Preschool Blog

Do I know you? Meet the New Preschool Editor

Julie Heath

I’ve answered this question and asked this question quite a few times in my life. Do I know you? You look familiar. Have we met yet/before? Preschoolers don’t always ask those questions. Depending on just where they are in their preschool life, some preschoolers will just sit down and start to play—if you have toys, you are my friend. So, I’m going to start and assume, if we could get together around a large cherry diet Dr Pepper with easy ice and (insert your favorite coffee/soda here), we would be good friends and be able to find something in common—if you love preschoolers, you are my friend.

Be Genuine

Dietzes at worship service

Jason and Cheryl Dietz were appointed to serve as church planters in Dresden, Germany, in 2006. The part of the world they live in has been called the most secular region on earth. Religion and faith are almost a foreign concept for most, and the Dietzes’ approach is to initiate spiritual conversations with everyone they come in contact with. “Those who show interest hear more and more from us, the whole gospel presentation, and an invitation to respond,” said Mr. Dietz.

When Trauma Is Ongoing

Helping preschoolers

When we think of preschoolers who experience trauma, we might think of a child who has gone through a tornado or house fire, a car accident, or witnessed a violent event. These are all one-time events, even though the consequences of these events might last a long time. What about preschoolers who deal with trauma on a regular basis? I’m thinking of a preschooler who is dealing with a serious chronic health condition or has a family member with a continuing health condition. Some preschoolers live with the ongoing trauma of living with a parent who has an addiction or substance abuse disorder. Other examples are preschoolers who live with a parent or sibling who has mental illness or those who live in a household in which there is domestic violence and emotional abuse. These preschoolers live in a constant state of fear because their trauma is ongoing.

A GA Leader Goes to Burkina Faso

“You are going where?” I heard that question again and again as I told my friends of my next exciting missions adventure with God — going to Burkina Faso to help begin missions education for children. Preparation for this trip recalled one of my earliest mission studies as a new GA leader — missions in Upper Volta. I remembered my group of GAs making paper replica maps of the butterfly-shaped country and learning to spell and pronounce the name of the capital.

“Can you say Ouagadougou?” French is the official language of Burkina Faso, although this country’s heritage is primarily Mossi with the Mooré language widely spoken. With a low literacy rate for those over age 15, the challenges before me were for much more than the pronunciation of Ouagadougou [oh-WAH-gah-DOO-goo]. How would I help women understand the need for missions education and discipleship and equip them to begin?

Meet Our Writer, Becky Rainey

Becky Rainey

Let me introduce myself! I am Becky Rainey. My husband, Charles, and I celebrated our 40 anniversary on December 16, 2017. God blessed us with 3 children who love the Lord. Lee and Anna, our grandchildren, are just the icing on top of a wonderful family.

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Serving Him by Teaching and Encouraging

While taking a philosophy class in college, Bart Gibbs was assigned a book titled, Man’s Search for Meaning. After reading the book, he was drawn to continue seeking God’s leading to find true meaning in life. Through volunteer experiences, while visiting Burkina Faso in 1981, he “found meaning in life through serving the Lord in bringing the good news of the Kingdom of God to people in West Africa,” shares Bart. Bart and Jane Anne Gibbs met while in college at the University of Tennessee (Knoxville), at Calvary Baptist Church, and were married in 1983. They have 2 daughters and a son.

Building with Blocks

Amazon Pool

Do you ever notice when your group of Mission Friends tend to gravitate towards certain activities? My group this year seem to be drawn to the Blocks area. Every week, that is the first interest area that they go to. It is not just our boys who gravitate towards activities in Blocks. Some of the girls are in the Blocks area each week, also. Our preschoolers, who are 3s and 4s, spend a lot of time building really elaborate structures. A couple of our preschoolers concentrate so much on what they build, that sometimes the Blocks area is the only interest area in which they play in 1 session of Mission Friends. I have to make sure they learn about missions in this interest area.

Summer in Mission Friends

Preschool Summer Fun

Put some zest in Mission Friends this summer! Times at church might be more relaxed during the summer, so it’s the perfect time to do something a little different such as going outside for an activity. Keep the energy going in Mission Friends with these ideas to try throughout this summer.

  • Go outside for Group Time. Once a month, or maybe even more, take your preschoolers outside to tell the mission story and have Prayertime. I put a flannel-backed vinyl tablecloth down on the ground for my preschoolers to sit on, and this gives them a parameter for our Group Time outside.

Hot Off the Press! A Resource for All Preschool Teachers!

First Steps in Missions, vol. 24

Wait, what? Is it a resource for Mission Friends?

Definitely! And it’s also for other preschool teachers! It’s called First Steps in Missions, and the 2018–19 edition, volume 24, has just been released.

Perhaps you already know that each year we publish this supplementary book of activities to go along with the 12 missions areas that will be found in Mission Friends Leader teaching guide. Or maybe you don’t know about it—sometimes we feel like it should win the prize for Most Valuable Best Kept Secret in Mission Friends!

Meet the Martins in Las Vegas

Cynthia, Alicia, Tom Martin

In 2006, Tom and Cynthia Martin faced a difficult decision. They had been serving as International Mission Board missionaries in South America for 17 years, but needed to return to the United States because of medical issues. Cynthia says it was an intensely emotional time, and she grieved that she would no longer be on the front lines of cross-cultural ministry. “But God promised me that He wasn’t through with me,” says Cynthia.

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