Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What Will the Coming Months Hold for About the Children's Department?

As you know, the month of January I focused on VBS with reviews, side-by-side comparison charts and posts covering all things VBS - it has been a busy month! So, what will the coming months hold for About the Children's Department? Well, all of February I'll be focusing on family ministry with posts about family ministry, how to evaluate your family ministry, begin a family ministry and how to make a lasting impact on families in your church and community. I'll review resources and have some guest posts all about how to equip, support and encourage parents and build families! Please join in the conversation all month long!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Put Feet to Their Faith With Samaritan Purse's Children's Heart Project!

I am delighted to share a ministry opportunity with you . . . the Children's Heart Project from Samaritan's Purse. I could write about this project to explain it, but Samaritan's Purse does a much better job, so I'll share what they say and one of their stories with you.


"Since 1997, the Children's Heart Project (CHP) has arranged life-saving operations for more than 800 children from Bosnia, Kosovo, Honduras, Uganda, Mongolia, and Bolivia. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

How Did I Determine Which VBS Is My Top Pick for 2012?

I reviewed more than a dozen VBS kits this year and am very happy to say I found all of them to be Biblically sound resources with well developed themes and engaging settings! Regardless of which kits you select to utilize in your ministry, you can be confident of finding quality resources and you will be happy with your selections. I want to give you an idea of how I made my selections for this year's Top Ten VBS resources. I'm not a VBS publisher and I'm not a bookstore; I'm a children's ministry person so when I evaluate curriculum I look for the "tools" a curriculum provides which will help me equip my volunteers to most effectively communicate God's Word in a way children will remember and understand so they will be able to live it in their everyday lives!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

In the Coming Week . . . VBS, Family Ministry and More . . .

For the past month I've been focusing on VBS for 2012 . . . it has been a busy month with fourteen VBS kit reviews, two side-by-side comparison charts, give-aways and much more. Thank you for reading my VBS posts this month and a special thank-you to everyone who "shared" About the Children's Department with the people you know! I most sincerely appreciate it!

I Have a Winner in My Adventures on Promise Island VBS Kit Give-Away!

I'm happy to announce Dan Haggard is the winner in my Adventures on Promise Island VBS kit give-away! (you will find the review at this link) Thank you Dan for reading and sharing About the Children's Department (please message me your address so I can send it to you) and thank you Standard Publishing for sending a kit for me to review and give away!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Don't Forget I'm Giving Away an Adventures on Promise Island VBS Kit Tomorrow!

Tomorrow, January 27th, I'm giving away one Adventures on Promise Island basic kit from Standard Publishing! Adventures on Promise Island is my Top Pick for VBS 2012 and is a tremendous resource for you to use in your ministry. So, how can you get in the drawing for this give-away? If you "share" any of posts from today, you'll receive an entry in this special give-away each time you "share" - which will be tomorrow, January 28th! (please comment, or email to let me know each time you share this post so I can be sure to give you all your entries!) This is all there is to it! Thank you for reading my blog and for sharing it with the people you know!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Don't Forget I'm Giving Away an Adventures on Promise Island VBS Kit!

This Saturday, January 27th, I'm giving away one Adventures on Promise Island basic kit from Standard Publishing! Adventures on Promise Island is my Top Pick for VBS 2012 and is a tremendous resource for you to use in your ministry. So, how can you get in the drawing for this give-away? If you "share" this post between today and January 27th, you'll receive an entry in this special give-away each time you "share" - which will be on January 28th! (please comment, or email to let me know each time you share this post so I can be sure to give you all your entries!) This is all there is to it! Thank you for reading my blog and for sharing it with the people you know!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

I'm Giving Away One Vineyard Worship, I Love Your Presence!


Please take a moment to check my other blog, grandma's cookie jar, because I'm giving away one Vineyard Worship,  I Love Your Presence CD download! Follow the link to find my review and all the info on the give-away!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Free Resource for Parents and Grandparents . . .

