Taken from the New Testament of the Bible, Matthew 13:1-9, the Parable of the Sower tells the story of a farmer who scatters seeds while planting crops. The seeds fall on a stone path, among rocks, in thorns and in rich soil. Seeds sown in the fertile soil grow roots and produce fruit "a hundred or thirty or sixty fold." The seeds that fall among the stones, rocks and thorns wither, are choked and die. Through this parable, Jesus reveals to his apostles the importance of preparing their hearts to make them fertile soil for God's seeds of faith. Just as growing deep root systems in fertile soil nourishes plants, God's love through prayer, works and faith grow in the soul -- radiating and multiplying -- bearing fruit for others.
Grow plants. Provide three seeds for each child. Corn, radishes and beans are easy to use as they are large seeds with different colors and leaves, making identification easy. Begin by folding a paper towel in half. Poke three small holes along the fold. Place the three seeds on top of the holes Make a pouch with the seeds on the inside. Staple the sides of the paper towel. Place the paper towel pouch, fold side down, into a plastic sandwich bag. Securely tape the plastic sandwich bag to a piece of letter size card stock or poster board. Hang on the wall in a sunny location. Watch the seeds as they begin to germinate with plenty of sunlight and water.
Make candy corn cookies. Items needed include: 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of margarine, 2 1/4 cups of flour, one egg, 1 tsp. vanilla, and orange and yellow food coloring. Cream sugar and margarine. Mix in egg and vanilla. Slowly add flour. Divide dough into three equal parts. Dye one-third of the dough yellow, one-third orange and leave one-third white. Chill dough in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Remove dough from refrigerator and stack in three layers with orange in the middle. Roll out the dough and cut in triangles, making sure to keep white on the bottom, orange in the middle and yellow on top. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.
Make a sunflower plate craft. Items needed are: dinner-size paper plate, yellow construction paper, glue and sunflower seeds in shells. Trace the child's hand on yellow construction paper to make petals."Cut out hand shapes. Draw a circle in the center of the plate. Cover circle with glue and stick on the sunflowers. Glue hand petals around sides of the plate.
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