Sometimes Bible curriculum can have so many activities in them that they cannot be completed in the allotted class time. This can be a good thing because it gives the teacher choices of activities to do in class. Also, sometimes the activities planned for certain lessons do not actually back up or support the lesson for the day, rendering them useless in this lesson. But having a few extra lesson activities or segments can help teachers make their lessons better. On several occasions I substituted alternative activities in my lessons because the one provided didn’t have anything to do with the lesson of the day.
Bible activities are wonderful teaching tools. However, one challenge I faced required the teacher to locate a multitude of various items to bring into class for one 15-minute activity. Among these items was a selection of clothing for the students to play dress-up during class time.
Dressing up can be applicable if your students are doing a drama activity or if they are learning how the people in Bible-times dressed. If you are teaching how people dressed in Bible times and have a selection of clothes that are from or similar to that time period, the lesson could be beneficial. This activity can work if “dressing up” supports your lesson or its application and the teacher has the items readily available, and doesn’t mind carrying a large load of goods to church. However, carrying a large amount of clothing to church can be cumbersome, and dressing up may take a large part of your allotted time period that could be used in a better way.
Most of the time just playing “dress up” doesn’t really teach the students much about God’s word and, in my opinion, is a waste of class time. Though dressing up can be fun for children, what do they learn about the Bible and Christian living from it? Most of the time it is only a fun activity the children could do at home in their spare time. Why waste our class time playing games that do not relate to our Bible lessons?
Another activity from a different lesson suggested the teacher bring various children’s toys, including place settings of dishes, plastic food items, a toy shopping cart, and other miscellaneous items to class for one fifteen-minute class activity. If the teacher has these items at home, and has the time to gather them up, this could be workable. However, if the teacher has to spend a lot of time searching for these items, borrowing them from friends, or purchasing them for one class activity, this can become too much. Many teachers struggle to find time to plan or review their lesson before presenting it. Why would a teacher want to spend time chasing down a bunch of items for an activity that really doesn’t have anything to do with the Bible lesson? This is simply too much!
In addition, I don’t believe purchasing this multitude of items for one 15-minute time segment is being a wise steward of God’s resources. The money would be better spent purchasing items that could be used repeatedly in Bible lessons or in making Bible-based crafts or other projects that can be used to provide the children with “memorable moments” or with reminders of the lessons they learned.
As teachers, we need to get the most we can out of the money and the time we have been given to teach Bible classes to our students. If we waste our money or our time that’s allotted for teaching Bible classes, we have missed our opportunity, and we can’t get it back.