You may or may not realize I also write another blog . . . grandma's cookie jar. This blog's goal is to be a resource which, "just as grandma's cookie jar should always be full of good things, this blog will be full of good ideas, information, activities and reviews of things to help grandma . . . and grandpa, mom and dad too . . . pass on a heritage of faith to the children in their lives!"

VBS 2012 Give-away - Adventures on Promise Island VBS Kit!

I'm delighted to announce I have one Adventures on Promise Island basic kit from Standard Publishing for give-away! Adventures on Promise Island is my Top Pick for VBS 2012 and is a tremendous resource for you to use in your ministry. So, how can you get in the drawing for this give-away? If you "share" this post between today and January 27th, you'll receive an entry in this special give-away each time you "share" - which will be on January 28th! (please comment, or email to let me know each time you share this post so I can be sure to give you all your entries!) This is all there is to it! Thank you for reading my blog and for sharing it with the people you know!

VBS 2012 - Zapped, by Orange . . . Review Is Coming . . .

So far this year I've reviewed 14 VBS resources . . . I have one review remaining - Zapped from Orange. As soon as it arrives, I'll be reviewing it and adding it to my 2012 VBS reviews and side-by-side comparison chart, so please stay tuned!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Put Feet to Their Faith - Help Your Children Stand for Life!

Today is the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade - the supreme court decision which legalized abortion in the United States of America. With all the talk about the "rights of the mother" and "freedom of choice" talk about "responsibilities" and the right to "life" can be pushed to the side. Please take a moment to watch this video about a little girl who weighed only one pound when she was born - she was the size of a dollar bill! The doctors thought this little girl had a fatal chromosomal abnormality which caused this little girl to stop growing; her mother, at 25 weeks, spent 24 days in the hospital on bed rest. When Kaylan was born, tests confirmed she did NOT have the chromosomal abnormality! She spent 120 days in the NICU, but then she went home!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

I Have Four Winners in My VBS 2012 Give-Aways!

I'm delighted to announce Tracy Gulledge Stevens is the winner of a Go Fish Praise VBS kit, Kathy Walters Langford won Cokesbury's Operation Overboard VBS kit, Trona A. Mays won Answers in Genesis' IncrediWorld Amazement Park VBS kit and Nita Carter won NextGen4Christ's Rock the World VBS kit! (Please message me your addresses so I can have these sent to you!) Thank you Tracy, Kathy, Trona and Nita for reading About the Children's Department and thank you Go Fish, Cokesbury, Answers in Genesis and NextGen4Christ for your generosity in making these kits available for review and for give-away!


Friday, January 20, 2012

VBS 2012 . . . Four VBS Kit Give-Aways and One More Review . . .

Well . . . I've reviewed 14 VBS resources so far this year and have one more to go . . . Zapped from Orange. As soon as it arrives I'll post the review and add it to the side-by-side comparison chart. Tomorrow I'll post my third Dollars and Cents of VBS and Monday I'll post the additional VBS resources to my side-by-side comparison chart. In addition, tomorrow I'll be drawing four names for the four VBS kits I'm giving away - Praise from Go Fish, IncrediWorld Amazement Park from Answers in Genesis, Rock the World from NextGen4Christ and Operation Overboard from Cokesbury, so please be sure to check back tomorrow to see who wins these VBS resources!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Go Fish and Denver and the Mile High Orchestra - All of My Heart!

It can be tremendously difficult to find music with a solid message and tune which will get kids really singing . . . that is unless you take a good look at the music from Go Fish and Denver and the Mile High Orchestra! Their music is flat out, amazing! The messages are solid and the tunes combine harmony and "pep" so kids not only sing the songs, but get up and dance as well! These are songs which most importantly, communicate a solid message about God's love, grace, forgiveness and the joy knowing Him brings to our lives! Check this song out from the Go Fish VBS, Praise - All Of My Heart . . . 

