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Does anyone use Godly Play in the WoRM or in other areas of your education program? I'm exploring possibilities for a second hour program and other options for preschoolers. How do you use it?

 



 

 

 

Editor's Note:

 

As Cindy's original post notes, Rotation educators often have other program needs! ...and as you will see by the responses, some Rotations INCORPORATE "Godly Play" and preschoolers in their Rotations.  For more about Preschoolers in Rotation, go to the Article by that name in the Rotation Setup Resource Forum

 

Godly Play is a creative curriculum for Preschoolers-K created by Jerome Berryman. In short, the children learn to tell the story by seeing it presented by a storyteller, and then playing through it. Thus, in Godly Play classrooms, it is very common to see "story play kits" organized on a shelf.   Typically, the teacher tells the story by introducing the kit and adding/manipulating the props one by one. Then the children reproduce that and play with the story.

 

The technique of using "story kits" has been around a long time, and is sometimes used in Storytelling, Art or DRAMA Workshops in the Rotation Model with older children. 

 

Keeping the story-kits out and available for unstructured play becomes an opportunity to refresh the child's memory and expand their understanding.  Thus, while you might not officially do "Godly Play" in your rotation, you might want to take note of this memory-empowering concept!

 

Last edited by Wormy the Helpful Worm
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We will be starting WoRM this fall but I have had a Godly Play classroom for years.

 

What I intend to do is use the Godly Play stories in my story telling workshop when possible.

 

I think it is time we had a break from Godly Play as it was written but I do love the format of the stories.

 

If you have never used it, it is an expensive/time consuming thing to get started but if you already have the materials and trained storytellers then I see no reason you couldn't use it as well for a second hour if you need that.

Sheila

Last edited by Wormy the Helpful Worm
Cindy -- Yes, we use Godly Play for our 4&5 year olds. We've used it for 3 years now, & both children and parents are pleased with it. Our church is starting the WoRM next month for grades 1-5, so the Godly Play kids will not be part of it. We do plan to incorporate them occassionally, but they will usually remain in their own classroom.

I do have concerns that the GP kids & parents might feel "left out" of all of the excitement surrounding the WoRM, but really, GP has been so successful here, we don't want to mess with something that's not broken.

Debbie

Hi, Cindy,
We do use Godly Play with our 2, 3, and 4 year olds. It's not a part of rotation, but it meets the needs of having this age group stay in one location. And also I think it's just perfect for them. This will be our 5th year of Godly Play, and no one is ready for a break yet.


We have a music person who gathers the children in the story circle every week, and then we actually ROTATE (yikes) other adult leaders. The storytellers and the doorkeepers volunteer in teams of 2 and serve one Sunday each month. Our Godly Play takes place during our worship service (after the children leave) so it's much easier to get volunteers for once a month than to miss worship over a prolonged period. Having the music leader be the same (a staff person) every week makes this possible. She doesn't necessarily stay for the whole session, but may return to worship after the children have gotten to know their other leaders (all of whom are parents and have volunteered at least 3 of the 5 years!).


We find that doing rotation for children this young means a lot (too much?) of revision for age-appropriate activities, unless we are able to incorporate them into a broadly graded group. We do the broadly graded thing in the summer. The older students love being leaders for the younger ones who are also delighted with the arrangement.


Let me know if there are other specifics for Godly Play you need.
Anne

Last edited by Wormy the Helpful Worm
Thanks Sheila, Debbie and Anne! I am planning to attend an introductory workshop to Godly Play in our area in September. Our preschoolers have felt left out of the rotation model excitement, and I've been wanting to do something special with them. This sounds like a good possibility.
Cindy, we have used Children and Worship (if that is the same thing)with our 5yr olds through 2nd graders for many years as a Sunday school class. It is very different from the old classes. We made our materials so they were not expensive at all. We gave up children's church in frustration and decided to try this as a SS instead. It really made a positive difference in behavior during worship. I also think the little kids look forward to something different when they reach 3rd grade and can be in the rotation classes.
Anyone have an opinion on how young is too young for the rotation model. We currently have 3 & 4 year olds in our model and I feel they are too young. I don't know what this Godly Play is, does it address this issue?

Thanks for any responses that my address my dilemma.
ChristyV
Christy,
There was a poll conducted on this site not too long ago about using rotation with pre-schoolers. I wonder what the results were? Do a search and see what you can find out!
We are yet another of those congregations doing godly play with ages 3 to 6 for four years now. Our children learn the stories and are able to retell them, in addition to learning how to worship much as we do "upstairs". We have a smaller team of leaders for them and they stay in one room -- which we feel is best for that age.
This summer we will use our rotation space for all ages but split them into appropriate groupings by age where necessary. I think the older "godly players" (my son included) will be excited to have a glimpse of what it's like to be in the big kids space!
Blessings,
Hilary
quote:
Originally posted by Pam C:
Cindy, we have used Children and Worship (if that is the same thing)with our 5yr olds through 2nd graders for many years as a Sunday school class. It is very different from the old classes. We made our materials so they were not expensive at all. We gave up children's church in frustration and decided to try this as a SS instead. It really made a positive difference in behavior during worship. I also think the little kids look forward to something different when they reach 3rd grade and can be in the rotation classes.
Many of the Godly Play Bible Stories can be found on the web. We make characters with a scroll saw and then a woman in our church paints them. You can use Fisher Price characters. We use old Sunday school papers for patterns and often use maps for our base and tell the story as we have the children move the characters on our enlarged map. We do not use all the formal proceedures for taking out the pieces. We use it in rotation in one workshop just as another way to tell the Bible story. Many stories ready for Godly Play can be found on the web site below. We find the story here but do a lot of adapting.
http://www.edupatterns.com/toppage11.htm
I got the book "Young Children and Worship" by Sonja M. Stewart and Jerome W. Berryman to get started and it has some patterns and stories, but costs $25. I see that another book about Godly Play is advertised at Wal Mart for $15.95. I have not looked at it.

We use Godly Play as one of our rotation stations at least 50% of the time. You know who enjoys it the most? The 4th-6th graders! You should see their faces light up when they see it on the schedule.

We tried including our preschool/pre-K in the main rotation last year. The kids did just fine but some of the teachers had difficulty adjusting to such a broad age range. This coming year we've been blessed with a teacher who will teach the preschoolers in their own space. We still plan to have them do rotation lessons that coordinate with what the older kids are doing.


Corine

Last edited by Wormy the Helpful Worm

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