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We're looking for lesson ideas, resources, and creative inspirations to teach "about our denomination."  Don't worry about which denomination you are, the rest of us can likely use your creative idea with our own denom.

The following idea can work for all denominations that have a "Channing Bete" pamphlet that tells the story of their denomination. The idea from Neil was written in response to a teacher's request for lesson idea help to teach about her Presbyterian denomination. Member Anne Camp suggested the Channing and Bete pamphlets, and Neil followed up with some creative ideas about how he's taught with them.


These pamphlets were very popular in the 80's and 90's and early 2000's to give to older kids and new members in churches. Cokesbury has several listed for sale. Check with your denominational resources to see if they ever had one produced for your denom.

The important detail that's missing in Neil's idea below is that the Channing Bete pamphlets are full of line-drawn CARTOONS with captions that do the "about" describing. See the covers above to jog your memory if you've seen them before. 

Many years ago I used the following fun approach to reading the Presbyterian Channing Bete Pamphlet with my Confirmation Class. I see no reason why it couldn't also be done with children.

1) The kids identified several key pages/drawings in that pamphlet that they thought were important ideas, then they split into "actor-model" teams who recreated the selected pages/scenes for a "photo-shoot" to create their own version of the pamphlet. We titled it "What it means to be me...a Presbyterian."  Made a memorable wall display (which included pages from the pamphlet. (We had extra copies of the pamphlet that some members took after seeing the display.) We did it with Polaroid instant cameras it was so long ago, but it would work with digital cameras or phone cameras and a printer too!

For our picture of "John Calvin" (whose line drawing is in the pamphlet), we printed a picture of Calvin and made a cut out that the kids stuck their eyes/lips/nose through. It was funny, but made the point...he is us, we are him.  

2) In another class, after going through the pamphlet, we split into three teams who had to spell the word P-R-E-S-B-Y-T-E-R-I-A-N ...coming up with a word that started with each letter. This took time and some of the words they came up with created quite a bit of debate!   

3) In yet another class, the kids and I took the familiar "B-I-B-L-E" song ("...yes that's the book for me") and re-wrote the lyrics as "The P-R-E-S-B-Y-T-E-R-I-A-N, yes, that's the denomination for me, we stand up for...."  and they each came up with what we "stand up for." Each team had to sing their version, accompanied by my guitar and had to spell the letters with their bodies (like kids do singing the real song) -teaching their version to the class. Of course, you start slow, and sing it 3 times, ...each time faster. It was a total and very memorable HOOT.


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