I See a Generation

Think with the end in mind.

Such a valuable part of leading small with our few, but it can be elusive sometimes when you are living in preschool world! There are Sundays where it’s hard to see beyond that gentle, quiet Harper, who has many things that happened in her world this week, but Annie won’t be quiet long enough for her to share. Or just when you have your entire group really engaged in that great game to get them thinking about the Bible story they are going to hear, Sammy shows up with his collection of plastic dinosaurs (or lizards, or dragons) insisting that they each get to have their turn. Then there is the Sunday that one of your few who is not very regular — Kenny in my world – is present but only wants to talk about zombies (Yes, in preschool. Note to self: maybe I need to gently find out what he is watching on tv.) How is it possible to contemplate higher, nobler ideals like “thinking with the end in mind?”

In the midst of all these thoughts, God, in a way only He can orchestrate, reminded me what it looks like to think with the end in mind. In “big church” amongst the adults, the words to a song hit me with such forceful reality. “I see a generation rising up to take their place, with selfless faith, with selfless faith. . .” All the faces of my few started popping into my brain: Harper and Annie, Sammy and Kenny. They are the generation that I am going to see rising up to take their place. I am honored to introduce them to God who loves them and made them and Jesus who wants to be their friend forever. What a unique opportunity to speak into Harper’s gentle and quiet nature, and encourage her to share. Before long she’ll be an elementary student, then a middle schooler, and then a high school student encouraging other gentle spirits. And Annie? Part of what I get to do is direct that boundless energy and take charge attitude into being a leader, not afraid to face challenges, but respecting those she leads. Sammy and his imagination and endless collection of amphibians and other critters? He may be the one crafting and creating words that will capture the hearts and attention of preschoolers yet to arrive on this planet. I’m not sure yet about Kenny and his love of zombies. . . maybe he’ll be a great student pastor someday!

Thinking with the end in mind for your few preschoolers is all about seeing their potential, but never losing sight of who they are now and fully loving and accepting them right where they are.

What are your challenges in thinking with the end in mind for your preschool few?

Gay Tucciarone April 13th, 2015 0 comments

Serving Young

Your preschool small group is a great place for kids to not only get their first impressions of their Heavenly Father, but also to get their first impressions of what it means to be the church.  As they are beginning to understand that the church is where God’s family gathers, that this is where we all love God and, at least most of the time,

Barbara Graves March 9th, 2015 0 comments

Memorize, Store, Retrieve

Can we really expect a 4-year-old to recite the memory verse two hours after he heard it in your small group on Sunday morning?

Can we expect a 2-year-old to properly pronounce all of those words so that Mom and Dad understand what she is saying?

Yes and, well, yes—at least some of the words with a little help!

First let’s think about why we

Danielle Schneller February 16th, 2015 0 comments

Church is a place to have FUN!

Sometimes I think we need to remind ourselves that church IS a place to have FUN, and to have FUN does not have to be complex, does not require a ton of prep or a huge budget. Fun can be simple!! Give a preschooler a few “props” and just watch their imagination go!!

The First Look “Pirate” theme has helped remind me just how much

Jenny Zimmer February 4th, 2015 1 comment

It’s Hard to See the End

When leading our few preschoolers, some where in between the "be nice" and "share" talks, spilled snacks, “accidents”, crying over hurt feelings (and possibly "she put glue on my sheep not hers" conversations), it is easy to lose sight of thinking with the end in mind.  Our few are at a unique place in development. Their ability to communicate their thoughts and needs are often

Gay Tucciarone January 29th, 2015 2 Comments

Today Could Be “THE” Day!

You just never know what each day with your few may hold and which day could turn out to be THE day.  There were a lot of THE days in the Bible and the people who helped those days happen were simply living their life, day to day in the lives of those who they were influencing.  By choosing to be consistently present in the

Barbara Graves January 23rd, 2015 1 comment

A Year to Remember

As a small group leader, one of your goals is to partner with parents. You hope for the opportunity to team up with the parents of your few and make a combined impact on their faith development. But, often, this is easier said than done, solely based on the hectic nature of Sunday mornings. Parents rush through the check in process to get their child

Barbara Graves January 15th, 2015 1 comment

More Than A Story

Each week in our preschool classrooms you have the opportunity to teach the greatest story ever told.

You get the honor to sing songs that are catchy and fun.

You are blessed to have the chance to play, color, cut out, smile, give hugs and high fives.

ALL of those things are incredibly important in making an everlasting impact on the heart of a preschooler.

Cass Brannan December 15th, 2014 0 comments

Dear Nursery Volunteer…

An open email from a thankful mom.

Dear Nursery Volunteer,

If I were a better woman, I would send you a hand-written letter sealed in a floral-print envelope with a gift card to the local coffee shop.  But, truthfully, I’m not certain I can find a piece of paper in my house that doesn’t have a to-do list, an appointment reminder or a grocery list

Barbara Graves November 6th, 2014 5 Comments

Purposeful First Words

A baby’s first word is a milestone that many parents will remember their entire life!  According to Circle of Moms survey, these are the 10 most common “Baby’s First Words”:

Dad ( or Dada, Daddy, etc)
Mom ( or Mama, Mommy)
Hi
Bubba
Dog
Ball
No
Cat
Nana
Bye

Why these words? Partly because the hard consonant sound is the easiest to make, so words

Barbara Graves October 20th, 2014 1 comment