Big Q: What Are Your Fondest, Funniest Memories of Sunday School?


By Linda Sladkey

CHICAGO, IL (May 19, 2016)—One of my childhood Sunday-school teachers passed away this year. A kind lady with bouffant hair who went beyond showing a squirrely group of fifth graders that she loved us—she showed us that she genuinely liked us. As I’ve been pondering the forty years since I sat around the table in her classroom, I realize that kind of relationship is exactly why I became a Sunday-school teacher myself.

Memories of the years I spent teaching Bible stories to kindergarteners are filled with funny and sometimes trying moments. One morning I was sporting a new hairstyle and an earnest young girl asked if I had forgotten to comb my hair that day. Or there was the boy who listened to the entire Easter story of Jesus’s resurrection and then shouted with wonder, “And he does that every year too!”

The Companion is wondering what memories you have of Sunday school, either as a child or as a teacher. What are your fondest, funniest Sunday school memories?





  • A memory that stands out as a teacher, took place in Rosemead, California, in 1987. We had a number of students who were new to Sunday School. During Lent we showed a brief movie of the last days of Jesus. A 10 year-old-boy gasped and said, “They’re hurting Jesus! I think they might KILL him!” I would also like to give tribute to a faithful Sunday school teacher from Braham, Minnesota. Alvera Dahlberg Peterson is turning 100 next month! She has impacted my life and countless others.

  • When I was in 4th grade in Mercer Island Covenant Church we had a boys class that Don Strome taught. He began the year by asking for a volunteer. He then took the boy into his lap and rocked him while singing “Rock a bye baby”. Addressing the rest of us he said, “I’m going to expect you to act grown up, but if you want to act like babies I’ll treat you like one. ” Point made – and memory made!

  • When I was in 9th grade, I had a young married couple serving as my Sunday School teachers. We had a particularly rowdy group of boys in the class, who would throw things at one another, tease the girls and make silly comments throughout the lesson each week. We were definitely a handful.

    To this day, I can’t remember any of the lessons that they taught us, but I do remember their love and patience and willingness to put up with our sometimes over-the-top adolescent behavior. That was the lesson we most needed at the time.

    Little did I know that one of the teachers, Phil Anderson, would become one of my professors at North Park Seminary some 20 years later. Thankfully he was just as gracious to me in Seminary as he was to me in 9th grade!

  • While in my early twenties, I taught a class of pre-teen boys in a small-town church. We were studying the story of Elijah and the prophets of Baal. I had prepared for the class, but had written the Scripture reference incorrectly. The boys laughed themselves silly after reading aloud: 2 Kings 18:27 “Has my master sent me to your master, and to you, to speak these words? has he not sent me to the men which sit on the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own urine with you?” We were eventually able to return to the lesson. In subsequent classes, the boys were quite diligent in looking up the daily readings, but we had no similar events.

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