Tonight was a fun night in religion class. Well, at least I enjoyed myself...hee hee. After a whirl wind at circle time discussing and reviewing the season of Advent and the beginning of the Liturgical year, I busted out into song. That's right, I thought it was necessary to sing "This little light of mine." Let me just say that I can't carry a tune in a bucket and my students all cheer when I sing. I LOVE MY STUDENTS!! We talked about not hiding your light and sharing it with others.
Next, after the great singing experience, I started by drawing on the board. Have I ever mentioned that I'm not an artist, at all. Well, I drew rectangles and circles and other various objects. (basically road signs...I love using these as illustrations) Then, I used these objects to spark the discussion about laws of the land and God's laws. We talked about following the laws and the reasons you should do it. Of course, being the straightforward person that I am, there are never any giggles in my classroom...EVER! So, I always discuss the meanings of the stop lights...you know how some people think that yellow means "go faster" or "speed up." That always makes them laugh. Oh, and then kids totally throw their parents under the bus....hee hee. (usually right after I throw my husband there)
So, after we this we began to go over the commandments. We went over my friend Nikki's way of remembering the commandments with a few tweaks for our religious ed books. We also discussed confession, mortal sins, venial sins, etc. (It was a "meaty" class.)
For those of you who don't check out my friends blog, here are some ways to remember the commandments. (btw: You can view her great blog anytime by clicking on the right over there...Banana, Bear, and Bophie.)
1. Hold up one finger- God should be first-- No other gods before him.
2. Hold up two fingers- This forms a V for vain-- Don't use the Lord's name in vain.
3. Hold up three fingers- This forms a W for worship-- Sundays are for worship and rest.
4. Use four fingers to salute- Honor your Father and Mother.
5. Use five fingers to make a fist- Don't kill.
6. Use three fingers on each hand to form a heart- Don't commit adultery.
7. Hold up two fingers on one hand, use all five fingers on the other to grab the two fingers- Don't steal.
8. Use four fingers on each hand to form binoculars over your eyes- Don't bear false witness. This also forms the number 8 when you take them off your eyes and turn them sideways.
9. Hold up the ring finger (other nine are down)- Don't covet neighbor's wife.
10. Use all ten fingers to cover your eyes- Don't covet neighbor's goods.
In our religious education book, there was a nice (although very brief) examination of conscience for the kids. We reviewed that and I had them write down the "hints" or "key words" to remember the commandments in their books beside the examination. We talked about Moses and how the people felt about the laws when he came down from the mountain.
Then we had a big discussion about mistakes vs. sins. I was a bit shocked by the number of students that had a hard time telling the difference when we talked about these. A great many of them thought that no matter what...it was a sin. I explained it like this...if I leave a store and my son has put a toy in my pocket and I didn't know it then yes, I have stolen something. However, I'm not sinning as long as when I realize it...I return it. :) That got them sitting up in their chairs.
They were just absolutely wonderful tonight!!
As always, I feel as though I can't do enough and there is just SO much to teach them. Oh, and I really need to go to confession now...lol. Isn't it funny how a child's review of the commandments and an examination of conscience will really hit home like that?