Welcome to the Explorers program at Emmanuel Church in Richmond Hill, Ontario. The goal of our new program is to get the children excited about God while learning the bible, applying it to their everyday lives, and developing friendships.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Exploring in December!

The Explorers in December

“Advent: John the Baptist announces
Jesus” (Matthew 3)

Memory verse: “I baptize you with water, but one who is more powerful that I
is coming. I am not worthy to untie the thongs of his sandals. He will baptize
you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” Luke 3:16

This Advent month the Explorers (ages 5-11) are going to be learning
about the coming of Jesus through studying the story of John the
Baptist. During Advent, we not only remember the coming of Jesus at
his birth, we also focus on His coming again. We celebrate both the
coming Kingdom of God and the birth of the Messiah while we also face
the brokenness of the world that the Messiah has entered into. John’s
announcement of Jesus and his call to repentance are one of the ways we
hope to begin to teach the children the nature of this ‘advent waiting’.

Blastoff Week (December 5th):

The children will listen to the story of John the Baptist. Following this, children will work on Advent decorations for the Sunday School
Christmas tree. Many thanks to Don Ure for finding such a beautiful tree for the children to

Drama Week (December 12th):

The children will be guided through dramatic exercises that help them reflect on the meaning of the John the Baptist story.

Technology Week (December 19th):

This month, the children will have a “movie day”, complete with hot chocolate and popcorn, and will get to watch an animated version of the John the Baptist story.

December 26th and January 2nd:

we will have a break from our usual Explorers curriculum. Children can choose from a number of supervised activities: skating (on the expanded rink behind the CEC building), watching a movie or working on an art project.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Explorers in November

The Explorers in November
1 Kings 18
Memory verse: I will lift up my eyes to the hills.  Where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.Psalm 121: 1-2


This month the Explorers (ages 5-11) are going to learn about the Old Testament prophet Elijah.   Part of what we aim to do in the Explorers is teach how the Old and New Testaments are connected and how both are integral to knowing who God is.  In the case of Elijah, his works and life as a prophet foretold the coming Kingdom of God.  Healings, miracles, direct experiences of God and the conquering of evil: all of these were foretastes of the Kingdom of God that Christ brought in.  So in entering into the story of Elijah the children encounter amazing stories of God’s desires for his people and they learn more fully about the meaning of the coming of Christ. 

Blastoff Week (November 7th):            The children will listen to the stories from 1 Kings about Elijah’s life and ministry.  Following this, the younger children will work on a craft-based activity related to the story. 

Drama Week (November 14th):                  The children will be guided through dramatic exercises that help them reflect on the meaning of Elijah’s life as a prophet.  
Technology Week (November 21st):   The children will continue working with the new software,  with an added discussion time about some of the connections between the Old Testament material in the software and the New Testament life of Jesus. 

Life Application Week (November 28th):           

Several games will be designed  to challenge the children to think through the meaning of the Elijah story in their own lives. 

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Time to Sing!

The Explorers are invited to participate in the Children's Choir.  We are working towards a Christmas performance.  The choir will be meeting after the service (and a short snack downstairs) each Sunday for a half hour rehearsal.  Anyone is welcome to join in!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Giving Jar in November

The kids have brought in close to $50 for the giving jar since our last project. Two weeks ago, they agreed to use the money to fill two shoe boxes for the Operation Christmas Child Program through Samaritan's Purse. This past Sunday they split into groups to choose if they would shop for boys or girls and note what items they thought would be best to send abroad. You can find out more about Operation Christmas Child on the Samaritan's Purse website here.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Exploring in October!

The Explorers in October
“David is King”
2 Samuel
Memory verse: For God does not see us the way people see us.  They look at our outward appearance, but God looks at our heart.  1 Samuel 16:7.


This month the Explorers (ages 5-11) are going to learn about David as King.  They will be learning about what it means that David was a man “after God’s own heart”.  David made lots of mistakes and did things that God didn’t want him to do.  But he always turned back to God.  And God never turned away from David; instead He worked actively, faithfully and patiently with David his whole life.  This story is one of the most realistic, human stories of God’s faithfulness and of His desire that we love Him and serve Him with our whole heart. 

Blastoff Week (October 10th):            The children will listen to the stories of the some of the events from David’s reign.  Following this, the younger children will rotate through centers, having the option to create a craft related to kingship, work creatively in their journals (for example, draw a cartoon version of the story) or choose a coloring-based activity. 

Drama Week (October 17th):                  The children will be guided through dramatic exercises that help them reflect on the meaning of David’s kingship.  
Technology Week (October 24th):   The children will be divided by age and given the chance to play with story-specific gaming software that has been purchased.  We have two programs available that will provide different levels of challenge and ease based on the age and experience of the children. 

Life Application Week (October 31st):           

Several games will be designed (for example a Jeopardy style game) to challenge the children to think through the meaning of the David story in their own lives. 

Giving Jar Generosity!

The Giving Jar is a weekly part of the Explorers program.  Through it we want to begin to teach that central to the following Jesus is learning how to be generous, particularly to those in need.  Each week children have an opportunity to put money in the Giving Jar (which automatically tabulates the current total).  It doesn’t matter how much they give – it is far more important to cultivate a habit of generosity than to be concerned with the amount. 
Since January, the Explorers have collectively gathered $105 in the Giving Jar. As a group, they prioritized giving towards food and medicine to families in need.
So, through World Vision Canada, they have already purchased 5 fruit trees (such as banana, papaya, mango and orange), as well as enough antibiotics for 10 children and are planning towards their next “generosity project”.


The journals were designed to help children and their families learn and work with the Bible stories in a fun and creative way at home.  Journals are not a required part of Explorers, but provide a way for children of all ages to take their learning a step further if they want to.  Each journal sent home with the child has a list of “journaling ideas” inside of it, but creativity is encouraged!  The goal is that the child engage with the Bible in a way that interests them.


Passports are a fun way for kids to track, and receive modest rewards for,  their involvement in the Explorers program.  Each child has their own passport booklet that stays at church.  Each Sunday their passport can get stamped for attendance.  During each month, if they have memorized that month’s verse from the Bible, they also get a stamp.  And there is opportunity for “extra stamps” through working on their at-home journal, being involved in the choir or other 'extras' that come up.  At certain thresholds (6 stamps, 12 stamps, 18 stamps, etc.) they can receive a prize if they want to!

What is the Explorers Program?

The Explorers is a Sunday Morning Sunday School Program designed for our children to experience and learn in a multidisciplinary way about the love of God for them.  It is our conviction that God desires our children to know Him in vibrant, life-giving and constructive ways.  Our program is therefore a dynamic and creative approach to opening the Bible to the children.  It is run on a 4 week rotation which looks like this:
Blastoff Sunday: an introduction to the story of the month and a creative project interpreting the story.
Drama Sunday: using drama techniques to experience the story or elements of the story  
Technology Sunday: delving into the story through curriculum-specific gaming software and “movie Sundays”.
Life Application Sunday:a game-based Sunday where children begin to build bridges from the story to their own life and situation.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Explorers are on Facebook!

To join our Facebook group click here.

Welcome to our new blog!

Hello everyone.  Welcome to the blog for the Explorers program.  This blog will be used as a tool for parents, teachers and kids who are a part of the Explorers to share ideas, updates and interesting things that relate to our program.  
We are excited to have launched our new fall program.  This month we are exploring the friendship of David and Jonathan.  The story of David and Jonathan can be found in 1 Samuel 18 and 19.