YFM 1st-5th Lesson 7/19/2015

Always a Blessing
1st – 5th
This Week’s Theme: Encouraging the understanding that there is always a blessing to be found in every situation. We must remember that God is always present.  
Teacher Insights: Today’s lesson will invite the class to see how God is present even when something in life is difficult. Today we will focus on the following objectives for our classes.
  • If we look patiently enough, we will find the blessing in the situation.
  • God’s blessing is not always obvious.
  • God is present no matter what
This lesson was adapted from Diane Venzera’s youth curriculum, In the Forest of Finding Out. The full curriculum may be found at: www.dianevenzera.com.
Unity Writings: The word universe means “turned into one, a whole.”… A whole needs all of its component parts, and no one part is any more important than the other.
                                                - The Quest, Richard and Mary-Alice Jafolla
God as omnipresence is the only presence in the universe. This refers to the all-pervading presence of God, permeating the universe. God is everywhere present. There is no place where God is not. He is in all, and through all, and around all. 
                                                                -Dynamics for Living, Charles Fillmore
“And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
                                                -Matthew 28:20 (NRSV)
Unity Principles:  (today’s principle is highlighted)
1:  God is all Good and active in everything, everywhere.
2:  I am naturally good because God’s Divinity is in me and in everyone.
3:  I create my experiences by what I choose to think and what I feel and believe.
4:  Through affirmative prayer and meditation, I connect with God and bring out the      good in my life.
5:  Practice, Practice, Practice.  I do and give my best by living the Truth I know!  I make a difference!
Pre-session:  Blessing Others
Make sure you create a sacred space at the tables in your rooms. You can do this by lighting the Christ candle and then placing sacred objects around it. 
Greet Parents and Children.  As much as possible try to greet parents at the sign-in table.
    • At the Sign-in table ask:
      • Please print names
      • Does your child have a yellow registration form filled out?
      • Any special needs that we should know about?
Pre-session Activity: Blessing Sticks
Materials: wooden sticks- one per child, colored yarn/leather cording, beads, feathers, markers
As your class is arrives and is signed in, give them a dowel rod and invite them to create a blessing stick in any design they choose. When they are complete, encourage them to create a simple blessing rhyme they can share with others. They can use their stick to create beat and rhythm to go with their blessing if they would like.
Sacred Circle: Is God in Difficulties?
  • 3 Ohms:  In order to synchronize our energies, have the children sit in a circle and begin sacred circle with 3 ohms.
  • Who is Jesus for us in Unity?  Our way-shower, the great master of love.
  • Affirmation: I am blessed by everything I experience.  
  • Introductions/Affirmations:  In turn, have each student stand say their name and a characteristic they bring to the classroom.  For example, “I am Brandon and I bring peace to the circle today.” All the children warm up their hands and put their hands in the prayer position, bow, and say, “Namaste’ ________, you are _______!”  
Namaste’ means:  "The light in me sees the light in you." 
  • Heart AgreementsHeart Agreements establish the boundaries of how everyone in the group agrees to “show up” in Sundayschool. They are not being TOLD how they must show up; they are telling YOU how they have agreed to show up.  During the course of the lesson, you may refer back to the Heart Agreements.  For example, if a group of kids is perpetually talking while you are speaking, then you may say to the class as a whole, “What was our heart agreement about listening to speakers?”  And let the kids tell you!
Our basic heart agreements are:
Gentle Hands
Open Hearts
Walking Feet
Listening ears
Kind Words
  • Love Offering:  Divine Love, Blesses and multiples, all that I have, all that I give and all that I receive.  And I am joy-filled and grateful.  FYI:  students may place lots of things besides money in the love offering basket:  joy, friendship, peace, love, etc.
Now it is time for our meditation. I invite you to become still and quiet your mind and body. Make sure your spine is straight and begin to relax your body, closing your eyes. Take a deep breath in through your nose and gently hold it for a moment, before releasing it through your mouth… Pause… And as you relax your body further, take another deep breath in through your nose and gently exhaling through your mouth… Pause… And finally, one more time, take a deep breath in, hold it and release…Pause…
In your mind’s eye, see a tall building that you are familiar with. See how tall and straight this building is. As you look at this building, think about how stong this building has to be to stand tall against all wind, rain, hail, and tornadoes. Slowly, look up to the top of the building and slowly look down to the bottom. Remember all the different bricks that it took to make this a tall strong building…Pause…
Now in your mind’s eye, imagine that you are one of the bricks, which make this building tall and strong…Pause… Feel how strong you are. You know that no matter what comes, you are ready to hold this building up. But notice that you are not the only brick holding up this building. You are just one of many bricks. Look around you and see all the other bricks. See that they were all made just like you. 
Feel how connected to the bricks around you, below you, above you… Pause… Feel the energy of the cement that brings you all together as one. Feel how easy it is to hold this building up against all the storms with all the bricks connected…Pause… Feel how proud you are for yourself and all the bricks around you for coming together to make such a tall and strong building…Pause…
Now, as we come back to this time and place, remember that we are never alone. We always have the support of God around us. Now, return your attention back to your body. And when you are ready, open your eyes.
Story time: That’s Good, That’s Bad by Margery Cuyler
You will find today’s story in your materials tub. Today’s story is about a little boy who goes through many different adventures. Depending on how you look at them, each adventure could be good or bad. It all depends on your perception of the situation. The main focus for today’s story will be the understanding that we always have the power to choose to see the good or blessing in every situation. 
Discussion Questions:
·         What is happening in the story?
·         How could the things that happened to him be both good and bad?
·         What does it mean to be blessed?
·         How can we see God in every situation?
·         How do we know God to always be there?
·         What benefit do we receive when we always try to find a blessing in every situation?
·         Describe a time when you received something good from a situation that looked negative.
Creative Expression: 
That’s Bad, That’s Good Game Show
Materials: Scene Starters (copied and cut apart)
This is an acting game. Invite the children to select a partner to act with. The rest of the children will be the audience. Invite the actors to select one of the Scene Starter Cards, read it over and come up with a possible “good” ending to the scene described on the card. The card will have a description of a scene that at first looks like it would be “bad”.
Ask one of the actors to read the “bad” scene out loud to the group. The audience will try to guess what the good ending could be. Then the two actors will act out the “bad” scene and possible good ending they came up with.
Give everyone who wants to a chance to act out a scene.
Closing Prayer:  
Let us pause for a moment in silence. We send thoughts of love to everyone in the world. Pause.
Father Mother God, thank you for this time together to learn and for the wonderful moments when we can connect with you. In this moment we choose to create a wonderful world for all. We allow our Christ light to shine out for the world to see and speak words of love and peace into our world. We are grateful. Thank you God! Amen.
Teacher Reminders: Please HELP
    • Return the teacher tub and all supplies to the Resource Room
    • Sign out by writing the number of children you had on the Teacher Sign-In Sheet.
    • At 11 put the sign-in sheets in your supply tubs.
    • Put the love offering in the envelope in your tubs.