VBS 2012 - Sonlight Express - Jesus and Me - Bogard Press

If you are looking for a very traditional VBS with a strong focus on evangelism, be sure to check out Sonlight Express from Bogard Press.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

VBS 2012 Give-Away - Four VBS Kits . . .

There are only three days until my big VBS Kit give-away! Due to the generosity of Go Fish, Answers in Genesis, NextGen4Christ and Cokesbury, I have four VBS kits to give away. You will be able to find my reviews of Praise, IncrediWorld Amazement Park, Rock the World and Operation Overboard at the links provided - please take a moment to check these kits out and think about how you might utilize them in your ministry. Certainly VBS would be one option, but think also about Summer Sunday School, Mid-week ministries and special events throughout the year for children and families as VBS can be an excellent resource for all these opportunities!

VBS 2012 - Olympion from VBS Reachout Adventures


VBS Reachout Adventures offers their Olympion VBS this year with a strong focus on memorization.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Please Check out CMBuzz for Additional VBS Reviews and Ratings!

CM Writers Children\s Ministry YouthI'm honored to write for CM Buzz and all month long while I've been posting VBS reviews here on About the Children's Department, I've also been writing a shorter
review for each VBS kit and included a 5-star rating. So, please take a moment to check out CM Buzz for more VBS info! And while you're there . . . check out the  other great children's ministry info you'll find there!

VBS 2012 - Go Big! from Cook

Go Big! VBS is a new downloadable resource from Cook which is only available in a bundled package this year with their Tru Unlimited and combo Unlimited Memberships. It will be widely available next year for any church to purchase separate from Tru. I'd personally love to see churches use this resource in June and then towards the end of July or in August hold their regular VBS - what a great way to get into your communities and then pull the children and families you contacted in the communities back to your church! Working along with a VBS this could be an amazing outreach!

Monday, January 16, 2012

VBS Give-Away - Operation Overboard VBS Kit from Cokesbury - and Three More Kits!

I'm happy to announce since Cokesbury sent me two of their VBS kits, I'm giving one away! This Saturday, January 14th, I'll have a drawing and four people will each win one VBS kit! I'm giving away Operation Overboard, Praise from Go Fish, IncrediWorld Amazement Park from Answers in Genesis and Rock the World from NextGen4Christ! Thank you for reading my blog and thank you to these generous publishers for making their kits available for me to give away!

VBS 2012 - Operation Overboard by Cokesbury

Cokesbury 2012 Overboard VBSCokesbury did not get their kit to me in time for me to consider it for my Top 

Ten - they did a wonderful job with Operation Overboard - it is well worth taking a good look at it to see if it might be a good "fit" for your ministry -

A Look Ahead at What I'll be Talking About In the Month of February . . .

I've been talking all this month about VBS - and will continue to do so throughout the remainder of this month, but what will I be focusing on for the month of February? Well . . . I think all of February will be focused on equipping parents. What do we do as the church to equip and encourage parents? How do we help them know what to do in the areas of discipline, spiritual training/leading and as far as how to nurture their children? Do we have one "parent meeting" and then leave them to figure it out on their own or do we have an intentional and focused plan which we are serious about implementing so the parents in our ministries have on-going help, support and training to help them be the parents they need to be?


Please plan to join me all throughout February as we consider these important questions!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Put Feet to Their Faith with a Project to Help Children Value Life

I recently read the following on a friend's facebook page . . . "More than 24 years ago, Pam and her husband Bob were serving as missionaries to the Philippines and praying for a fifth child. Pam contracted amoebic dysentery, an infection of the intestine caused by a parasite found in contaminated food or drink. She went into a coma and was treated with strong antibiotics before they discovered she was pregnant.

Doctors urged her to abort the baby for her own safety and told her the medicines had caused irreversible damage to her baby. She refused the abortion and cited her Christian faith as the reason for her hope her son would be born without the devastating disabilities physicians predicted. Pam said the doctors didn't think of the baby as a life, they thought of the baby as a mass of fetal tissue.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

VBS 2012 - the Dollars & Cents of VBS . . . Part 2

As I talked about last week the realities of the Dollars and Cents of VBS can impact if a church is able to go ahead with VBS for summer 2012 as the Dollar and Cents of it all can come into play as you determine which resources you will use. In this economy with so many people out of work our churches are struggling to meet their budget. VBS can be expensive and yet it is a very important - and in many cases the only - outreach all year for many churches.

