Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Activity B3 - Lesson 5: Grow a Garden

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B3
Lesson 5: Judas Betrays Jesus in the Garden (John 18:1 - 14)

Grow a Garden - Materials Needed:
- plastic cup for each child
- flower/plant seeds
- potting soil
- puff paint and stick on gems

Using the puff paint draw plant stems and leaves growing up the side of the cup, stop a couple of inches from the top of the cup. Place stick-on plastic gems a little ways above the stem, then draw petals around the gem to the top of the stem to make flowers. Use other colors to create patterns inside the petals, such as stripes or dots. The children could also add bees, butterflies, or grass. Then have each child fill their cup 3/4 full of potting soil and plant the seeds according to the directions.
For younger children cut out construction paper flowers/insects and let them glue the pieces to the cup.

Activity - Answer with a Question:
Play this trivia game like the popular television game show. You provide the answer from today's lesson and the children ask the question. For example, the answer is "Kidron Valley"; the question is, "What did Jesus cross to get to the garden?"

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Have a Blessed Christmas!

"I bring you good tidings of great joy!  For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord!"
From Sola Publishing and WordAlone Ministries, we wish you a blessed Christmas! May God strengthen you in the the promise of the Savior born for you, and give you the peace which the world cannot give.

Here at Sola, we will be doing our year-end inventory along with making a financial system upgrade to better serve our customers. Orders that come in on or after December 28, 2011, will not be shipped until January 2, 2012. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Activity B3 - Lesson 4: Lazarus Race

Sunday Schoolhouse Series - Red Unit B3
Lesson 4: Lazarus is Raised from the Dead (John 11:17 - 44)

Play Lazarus Race - Materials Needed:
- roll of toilet paper for each team racing

Each team gets a roll of toilet paper and picks someone to be Lazarus. On "go" the teams use their entire roll of toilet paper to wrap Lazarus. Wrap the arms and torso separately, avoid the head entirely, and wrap the legs together (but not too tight). When the toilet paper is used up, the rest of the team races to the opposite end of the room and yells, "Lazarus, come out!" The wrapped team member tries to meet their team on the other end of the room without breaking the toilet paper wrapped around their legs. First Lazarus across the room wins. You may want additional rolls of toilet paper so the children can pick a new Lazarus and play again. Using a hallway would provide a longer race route.

Bible Story Trivia:
Simple questions from the story can be asked to see if the students picked up on the details about names, places, objects, and events. For younger children these may be phrased in the form of "yes" or "no" questions.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Sola Confirmation Series: Lord's Prayer

We've just finished up the final book in the Sola Confirmation Series on the Lord's Prayer!  That means: all four core books in the series are now available — Ten Commandments, Apostles' Creed, Lord's Prayer, and Sacraments. All are ten sessions each, and written in an easy to use workbook format.  Go HERE to order.

The Lord's Prayer book includes one session on the Introduction, each of the Petitions, the Conclusion, and a session on Daily Prayer. The Scripture focus for series is on the Parables of Jesus, with Bible Study lessons taken from the Gospels.

Session 1: Prayer
Session 2: Name
Session 3: Kingdom
Session 4: Will
Session 5: Dependence
Session 6: Tresspasses
Session 7: Temptation
Session 8: Deliverance
Session 9: Doxology
Session 10: Devotion

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Activity B3 - Lesson 3: Build a Good Samaritan

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B3
Lesson 3: Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37)

Create a Good Samaritan - Materials Needed:
- clean recycling of all types (milk jugs, toilet paper tubes, old spoons, plastic piping, etc.)
- scissor, duct tape and craft glue
- googlie eyes, construction paper, markers, yarn

For this project the children will build a good Samaritan. Do this as a class or individually. Lay all the recycling and craft items out and have the children use their imagination to create a good Samaritan with what is on hand. You may want to make a sample ahead of time as an example; for instance, milk jug for a body, toilet paper roll legs, wood mixing spoon head with a face drawn on and yarn hair. Encourage creativity.

Use the creations as the actors in the drama provided in the Sunday Schoolhouse Activity book.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Activity B3 - Lesson 2: 3D Maze

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B3
Lesson 2: Mary Listens to Jesus (Luke 10:38 - 41)

Create a 3D Maze - Materials Needed
- empty cereal box for each child
- scissors, tape, glue, and markers

- marble or ping pong ball for each child
- various obstacles:

  cotton balls, corks, toilet paper tubes, etc.

Like the story, the kids will need to make it through the maze of everyday things that distract and keep us from Jesus in order to make it to the goal which is being with Jesus. Have the children cut out the front cover of the cereal box, leaving the sides and back in tact - it may help to reinforce the corners with tape. Save the cover. Mark one corner of the box "Start", then mark a different corner "Jesus". The object is to build a 3D maze which would allow the children to tilt the box in order to get the ball from "start" to Jesus". Use the cover to cut walls and tape them in the box upright. Then add pieces of toilet paper tubes for tunnels, corks/cotton balls, etc. for obstacles to maneuver around. Smaller children will find it easier to have mazes with large obstacles and to use ping pong balls. Older children can make their mazes more elaborate and use marbles to try to make their way to Jesus.

