03 March 2014

lessons learned (Lent)

Yesterday it struck me that the pastor and I hadn't discussed which of us might provide a children's sermon, if needed, for our service that afternoon. Inspired by Sheila's good reports of The Mystery of Easter, I rushed a cross puzzle into production.

Before I began, I read the script (from The Complete Guide to Godly Play, Vol. 4) onto a recording which I then listened to as I worked. Once I'd finished, I listened once or twice more while I physically acted out the lesson, moving the pieces around, and finally tried it without the recording, speaking the script myself. Way back in training we tried that, having one person read the script while another moved the pieces, but I'd never tried using a recording of myself for practice before!

The materials were far from ideal. I cut a cross out of cardboard packing material from our recycling pile. Having no paint to hand, I used magazine clippings of purple on one side, and white felt on the other.

Lessons learned? I liked this method of practicing the script. But I would not use felt as a covering for this cross again. You can see the white puffing out from underneath even when the purple sides are turned up. Moreover, it prevented the pieces from slotting together as nicely as I'd have liked them to.

In the end, we had no children at church and I didn't present the lesson. But you know what? For one-time use, in a pinch, I was much happier to have far-less-than-perfect materials than not to have had any at all. I enjoyed this little project as a Sunday task, and I felt good having something to offer children if any had come along.

I've heard it said, "Perfect" is the enemy of "Done". Godly Play materials should always be made with love, as beautifully as you can. Really, they should be as good in quality as the objects you use for liturgical purposes for adults (as nice as your chalice or communion trays, as nice as the Bible on your lectern). But don't let that ideal prevent you from doing the best you can.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad that you gave this story a chance! And I hope you'll get to tell it on another Sunday. I love what you said about the materials being well made, "but don't let that ideal prevent you from doing the best you can". That totally reflects the spirit of GP and Montessori.


Thanks for conversing with me about Godly Play®! I do moderate some comments for the sake of the children I write about. Please be polite: to quote the Velveteen Rabbi, Whatever you're going to say in response to my posts, consider whether it's the sort of thing you would say to your host or their children if you'd been invited to someone's home for tea. If it isn't, then please don't say it here.

If you're new to commenting on blogs, I recommend that you "Comment as" Name/URL. You can use your real first name or a nickname. URL is the address of a website that you want to be linked with your name - feel free to leave it blank. Before your comment is accepted, you have to pass a spam filter. After clicking on 'post comment' or 'preview', just type in the sequence of letters you will then see (or click on the wheelchair for a recording of characters to type). Thanks for reading and commenting!