Monday, 24 February 2014

Do You Remember Flannel Graph?


Do you remember flannel graph ?
 I sure do!
 
I was recently reading a fellow blogger's post, Cranberry Morning, where she was sharing sweet memories of her Grandmother. She recounted her Grandmother’s work in Children’s Evangelism. This brought back memories of my own experiences attending a children’s ministry as a child called, “The Good News Club.” It seems this was also the ministry Judy’s grandmother was involved in.
Small world!
flannel-graph
 
Once a week, I remember, a car load of us children would pile into our preacher’s wife’s car and then we were driven across town to attend the Good News Club. It only lasted an hour. The meeting started with us  singing the *Good News song. Next we would have a flannel graph story, then we shared a snack and lastly a prayer together. We all piled again back into the car and were driven home until next weeks meeting.
 
Doesn’t really sound like it amounted to much, does it?
But surprisingly, here I am almost 50 years later able to recount all the words of that little song. I remember the rather rotund lady that pounded the keys of her piano while we little children, who were all sitting gathered on her floor, belted out the word just as loudly and proudly as we could. I remember exactly where her house was located even though I was so young and it was all of the way across town.
But those where minor details…..
 
FlannelGraph2not me!!
 
It was there in that tiny little house, on flannel graph, that I had learn so many stories of the Bible.
 
Now fast forward several years later to when I was a young mother with four little children of my own.
My MIL, who is a preacher’s wife, gifted me with a suitcase full of flannel graph!
I couldn’t believe it. 
There inside the suitcase were many of the same images of Bible characters I had seen as a child at the ‘Good News Club.’
 
felt
So, needless to say, my own children and those who attended our Sunday School classes had learn the stories of the Bible from flannel graph just as I had so many years earlier.
 
I’m not sure if churches use flannel graph anymore. With all of the technology we have today I assume they probably show movies.
Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I think children would still appreciate the old-time flannel graph stories.
 
It was interactive.
You could call the children up to help place the characters on the board.
 You could stop in any part of the story and ask or answer questions. I even let the children tell the story back to me using the flannel graph.
 You sure can’t do that with a movie!
 
I did a little research and found that they do still make flannel graph. It’s a little pricey, but I bet if you’re in an area where they have auctions you might just run across a whole suitcase full like my MIL had given to me.
If you're a young mother, try it!
Here's my song....
 
The Good News Song
Good news, Good news, Christ died for you and me
Good new, Good news, If I believe
Good news, Good news, I’m saved eternally
That’s wonderful, EXTRA, Good news!
 
 
 

19 comments:

Kathleen Grace said...

I remember! Not only did my Sunday School teachers use them when I was a child, I remember using them when I taught Sunday School 30 years ago. Yes, I am afraid that they have been replaced with videos and other high tech techniques, but I guess we came from simpler times. I remember loving those flannel graphs as a child. All I wanted was a set of my own to play with!

Nancy J said...

Childhood memories of special days, wonderful, and your dear M-In-Law, what a treasure, both the lovely lady and the gift. Cheers, Jean.

Cranberry Morning said...

Thank you for mentioning Cranberry Morning in your post! What a wonderful heritage our parents and grandparents gave us - and how that flannelgraph captured our attention while the adults had the opportunity to share the love of Jesus with us! As an adult, I also used flannelgraph with my junior church kids. I've since passed it on to another church leader. It's such a wonderful vehicle for teaching the Gospel.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I remember these, too and haven't seen anything like it in years. What we learned as a child stays with us. I can still remember a lot from Vacation Bible School held every summer. I remember the grape kool aid and sugar cookies, too! heehee! Fun post!

Daisy said...

Kimberly, believe it or not, I attended a "Good News Club" meeting every week too! It was held at my neighbor's house. I don't remember ever singing that song, but I do remember the flannel graphs. They also used them in our Sunday School classes. I have great memories from those times. :)

Debbie said...

Oh I LOVED those! And your right, I think the kids today would love them too. Great for them to play with too. And re-tell the stories themselves. I need the tune for those lyrics now, lol Enjoy your day!

Pamela Gordon said...

I also remember flannel graph and used it to teach Sunday School years ago. It is so colourful and bright and a great teaching tool, although I don't think it's used as much these days. That's wonderful that you have your mother-in-law's suitcase full. Great for the grandkids to learn the Bible stories from!

Christine said...

Yes! I went to a Good News club and we still sing that wee chorus where the children love to shout EXTRA good news! I even have some flannel graph stories but tech seems to have taken over!
Thanks for the memories of wonderful children's meetings and faithful workers!
Christine

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Wow, I went to a Good News Club too. My mother did the flannel graph and when you think back on it, it really was something.

That song too, oh my goodness.

Thank you for the memories.

FlowerLady

NanaDiana said...

Kimberly, They actually used to bring those story boards into our public school classroom every Friday afternoon from the time I was in first grade until I graduated from there in 6th grade. I LOVED those stories and so looked forward to then as a kid. I looked for those when my kids were little and couldn't find them anywhere.

What a sweet memory of the past for many of us. xo Diana

debi said...

What wonderful memories you have stirred up for me....Yes they were great!!

Hugs!

Vee said...

You know what? I read that post , too, and it did not click with me that this was the same "Good News Club" experience that I had enjoyed as a kid in the early 60s. I loved it. The pastor was the one doing the flannel graph and how I loved those Bible stories. I also loved the flannel graph I used in my classroom for so many years. Once a story had been presented, board and figures remained out for the remainder of the day so that children could re-create the story. Sweet memories!

Poppy said...

Hi Kimberly,

Although this is the first time I am hearing about flannel graph and the Good News Club, the whole experience certainly sounds quite inspiring, both for the song and the colourful, interactive teaching tool. Thanks for sharing; what sweet memories!

Poppy

Carla from The River said...

Amen. I agree, I do not think a movie does the same.
I like Veggie Tales, but sometimes they can be too goofy.

Holly said...

I remember those! My Sunday school teacher used them too. What a good memory!

Jane@Cottage at the Crossroads said...

Hi Kimberly,
I have wonderful memories of our church organization for young girls. It was called the Girls' Auxillary. Our leader was so patient with us and was a wonderful role model. I try to remember that when I teach Children's Church now. Sure wish I had some of that flannel graph to help me tell the stories!

Simply Linda said...

I had no idea that is what it was called. But, yes..I do remember..Blessings

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Yes, I remember these. How sweet of your MIL to give you a suitcase full to help teach your children and SS children!

Jaybird said...

I DO remember flannelboards...as a music teacher, I used them pretty regularly!!
A funny story for you.... We use a comforter as a quilt in the winter. It was always sliding off on one side or the other. I thought back to my "flannel board" days...bought 2 yards of flannel and heat bonded it to the back of the quilt! Presto, the flannel adheres it's sweet self to our blanket, and no more slipping. My sweet hubby wanted to know how I thought of that...I just reminded him of the Sunday School flannel boards, he figured out the rest, and I got a thumbs up!! Yaay!
Thank you for a lovely blog! I linked over here from The Blessed Hearth (she is GREAT), and I'm reading "backward" :^)
Blessings to you,
J