Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Sunday School

Sunday School lessons for church can be hard to teach to begin with. Add onto that the plights of the youth and suddenly it becomes crazy hard to come up with something exciting and fun to capture their attention.

Jon has been teaching Primary since we moved to New Plymouth, and I am teaching youth Sunday School. I am not sure if either of us has it any easier than the other. However, we have been able to get creative with some of our lessons.

Lately we are in or getting into the war chapters of Alma in the Book of Mormon. Jon has incorporated his hobby of Warhammer into his Sunday School class. What better way to teach the kids of battle than to have them reenact the battles with little models? They get hands on fun, plus a lesson (hopefully) all in one. The most unconventional thing of these lessons for his class has been the models of the armies. Unfortunately, Jon does not have nice little army Lamanites and Nephites and has had to replace them with what he has.... a Goblin Army vs. a Dwarf Army. So far this has worked out pretty well... The Goblin Army outnumbers the Dwarf Army and the Goblin Army has no armor, just like the Lamanites. We will see how this class pans out.
Zerahemnah and Captain Moroni:
The Nephites:
The Lamanites:

The Battle:

I am looking forward to getting into the scriptures that speak of Secret Combinations. I have decided to remake the game Clue (or Cluedo) into a game for church. The Gadiantan Robbers kill the Chief Judge, so the game will be to find out who killed the Chief Judge. Instead of rooms in a house for where the murder occurred, they will be towns or lands from the Book of Mormon. The characters will be characters in the Book of Mormon or unless there are not enough names. I haven't quite gotten into the list yet, but will post more once the game is ready. Hopefully the kids will like this one.

They did seem to respond positively to Jeopardy. I am waiting for there to be enough kids to do a Book of Mormon Family/Class Feud. One thing that worked well for talking about testimonies (I used this when teaching Alma 32 instead of the whole planting seeds and nourishing them) was using the game Jenga as a object lesson. We talked about how to build a testimony, you have to first want to know something (and for this I placed one block down). Then the next step is to start looking into it (another block), and then you may start to gain a bit of a testimony about the basic things. You may gain a testimony of prayer first (another block), then perhaps of God (another block), of Christ (another block), and you keep going... the church, the Bible, the Book of Mormon, the sacrament, tithing, etc. etc. And you build up the jenga tower.

The next part of the object lesson comes in once the whole tower is built. When you stop trying to nourish your testimony, when you start losing your testimony of one thing (pull out a block), it effects your whole testimony. Surely if you start losing one piece and you do nothing to repair it, another piece of your testimony disappears (take out one block at a time). And eventually, your testimony crumbles. (The tower falls down) To build it back up, you have to start from the beginning again. (Place the initial block again.) However, if you can stop losing pieces and start building back up your testimony, you can build it back up much easier than if you let it all go.


Tavs said...

did you actually make all of that from scratch? I can't decide if that is the dorkiest thing I've ever seen, or the coolest! I love it!

The Big 'D' said...

Not from scratch. They are little models that you put together and then paint. I was allowed to do a bit of the painting for them and Jon finished them all off. (Mostly because this isnt his actual army that he uses to play with AND because I was actually home with enough time to do it.) I am not allowed to paint any other armys unless I get my own.