Touch and Run Memory Verse Activity:
Print the memory verse on cards or heavy paper, using one or just a few words on each card. Place the cards at various places around the room. Show the students the location and order of the cards. One at a time, have each child run and touch each card saying the words as he/she goes. See who can run the course in the least time.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Activity B3 - Lesson 1: Weather Vane Cross

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B3
Lesson 1: John the Baptist Points to Jesus (John 1:19-34)

Create a Weather Vane Cross - Materials Needed:
- Styrofoam cup for each child
- straw for each child, long enough to stick out of the cup
- tag board so each child can cut out two arrows and two crosses
- Plastic Jewels self stick to decorate with
- transparent tape, scissors, and craft glue
- aluminum foil

Turn the Styrofoam cup upside down. Teachers can use the scissors to poke a hole in the bottom of the cup just large enough to push the straw through. Remove the straw and cover the cup with aluminum foil. Wrap the foil and tuck it under the cup. Poke the straw through the aluminum foil into the hold already made in the cup. This is the base of the weather vane and the pole to hold the arrow and cross. Use transparent tape to secure the straw to the top of the cup so it stands fairly straight. Take the tag board and cut out two matching arrow shapes (arrowhead on one end and feather shape on the other) approximately 5 inches long. Using the craft glue attach the arrows horizontally on the straw about 1.5 inches above the cup. Glue them parallel to one another. Next cut out two crosses from the tag board. Decorate the crosses with the stick on plastic jewels, then use the craft glue to attach crosses to the straw above the arrow. The weather vane is complete.

Laundry List Memory Verse Activity:
String a clothes line from one end of the room to the other. Print this lesson's memory verse on cards or heavy paper using one card for each word. Pass the cards out to the students. See if the children are able to clip their word to the clothes line in the proper order. If time allows, have them take the words back down mix the up, pass them out and see if they can do it faster!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

New Music CD by Peter Churness

My Messiah — A Celebration of Jesus Christ

LCMC Pastor Peter Churness has just released a music CD called “My Messiah — A Celebration of Jesus Christ,” inspired by Handel's Messiah. This guitar-based version uses the same words (all taken from Scripture) but with a contemporary-folk musical style.  It can be purchased from his website at: www.mymessiah.org  or downloaded from iTunes, Amazon MP3, CDBaby, etc.

The website also has more information about the project, as well as sample songs you can listen to.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 7: Psalm 23 Book Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 7: The Lord is My Shepherd (Psalm 23)

Create a Psalm 23 Book - Materials Needed
- 8.5x11 sheet of craft foam for each student
- two sheets of copy paper for each student
- crayons or markers and pens or pencils
- yarn and scissor
- copies of Psalm 23 for each student
- hole punch

First cut the craft foam in half so the you have two 8.5 x 5.5 sheets, this is the front and back cover of the book. Cut the copy paper in half the same direction and stack it inside the covers. Using a hole punch, punch three holes on the long left side of the book, make sure to punch the inside pages as well. Cut bits of yarn, string through the holes and tie loosely to hold the book together. Write the title on the front of the book, "Psalm 23", underneath write "Illustrated by: (add child's name)". Younger children may need the psalm printed and cut into sections to paste in the book. Older children can write the psalm using their copy for reference. The children will illustrate the pages following the imagery of Psalm 23. Suggested outline: Page 1 - verse 1-2a; Page 2 - verse 2b-3a; Page 3 - verse 3b; Page 4 - verse 4; Page 5 - verse 5; Page 6 - verse 6. The back page can be used to give a biography of the illustrator: name, age, where they live and how they spend their days.

Activity: Find the Verse
Race to see who can look up a given Bible verse the fastest. Have students sit with their Bibles closed in front of them. The teacher then reads off a book, chapter, and verse and students race to look it up. The first student to find the verse in the Bible reads it aloud. That same student gets to choose the next book, chapter, and verse to look up.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 6: Shield Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 6 - Nehemiah Rebuilds Jerusalem (Nehemiah 2 and 4)

Make a Shield - Materials Needed:
- each child will need a piece of cardboard or
  tag board big enough to make a shield
- scissors, tacky glue, and packing tape
- aluminum foil
- construction paper
- permanent markers

Cut a strip of cardboard about three inches wide and ten inches long and set aside. From the remainder of the cardboard trace then cut out the shape of a soldier's shield. Wrap the shield in aluminum foil to give it a metallic look. Use the tacky glue to glue down the sides of the aluminum on the back of the shield. Take the strip of cardboard previously set aside; using the packing tape attach each end of the strip vertically to the back of the shield so that the children can put their arms through and hold the shield from behind. Using the construction paper cut out a cross and glue it to the front of the shield. Use the permanent markers to write, "Do not be afraid - Remember the Lord who is Great and Awesome." You may want to have this typed for the smaller children to paste on their shields.

Activity: Acrostic Prayer
Make an acrostic prayer based on the theme word "Responsibility". Use each letter of the theme word as the starting letter in each word of the prayer.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 5: Furnace Diorama

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 5: The Fiery Furnace (Daniel 3:1 - 30)

Create a Furnace Diorama - Materials Needed:
- large empty cereal box for each child
- copies of the drawings of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego for each child
- grey/red/orange/yellow construction paper
- cotton balls
- scissors, glue, black markers and markers or crayons

Cut out a large arched entrance from the front of the box. It should be large enough to allow the picture of the men to be added inside. Cover the outside of the box with grey construction paper and glue it into place. Cut tongues of fire out of the red/orange/yellow construction paper and glue them to the back of the box so they can be seen through the opening. Add some tongues of fire to the foreground by folding and gluing a tab on the bottom of the flame allowing it to stand upright. Color the pictures of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. Cut out the drawings leaving about one inch under their feet. Fold over the extra paper under their feet and glue that onto the floor of the box so that they are standing inside the furnace. Pull the cotton balls gently so they flatten somewhat, color the tops lightly with black marker and glue to the floor around of the furnace. Decorate the furnace adding lines for stones on the grey construction paper.

