There is a really good video clip about this Bible story on The Answers in Genesis site – click here to go straight there.
In one of our toddler groups we’ve been learning about how everything began. We started with creation, then how things went wrong for Adam and Eve when they sinned against God. We’ve learnt about Noah and now we are finding out about how people groups and languages began.
In Genesis 11 we find out that Noah’s descendants were still living in one big group and that they were very capable and able to make bricks. When Noah and his family had come out of the Ark God had told them to ‘fill the earth’ (Genesis 9:1). But they had not spread out but stuck together. So God separates them by confusing their language. Then they really have no choice but to go their separate ways and ‘fill the earth’.
Story for children (during the story if you have someone who can speak a language that you don’t understand ask them to help you – they could give you some building instructions!)
Do you remember how Noah and his family came out of the Ark? They were so happy to be back on dry land again. God told Noah and his family that they should spread out over the whole earth. Do you think they did what God said? No! They wanted to stay altogether.
Time went by. Soon there were lots of people. They all spoke the same language. When someone said ‘hello’ everyone understood. They were clever too. They learnt how to make bricks that were strong. (Have a brick to show)
‘Lets build a huge city with a tall tower that reaches up and up into the sky’ they said. everyone understood.
They started work.
‘Pass the bricks’, ‘Lend me a hammer’, ‘is that wall straight?’ Everyone understood all the instructions.
God looked at what the people were doing. He wasn’t pleased. He had told them to spread out and they hadn’t listened. So God did something that only God could do. He made the people start to speak in different languages.
It was so hard to build the huge city and tall tower now that some people were saying words that other people didn’t understand. (ask your friend to give you a couple of instructions here)
The people gave up. They got together in smaller groups with others who had the same language and they began to spread out over the whole earth.