Read an Excerpt
"Last week, we brought in a gospel illusionist. The week before, our drama team did a puppet production for the entire hour. Next week, I'm hiring a clown and renting a cotton candy maker. Every week, I have to do more and more to keep the kids' attention. I just can't compete with Hollywood."
We are competing for the hearts and minds of our children. So much in this world calls for and captures their attention. Unfortunately, many of the messages behind the production and special effects do not honor God or edify the souls of our kids.
We can work ourselves to death to create a Christian production every Sunday that will keep kids interested. Or...we can use the very thing that captures their attention to teach them the most important lessons and to help children grow in their faith. Instead of competing with Hollywood, we can use it as a tool to advance the kingdom of God.
Have you ever noticed how just turning on the television commands the attention of the children? Even when they're watching snow as you rewind the movie, children watch in an almost hypnotic state. What's even more amazing is that they remember what they see. Ask a child about his or her favorite movie, and you'll hear the entire plot, the lessons learned, and many of the lines word for word.
What an opportunity we have! If the television creates a captive audience, why not help that audience learn about Jesus? Movie Clips for Kids offers one hundred clips you can use to teach at least fifty different Bible stories to your kids. And every clip offers an exciting active learning experience. That way, you don't have to go from a captivating movie clip to a boringlecture. Instead, you can move from an interesting clip straight to a fun activity that reinforces your point.
Are you looking for something to supplement your Sunday school lesson and give some extra pizzazz? Go to the Table of Contents to find just about every major Bible story you'll teach this year. Maybe you need some help teaching children about an important topic? Check out the topical index in the back of the book. Find your topic, grab your movie, and you're ready to go!
The production has already been done for you with multimillion dollar budgets. You can captivate and interest children without spending a bundle or burning out your staff. So pop the popcorn, load the VCR, and get ready to change the world for Christ!
Oh yeah...a couple of important things before you begin. For the most part, federal copyright laws do not allow you to use videos (even ones you own) for any other purpose other than home viewing. Though some exceptions allow for the use of short segments of copyrighted material for educational purposes, it's best to be on the safe side. Your church can obtain a license form the Motion Picture Licensing Corporation for a small fee that covers video use for the whole church. Just visit www.mplc.com or call 1-800-462-8855 for more information.
We've also asked our authors to work hard to keep the video segments wholesome and appropriate for children's ministry. You'll notice that most of the clips are rated G and a few are PG. But that doesn't guarantee that you or someone in your church won't find the clip offensive. Make sure you watch the clip before you show it to the children in your ministry.
You also have to remember that children may see your showing of the clip as an endorsement of the whole movie. While the clip may be perfectly innocent, a child may go home excitedly and say, "Guess what we watched at church today?" The parents may rent the movie and call you the next day saying, "I can't believe you let my child watch that movie! Do you know what happens in the movie? Our pastor is going to hear about this!" The parent may be overreacting. The parent may have a good point. Either way, parents have a right to protect their children. So you may want to let parents know that you're planning on using movie clips, how you'll use them, and why you're using them before you begin. It seems as if just about every high-budget production has something in it that someone may object to, so be sensitive. Just because you think the movie is OK doesn't mean parents will. We've included a letter and movie announcement on pages 7-8 that you can use to communicate with parents. You can photocopy the pages and send them out or adjust them to meet your needs.
I think that covers the basics. Now sit back and enjoy the show!