Open The Book is an exciting way of telling Bible stories to primary school children every week in the context of whole school Collective Worship. A team of 6 or 7 volunteer storytellers from St Mary’s church goes into Frittenden school every Thursday to act out a Bible story. We take simple props and get dressed up in simple costumes, most of them home-made using the creative gifts and skills of our team with whatever resources are available.
We follow the programme created by Open The Book, a project which began with a group of volunteers in Bedford almost 20 years ago and is now a national charity under the umbrella of Bible Society, enjoying huge success up and down the whole country and beyond. It uses the Lion Storyteller Bible by Bob Hartman as the main source for all the stories which are spread over a three year “syllabus”. It also provides a handbook which gives, for each story, an introduction, suggestions for making the story come alive, a time for reflection and a simple prayer to which the children are invited to respond “Amen” if they wish. We always conclude with a song/hymn which has a meaningful link with the story.
It’s a simple idea but we never cease to be amazed at how well it works. The children love it, the staff thoroughly enjoy it and our team rises to all the many challenges somehow! Watching the children’s faces as the story unfolds before their eyes is a delight! They don’t miss a thing and are keen to give interesting answers to any questions posed, showing understanding and enthusiasm. We usually involve children in the dressing up and acting out; they are always queuing up to take part! How often have we heard the children tell us that it’s their favourite assembly and they can’t wait for next week.
God is at work in this important ministry of the church. We meet regularly with almost 100 children and school staff on Thursday mornings to bring them stories of God’s people from God’s Book in a very memorable way!
If you would like to be involved, please contact Helen Stansfeld, 01580 852185.