Tips & Tricks

How to Use the News

—Pat Verbal

Daily news items are a tre­mendous tool for Christian teaching. Use a variety of ways to show kids that God is here and personal!

World Events

Not every event is kid-friendly. Choose those that children are most likely to hear about and be aware of adults’ concern. Kids will have questions about natural catastrophes, terrorism and homelessness. The Do You Wonder Why? booklet from CEF can help to an­swer their questions.  When famous people such as the President and other leaders speak out for God and righteousness, children need to know of their faith and courage. Post articles on your bulletin board and direct children to write comfort­ing Scriptures on cards to place around them.

Local News

City papers include ways that churches reach out to help those in need. Read these headlines and give a synopsis of the story. Ask the children, “Who are the good Samaritans in our town? How can we be like them?” (Luke 10:30-37). Make plans to involve your class if feasible.

Sports

Children love sports. Point out athletes who glorify God in their actions as well as those who don’t. When a star player is arrested for drunk driving or using drugs, discuss the pain that comes from not following God’s plan for our lives. Help your students see that just as an athlete takes the name of his team, we take the name of Christ. Proverbs 20:11 reminds us, “Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right.” Ask, “What are some ways kids can represent Christ as they play sports?”

Advertising

Use ads to help children become good stewards of what God has given them.

Try this game: Divide your group into two teams. Give them magazines and scissors. Have Team One cut out ten items needed to survive for two weeks in the desert. Team Two will pick ten items for a trip to New York City. Give them five to eight minutes and listen. You’ll learn about their values. Through discussion following the game they will discover things they don’t need and that a loving God provides their true needs (Phil. 4:19).

Focus on Good News

Clip stories of children who serve God by serving others.

Nichola, who was born with only one hand, plays the guitar and sings at a local hospital. Gentry asked friends to bring shoes to her eighth birthday party for Shoes for Orphan Souls and collected 30 pairs. Tyler worked with his church to paint and landscape a low-income family’s home.

Keep a prayer list of people in the news who have car accidents, lose their jobs or suffer illnesses. Pray for soldiers and their families and send cards with Bible verses. Challenge your class to be like those Isaiah wrote about “who bring good news” (Isa. 52:7).

The next time you need some timely activities check out today’s news!