Today I'm going to once again take a look at the Dollars and Cents for the five VBS resources I reviewed this week. I'm happy to see in many of the director's materials some fun ideas of ways to raise money for VBS, but again, when so many people are unemployed and living pay check to pay check, there just may not be additional dollars for them to give to VBS. Obviously a starter kit is the first place to begin when purchasing VBS materials and from there you'll need to determine what - if any - student materials you will also utilize. As far as student materials I like the idea of being able to give children something each day which will remind them of the Bible lesson. I especially like the objects/cards which can be clipped or pinned to a backpack as they make great reminders! I also like the idea of being able to give children their own copy of the music . . . of course these things take money and your budget just might not have room for them. So, what will it cost and how can we move ahead with VBS on a budget?

Please Check Out Kidmin1124 - My New Post is About Seasoning Those Words with Grace!

Please check my new post on Kidmin1124 - I wrote about seasoning our words with Grace - I said, "Consider Colossians 4:6, “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (NIV) As you enter 2012, commit to be a person whose conversation is always full of grace, seasoned with salt so as you serve the children and families in your church and community the “echo” which results in their lives will “shape” them with the grace God so richly lavishes on us!" See more at the full post!

I Have Four Winners in My VBS 2012 Give-Aways!

I'm happy to announce Frank Tan won the Super Duper Backdrop from LifeWay, Tina Hendrickson won the Bugzi puppet from Regular Baptist Press and Stacey Shein Kay and Katy Ross Bean each won an Up & Away CD from Group. Thank you Frank, Tina, Stacey and Katy for reading my blog (please message me your addresses so I can send these to you) and thank you LifeWay, RBP and Group for making these items available for me to review and give away!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Don't Forget! Three Fun Give-Aways Tomorrow!

 Tomorrow I'll be drawing three names for some fun VBS give-aways . . . two Up & Away music CD's from Group's Sky VBS and one Super Duper backdrop from LifeWay's Amazing Wonders Aviation VBS! Be sure to check back tomorrow to see who wins these VBS resources! Thank you Group and LifeWay for making these things available for me to give away!

More 2012 VBS Reviews and Give-Aways Are On Their Way . . .

Today I posted my Top VBS for 2012 - Adventures on Promise Island from Standard Publishing - but, my VBS reviews are not yet completed! I will be sharing reviews for six more VBS resources next week - Go Big! from Cook, Operation Overboard from Cokesbury, Olympion from VBS Reachout Adventures, SonExpress from Bogard, No Friend Like Jesus from Abingdon Press and Zapped from Orange - although it may be yet another week for this review as I'm waiting for their kit to arrive. 


Monday in addition to more VBS reviews, I'll also be posting my side-by-side comparison chart, so while I've announced my Top Ten VBS resources for 2012, there is still more VBS information on the way!


Plus, on January 21st I'll be giving away four VBS kits - Praise from Go Fish, Rock the World from NextGen4Christ, IncrediWorld Amazement Park from Answers in Genesis and Operation Overboard from Cokesbury!

Top Pick for VBS 2012 - Adventures on Promise Island by Standard Publishing

I'm delighted to announce my Top Pick for VBS 2012 is  Adventures on Promise Island by Standard Publishing! This VBS has solid Bible content and a strong focus on living what you learn by serving others! Combine this with a fun island setting and great music from Yancy, well, you have a VBS which will impact and change lives!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Silly Song Countdown - and Give-Away!

