How to Tell Children Stories using “Godly Play®” Method

Saturday, 10 November 2012 • 9am to 5pm  (a community project by BEST)

David Pritchard

Participants can experience key elements of the Godly Play approach (including one or two stories), see a carefully laid out children’s sacred space and explore many of the resources. The group size is small, so ideal for asking all your questions. You can book as an individual or bring your group.

Workshop for parents, children’s or youth workers, school teachers, sunday school teachers, pastors, and anyone who loves children .…

Where : Bangsar Lutheran Church, 23, Jalan Abdullah, off Jalan Bangsar, KLSaturday 10 November 2012 9 am – 5 pm

Facilitator: Mr. David Pritchard (Children’s Ministry Coordinator with Scripture Union Spain & certified Godly Play teacher trainer)

Fees: RM60 per person, Group of 3 persons and above RM40 each. (payment on registration) • Includes registration, handouts, tea & lunch meal.

Other info: Participants should wear comfortable clothing and be prepared to sit on the floor during sessions… although chairs will be provided for those you may have difficulties with this!

Organized by: Breakthru Enrichment Station (a community project)
and supported by: Bangsar Lutheran Church. Courses have been enriched by a broad mix of Christian denominations
map: http://bangsarlutheran.org/Contact/

Reservation: Due to lunch preparation for the workshop, we require prior booking • Email/SMS or call Cheng Yu Chiet yuchiet@hotmail.com / mobile phone 019-2288869 or 012-3292681.

What is Godly Play® Method?

Godly Play is a creative and imaginative approach of story telling. It can be used in a variety of settings churches, schools, hospitals, care homes for the elderly

  • Godly Play is based on long established, tried and tested approaches
  • Godly Play uses symbols and objects as well as words
  • Godly Play values process, openness and discovery
  • Godly Play encourages people to make meaning for themselves

A Godly Play® session includes a time to:-

  • get ready
  • tell a story using objects and artefacts
  • explore the story more with open questions and discussion
  • respond with a free choice using  a variety of materials – art… silence… play…writing…
  • enjoy a simple feast and sharing

Imagine someone who….

  • creates a space to think big
  • learns as well as teaches
  • doesn’t always know the answer
  • builds a community
  • enables children to make connections
  • is open to the unexpected
  • slows down the pace
  • provides the tools then stands back

Imagine an approach to Christian nurture and education that

  • promotes knowledge, skills empathy, spiritual growth
  • develops the needs of the whole child
  • provides a multi-sensory approach  to learning
  • develops language and communication skills
  • develops thinking skills
  • provides depth and reflection in every session

Godly Play® can help you see and do things differently


Comments from Training Sessions

“It was a safe comfortable atmosphere in which to explore”

“We learned so much from each other”

“Excellent material and method conveyed by resourceful experienced trainers in a ‘hands on’ experiential manner”

“There was a really good balance between informality and direction”

“It was great fun”

Teaching with language

As Godly Play has been developing over many years (since the 1970s), it has been possible to discern how particular forms of words are best able to help tell the essence of each story presentation. There are well-tested scripts for stories told in Godly Play style that say only what has to be said, and do so in a way that children seem to absorb the language into their own ‘play’ and in the case of older children, into their spoken and written prayer. The emphasis is on simplicity, getting to the essence of the story rather than ‘exciting’ elaboration.

Teaching with people and with respect

In Godly Play there are usually 2 (but no more) adults present. Each has a carefully distinguished role. The ‘story-teller’ leads group time, tells story and focuses on the presentation of God’s word – and as such is more ‘spiritually’ engaged. The ‘door-person’ helps in more practical ways like an usher or deacon assistant. The door-person also may sit to one side with any child who is finding it really hard to focus in the group – i.e. deals with the behavior issues in a way that tries not to disrupt the rest of the group wherever possible.

A key element in the Storyteller’s role is to lead the ‘wondering’ period in response to the story or presentation. Key wondering questions are:

I wonder what you like best about this story
I wonder which is the most important part?
I wonder where you are in this story?
I wonder if there is any part we could leave out, and still have all the story we need?

Godly Play® in Schools

The National Society instigated a project, funded by St Christopher’s Trust, to enable teachers from a group of community and church primary schools to explore the Godly Play approach through controlled, classroom based research. This project, along with other training opportunities across the UK has led to a surge of interest in the use of Godly Play in schools and early years settings.

Godly Play at School 2_thumb[4]Teachers who are using Godly Play in the classroom have found that the approach offers them alternative ways of approaching religious education and spiritual development and challenges long held views about the process
of teaching and learning. Godly Play in schools challenges the ‘empty vessel’ model of education. The teacher must be prepared to learn with the children as well as teach them.

Godly Play at School 1_thumb[1]The teacher must be open to the unexpected . In today’s classroom there is a climate of pace and rigour. The Godly Play approach slows down the pace of delivery, but this doesn’t mean that the rate of learning is slow. In today’s world, when so much of a child’s time and how they use it is prescribed, the time in a Godly Play session, set aside for reflection and response, creates a safe space where children can explore their ideas more deeply and make meaning for themselves. It allows them to think ‘big’ .In the current educational climate with its emphasis on the development of social and emotional aspects of learning, the Godly Play approach enables teachers to ‘build a community’ within the classroom, a community where children are free to wonder, explore possibilities and learn more about themselves in relation to others.

Rosemary Privett
Accredited Godly Play teacher

Register up here:
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