Activity - Sound Effect Drama:
Read the drama provided for this lesson adding as many appropriate sound effects as the kids can think of, i.e. crumple up paper for the sound of the flames when the furnace door opens. Be creative and resourceful!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Free Electronic Calendar from CPH

Last month, Sola Publishing released its new Liturgical Calendar for Lectionary Year B: 2011-2012.  It has been very well-received.

In helping to make the break from ELCA resources, many people have expressed thanks that Sola is recommending the LCMS version of the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) along with the use of the ESV Bible (English Standard Version).

PDF copies of the color and grayscale versions of this calendar may be downloaded HERE for free; hardcopies may be ordered through Sola for a nominal charge HERE. Permission is granted to photocopy these sheets for local congregational use.

Our friends at Concordia Publishing House have also released a free electronic version of the Lectionary Calendar for iCal (a mac-based calendar program).  Go to the CPH website at:

There are links to download the Lectionary B series (starting on Nov. 27) as well as the Lectionary C series -- for those who like to plan way ahead. Year A will be uploaded soon.  

This Calendar will list the same Scripture texts that are found on the Sola lectionary calendar and the new Sola "Word of God" Scripture Inserts.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 4: Jonah Activities

Sunday School Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 4: Jonah Flees from God's Calling (Jonah 1 & 2)

Jonah Swallowed by a Big Fish - Materials Needed
- Hard boiled peeled egg
- dry glass bottle with an opening a little smaller than the egg
- two matches
- clear tape, paper and scissors (optional)

This science experiment is a fun way to illustrate Jonah being swallowed by the big fish. Set the end of the egg on top of the opening of the bottle to show the children the egg will not fit into the bottle. Light the two matches and drop them into the bottle. Place the egg quickly over the opening once again. The burning matches will change the temperature of the air in the bottle in turn changing the air pressure in the bottle causing the egg to go into the bottle/swallowed like Jonah. If you'd like, decorate the bottle with paper fins prior to the experiment to give it the look of a fish.

Jonah Spit Out Activity - Materials Needed
- long piece of string (two spots to tie the string)
- straw
- balloon
- tape
- picture of Jonah

Tie one end of the string to a chair or door knob, thread the straw onto the string and tie the loose end to another solid object (i.e. door or chair) so that the string is taut. Blow up the balloon holding the opening shut, but not tying it. Tape the picture of Jonah to the side of the balloon. Tape the balloon to the straw so that the opening of the balloon is facing the nearest tied end of the string. Release the balloon, Jonah will go flying across the length of the string as if he has been spit from a large fish.

Scheduled Maintenance Coming Soon

We have just been notified that our credit card processing company has scheduled maintenance which will bring them offline. During these two periods you will be unable to process orders through Sola Publishing's online store. You can choose to process your order after those times or call in and leave a message.
Dates of the Maintenance:
Saturday November 5th 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific Time
Saturday November 12th 8:30 p.m. to Sunday November 13th 1:00 a.m. Pacific Time
We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Activity B2 - Leson 3: Altar Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 3: Elijah Challenges the Priests of Baal
(1Kings 18:17 - 40)

Altar Craft - Materials needed:
- paper plate for each child
- markers
- frosting and plastic knives for each child
- 12 pieces of caramel for each child
- chow mein noodles
- red/yellow/orange jelly beans

On the outer edge of the plate have the children write, "You, O Lord, are God!" The children will build the altar like Elijah did. The caramels represent the 12 stones Elijah used. Use the frosting to stick the stones in a circle to the place. Put a dab of frosting inside the circle and put on the sticks of wood/chow mein noodles. Then add another dab of frosting and stick on the fire/jelly beans.

At-home Activity:
Instruct the children to recount the story to their families as they all share in the edible craft.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sola Lectionary Inserts - Available for Order

The Word of God
Lectionary Scripture Inserts
Ready for Advent 2011, Sola is now producing Lectionary Scripture Inserts for weekly worship, as electronically delivered PDF copy masters, able to be reproduced on a church's computer or photocopier.  Click HERE to see a full-size copy-ready sample. The inserts include:
a) Three Appointed Readings: First and Second Readings, Gospel
    - featuring the English Standard Version of Scripture (ESV) 
    - using the LC-MS version of the Revised Common Lectionary*
b) Psalm Text (pointed for chanting) 
    - using the traditional Psalm texts, as used in the LBW
c) Prayer of the Day (Collects)
    - translated from the traditional/historical sources 
A seperate RTF sheet will provide Scripture texts as well as suggested "Prayers of the Church" for worship leaders, editable for local use.

For those who order in 2011, you will receive the inserts and prayers for Advent-Christmas 2011 at no charge!  Your quarterly subscription will begin in 2012.
HOW TO ORDER:  The inserts are being made available as an ongoing subscription for those who have a congregational account with Sola. Please contact our regular customer service number 1-(888) 887-9840 to start a subscription, and/or to set up a congregational account (all you need is: name, address, phone, email).
DELIVERY and BILLING: The inserts will be sent quarterly as a copy-ready PDF file, including the lessons for the upcoming three months. A 'plain text' RTF file will also be sent for those who may prefer to cut and paste text into their bulletins. The email to which the files are attached will include the quarterly invoice for the congregation, at a subscription rate of only $20 per quarter (including permission to reproduce as many copies as the congregation requires).  The subscription will continue unless cancelled. A valid email address is required. 
In consultation with leaders of NALC, LCMC, CALC, and Lutheran CORE, Sola is recommending the use of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod version of the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL), as found in the Lutheran Service Book (LSB), from Concordia Publishing House. Used with Permission.  Lectionary inserts and other worship-support products produced by Sola Publishing will be based on this version of the RCL, rather than the ELCA version. (Go HERE to see a schedule of the texts for the year.)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 2: Puppet Drama

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 2: David is Anointed as King (1 Samuel 16:1 - 13)

Create Puppets - Materials Needed:
- toy cow, action figures for
  each character in the drama
- string
- 10 dowels
- thimble with water
- optional: large craft paper and crayons

Tie the string to the dowels, then tie the other end of the string under the arms of the action figures and cow so they hang down a foot or two from their own dowel. If time allows take a large piece of craft paper and color a scene for the figures to walk in front of.