It’s a Silly Song Celebration at VeggieTales!  If you have haven’t checked it out yet—please check the link here on my blog in the right column NOW through January 24 as Larry the Cucumber counts down the top fan-picked favorite Silly Songs in VeggieTales history—leading up to the unveiling of the ALL-NEW FAN-INSPIRED SILLY SONG which will debut January 24 with the DVD release of Veggie Tales: If I Sang A Silly SongYou'll want to check back each day so you can enjoy the fun of this Silly Song Countdown!

VBS 2012 Give-away - Up & Away Sing & Play CD from Group

I'm delighted to announce Group has generously given two of their Up & Away Sing & Play CDs from Sky VBS for a special give-away! This CD has all the songs from Sky VBS and are songs children will want to sing all year long!

Top Three VBS Countdown 2012 - Sky from Group Publishing

Sky - 2012 Easy VBSI'm delighted to announce today the runner-up VBS in my Top Ten VBS reviews for 2012 - Sky from Group Publishing! Sky placed second this year, but placed first in my Top Pick for VBS Setting 2012! Sky is great fun, but most importantly, has solid Bible teaching and learning!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

VBS 2012 Give-Away - Super Duper Backdrop from LifeWay's Amazing Wonders Aviation

I'm delighted to announce LifeWay has generously given one of their Super Duper Backdrops from Amazing Wonders Aviation VBS for a special give-away! You'll receive six, 6' x 3' panels—one per wonder - which you could group together for a

 super-duper 6' x 18' backdrop, or hang them separately to sprinkle a little wonder throughout your VBS area! Panels include: Paricutin Volcano, Grand Canyon, the Matterhorn, Victoria Falls, Great Barrier Reef, and the Northern Lights and are sure to add a wonderful touch to your Amazing Wonders Aviation VBS!

About the Children's Department is NOT Spam!

I learned this morning when my husband tried to share to facebook my VBS review for Amazing Wonders Aviation, this site has been "marked" as "spam". I do not understand why or how this happened as this site is just a blog. I write at least once a day and share my posts to facebook . . . I don't send out mass emails or do anything to "spam" anyone, so I am really baffled by this. I am very non-technical, so if anyone knows what I can do to have my blog no longer be "marked" as "spam", I'd most sincerely appreciate hearing from you!

Top Three VBS Countdown 2012 - Amazing Wonders Aviation from LifeWay

Color LogoWell . . . we have almost made it through my Top Ten VBS for 2012 reviews and today I'm happy to announce my third place VBS for 2012 . . . Amazing Wonders Aviation from LifeWay!  They did a great job with the content and substance of this VBS resource and their setting is great fun . . . it is the Runner-up for Top Setting for VBS 2012! Take a look and consider if Amazing Wonders Aviation is a good "fit" for your children's ministry!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

VBS 2012 Give-Away . . . Praise VBS Kit from Go Fish!

I'm delighted to announce the Go Fish Guys are generously making available their VBS Kit, Praise, for me to give away! Praise VBS is my Top Pick for Music for VBS 2012!

The drawing for this kit will be on January 21st and you can have an entry by "liking" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG! In addition, if you share any of my posts or comment on them you will receive additional entries - be sure to let me know when you share. Thank you for reading my blog and thank you Go Fish Guys for making a kit available for give-away!

VBS 2012 Give-away . . . IncrediWorld Amazement Park VBS Kit Give-away!

I'm delighted to announce Answers in Genesis is generously making available their Starter Kit of their IncrediWorld Amazement Park VBS for me to give away! 

The drawing for this kit will be on January 21st and you can have an entry by "liking" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG! In addition, if you share any of my posts or comment on them you will receive additional entries - be sure to let me know when you share. Thank you for reading my blog and thank you Answers in Genesis for making a kit available for give-away!

VBS 2012 Give-away . . . Rock the World VBS Kit Give-away!

I'm delighted to announce NextGen4Christ is generously making available their Download Plus Kit of their Rock the World VBS for me to give away! The Download Plus package includes all the digital and downloadable curriculum/resources, the skit DVD's, the "Tell the World" Worship CD, and a CD-Rom. 


