15 minute Story planner
The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories by Mary Batchelor pages 13 - 14
1. Setting the scene - 2 mins
Find the Old Testament section in a Bible.
Show and talk about 'The Old Testament FlashCards' card one
2. Starter question - 1 min
Can you imagine a garden overgrown with weeds and thorns? Where would you play? Where would you sit?
Today, gardeners spend hours and hours pulling up weeds, chopping back briars and cutting down brambles. However when God first created the earth there were no weeds or unwanted thorns spoiling his creation; instead, with very little attention, plants grew, fruit ripened and flowers budded. But then one day Adam and Eve disobeyed God. From that day not only was their friendship with their Creator spoilt but the whole of creation was spoilt too – amongst the flowers and shrubs, weeds and thistles began to grow.
Although God's creation was spoilt he loved the world so much he planned to put things right. Many years after the world was first created God sent his Son Jesus to make a way for people to be his close friends once more, then, he promised, that one day his people would live with him in the perfect Kingdom of Heaven.
3. Tell the story with props - 4 mins
Beware of allergies – make sure it is safe for the children in your group to handle the food used in this activity.
A toy snake
‘Did God really say…?’ speech bubble (see Printables)
‘Where are you, Adam?’ speech bubble (see Printables)
Click on the images at the beginning of this post for more resources from the web
4. Story activity - 6 mins
Option 1 - Enjoy the puzzles in this weeks Dead Sea Comic Caper (see Printables)
Option 2 - Play a game where the children need to knock down weeds to win the challenge
You will need: ‘weed pictures’ (see Printables), masking tape, scissors, bean-bags (or socks turned into small bundles) and a total of sixteen of the following items: cereal boxes, wellington boots and 2 litre empty drinks bottles – it doesn’t matter how many of each item you have as long as you have sixteen in total.
Before the session print sixteen ‘weed’ pictures. Cut out the pictures and use masking tape to stick one picture to each of your items (the cereal boxes, wellington boots etc.). Now stick strips of masking tape to the floor of your teaching space to create two large squares. The squares should measure approximately 2 x 2 m. Stand eight of the items in each square and explain that these represent the weeds.
Divide the children into two teams. Name one team ‘the farmers’ and the other team ‘the gardeners’. Ask ‘the farmers’ to stand around the edge of one square and ‘the gardeners’ to stand around the edge of the other square. Give each child two or three bean-bags or sock bundles. When you shout ‘go’ the children should throw their bags/bundles at the weeds trying to knock them over. When all the bundles have been thrown count how many ‘weeds’ remain standing. The team to knock over the most weeds is the winning team. If you have time, stand the weeds up and play the game again.
5. Reflective prayer - 2 mins
Father God, thank you that you love and care about each and every person. Thank you that you long to be close friends with everybody everywhere. Thank you that all those years ago, when Adam and Eve disobeyed you in the garden, you had a plan to make a way for people to become close friends with you once more. Father God, help us to tell others about your great love. Help us to pass on the Good News that, because Jesus lived, died and rose again, all people, everywhere can say ‘Yes’ to your love and forgiveness and become close friends with you. Amen.
Alongside this story, make a craft...