33 & 34 - Joseph: Into the Pit & On the road to Egypt


15 minute Story planner

Genesis 37
The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories by Mary Batchelor page 44-46

Briefly remind the children of the background to the story of Joseph.  Many years after Jacob left the land God had promised his grandfather Abraham, he made the long journey home. By the time he settled back in the Promised Land (the land of Canaan) Jacob had a very large family; his wife Leah had had many children, while his wife Rachel had had two. Altogether Jacob had 12 sons and one daughter. 

1. Setting the scene  - 2 mins 
Find the Old Testament section in a Bible.
Show and talk about 'The Old Testament FlashCards' cards one to three

2. Starter question - 1 min  
Do you help your mum or dad at home? Perhaps you tidy your room, put the dishes away or maybe lay the table. One day Jacob asked his son Joseph to do a job for him. Joseph was eager to help his Dad...  but things did not turn out well for Joseph that day.

3. Tell the story with props - 4 mins

  • Use the 12 brothers visual aid created last week or make another one out of 13 craft lollipop sticks and 12 pictures of male faces plus one female cut out of a magazine/newspaper (it would be helpful if they were all roughly the same size)
  • Sticky tape
  • ‘The names of Jacob's children and how to display them’ instructions (see Printables)
  • A colourful jacket or blanket
  • Perfumes and/or spices in decorative boxes or bags to represent the traders wares  

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 - a game about Joseph finding his brothers
You will need: the brightly coloured jacket or blanket and a blindfold.
Briefly explain that when Jacob sent Joseph to speak to his brothers he had difficulty finding them because they had moved their flock of sheep to a different place. Explain that the children are going to play a game about Joseph finding his brothers. In the game ‘Joseph’ will be blindfold although he could see perfectly well in the story.

1. Ask for a volunteer to be Joseph.
2. Encourage ‘Joseph’ to wrap the blanket around themselves or put on the jacket.
3. Ask the remaining children to stand in various places around the room. If you have a large room limit the area that the game will be played in. The remaining children are Joseph's brothers.
4. Now ask Joseph to cover his/her eyes with the blindfold.
5. Ask the brothers to move around the room then stand still. Joseph will now need to tentatively move forward to find his brothers. The brothers can either remain silent or quietly call out Joseph's name or even ‘baa‘ like sheep.
6. Once Joseph has found one of his brothers, either encourage the ‘brother’ to find his remaining siblings or sit at the side of the room while Joseph searches for the rest of his family. If you have time play the game with a different Joseph.

5. Reflective prayer - 2 mins  
Father God we think about Joseph growing up. We remember how badly he was treated by his jealous brothers. We imagine Joseph's relief to be pulled up out of the well... only to be sold as a slave to tradesmen.

Father we think about Joseph's journey to Egypt. We remember that each step took him further away from his home. 

Father, we thank you that you were with Joseph during those difficult times; even when he was being treated unkindly and far away from his home you were watching over him. Father help us to remember that you are always with us too. Help us to remember when we face difficult times that you are watching over us and that you love and care for us more than we can imagine. Amen.  

With younger children, or during a shorter session you may wish to select just one or two phrases from the reflective prayer.

Alongside this story, make the craft...

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