Lively minds deserve a lively environment in which to find out more about God, his love and how to follow him. That’s exactly what Transformers provides for the 5-7s. The Task Sheets are Bible-based fun and the fantastic artwork is a joy in itself - with a wide variety of puzzles and activities to reinforce the messages of each session.
Welcome to Transformers, part of Powersource, a brand-new resource for helping children discover more about God, his love for them, and how they can follow him. All the Powersource books consist of undated modules of varying lengths. This is to enable you to plan a programme to suit your needs, especially if extra events happen that mean you do not use the Powersource material on those occasions. Themes have been chosen as a balance of Old and New Testament studies, contemporary discipleship, the world-wide church and some church history. Whilst there is, naturally, teaching involved, we have sought to avoid ?school? language. They are ’sessions’, not ’lessons’. As many others have pointed out, the ’School Model’ is not generally the best pattern for growing faith in children. As with all such material, there is some preparation involved, and this is clearly indicated. The sessions follow a consistent pattern and are found laid out in this order. Occasionally, however, a writer may suggest changes to the programme, in which case this will be clearly indicated.
The Session Ingredients are as follows: Worship time: Each session normally starts with Worship time, but if your children have already had a time of singing and prayer before coming to Transformers, or if the writer suggests it, then Worship time may come later in the session. Most of the key songs suggested by each writer are included on the CD provided. Many of you will simply want to sing along with the recording, but feel free to add any other songs you feel are appropriate. It is assumed that you will add other general praise songs, as appropriate. Most of the songs are to be found in Kidsource. Worship is not just singing, however, and some writers will suggest spoken worship. Praying will also be part of this time and/or in the Response time or at the Conclusion - or even in Pastoral time. Be creative with prayer, not least in getting ready to pray. Rather than instructing children to put hands together and close their eyes, why not create a ’Prayer drill’ - a verse with actions.
Another element of Prayer time may be for leaders to pray over the children, asking God’s blessing, or healing or other grace he longs to pour out on them. You may also encourage your children to pray for each other. For the latter, you may wish to consider what has been called ’Drainpiping’, using these simple steps:1. Sitting or standing as a group, one child at a time goes in the middle, closing their eyes to ’receive’ from God. 2. In simple acknowledgement that it is God who wants to bless us, the other children raise one hand to ’heaven’ .3. They stretch out the other hand towards the child in the middle. (Thus there is a kind of ’drainpipe’ arrangement - a picture of God’s love being directed through each child to the one for whom they are praying.) 4. The leader or a child simply says thank you to God for the one in the middle, and asks God to touch, bless or heal, etc., according to what is wanted. 5. Others may pray out loud, and could be encouraged to do so, but it is important to continue praying quietly, and to ’wait’ for God to begin to do what he wants, rather than saying a hurried ’Amen’ and moving on to the next child who wants to be in the middle!
This activity may be strange at first, for leaders and/or the children. Do not hurry, and be expectant that as you continue in this, the children will, in some way, begin to experience God’s touch. As the children get used to it, perhaps you will let the children ’drainpipe’ you!!
Pastoral time: This is one of the Powersource ’essentials’. We believe that time should be spent with children building pastoral relationships, as children need to be nurtured as well as taught. This is especially true if you are one of a rota of leaders, and thus only see the children periodically. Pastoral time involves talking with the children, getting to know them, letting them get to know you as the leader. Activities are suggested to help the process. Time spent in this way may vary from week to week, but it is a sound investment.
Opening activity: Some kind of activity provides the link between Pastoral time and the theme for the day, though occasionally it may just be a bit of fun.
Presentation: This is an outline of the teaching. A variety of methods are suggested, and occasionally additional resources are printed.
Response: Sharing Christian truth is not meant to be a cerebral activity. The Gospel requires response on the part of the hearer, young or old. Whilst Transformers are still growing emotionally and intellectually, they are still capable of spiritual response. Thus, the writers suggest ways in which the children may wish to respond to what God is saying. Not all children will want to make an overt response at each session. The point is to give space for those who may sense God’s touch in their lives. There is no intention to pressurise children to do something unnatural or inappropriate.
Memory verse: We have included simple Bible verses which the children could learn as part of the session. Some writers have suggested learning methods, whilst others leave it to you! The memorisation of Scripture is a good habit to develop, especially if the children genuinely understand what they are learning! Project time: Art and craft are usual ingredients in a programme such as this, and you will find various suggestions (and photocopiable resources where necessary). This is often a group activity which will span the whole module.
Conclusion: Various suggestions are made as to how to conclude the session. It may involve prayer, a song, or simply looking at the week’s To Do aim.