Bible stories to act out. You can do it without a lot of props - as long as you can make a big fish that the kids can get into. I have seen many different ways to make a fish- from a table covered with cloth to the doorway to a classroom decorated to look like the mouth of a fish. Here, I used a simple pop-up tent (one of the greatest investments I ever made - especially since my neighbor gave it to me for free years ago).

I took the pop-up tent and covered it with black tablecloths I have on hand. You could use plastic ones from the dollar store if you don't have these or dark sheets.

I made 2 giant eyes out of felt. The felt sticks to cloth, so if you do have sheets or tablecloths, it is easy to put together.

I made my original tongue out of red tissue paper. This time around, I added red wrapping paper we had on hand.

I made a tail by twisting a rectangular piece of black cloth and taping it to the wall with black duck tape. I hung "seaweed" inside of the fish - just green crepe paper taped to the tent seams.

For an added effect, I covered the wall directly behind the fish with blue paper and some fish we had left from Bible school.


DIY Giant Fish for Jonah from Joan Eppehimer on Vimeo.

I wrote a simple drama based on the book of Jonah. You can access that here.

We added a ticket counter (the window in our unfinished stage) and signs for the "city gates" of Nineveh to create a little atmosphere. Here's the link for my signs.




DIY Eggtremely Large Easter Egg

  This was an eggtremely time consuming project to do, but it was also very rewarding, and even fun. I want to warn you though, don't pa...