Begin by paging through a newspaper and shaking your head.
- If I had both good news and bad news to share with you, which would you want to hear first: the good news or the bad news? Why? (Answers will vary.)
You may know someone who is always eager to spread news even if the facts are not correct—even if it is fake news. If something catastrophic happens, he or she is the first to tell the bad news, and he or she may talk about it over and over until it becomes old news. Fake news. Real news. Good news. Bad news. Old news. Current news. Where do you get your news?
- Where do you get the family news about what is going on in your relatives’ lives—good or bad? (Answers will vary but might include: Grandma, phone calls, reunions, letters, email, texts, etc.)
- Where do you get the church news about what is going on in our congregation? (Students may mention announcements in the worship service, email, newsletter, parents, etc.)
- Where do you get the community or school news to learn about the good or bad in our community and in our schools? (Answers will vary; during the school year, announcements over the PA; flyers; community newspaper; TV and radio newscasts for school closures/delays; PTA, etc.)
- Do you watch, listen to, read, or pay attention to world or national news? Why or why not? (Answers will vary; parents may put restrictions on watching the news; it may be depressing or upsetting; family may watch the news together, etc.)
According to the dictionary, news is: “a report of recent events or unknown information.” Some people get news from the newspaper, some from the radio, some from the Internet, and some from word of mouth. There are those who want to know the latest news up to the minute. Others do not care to know the news at all.
Return to paging through a newspaper. This time read some of the negative headlines out loud. Someone must have decided that noteworthy information about important events is bad. Most of this is bad news!
Whether it is world news, national news, or local news; whether it is family news, church news, or school news—there is a lot of bad news communicated. That does not mean good things are not happening, but what makes the headlines is the bad news. Even in families, church, and school there is bad news: someone lost a job, someone is ill, someone was in an accident, the sports program is being cut, the teachers are on strike, the school air-conditioning is broken.
Show the following brief clip [0:21]:
do you want the good news or the bad news?
- Do you agree that real news is bad news, and if there is no bad news there is no news at all? Why or why not? (Answers will vary.)
- Why do you think bad news is reported more than good news? (Answers will vary.)
- How does hearing bad news make you feel? (Answers will vary.)
Today we are going to discover and celebrate some really good news that is far more worthy of being reported than anything in this newspaper. It comes from the most reliable Source of all.
Kids definition of news
Looking for Steps 2, 3 & 4?
You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide. For upper elementary, middle school, and high school your Step 4 appears below. For adult, use the Step 4 in your teacher’s guide. To purchase a teacher’s guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes.
- Internet access
- Craft foam (4-inch x 12-inch strips; 1 per student)
- Permanent marker
- Hook and loop fabric fastener strips (self-adhesive; 1 per student)
- Small plastic bottles of water (1 per student)
- Optional: Craft glue; foam shapes
Before class, cut strips of craft foam in four-inch x 12-inch strips (one per student).
The man in the video clip we watched earlier must not have read the Gospels. He thought no bad news meant no news at all! The good news of Jesus as taught in the Gospels is indeed news—really good news. It is real news that never gets old.
We are going to make Good News bands for our water bottles. On a hot summer’s day, we are refreshed by a sip of cold water. When we reach for our water bottles, the bands will remind us that in a world of bad news, we are refreshed by the joy of the good news of Jesus. We can have peace knowing that no matter what is on the local or world news or no matter what is going on around us in family, church, or community, we have the best news of all.
Hand out the plastic bottles of water along with other supplies including a strip of craft foam cut to size. Have your students wrap the craft foam strip around their water bottle and, allowing an overlap of at least an inch, have them trim the craft foam strip to fit. Allow your students time to decorate the band with permanent marker (optional: provide fun foam shapes such as flowers, the sun, sunglasses, etc. also), but be sure they write GOOD NEWS in large letters somewhere on the band. Encourage them to make this band a joyful celebration of the Good News.
Have your students position one side of the self-adhesive hook and loop fabric fastener strip to the front of the far end of the band. Show them how to position the opposite side of the fastener to the back of the other end of the craft foam strip and press it into place. Encourage your students to reuse this bottle by refilling it with water when empty, but they may also remove the craft foam label and place it on a similar-sized water bottle if desired.
While the students are working, you may want to play the following [2:07]:
Good news Jesus was born – lyrics
- How can focusing on the good news of Jesus change the way you live this week? (Answers will vary but might include: feel relief, feel freedom, have a more positive attitude, fear less, not get bogged down by bad news, share the Gospel with others, etc.)
- How can you share the good news of Jesus with others this week? (Answers will vary. Suggest that they make another water bottle with John 3:16 on it and give it to someone who needs to know about Jesus’ love [if time and supplies permit, have them create another one now].)
Close in a prayer thanking God for the good news of Jesus and asking for help to celebrate and share the good news of Jesus rather than dwelling on the world’s bad news.
(For our adult customers: we are not affiliated with and do not endorse any website or any other media listed on these pages. At the time of writing, our editors carefully review the referenced material and non-references web page content. However, due to the nature of the Internet, non-cited content on the website [including pop-ups, links, and ads] changes frequently and is beyond our control. Please review carefully before showing links in the classroom.)
(For our upper elementary, middle school, and high school customers: David C Cook is not affiliated with and does not endorse any website or any other media listed on these pages. At the time of writing, David C Cook editors carefully review the referenced material and non-referenced web page content. However, due to the nature of the Internet, non-cited content on the website [including pop-ups, links, and ads] changes frequently and is beyond our control. Please review carefully before shoeing links in the classroom.)