Saturday, January 06, 2007

Preparing To Teach

It’s Saturday night and I have both my Sunday School lesson and my Junior Church lesson done. Actually, I finished them yesterday. No Saturday night specials for me!

I’ve learned over the years that flying by the seat of your pants in your preparation usually means you’ll fly by the seat of your pants during the lesson time as well. Saturday night used to creep up on me; I’d study furiously Saturday night, then pray like crazy that God would rescue me in spite of my lack of preparedness. He is such a gracious God. Sometimes my best lessons have happened when I was the least prepared; but instead of getting cocky and taking advantage of it, I knew deep down that it was His doing, not mine, and I’d better not push the point.

I know one lady who would start preparing her next Sunday School lesson Sunday afternoon. I have tried studying Monday or Tuesday, but life would get busy and as I got older, by Saturday, I couldn’t even remember what I had studied! So, after twenty five years of teaching, here’s what I find works for me.

1. Start studying the scripture passages early in the week. Take notes of what impresses you and what you learn from the Scripture. Spend time reflecting on how you need to apply the Scripture to your daily life. I incorporate this study into my daily quiet time, studying the Scriptures several days in a row.

2. Read the curriculum lesson sometime in the middle of the week. Purchase necessary supplies. Choose your activity options or think through how you need to adapt the options to your particular group of students.

3. Try out any craft ideas new to you. I had to do this just this week. I’m glad I did because my directions said to use a thin line of glue and I found that only a couple of drops were enough. I’m a little nervous about this craft because I know how kids are with a bottle of glue. I may yet decided to put a teen age helper in charge of the glue bottle.

4. Write out an outline of the lesson on an index card so you don’t have to keep looking at your teacher book. Put key words for questions or examples you want especially to use.

5. Read the scriptures and look over your outline either Saturday night or Sunday morning. Spend time praying for yourself and your students, that the Lord might speak through you and through the activities you use. Pray that morning preparations for the families of your students go smoothly so they will have time to come and will arrive in a right frame of mind.

Happy teaching. May God bless your Sunday.

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