The drawing for this kit will be on January 21st and you can have an entry by "liking" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG! In addition, if you share any of my posts or comment on them you will receive additional entries - be sure to let me know when you share. Thank you for reading my blog and thank you NextGen4Christ for making a kit available for give-away!

VBS 2012 Give-away . . . Bugzi the Puppet from Regular Baptist Press!

Bugzi the PuppetI'm delighted to announce Regular Baptist Press sent me their Bugzi Puppet for a give-away! Not only is Bugzi a beautiful, bug butterfly, but this is actually two puppets in one as in addition to the butterfly, you also receive the caterpillar puppet as well!


So . . . if you have "liked" About the Children's Department by using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG, then you are entereded in my drawing which will be on January 14th. If you have not "liked" this blog yet, please take a moment to do so and you will be entered in the give-away. It is this simple! Thank you for reading About the Children's Department . . . please share this blog with the people you know!

Top Five VBS Countdown 2012 - Rock the World from NextGen4Christ!

Today I'm happy to announce my fourth place VBS for 2012 . . . Rock the World from NextGen4Christ! You may not be familiar with NextGen4Christ as they are a fairly new VBS publisher, but they did a great job with the content and substance of this VBS resource. Take a look and consider if Rock the World is a good "fit" for your children's ministry!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Top Five VBS Countdown 2012 - BugZone from Regular Baptist Press

Well, as we enter my second week of VBS reviews, today I'm happy to announce my fifth place VBS for 2012 . . . Bugzone from Regular Baptist Press! RBP did a great job with the content and substance of this VBS resource - if  you are not familiar with their materials and have never taken a close look at them in the past, this year is a great year to make a change and consider if BugZone is a good "fit" for your children's ministry!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

VBS 2012 Top Ten Reviews Continue This Week . . .

Last week was a busy week with the first part of my Top Ten VBS reviews for 2012 and this week my reviews will continue, but I want to take a moment to share again how I selected my top ten and remind you, just because a VBS placed 10th or 8th or 6th in my review, it doesn't mean they are not truly excellent VBS resources. This year there are truly excellent vbs kits available - all of them! Please check my post about this and take a close look at all these resources to see which ones might be a great "fit" for your ministry . . . and keep these resources in mind for mid-week, family events and special opportunities all year long!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

VBS 2012 Give-Aways . . . I have Six Winners . . .

As I focus on VBS for the month of January, many of the publishers are making items from their VBS available for me to give away on my blog, so . . . today I am delighted to announce the first group of winners! Kristina Mae won the Praise DVD from Go Fish, Kris N KayCee Goethe, Tracy Jones and Tammy Matthews each won one Caleb the Camel puppet from Concordia and James Goff and Carrie Nuoffer Scott each won one Babylon CD from Group. (please all of you, message me your addresses so I can send your prize to you) Thank you Kristina, Kris, KayCee, Tracy, Tammy, James and Carrie for reading my blog and thank you Concordia, Go Fish and Group for making items from your VBS resources available for me to give away!


Next week as my Top Ten VBS for 2012 review continues, I'll have additional items to give away and then the following week, I'll be giving away some VBS kits as well - so far from Go Fish and Answers in Genesis! So, keep watching for the specifics on my up-coming give-aways and thank you all of you for reading my blog!

VBS 2012 - the Dollars & Cents of VBS . . . Part 1

While there are certainly excellent and compelling reasons for churches to plan and present a Vacation Bible School to the children in their church and community, the realities of the Dollars and Cents can impact if a church is able to do so. If your church chooses to go ahead with VBS for summer 2012, the Dollar and Cents of it all can again come into play as you determine which resources you will use. I once had someone from a publisher tell me if a church really cared about the children in their ministry they would spend whatever they had to, to have the best curriculum possible. I disagree. While I absolutely believe churches care about the children in their ministry, budgets are a very real and difficult reality. In this economy with so many people out of work our churches are struggling to meet their budget. VBS can be expensive and yet it is a very important - and in many cases the only outreach all year for many churches.

