The students are back, the lesson plans are ready for a new quarter, and—wait—National Lutheran Schools Week is just around the corner! As you gear up for a week of celebrating the blessing of Lutheran schools, here are a few simple ways to make those days special without adding too much time for preparation.
1. Bible Word Wall
One of the blessings of a Lutheran school is that God’s Word is everywhere! Make that visibly apparent by giving each of your students a piece of construction paper. Encourage students to copy down their favorite Bible verse (provide a list of options for students who would like ideas). Stagger the pages like bricks and build a colorful “Bible Word Wall” in the hallway outside your classroom. Ask students to write their names on their “block” so that parents can see what Bible verse their child chose to post.
2. Pieces of the Puzzle
The emphasis for the 2016 National Lutheran Schools Week for The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is “Life Together in Christ.” Show this unity of individuals by highlighting each student and uniting them together. Take a few poster boards and cut them into as many puzzles pieces as you will need for your students, plus two more. Hand out a piece to each student. Ask them to draw a self-portrait, write their first name, and mention something they like to do. Make one puzzle piece for yourself too, and write the name of Jesus on the last piece. If you have time and space, make this an activity where students all take part in placing their piece in the puzzle! When all pieces are completed, display the assembled puzzle for families to see.
3. A Show of Hands
Another way to emphasize “Life Together in Christ” is to have students trace their hands and write their names in the middle. Display the hands so that they are holding hands, arranged in a heart, or even forming a paper chain by connecting thumbs and index fingers together. Remind students that they are each special children of God and that they work together as one family.
4. Personal Thanks
This is often a week when parents thank teachers for their hard work—and rightly so! But we all know that parents often sacrifice a great deal to be able to send their kids to a Lutheran school. Create a card template. On the front cover, write “Thank you for supporting my school!” On the inside, write “I love my school because” somewhere at the top. Let students of all ages finish their own card. Ask students to take the cards home, or mail the cards to parents with other school news. Parents will appreciate knowing that their children are thankful for their school and for the hard work it takes to support it.
5. Acts of Service
Teachers and parents and students all make up an important team to support Lutheran schools, but let’s not forget all the support staff and volunteers that make learning possible! Ask a few of these people (librarian, office administrator, cook, custodian, maintenance worker) if there are ways the students could serve them. Dedicate an hour during the week to divide students in helping each of these individuals. It’s another way to celebrate “Life Together in Christ”!
With so many Lutheran schools celebrating, the traditions and opportunities are endless. If you have a great tradition, share it in the comments section! In all you do, celebrate that “God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:9).