Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Too Much Noise! Themes: Stress, Quiet, Solitude, Prayer, Distractions, Worship, Farm Animals, Noises, Sounds

Too Much Noise!
...A Preschool Story Time Lesson Plan About Seeking Quietness.

As an introduction to your storytime, bring in an assortment of noise makers for the children. Include objects that make loud noises (such as tin pie plates, rattles, plastic cups for banging together,) and items that create soft sounds (like organza scarves, sandpaper, pinwheels, or small triangles.) Alternate between having your group make loud then soft noises. Discuss the differences the children experienced. How did the loud noises make them feel? How would they feel if the loud noises went on for a very long time?

STORY: Too Much Noise, by Ann McGovern. Enjoy the story with the children. Take a few minutes after the story to discuss the main character's experience of having all those noisy farm animals in his house. How do they think that experience helped him feel better about the quieter "noises" in his home?

GAME: Play "Barnyard Match-up." Assign a farm animal noise to each child. Make sure there are two of every animal represented. For example, if you have twenty children, make sure you have two pigs, two cats, two cows, etc. to make 10 sets. Let the children all make their animal noises at the same time, seeking out their partner. Game is over when all the sets have come together. Assist younger children and have fun in the cacophony!

SONG and Quiet-Down: Gather everyone back to your storytime circle, and discuss the noisy game you just played. Emphasize the distinction between the noise before and the quiet now.

Explain that everyone needs to find a quiet place now and then to stay healthy and happy. Tell about how Jesus often sought out a quiet place away from the crowds to rest and to pray.

Play "Agnus Dei" from Cedarmont Worship for Kids, Volume 1. Sit back and let the music lead the children into a place of stillness and worship.

STORY: A Quiet Place, by Douglas Wood. Ask the children where their favorite quiet place is. Describe what Jesus' favorite quiet place might have been like.

BIBLE VERSE BRACELETS: Psalm 46:10a "Be still, and know that I AM God..." (NKJV)

and/or Matthew 14:23 "And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there." (NKJV)

(Print out, on a brightly-colored sheet of paper, today's verse repeated down the page. Cut between each verse so that you have 10-15 strips, each with the verse printed on it. Ask the children to form a line, and using tape to stick the ends together, wrap a "Bible Verse Bracelet" round each little wrist. Some children do not want to wear it; in that case, hand it to them and tell them to use the verse as a bookmark. The children love these, and come to expect them at each session! The verses also find their way home to parents and siblings, and help to spread the news about that day's storytime.)

ENRICHMENT ACTIVITY: Visit a local farm. Explore the many types of animals there. Discuss the different sounds each animal makes. Find the noisy places on the farm. Find the quiet places. Enjoy!!