As you teach Mission Friends, you will notice several different phrases that are frequently used in the suggestions in Mission Friends Leader. Let’s unpack the meaning of these phrases.
Some activities begin with the words, “In advance.” When you see this phrase, you will know there are things to do before the session to prepare for the activity. Because we suggest activities in which the preschooler does most of the work, preparation for activities is minimal. It may be that the leader needs to cut a shape from paper, prepare an item from the Mission Friends Leader Kit, or search for a picture online. The instructions “In advance” will help you prepare for the activity.
“Post the allergy alert chart”
This is important to keep preschoolers healthy and safe. The allergy alert chart should be posted where parents can see it at the beginning of the session. Post the allergy alert chart when preschoolers will taste or drink a food item, when nature items are used in the classroom, or when there are any animals in the classroom.
An allergy alert chart is available as a free download at wmu.com/preschool. Print the chart and laminate it to make it reusable. For each session, write on the chart what preschoolers will taste, touch, or smell. Provide a dry erase marker for parents to write the child’s name if he or she is allergic to any of the items.
A caution is placed on any activities that require close supervision for safety purposes. Any time water is used in an activity, a leader must closely supervise preschoolers at all times. When there are items that preschoolers could put in their ears, nose, or mouth, a caution is needed to closely watch and supervise. A caution is included when hats, sunglasses, or goggles are suggested, in order to avoid the sharing of germs.
“Open the Bible and read”
Using Bible thoughts in Mission Friends is so important as preschoolers hear these said aloud. Opening the Bible to the reference and reading the Bible thought helps preschoolers make the connection that the words come from the Bible. Preschoolers come to know that these are not simply nice things the teacher says, but words from the Bible. Use the Bible during activities and Group Time as you open the Bible to say Bible thoughts in Mission Friends.
by Joye Smith, WMU Preschool Ministry Consultant