Using the drama provided have the chilren walk the characters in and out of the scene as appropriate. At the end, Samuel anoints David with the thimble of water.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Advent Candle Readings

As Sola begins releasing its worship support materials this Advent, one of the first products now available is a booklet of readings for the lighting of Advent Candles. Intentionally kept simple and straight-forward, this brief booklet can be used for the lighting candles of the Advent wreath in the worship services of the congregation, or it may be used for weekly family devotions (perhaps at Sunday dinner).

This simple booklet provides a brief reading, Scripture text, and song to accompany the lighting of the candles. It also suggests readings and prayers for the candle-lighting portion of a Christmas Eve candlelight service.  Click HERE to order from the main Sola website.

Look for more worship resources, including Sola's new Lectionary Scripture Inserts "The Word of God" to be released later this month!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Activity B2 - Lesson 1: Midianite Soldier/Tent

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B2
Lesson 1: Gideon's Small Army (Judges 7:1 - 23)

Create a Midianite soldier/tent 
Materials Needed:
- a piece of construction paper per child
- copies of the soldier figure
  (click HERE for a Soldier Pattern)
- markers, crayons
- tape, scissors and glue

Take a piece of construction paper and cut it lengthwise. Fold both pieces in thirds. They now make two tents with open tops. Lay them flat on a table and glue the soldier costume onto the side of the tent. Be sure to glue the soldier costume and draw him so that the feet will be on the ground when the tent is put upright. Draw in the soldier's face and color the costume. Tape the two ends of the tent together so that it stands up. Set up all the tents/soldiers in the middle of the classroom to use during the drama reading.

Drama Activity:
Each child will need a kazoo or some other instrument to use as a horn and a flashlight. Read through the drama. Near the end when Gideon tells the men to surround the Midianites turn off the lights (making sure everyone can still read the drama). When the army shouts, "For the Lord and for Gideon!" the children should blow their kazoos and point their flashlights all around the Midianite camp set up earlier.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

E-Book on The Augsburg Confession

Looking for something to read on your Kindle? Check out this e-book from Pastor DJ Lura:

lura.pngSo What's a Lutheran, Don'tcha Know?
[Kindle Edition] - by Rev. D.J. Lura

What does it mean to be Lutheran? In the vast spectrum of Christianity how do Lutherans differ from other Christians? With a bit of humor and an intentional effort to simplify “theological” language, this book looks at the Augsburg Confession; the official declaration of faith that began the Evangelical Lutheran Church. It highlights the unique message of the Gospel, and explains what Lutherans offer the Evangelical witness of Jesus Christ in the world today. This is an e-book available only at Amazon for $2.99 (Go HERE).

(Parts of Pastor Lura's e-book were included in printed form in the leader's guide of Sola Publishing's study on the Augsburg Confession.  He currently serves as a Lutheran pastor in the Philadelphia area.)

Activity B1 - Lesson 7: Window Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 7: Rahab and the Spies at Jericho (Joshua 2:1 - 24)

Create a Window - Materials Needed:
- square piece of cardboard for each child
- square piece of tin foil big enough to fold over the back side of the cardboard
- red cord or yarn
- popsicle sticks (several for each child)
- copy of the prayer for this lesson
- glue and scissors

Wrap the foil around the cardboard square. Glue the edges to the back of the cardboard to hold the foil in place. This is the glass pane for the window. Glue popsicle sticks around the edges of the square to make the window casing. Add more sticks to create smaller panes of glass. Glue the prayer for today's lesson on ones of the window panes.

Back In Time Activity:
This game leads the class in a quick review of the stories they have covered so far. Picture sheets from previous lessons can be used as "flash cards", with the teacher asking the students the basic plot of each story and how the story ends.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

ESV - English Standard Version

Beginning in Advent 2011, Sola will be producing weekly lectionary inserts as downloadable pdf files, able to be reproduced locally.  These inserts will incorporate texts from the English Standard Version of Scripture (ESV).
Because of its textual accuracy, the ESV comes highly recommended by people from across our partner associations, including leaders of NALC, LCMC, CALC, and Lutheran CORE.  It is the version used in the Lutheran Study Bible from Concordia Publishing House, and is also the version of Scripture quoted in the ReClaim Catechism sold through Sola.  It will be the primary recommended version of Scripture included in future Sola Publishing releases.
From the Crossway website (www.crossway.org):
The ESV® Bible (English Standard Version®) is an “essentially literal” translation of the Bible in contemporary English. The ESV Bible emphasizes "word-for-word" accuracy, literary excellence, and depth of meaning. The ESV is ideally suited for personal reading, for public worship, for in-depth study, and for Scripture memorization. The ESV Bible is available in more than 200 print editions, and it is free online anytime everywhere in the world.
The ESV Bible was created by a team of more than 100 leading evangelical scholars and pastors. Since its publication in 2001, the ESV has gained wide acceptance and is used and trusted by church leaders, numerous denominations, and millions of individuals around the world.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 6: Serpent on a Stick