Today I'm going to take a look at the Dollars and Cents for the five VBS resources I reviewed this week. I'm happy to see in many of the director's materials some fun ideas of ways to raise money for VBS, but again, when so many people are unemployed and living pay check to pay check, there just may not be additional dollars for them to give to VBS. Obviously a starter kit is the first place to begin when purchasing VBS materials and from there you'll need to determine what - if any - student materials you will also utilize. As far as student materials I like the idea of being able to give children something each day which will remind them of the Bible lesson. I especially like the objects/cards which can be clipped or pinned to a backpack as they make great reminders! I also like the idea of being able to give children their own copy of the music . . . of course these things take money and your budget just might not have room for them. So, what will it cost and how can we move ahead with VBS on a budget?

Friday, January 6, 2012

I Have a Winner in My Brittany Hargest Love All the Way CD Give-Away!

I'm happy to announce Tammy Christian is the winner in my Brittany Hargest, Love All the Way CD give-away! (You'll find the review at this link) Thank you Tammy for reading my blog (please message me your address so I can have it sent to you) and thank you EMI for sending one for me to review and making another available for me to give away!

VBS Give-Away - IncrediWorld Amazement Park Starter Kit from Answers in Genesis!

I'm delighted to announce Answers in Genesis is making available one of their Starter Kits to give away on my blog! Their VBS for 2012 - IncrediWorld Amazement Park  - made my Top Ten VBS for 2012 - see the review at this link - and it is well worth your serious consideration as you evaluate which VBS resources are the best "fit" for your ministry!

So . . . how can you get your name in the drawing for this VBS starter kit? It is pretty simple! First, "like" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG. If you have not already "liked" this blog, please take a moment to do so and you will be entered in the drawing which will be on January 21st. In addition, if you "comment" and/or "share" any of my VBS posts you'll receive an additional entry each time you do - please feel free to let me know when you "share".

Top Ten Coundown for VBS 2012 - IncrediWorld Amazement Park from Answers in Genesis!

As I said yesterday, this year I have a two-way tie for sixth place in my Top Ten VBS for 2012 review, so today I want to share with you the new VBS from Answers in Genesis - IncrediWorld Amazement Park!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Top Ten Countdown for VBS 2012 - SonRise National Park from Gospel Light!

This year I had a two-way tie for sixth place in my Top Ten, so today and tomorrow I'll share the sixth place VBS resources! Today let's take a look at  SonRise National Park from Gospel Light!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

I Have Another Blog . . .

I've been writing About the Children's Department for a little over a year and sincerely appreciate the opportunity to share information, ideas and resources related to children's ministry with you all! Thank you for reading my blog!


You may not know, but I also write a blog which is full of resources, ideas and information to help grandmas - and grandpas, moms and dads, too - pass on a heritage of faith to the children in their lives . . . this blog is called, grandma's cookie jar! I review resources for grandma - grandpa, dad and mom, too - books, movies and music for children, provide recipes and crafts, lots of give-aways and stories to put a smile on your face! When you have a moment, please check it out and share it with the people you know!

VBS Give-Away - Praise DVD and Praise VBS Kit from Go Fish!

I'm delighted to announce Go Fish is giving me one of their Praise DVDs and one Praise VBS Kit to give away on my blog ! Their VBS for 2012 - Praise - made my Top Ten VBS for 2012 - see the review at this link - and it is well worth your serious consideration as you evaluate which VBS resources are the best "fit" for your ministry! Plus, Praise's music is my Top Pick for Music for VBS 2012 - the music is amazing . . . you are sure to love it!

Top Ten Countdown for VBS 2012 - Praise from Go Fish!


As I said yesterday, this year I have a two-way tie for eighth place in my Top Ten VBS for 2012 review, so today I want to share with you the new VBS from  Go Fish Praise! In addition to making my Top Ten, Praise is my Top Pick for Music for VBS 2012!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

VBS Give-Away - Babylon Celebration Music CD from Group Publishing!

