Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Party

Last Sunday, December 18th, we had a Christmas party for English class. The previous class, I told the kids that there was going to be a surprise & I guess they told their friends because instead of the usual 8-10 kids, there were 16!

We normally have class on Saturday, but many of the kids were going on a field trip during the week & wouldn't be able to come on Saturday. They asked if we could change the day because they wanted to come. That made me feel like I'm doing a little something right! So, we set class time for 4:00pm on Sunday.

When we got home from church a little after 1:00pm, all of the kids were sitting outside already! So, I quickly set up everything & we started class around 1:20. I began by telling the kids we were going to learn about a holiday that is celebrated in America & many other places. (There are a few decorations here, so I know that some people know a little about Christmas, but not much.)

When we start with new material, I always start with vocabulary words. So, for this week's new words, I printed out the shapes of the words & the kids colored them in & wrote each word. I also made a power point slide show with real-life pictures of each word. I think they like this way of learning & it helps them to remember each word.

All 16 kids getting ready to learn about Christmas

Vocabulary shapes worksheet

After the kids learned the new words, I had them decorate a little Christmas tree. Everything that we used was a vocabulary word, so the first person that yelled the correct word helped me put that item on the tree. Then, they each got an ornament to hang. They really enjoyed that!

The finished tree!
After decorating the tree, the kids played Christmas Bingo. A few had played before, but most had not, so it took a bit of time to explain it in a way they would understand. They had a good time playing & shouting out "BINGO"!

After Bingo, we moved to the outdoor classroom for a snack & story. They had butter cookies, no-bake cookies, & chocolate milk. I had explained to them that some of the words that we had learned earlier would be in the story. I also explained that while some of the characters we learned about earlier were made up in the stories that were written about them, the story that I was going to tell them was a true story, something that really happened. I read to them a kids' version of the Christmas story out of Matthew & Luke. While I read, Becky translated, & Johnny held up pictures for each part of the story. It didn't start out too well as the kids were really excited about the snack & didn't want to stop talking & pay attention, but after a few minutes they quieted down & were really paying attention. After I finished reading, I explained to them that this is the reason I celebrate Christmas.

Kids listening to the Christmas story
After reading the story, I passed out gifts to all of the kids. They were really excited! The looks on their faces were priceless! They stayed until around 5:30 playing with their gifts with each other.

Waiting in line to get another snack - loti, an Indian pastry
Overall, I think the kids had a great time! This was the first time that I really introduced Jesus & any part of the gospel to them. Most of them have never heard of Him, so it was a great opportunity to share some of my culture while at the same time introducing them to the Savior of the world as a baby!

As I was watching the kids play, I was overwhelmed with love for each one of them. It breaks my heart to know that they had never had an opportunity to know of Christ & His love for them. I am so humbled & immensely grateful that He chose to use me to reach these kids for Him! As they left one-by-one, I silently prayed for each child that they would personally come to know Him & grow in Him. I can plant the seed, but only God working in them will bring about the harvest.

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas!

Serving Him,

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