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 6: Moses and the Bronze Serpent (Numbers 21:4 - 9)

Make a Serpent on a Stick - Materials Needed:
- one chop stick or ruler per child
- 8.5x11 yellow construction paper
- scissors, glue, transparent tape, markers
- googlie eyes
- yarn

Have the children take the yellow construction paper and begin to cut a spiral leading toward the center of the paper. Leave approximately 1 1/2 inches between cuts as the spiral is made. Near the middle of the paper stop the spiral cutting leaving an oval shape at the end - this makes the snake's head. Lay the paper on the table and use the markers to decorate it with snake skin patterns. Add googlie eyes to the head and glue on a yarn tongue. Fray the ends of the yarn slightly to make the tongue look forked. Tape the top of the snakes head to the top of the stick and wind the body around the stick (the body may need to be shortened).

Re-do Drama Activity:
Read the drama in parts as written. Then go back and choose a better path for the people. Instead of asking why they were brought out to the wilderness to die; choose to thank God for releasing them from slavery. Instead of complaining about the food; thank God for giving them just what they need to live on.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 5: Sponge Painting the Burning Bush

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 5: Moses and the Burning Bush (Exodus 3:1 - 20)

Sponge Painting the Burning Bush - Materials Needed:
- glue
- acrylic paints in tan, brown, black, red, orange, and yellow
- paint brushes
- several sponges (large and small)
- stamps of shoe prints and footprints or sponges cut in those shapes.
- large piece of white paper per child
- copies of Exodus 3:5 "Remove the sandals from your feet...you are standing on holy ground."

Barely dip the face of a large sponge into the tan paint and gently dab a little paint on the paper to make the mountains. Using a brush paint the branches of the bush on the mountain. Using the smaller sponges, barely dip the face of one sponge into yellow and another in orange and red. Dab them gently around the branches adding fire. Show Moses' path up the mountain by using the shoe shaped stamp/sponge and black paint, then add the barefoot prints closer to the bush. Glue the verse at the top of the paper.
Alternatively, make this a class project using a large piece of paper for a mural and have everyone work together.

Out-the-Door Activity:
Have the students line up at the door. In order to get out the door, each student must answer a question from the story. If a student misses the question, have him or her move to the back of the line and try again. You may want to ask harder questions first, moving on to the easier ones. If you finish all the quesions, start over; don't worry about asking the same questions a second time.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sunday Schoolhouse Unit B2 Released!

The second installment in the the "Red Year" of the Sunday Schoolhouse series has just been released.  This unit covers the second half of the Old Testament, under the subtitle: "Stories of Prophets and Kings."  If you are using the Red series this year, you are now set with lessons through the end of December.

For those who are counting — maybe it's just me — the three-year cycle of Bible Story Lesson Books is now halfway complete!  I'm pleased to say that Sola has published its Sunday School installments on schedule, according to our three plan.

When the basic three-year Sunday Schoolhouse series is complete, I look forward to adding a matching workbook for older elementary students.  Our plan is to produce a "digging deeper" edition to match the Sunday Schoolhouse series, which will include Bible history, geography, and text study for question/discussion, aimed at the 5-7 grade level.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 4: Cow Paper Tube Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 4: Joseph Explains Pharaoh's Dreams (Genesis 41:1 - 45)

Cow Paper Tube Craft - Matierals Needed
- two empty toilet paper cardboard tubes per child
- black construction paper
- yarn, craft glue, markers, scissors
- copies of the cow face provided

Cut one of the cardboard tubes in half the short way to make the cows legs. Cut the other cardboard tube in half lengthwise. One of the halves will be the cow's body. Take the other half and cut it again the short way, this quarter piece will be the head. Using black marker, color a line around the bottom of each of the two short tubes that make the cow legs - these are the hooves. Cut black construction paper in the form of patches and glue them randomly onthe cow's body and legs. Glue the cow's body onto the top of the legs using thick craft glue. Use yarn to make a tail and glue it to the underside of the body. Older children can braid the yarn. Glue the cow faces onto the quarter piece of tube and use craft glue to attach it at an angle to the front of the cow's body.

Go HERE for a Cattle Head pattern sheet.

Ball Toss Greeting Activity:
Have the children gather in a circle. Using a small soft ball start tossing gently to each child saying, "Good morning (name that person)." The child that catches the ball replies likewise and tosses to someone else until each person has been greeted.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 3: Family Tree Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 3: Abraham and Sarah Promised a Child (Genesis 18:1 - 15)

Family Tree Craft - Materials Needed
fair amount of small branches
- blue, brown, green construction paper
- green tissue paper
- glue and scissors
- pencils and markers

Use the blue construction paper as the background. Have the children cut a tree trunk out of brown construction paper and glue it onto the blue paper. Have the children cut out enough leaves from the green construction paper so that they have one per family member. Write the names of the children and their family members on the leaves. Glue the small branches above the tree trunk making the branches of the family tree. Glue the small leaves near the branches. To make the tree appear full, glue small pieces of green tissue paper around the tree top by wrapping a small piece on the erasor end of a pencil, dipping it in glue and pressing it onto the paper. Use markers to make wood grain lines on the trunk.

