Page 18 - Teaching Guide Unit 4 - Promise
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May 7, 2017 • 4th Sunday of EasterSunday Readings: Acts 2.14a, 36-41; 1 Peter 2.20b-25; John 10.1-10Teaching GuideOVERVIEWIn Sunday’s Gospel Jesus compares himself to a shepherd who cares for and protects the sheep. In ancient Israel, shepherds often lay in the gateway of a sheepfold at night so they became the gate that kept the sheep safely inside. Jesus refers to this custom when he says he is the gate. Promise helps children recognize that caring is the spirit of Jesus, the good shepherd and gate of the sheep pen.MATERIALS: Scissors, one penny and one game marker for each child.SHARING LIFE STORIESOBJECTIVE: The children will recognize ways they care for others and for pets.1. GATHER AND SING Gather the children in the singing area, standing in a line. Use the Easter song and actions you learned last week. The words are to the tune of “Are You Sleeping?”Alleluia! Alleluia! (Girls step forward and twirl.)Is our song. Is our song. (Boys step forward and frame mouths with hands, like a megaphone.)We are Easter people. We are Easter people. (All bow.) Sing along. Sing along. (Join hands and sway.)2. COVER ACTIVITY: I can show I care Gather the children in the story area. Ask them what it means to take care of someone. See that the person or animal is safe, has food, gets help if sick, play with them or talk to them. Ask who they take care of. Most children will mention pets and the feeding, brushing, walking, playing, training that goes with having pets. Some may care for siblings or older adults. Tell them this week’s Promise has a picture of a street where children are doing many caring actions. Distribute Promise and let volunteers tell you a caring action they recognize. Summarize your findings by making them into a prayer. Have the children make caring sentences that the children in the illustration might say. For example, “I can show I care by picking up litter.” Everyone responds, “Thank you, God, for people who pick up litter.” This activity readies the children for the Gospel theme of this lesson.3. STORY: Homework, the Classroom Rabbit Tell the children the following story about a classroom of children with a pet rabbit. Ask them to listen carefully to hear what the children did to take care of the rabbit together.Mr. McQuillan’s first grade had a white pet rabbit named Homework. The children took turns each day caring for Homework. They fed him rabbit pellets. They changed the paper in his cage. They kept his water bottle filled, and they made sure he got enough exercise. Homework would hop all around the room when the children were working. He wouldsit in Andrew’s lap when Andrew’s reading group was on the big rug in the corner.Mr. McQuillan didn’t want to leave Homework alone at school over the weekend, so he made a plan. The children took a note home asking parents if they would take care of Homework for one weekend in the fall and one weekend in the spring. Andrew was the first child to bring his note back.“My parents say I can have Homework this weekend!” Andrew told Mr. McQuillan. All the other children came back with signed notes, too, but Andrew got to be first.On Friday afternoon, the whole school gathered in the gym for a play the seventh grade put on. When the first graders got back to their classroom, Andrew rushed over to Homework’s cage. Homework was not there! The door to the cage was open. Andrew and the other children looked all around their classroom, but there was no Homework anywhere. “Oh, my,” said Mr. McQuillan, “when we went to the gym, we didn’t shut our classroom door tightly, and Homework got out.” Just then, Mrs. Sullivan, the librarian, knocked on the door. “Your rabbit was in the library,” she said, “but I couldn’t catch him. I think he went to the principal’s office.” Andrew and Mr. McQuillan went to the principal’s office. The principal said, “I saw Homework hopping by, but he didn’t stop. I think he went to the kindergarten.” Right outside the kindergarten door, Andrew saw little rabbit droppings. “We are on his trail,” Andrew told Mr. McQuillan. And sure enough, Homework was perched on the edge of the kindergarten water table, taking a big drink. Andrew picked Homework up and hurried back to put him in his cage.When Andrew’s dad picked him up at school that afternoon, he was surprised to see that Andrew had a big white rabbitin a cage. “Who is that?” Dad asked. “This is Homework,” Andrew said. “Mom said I can bring Homework home any time.” Dad laughed. “This rabbit is probably not the kind of homework your mother meant, but he looks like a nice pet. Let’s take him home and pick some lettuce from our garden for his supper.” And so they did.Review the details of the story. How did the children take care of Homework? How did Homework get out? What will Andrew and his family do to take care of Homework for the weekend?4. CREATIVE MOVEMENT Move to the open area. Tell the children they are going to pretend they are Homework. Have them crouch down like rabbits with hands on the floor in front of them and legs ready to hop. When Homework gets to Andrew’s house, he hops over to the water dish Andrew had ready and licks up water. Then he hops to the family room and squeezes behind the sofa. Andrew coaxes him out with a piece of fresh lettuce, and Homework nibbles it out of Andrew’s hand. Then he hops back to his cage and takes a nap. When he wakes up, he stretches his front legs and he stretches his back legs and then he hops over to the Gospel area to hear today’s story about Jesus.TG4-18

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