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John Knox

Our Pastor has made a special request to cover this topic this fall, it is set to be our second rotation, and as yet I have been unable to find a single bit of info that I feel will work for children in rotation. Has anyone out there done anything similar, or have any ideas to pass along? It will be greatly apppreciated! Thanks!

Last edited by Luanne Payne
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Rotation Ideas

Hi Deb
Wow, a whole rotation sounds like it could be tough. Especially if you have kindergarten and first graders in the rotation, which I assume you probably do. Would your pastor be open to having John Knox and Reformation included in a rotation about being Presbyterian? (I am assuming you are in a Presbyterian congregation, hence John Knox?)
Anyway, here are some thoughts to consider if that were to be possible:

Drama: Tell the story about John Knox; something of his life, and also the beginnings of the Presbyterian tradition. Point out to the children that there are many famous people who are Presbyterians. Mr. Rogers is one of them. Then invite the kids to create a "Mr. Rogers Neighborhood" sort of show using the information about Knox/Reformation. Perhaps video tape it?
Option 2: The song "Jesus Loves Me" was written by two Presbyterian sisters. Sing the song, illustrate it, learn it is ASL.
Art: The Presbyterian church symbol is a wonderful example of what we believe as a church and much of that can be traced back to the important aspects of Presbyterian beginnings in the Reformation. Learn about the symbol and invite the students to create a banner or poster using the symbol.
Movies: I expect you can get a video about the life of John Knox from your Presbytery resource center or from the denominatiuonal publishing sources.
Bible Skills and games: our national government is based on the Presbyterian form of gov't. Research and learn about the similarities and differences. Learn about the famous people who were Presbyterians in our national history. (signers of the Declaration for example.)
Much of this information is available in books and probably even on the denomination web site.
Last, but of course not least, invite your pastor to dress up as Knox and do a "you were there" sort of first person account of the Reformation times! Maybe someone else could be Francis Makemie and they could debate?
I hope this is helpful or at least gives you some place to "spring board" from. I think when you get something put together you should share it with the rest of us!
Good luck and God bless,
Jan Snell

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer


Our team that created our "scope and sequence" last year thought that having a Presbyterian unit was a great idea. I originally had a Presbyterian unit scheduled for this fall. We pushed it back and I am in the process of writing it for May.
Neil had a good idea for our computer lab. We will study the symbolism of the Presbyterian Seal (You can find a great explanation of the symbolism at We will then have the children create their own symbol in a computer drawing program (software suggestion: Kid Pix 4 (3-D).
Our storytelling will probably be one of our talented men dressed up and acting the part as John Calvin. I'm still working on some other ideas and Jan's sound great!
Good luck.
Judy Stiers

Last edited by Luanne Payne
Thank you for the expedient responses, and great ideas! I have gotten a bit of a reprieve, we will be waiting until next fall do this John Knox rotation! Lets keep in touch on this subject!

I do have the Art workshop pretty well set, we will be doing a cooperative stained glass window of the Presbyterian symbol.
Thanks again


I just previewed the 30-minute video, "Martin! God Loves You" for grades 1-8. It is a companion to the book, Martin Luther! God Loves You." It think is is the most accessible biographical material about Luther and the beginning of the Reformation for this age group. It also avoids sounding anti-Roman Catholic, which I find is the tendency of some material I have looked at.
The video is available from Morning Light Media, 10300 Watson Road, St. Louis, MO 63127.

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer


I am just beginning to put this one together but here are some ideas so far: For Drama we have a large cut-out-puzzle of the PCUSA seal. Each piece comes with a scripture reading and a task. I think most came from the PCUSA website with some tweaking. For Cinema there are lots of "Meet the Presbyterian" type videos as well as reformation videos but I was thinking of maybe using the Video Bible series on Acts and using the Pentecost story about the beginning of the church, then for art something to do with the printing press and translations.

And, I forgot one more. There is a discussion in James Loder's book, The Logic of the Spirit on using the narrative to teach a concept such as grace. I thought I would do something with that for our temple workshop.

Two more ideas we just had: We have the confessional banners up in the hallway of the church and thought we could do something with that for the older grades AND how does total depravity brownies sound?

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Last edited by Luanne Payne

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