"Find the Verse" Race Activity:
Break the class into two teams. Pick a Bible verse, whichever team can find the verse and read it first gets a point. Highest points wins the race.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 2: Sin is at the Door Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 2: Cain and Abel (Genesis 4:1-16)

Sin is at the Door Craft - Materials Needed:

• white and black construction paper<
• photocopy of door pattern (thick paper)
• scissors, glue, crayons, markers

In the middle of the white paper trace an old looking door. Cut out three sides of the door so that it will stay connected to the paper on the “hinge” side. Glue the black paper to the back of the white paper so that when the door opens you can see the black paper. Using a white crayon write the word “Sin” inside the door. Outline the door frame using yarn and use straight vertical pieces of yarn on the door to make it look like it is made of wood planks. Color the door to make it look like wood grain. 
For a reproducible door pattern, go HERE

On the rest of the white paper help the kids brainstorm different ways to cool off when people get angry; ideas that would help us not to open the door to sin, but keep it closed i.e. reading a book, exercising, talking to a friend. Younger children can draw pictures around the door representing these ideas, while older children can write their ideas in a little more detail around the door.

Circle Greeting Activity:
Start your morning with circle greetings; for example, the shoe greeting. Everyone stands in a circle, each child puts one of their shoes inside the circle. Take turns grabbing a shoe and saying, "Good morning (naming that person)". The child returns the greeting and grabs a shoe until all the shoes are chosen and everyone has given and received a greeting.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Activity B1 - Lesson 1: Class Animal

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Red Unit B1
Lesson 1: Creation of Humans and Animals (Genesis 2:4 - 25)

Create a Class Animal — Materials Needed:
• sheet of paper, scissors, glue, tape
• decorative craft supplies: fabric, yarn, imitation fur, googlie eyes, colored pipe cleaners, etc.

God made all the animals, some of them quite strange. Think of what God did with the platypus and see what the class can create. Have students contribute one of the animal’s attributes to create a whole new animal.
a. Body: hairy, scaled, feathered, etc.
b. Legs & Feet: hooves, claws, toes, webs, etc.
c. Arms & Hands: fingers, wings, claws, pincers, etc.
d. Face: nose, teeth, beak, trunk, snout, ears, etc.
e. Head: horns, antenna, mane, hair, etc.
After making a list, have each student make one part of the animal out of marker drawings, fabric, etc. Just like Adam named the animals, have the class come up with a name for their new animal. (Option: Instead of just one animal for the whole class, have each child may make their own animal. Encourage them to take their time and be very creative.)

God's World Cookies:
Start the new Sunday school year with a treat. For the cookie craft you will need plain sugar cookies - 1 for each child, green and blue frosting, several plastic knives and spoons, small paper plates, and animal crackers. Each child will decorate their cookies like Earth with blue water and green land; then place an animal cracker on the cookie.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Free Stewardship Materials for 2011

That we may Sow & Reap in the Word ...

For congregations planning a Fall Stewardship emphasis, Sola Publishing is providing free downloadable materials on our Sola website.  The theme for this year's Stewardship Emphasis comes from Jesus' words to his disciples in John 4, where he speaks of our calling to "sow and reap" by serving his mission in proclaiming God's Word in our daily lives.

Look on the Sola website under the tab menu "Free Sola Resources" or go directly to the Stewardship Page HERE for these downloads:

a) Color Theme Poster (like the one right)
b) Bulletin Insert-Devotional
c) Giving Plan Card
d) Sample: Time and Abilities Sheet
e) Children’s Story Page
f) Children's Stewardship Plan
g) Black and White Logo
h) Full Color Logo

Permission is granted to reproduce these materials for local congregational use.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Ten Commandments Book - Now Available!

Ten Commandment Workbook
is now available!

This ten session book spends one session on each Commandment, based around several Scripture texts from Old and New Testaments, with: examples, object lessons, in class questions, catechism, and prayer.  The Scripture focus for the series is on Moses and the Exodus, with lessons in the Bible study section primarily from the Pentateuch.

Click the link HERE to order from the main Sola website.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Confirmation Series Overview

For a single-sheet overview of the lessons and topics in the four core workbooks of the Sola Confirmation Series, download a free pdf HERE.  The session titles and portion of the catechism covered are listed, along with the Scriptural focus for each book

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Update: New Confirmation Book

The Fall unit of the Sola Confirmation Series on the Ten Commandments is coming along nicely.  It will undergo final editing next week, and is on schedule for release in mid-August.  If all goes well, copies will be ready for sale at the L-CORE/NALC gathering in Columbus next month.  

I have attached a sample of the first session on the First Commandment
HERE.  Refer to the previous post (below) for a description of all ten sessions.

As the year goes on, I will continue to post online various "extras" -- including: quizzes, study sheets, tests, etc.  You will find these on the main Sola website under the menu tab "
Free Sola Resources."

Monday, June 27, 2011

Coming Soon: Ten Commandment Confirmation Book


To those who have been using the Sola Confirmation Series in its beta test phase this past year, and those who are looking forward to the next unit on the Ten Commandments, I wanted to send a brief update to let you know what is coming.

Everything is on schedule for the ten session unit on the Ten Commandments; it will be available to be used for classes this Fall (2011). The completed book will released by the end of August at the latest. Prior to then, I will be sending out individual sample sessions to give you a preview.

For the time being, let me provide you with an overview of topics. Each session below corresponds to the like-numbered Commandment (1-10).

Session 1: Priority
Session 2: Respect
Session 3: Sabbath
Session 4: Authority
Session 5: Protection
Session 6: Fidelity
Session 7: Responsibility
Session 8: Integrity
Session 9: Contentment
Session 10: Consequences

There will be a single end-of-unit test and study sheet on the Commandments which I will post online this Fall. I will also provide weekly Catechism memory quizzes as well. Looking ahead, the final unit on the Lord’s Prayer will be released to begin classes in January 2012.

