We started with the second book in the Ruhi Curriculum for children’s classes today – our first lesson was about ‘forgiveness’. The lesson structures are quite similar to the ones in grade 1 – learning prayers, memorising quotations, songs, stories, art and something new – drama! 🙂
Our first prayer to learn off by heart, was one that we had used many times in singing. “Blessed is the spot…” Our favourite version of the melody is based on strong regular drumming rhythm (we used plastic pots and out laps to drum on), which the children did REALLY well with!
We then moved on to memorise our quote for today: “…let your adorning be forgiveness and mercy and that which cheereth the hearts of the well-favoured of God.” (Bahá’u’lláh) After discussed the meaning of the tricky words, the children were very in quick in memorising it. Well done everyone!
I still need to create the ‘downloadabale’ worksheets for these new lessons, but if you have access to the book “Teaching Children’s Classes – Grade 2” (ISBN-1-876322-56-X), the story for lesson 1 is on page 26. It’s a beautiful example of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá showing the utmost forgiveness to the governor of ‘Akka, even after he sought to do Him wrong.
Before moving on to painting, we did our first warm-up exercises in drama. Learning to control our bodies within a given space (square) and interacting with each other in creative drama. The execises are beautifully explained on pages 27 and 28. It was a very joyful experience and the unity in our class today was heart-warming!
See you all next time – I hope to have some more lesson info up next week…. 😉
“He is God! O God, my God! Bestow upon me a pure heart, like unto a pearl.”
The beautifully illustrated version of it, was our colouring in activity at the end of class too. (See today’s lesson in pdf format for a copy of it.)
The story we read today, was from a new book, called ‘Daily Reflections and Stories for Children‘. It is compiled by Munirih Hodge and Margo Styan – and the short stories are beautiful – 19 different ones, all arranged by virtues and spiritual qualities. The one we read today, was about two visitors who came to see ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. They didn’t like each other at all, but ‘Abdu’l-Bahá showed them how to be friends and told them ‘My home is the home of joy and delight. My home is the home of laughter … Whoever enters through the portals of this home must go out with a gladsome heart.” They left the house the best of friends. 🙂
To visualise how precious our hearts are and how practicing kindness and radiance can help us to keep them pure, just like a pearl – our craft was inspired by shells and pearls. See the pics for details…
After playing musical statues with Stefan Brown’s ‘Kindness’ song, we settled down for some calming colouring in. Well done everyone! What a lovely class!
Next week we’re having a special class as it’s ‘Ayyam-i-Há – the time of hospitality, celebrating unity and gifts… We’ll keep you posted on what’s planned, as soon as we have all details sorted 🙂
‘O Friend! In the garden of thy heart plant naught but the rose of love…”
Love was the theme for today’s class – the first one back after the school holidays. It’s a repeat of lesson 4, with slightly different activities. As recommended by the Ruhi curriculum, we are repeating each lesson 2 to 3 times. It helps with really instilling the core themes taught and virtues learned.
And once again, the children were superfast with memorising the quote for today. Most of them remembered it from the previous time – well done!
For our craft activity we decorated flower pots and then planted some seeds – not quite roses, but beautiful sunflowers, zinias and calendulas.
…with lots of care, sunshine and watering, we’re hoping to see these little seeds turn into some beautiful blossoms soon 🙂
The little flags, the children made, contain the quote for today’s lesson, to remember that we only let seeds of love germinate in the gardens of our hearts.
Then we read the story of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in Akká, where He is loving and caring to a man who shows him no kindness at all. For 24 years this goes on, until ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s endless love changes this man’s heart (p22-23 Ruhi Book 3).
We finished today’s lesson with the song ‘Love, love, love’ – for which you can find the lyrics here.
Please note: no class next Sunday 24 October – as we’re all at the Children’s and Junior youth Camp in Kaitoke -yay! See you all in two weeks, 31 October (it’s Halloween, come dressed up if you like…).
This must be one of my favourite lessons 🙂 it is based on lesson 2 in Ruhi Book 3, and we’ve gone through it before. The children needed very little prompting to remember the quote for today’s lesson:
“O Son of Spirit! My first counsel is this: possess a pure, kindly and radiant heart.”
We changed the craft slightly too – painting beautiful hearts – pure, kind and radiant ones – but then stringing them up, instead of using them as magnets. We loved the way they look, when we wrote the words first with oil crayons, and then painted over with a water based paint – the brightly colourful results are gorgeous!
For today’s story, we used an ‘old’ book I had from my parents, called ‘The Scottish Visitors’ – a story about ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s visit to London. It’s beautifully illustrated, and the story suits age groups from 5 to 12 alike!
We finished the class by playing the game ‘Burning thirst’ (Ruhi book 3, page 18). Sticks are tied to childrens’ arms – to prevent them bending their elbows – and they pretend to have walked in the desert and are very thirsty. A glass of water is given to them and they have to try and drink it (only works if they work together and hold it for each other). 🙂
And then sang Stefan Brown’s song on ‘kindness’. Always a favourite of everyone in class. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday everyone and see you next week, which will be the last class of this term (19th September).
Welcome back everyone! It’s been a fabulous first lesson after the school holidays 🙂
We talked about kindness, and what it means to be kind to each other, to animals, the planet, ourselves – to EVERYONE… Memorising the quote for today’s lesson was a breeze. Our children are learning them so quickly, it’s becoming second nature. Well done everyone!
After singing Stefan Brown’s song ‘Kindness‘, we made some peaceful and happy kindness-birds. A fabulous craft idea from the Australian Peace Pack material. It’s the little kindnesses we show each other that give us wings and lift our hearts and spirits!
It was great to see all the beautiful birds take flight…
We finished the class with the ‘Hidden Virtue’ game. Have a look at the lesson pdf for a description of how it is played – we had good fun with it and did at least 4 rounds 😉
Thanks all for great class and see you next Sunday – when we’ll learn about Generosity (some cookie baking/decorating might be involved….) – yum!
We had a lovely second lesson at the Community Centre today. The theme for this lesson was ‘A pure, kind and radiant heart’. We sang Stefan Brown’s song called ‘Kindness’ and had lots of fun, coming up with lots of different rhythms and percussion for it. We learned a new quote by Baha’u’llah (see quote of the week on the right) and did a craft activity – where we painted little heart magnets. Have look at the pictures, and I’ve posted a pdf of the complete lesson as well.
2_KindHeart (pdf for downloading)
Busy hands – making the ‘heart-magnets’…
We used crayons first to create a pattern on the cardboard hearts and then painted over it with watercolours – so easy and very pretty looking 🙂 it was hard to stop!
…to end the class, we played the game ‘Burning Thirst’. The children’s arms are tied to sticks, so they can’t bend their elbows. Then they pretend that they’ve been walking in the desert for a long time and are REALLY thirsty. They come upon a cup of water – how can they drink from it, without being able to bend their elbows and pick up the cup….?
…after lots of giggles and trial and error, they realise that they have to work together and hold the cup for each other to get any of the water! Well done!!!!!
Thanks also to Keith, who paid us a visit during children’s class today – it’s great having people popping in – all welcome 😉