Have you ever taught a lesson and fearfully realized that there are still 30 minutes left in the class, and you have nothing else planned to do? Or, planned an activity that just did not work with your preschoolers and went terribly, awfully wrong? Most teachers have been there once or twice, and it isn’t a great feeling!
Planning and being prepared with your materials are essential for a successful Mission Friends session. We want to teach preschoolers about missionaries, God’s love, and His plan for their lives. Teaching preschoolers about missionaries can have a lifelong impact on them. You will be planting seeds about our Savior in the lives of these precious little ones, and who knows, you may be teaching a future missionary about the love that God has for them and the whole world!
Planning lessons can be overwhelming, but with a little bit of organization, it doesn’t have to be. By following one of these steps five days a week for five minutes each day, leaders will be ready to teach Mission Friends.
Day 1: Read the Meet the Missionaries information for the month and pray for missionary requests. This information is found in your Mission Friends Leader magazine. Learning about and praying for missionaries will help prepare your heart and mind for the week ahead. It will also help you know what to focus on in each session.
Day 2: Read the session activity suggestions for your age group and the Group Time page, which are also found in your Mission Friends Leader magazine. Consider what will work best for your specific group of preschoolers.
Day 3: Choose and adjust the activities you will use with your Mission Friends. Consider the abilities and interests of the preschoolers in your class. Think about the time required for each activity and plan for the right amount of time. Make a list of the materials you will need for the session.
Day 4: Gather the materials you will need for your chosen activities and group time. You may need to request materials from your preschool resources room, visit a library, or go to the store to get necessary items.
Day 5: Review the activities you have chosen and organize materials in the order you will need them. This will smooth transitions between activities and group time. Practice telling the mission story. If you are reading the story, practice reading it in a way that will interest preschoolers. Be familiar with suggested questions and jot down any other questions that come to mind in order to deepen preschoolers’ connections to and understanding of the missionaries and God’s love. Preschoolers understand more if they have a personal connection to what they are learning.
By following this easy plan, you will have an organized way to prepare for Mission Friends that won’t take a lot of time. Before you know it, you will have a room full of preschoolers in love with missions and ready to do their part to change the world!