In Deuteronomy 5 Moses refers to the mountain where he received the ten commandments as mount Horeb. (In Exodus it is called Mount Sinai – same place; different name)
To tell the story I used a simple picture of a mountain drawn on to a large roll of paper (from Ikea). There was a ‘mini – Moses’ who ‘climbed’ the mountain, a cloud and the fire and smoke were added during the story using marker pens. There was also some actions for the children and parents to join in with. Actions are a great way of involving everyone in the story in a manageable way. As you do the actions say the phrase you are acting out.
Telling the story
Just before the story we practiced the actions we would need during the story. Once the group is settled I explain that during the story there will be something for them to do. We practice the action about twice and then we begin the story. I encourage the parents to join in too.
As the children are very young don’t include all the details – for example I don’t mention the Israelites at the foot of the mountain. The basics are focused on – Moses, Mount Horeb (everyone repeats the name. It’s included because we are doing the letter ‘h’), the cloud, smoke and fire and the ‘Ten good rules to live by’.
Main teaching point – God speaks to us – through the Bible.
The actions referred to the Ten Commandments which I referred to as ‘Ten good rules to live by.’
rules (shaped like a book because they were written down)
to live by (Walk your fingers over your hand to illustrate people walking/living)
Moses on Mount Horeb
To finish the story explain that today God doesn’t speak to us on mountains but from the Bible (have a Bible to show)
The Bible tells us that Goliath was over 9 feet tall. (read the story in 1 Samuel 17). It isn’t always easy to imagine just how tall someone is so we made a life size Goliath. The basic technique for doing this can be used for many pictures and would be very good for making scenery/background.
An overhead projector
The picture you want to enlarge in black and white
Permanent marker pens
Rolls of lining paper (plain wall paper). This is much thicker than the rolls of painting paper and so will stand up to being hung from a wall better.
To enlarge the picture
Copy or trace your picture on to the acetate.
Unroll your paper (We did this well in advance so it didn’t keep rolling up again!). You may need several widths of this tapped together. Use cellotape on one side only.
Hang your paper from a wall
Position the overhead projector so that your acetate image is projected on to the paper.
Trace over the projected image with pencil
Lay paper on the floor and go over the lines with marker pen. Use the original image as a reference for details.
Colour/paint your picture if you wish – we left Goliath black and white.
If you use a large picture of Goliath plan where you can display it. Refer to it during the story. The children can enjoy comparing their height with Goliath. You could have an adult dress up as David to show the contrast.
Also collect five smooth stones to show – and with young children count them together. There are places that sell slings – have a look at this one from Etsy
This is a very easy craft – the children draw around a tree template and cut out the shape. Then they decorate the tree with glittery shapes/paper and glitter glue and small pompoms (these are a little unwilling to stick but will if they are held down for a few seconds). Punch a hole in the top of the tree and add wool or cord.
Glitter glue can take a while to dry so allow for that when you make these.
T o make a Christmas tree template – white A4 card folded in half lengthwise – draw half a tree beginning and ending on the folded edge. When you unfold the card you will have a symmetrical tree. Cut out.
to add something to the telling of the Christmas story – add sheep and camels that stand up on pegs for legs.
Draw a simple camel or sheep (without legs!) on to card and cut out. Add the pegs.
You could also do this as a craft activity – just be careful with the pegs.
Start with a template. Draw around this onto two pieces of black A4 sugar paper (construction paper) I secured it with paper clips to make things easier . This design was tricky to cut out but older children could do it with some help and patience. If you have a small group I would be tempted to do this beforehand with a craft knife.
Cover window with tissue paper. Cut this into strips beforehand. Glue the other A4 black paper to the back. Hang in a window.
Go to this post for a PDF of the template that you can print.
Provide a template for the children to draw around on two A4 pieces of black sugar paper. (or construction paper). Cut out the Christmas tree shape. You can make this easy by folding the paper in half and making a cut to get started. Then flatten out the paper and carry on cutting out. Make sure the children keep the right bit of the paper to make the window.
I make two per child so they can sandwich them together at the end and then whichever way you look at the stained glass window it will be neat.
Have lots of brightly coloured tissue paper to cover over the gap. You can layer the paper to create more colour blends but be gentle with the glue
Finish by sticking the spare black A4 window to the back. Hang at a window.
Very young children would need a ready prepared window. They can stick tissue paper to a piece of acetate (rough side) and then add the A4 black tree.
To add something a bit extra – have a few pictures of stained glass windows to show to the children or even visit somewhere that has some. You can’t beat the real thing. http://www.stainedglassmuseum.com/ is a useful link.
You will need sugar paper or gold or silver card (about 100g in weight) cut in to circles. Aim for five circles per decoration.
A hole punch
Wool or thread
Fold each of the five circles in half – if the gold/silver card is white on one side make sure you fold that circle with the gold/silver on the inside.
Start to glue together – take on circle – glue one half of it – and stick another circle to it – carry this on till you have one circle left and then stick all of that circle to the decoration to make it complete.
You need to punch a hole in the decoration. This is tricky! Fold the decoration as in the picture and carefully punch a hole.
Add wool or similar – to make the decoration hang straight thread one piece of the woolpart way round again so the two threads are opposite each other and then tie a knot.
You can do different colour combinations and younger children might like to make the decoration with just four circles to begin with.
You can buy ready cut circles or use a 3inch craft punch. It is best to have perfect circles but you could cut your own.