Just to let you know, like last year, this year’s materials will continue to be released as “beta test versions” – meaning: I hope you will continue to provide feedback and suggestions, so that by the Fall of 2012, the whole finalized series will be released.

Thanks for your support,

Pastor Steve King
Director/General Editor
Sola Publishing

PS. All the free materials that I have posted online (worship notes, study sheets, tests, etc.) have been moved from the Sola blog to the main Sola website, under the tab heading "Free Sola Resources" at the top of the page:

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

WordAlone Invests Entirely in Sola Publishing

Reprinted from the WordAlone Website (posted June 15, 2011)


Times of difficulty and crisis are ones that often call us to hard decisions. For people of faith, this makes it even more critical that we seek to live in trust and obedience. Such is the case facing WordAlone as an organization at this time.

As servants of Christ, we are called by our Lord to be faithful managers and stewards of all that he has entrusted to us - not only in terms of our material resources, but even more importantly, in his Word as "stewards of the mysteries of God" (1 Corinthians 4:1). Jesus explained the kind of planning and foresight that he requires of his stewards. He said:

Which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, 'This man began to build and was not able to finish.' Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace.  (Luke 14:28-32 ESV)

For many years, WordAlone has sought to serve as a faithful gathering of disciples and workers in God's kingdom. Often with very limited resources, WordAlone has engaged in the battle for truth again and again, and has never shied away from taking a stand for the sake of God's Word. Over the years of its history, WordAlone has also laid a foundation and built many strong and significant ministries that continue to serve the larger fellowship of orthodox Lutherans. The Lord has used WordAlone to provide for the future of fellow-believers in this new Lutheran landscape. The faithful stewardship of WordAlone has borne fruit in many ways among us.

Yet, with all that it has been able to accomplish, WordAlone has never forgotten that it is accountable in its stewardship to Christ himself. Throughout our history, we have prayed that when the time came for us to pass that stewardship on to those who follow, we would graciously commend the resources that God has given us as a legacy to the continuing ministry of Christ's Church. That day has now come.

For several months, WordAlone's resources for ministry have slowly been shrinking. While we maintain a high level of trust and appreciation from our constituencies, many WordAlone folks have naturally started investing their support into building for the future with new congregations and mission opportunities. This is as it should be. But this shift in focus has meant that there is less and less money available for WordAlone itself to continue our "transitional support" ministry. To put it frankly, after several months of cutting salaries and expenses, our funding has finally been depleted and WordAlone cannot continue in its present form.

The Board of Directors, as stewards of WordAlone's resources, has concluded that the time has come to limit WordAlone's continuing ministry to the one area where we can best be of service to our fellow disciples, Sola Publishing.

Sola Publishing is a growing and thriving ministry that has emerged out of WordAlone's commitment to solid Biblical and confessional preaching and teaching, and it has become increasingly obvious that this much needed ministry is the best gift we have to serve the broad constituency of our friends in faith, including LCMC, NALC, CALC, CORE, and other faithful Christians who want to stay grounded in God's Word. With an eye to the future, WordAlone will be investing all its resources and energy into building Sola Publishing into a full-service publisher, able to meet the needs of our expanding fellowship of congregations. We hope that you will continue your support of this essential ministry, which focuses on the best gifts that God has given us.

At the same time, the Board has expressed its intention that WordAlone should not continue to operate under a deficit or incur additional debt, nor should the larger organization continue to be subsidized by Sola Publishing, which needs support for its own development. The Board has therefore decided:

1.  The executive positions of President and Vice President of WordAlone must regrettably be eliminated. Support staff will be reallocated where possible.

2.  WordAlone's existing auxiliary ministries will be bequeathed to our partner ministries where they might best be used to serve our larger constituency.

3.  WordAlone will work to fulfill, in good faith, the financial commitments incurred over the past few months, and back-compensation of its employees.

4.  WordAlone will continue to exist, exclusively doing business as Sola Publishing.

While these hard decisions are not made easily, we acknowledge that the command of Christ to serve the ministry of faithful stewardship is not optional. Our Lord expects us to use wisdom and responsibility in seeking to serve him daily in a faithful and effective manner.

As WordAlone moves forward as Sola Publishing, we ask for your financial support in this transition. We ask for your prayers and encouragement, as we continue to minister in the legacy of our namesake - Sola Scriptura - God's Word alone.

Yours in Christ,
The WordAlone Board and Staff

Monday, June 20, 2011

RCL Lectionary Online

Those looking for a readily accessible online source for readings from the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) are encouraged to check out this link to the Vanderbilt Library:


On this site you will find a schedule of RCL readings, along with the actual Scripture texts.  The site also provides a number of prayers for use in worship.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Thank You!

Thanks to all those who were are part of the recent events on Sola's "road trip."  We were happy to meet pastors and lay leaders from Illinois and the Carolinas.  It was great to get a chance to meet new people and talk about how Sola can serve to provide much-needed education resources to congregations looking for solid biblical materials.

Pastor Steve King - Director & General Editor
Pastor Tom Walker - General Manager

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Sola Road Trip

Sola Publishing will be featured at two upcoming events in the first week of June: one in Illinois and the other in North Carolina.  We will have a full sales display at both events, with workshop time to introduce our materials.