I'm delighted to announce Group is giving me two of their Babylon Celebration Music CDs to give away on my blog! Their VBS for 2012 - Babylon, Daniel's Courage in Captivity - made my Top Ten VBS for 2012 - see the review at this link - and it is well worth your serious consideration as you evaluate which VBS resources are the best "fit" for your ministry!

So . . . how can you get your name in the drawing for one of these CDs? It is pretty simple! First, "like" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG. If you have not already "liked" this blog, please take a moment to do so and you will be entered in the drawing which will be on January 7th. In addition, if you "comment" and/or "share" any of my VBS posts you'll receive an additional entry each time you do - please feel free to let me know when you "share".

VBS 2012 Give-away . . . Caleb the Camel Puppet from Concordia!

I'm delighted to announce Concordia is giving me three of their adorable Caleb the Camel puppets to give away on my blog! Their VBS for 2012 - Amazing Desert Journey - made my Top Ten VBS for 2012 - see the review at this link - and it is well worth your serious consideration as you evaluate which VBS resources are the best "fit" for your ministry!


So . . . how can you get your name in the drawing for one of these puppets? It is pretty simple! First, "like" About the Children's Department using the tab in the "find us on facebook" box ON THE BLOG. If you have not already "liked" this blog, please take a moment to do so and you will be entered in the drawing which will be on January 7th. In addition, if you "comment" and/or "share" any of my VBS posts you'll receive an additional entry each time you do - please feel free to let me know when you "share".

Top Ten Posts From 2011 . . .

2011 was a busy year for About the Children's Department . . . I began the year with my Top Ten VBS for 2011 reviews and side-by-side comparison chart and focused the month of January on VBS . . . just as I am again this year. Last Spring I released my Sunday School Curriculum reviews with a side-by-side comparison chart and then in June I released my children's church and mid-week curriculum reviews with side-by-side comparison charts. I've posted about recruiting, training and appreciating volunteers and spent the month of April looking at safety in the children's ministry. Each month I focused on a specific ministry you could involve the children in your ministry with to "Put Feet to Their Faith" and shared about children's ministries from around the world.


So . . . which posts were the ones you all read the most? Well, my top posts are . . . 

Top Ten Countdown for VBS 2012 - Babylon from Group Publishing!

Babylon VBS Logo Thumbnail TransparentThis year I had a two-way tie for eighth place in my Top Ten, so today and tomorrow I'll share the eighth place VBS resources! Today let's take a look 
at Babylon from Group Publishing!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Put Feet to Their Faith . . . Help Unborn Babies!

Thirty-nine years ago a landmark decision was made which legalized abortion on demand in the USA. Since then countless babies have been killed and the lives of young women scarred as a result. We believe the Bible teaches life begins at conception - in Psalm 139:16-18 we read, "13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them!" (NIV) In Job 3 we read where Job speaks of babies who die before birth as "infants" who never saw light. Throughout the Bible when it refers to a woman being pregnant, the baby is referred to as a child, son or even by name.

Top Ten Countdown for Vacation Bible School 2012 - Amazing Desert Journey from Concordia House!

Amazing Desert Journey Starter Kit - VBS 2012
I'm delighted to announce tenth place in my Top Ten Countdown for Vacation Bible School 2012 is Amazing Desert Journey from Concordia Publishing House!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Timeline for My 2012 VBS Reviews . . .

Tomorrow, January 2nd, is the day my Top Ten VBS for 2012 Countdown begins! Each day, Monday through Friday, I'll post a review for one of my Top Ten VBS resources for 2012 . . . my Top Pick for 2012 will be released on January 13th! In addition, on Friday January 6th and 13th I'll post a breakdown of costs for each of the VBS resources I reviewed that week. On January 16th I'll post my side-by-side comparison charts for VBS 2012 - this will include all 16 resources I reviewed - and the week of January 16th I'll post reviews each day for the six additional kits I reviewed.