Prov 15.2b: A wise teacher makes learning a joy (The Living Bible)
Jesus built curiosity for what He wanted to teach. Recall how He confounded the Jewish lawyers in the Temple at age 12 (Lk 2.40-47) and how He prodded Nicodemus with the statement “You must be born again” (Jn 3.7). We must raise out students’ expectation level, and make their attendance a fruitful learning experience. We need to stimulate the Sunday School to a joyful, active discovery of God’s Word together.
It is worthwhile to remember that after three days, people tend to remember only 10% of what they read, 20% of what they heard, 30% of what they saw, 50% of what they saw and heard and 60% of what they studied. The retention average after three days jumps to 70% of what was personally spoken and 90% of what was personally done.
Before the release of the next quarter’s materials, a Sunday School class will be asked to present an overview of the book to be covered. Everyone in the class should be involved, so as to maximise the learning experience. It is a work unto the Lord!
The aim of the presentation is to help the Sunday School understand the context and highlight the main teachings of the Bible book.
Main Areas to Be Covered
a. Background: date, author, historical setting, major places/geographical areas mentioned, reasons for writing the book.
b. Content: outline of contents, type of literature (poetry, law, prophetic, gospel, epistle, etc), main teachings, activities and themes, major characters, key words, key verses.
c. Interpretation: cover the different approaches (it is good to check with reliable commentaries and the FCF stand).
d. ACCENT material : scope of the ACCENT curriculum, account for any differences in the ACCENT material from the FCF stand.
Suggestions on Kinds of Presentations
Bearing in mind the objective is to stimulate learning, the presentation could employ a variety of techniques and methods depending on their relevancy:
- Use songs and melodies. - Play a game eg questions, riddles, pictograms, cross-word. - Drama and role play. - Skits to demonstrate a lesson truth. - Read a paraphrase of the Bible passage in simpler and more modern terms. - Show visuals like filmstrips, slides, video programmes, flip charts, overhead transparencies.
The “Purposeful Use of Learning Aids” is attached for reference.
Guidelines on Using Variety and Visuals
Before deciding on the technique, we need to consider some questions:
“What do I want the Sunday School to know, feel, and do as a result of this lesson?”
“Will this help communicate the meaning of Scripture?”
“Will it work well with the contents and fit my time limits?”
“Is there an easier or better way to achieve my goal?”
– The Sunday School is given only one hour so the presentation must keep within the time limits (45 min is a good time to aim at, excluding Q&A and prayer). Check with the Principal.
– Have at least one rehearsal.
– Check that everyone presenting or helping has the right aids and materials in their order.
– Present only the essentials – details are best left to printed notes.
– Make hard copies of notes for the Sunday School administration.
– The group leader’s task is to co-ordinate the effort, timing and ensure consistency and continuity.
– Don’t leave preparations to the last minute – each book has its own blessings!
– Pray as a class for the Lord’s leading and use each meeting as a time of fellowship.