Central Illinois:  Sola Gathering
June 1 at 7:00 p.m.
Held at Immanuel Lutheran Church (Flatville)
2498 County Road 2100 E, Thomasboro, IL 61878
(NE of Champaign-Urbana)
Phone: (217) 694-4156

North Carolina: Carolina's NALC Convention
June 3 at 12:00 noon through June 4 at 5:00 pm
New Jerusalem Lutheran Church
2120 Startown Road
Hickory, NC 28602
Phone: (828) 324-7272

Come see and hear about the wide range of resources offered by Sola Publishing from Rev. Steven King, director/general editor, and Rev. Tom Walker, general manager.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Activity (Series A4 - Lesson 7): Well of the Water of Life Craft

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Unit A4
Lesson 7: John's Vision of New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:1 - 14)

As part of this lesson the children will make the Well of the Water of Life:
For this craft each child will need a good amount of mini marshmallows, glue, blue decorating sugar, markers, a piece of construction paper, and plastic glue on jewels. Each child will get a piece of construction paper to use as the base to build their well on. Glue the mini marshmallows into about a 5-6" circle. Then staggering the marshmallows stack a second and third row making the sides of the well. Carefully spread some glue inside the walls of the well on the paper. Sprinkle blue decorating sugar on the wet glue to look like water in the well. Older children can write the Lord's word below the well, "To those who are thirsty I will give you the privilege of drinking from the well of the Water of Life without payment." You can print off this verse for younger children to glue onto the paper. Use the plastic jewels to glue around the paper for further decoration. Older children can go further trying to create the Greek symbols for Alpha and Omega (see page 31 of the Classroom Resource book) on their sheets using jewels.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Activity (Series A4 - Lesson 6): Forgiveness Game

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Unit A4
Lesson 6: Paul Asks Philemon to Forgive (Philemon1)

As part of this lesson the children will play the Forgiveness Game:
Have the children stand in a circle. Pick one child to go first, he/she turns to the person next to them and as silly or seriously as they like says, "Brother/Sister will you forgive me?" The person they've spoken to needs to respond, "Brother/Sister I forgive you, but I just can't smile." The child has to say the response without smiling or they have to sit down. Keep going until there is one person left. After the game explain that it is often uncomfortable asking for forgiveness, but it is very important. And that like in the game, just because you ask for forgiveness it doesn't mean the person doesn't feel hurt anymore and they may not be ready to smile. Even if they don't feel better yet knowing someone cared enough to ask to be forgiven helps. End with the prayer provided for this lesson.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Activity (Series A4 - Lesson 5): Clay Sculpting

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Unit A4
Lesson 5: Demetrius Stirs Up Trouble (Acts 19:23-41)

As part of this lesson the children will make clay sculptures:
For this project you will need enough modeling clay for each child to get a large enough clump to sculpt with; as well as beads, plastic jewels or other decorations. The children can mold a hill and form a cross standing at the top. Press beads and jewels into the cross for decoration. Very small children may want to use popsicle sticks and glue if they are unable to make a cross stand up out of clay. Give older children more items to decorate with. Encourage detail like wood grain on the cross or grass on the hill. Explain that our faith should be out in the open - "up on a hill" like the cross they made. They, like Paul and his friends, may feel rejection, but can pray for courage in standing up and speaking in Jesus' name.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Worship & Education Festival - Schedule

Activity (Series A4 - Lesson 4): Break Free

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Unit A4

Lesson 4: A Slave-girl and Jailer are Set Free (Acts 16:16 - 34)
As part of this lesson the children will make chains and break free:

For this lesson you will need large size grey construction paper, tape or stapler, scissors and markers. Cut strips of constructions paper lengthwise approximately 2" wide. Each child should have at least three strips. Label the paper "sin", "evil" and "fear". Next, the kids can shackle their legs with the strips of paper. Two strips used to make loops on each ankle - tape or staple the paper together, and one strip to link the two shakles together. Now the children are chained in bondage to sin, evil and fear. Older children can be more specific on their paper, listing specific fears, sins and evil. See how easy it is to run around the room while in bondage. Revisit Paul's story in Acts. Explain how we are baptised in the name of the Father, the Son, and of the Holy Spirit and have the children rip a chain link and gain release with the reading of the trinity. The children could make a second set to bring home and demonstrate to their family.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Activity (Series A4 - Lesson 3): Honesty Discussions

Sunday Schoolhouse Series Activity - Unit A4
Lesson 3: Barnabus Give, Ananias Lies (Acts 4:32 - 5:11)

As part of this lesson the children will discuss dilemmas:
Ahead of class, prepare some index cards describing a situation where a person would need to make a moral choice. (There are several books and card decks of this nature that can be purchased at Christian Book Stores). Lay out a several different dilemmas a person might face in life and asking how the students would respond in that situation:
- An example for younger children might look like this:  You are at a friend's house.  Your friend has a lot of toy cars, and has two of one kind that you have been wanting for a long time. Would you take the car since your friend has so many and has two of that particular one?
- For older children, the dilemmas should be more complex. For example: Say you received extra change back back from making a purchase at a big store. You didn't ask for the money; it was not your fault.  Would you keep the money or bring it back?

As you discuss the situations, have the student think about the consequence of their choices.  For example, keeping extra change given to you accidentally at a big chain store will not cause the store to go bankrupt, but what about the cashier whose drawer is short? What do they think happens when you add up mistakes over a course of a year, could prices for everyone be raised? For younder kids, will a child be asked over to a friends house again if their friend knows their toys might be taken?

For an added activity, have the children illustrate one of the scenarios with a drawing, illustrating a good choice for that particular scenario.