COMPLETE LESSON SET: Baby Moses to Burning Bush - State Street UMC Bristol, VA

Editor's Note:
The following complete lesson set covers a number of Moses episodes.
During our recent renovation of the Exodus forum, reviewers looked over this set and really liked it.



Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!

 

 

Workshop Summaries:

  • ART:  Create a mosaic table that tells of Moses’ life.
  • COMPUTERS: Review the events of the story in software (ILumina Bible CD); create an illustrated paragraph (using Bible Clipart CD, Word (moderator recommends Kid Pix Deluxe 4).
  • COOKING:  Children will create Moses in the Basket treats.
  • DRAMA: Act out the story in four parts.
  • GAMES/BIBLE SKILLS:  Locate the story on the map, review the story with life-sized board game.
  • MUSIC and MOVEMENT:  Listen and respond to several songs which tell the story. Learn about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad.
  • VIDEO: View the Prince of Egypt.

 


 

Overview and Background Information:

 

Theme:

God is with us! God sees, hears, knows, remembers and acts!

Scripture References:

Exodus 1-4:31


Memory Verse:

“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14

Our series on Moses...
This is the first in a series of four rotations on the life of Moses.
Rotation #1 Moses’ birth and early life including his rescue from the Nile, his education in Pharaoh’s court, his flight from Egypt to Midian, shepherd life, his call from God (Burning Bush experience) and his return to Egypt.
Rotation #2 - Plagues and Passover – and Escape from Egypt
Rotation #3 - 10 Commandments
Rotation #4 - Wandering in the Wilderness – Ark of Covenant. (posted at http://rotation.infopop.cc/eve...96068121/m/144107469)

Objectives and Life Application:

  • Children will locate the story in their Bible.
  • Children will retell the story in their own words.
  • Children will identify the book of Exodus as a book of Law (3-6 grades).
  • Children will identify: Moses, Miriam, Jochebed, Aaron, Pharaoh, prophet.
  • Children will recognize that God is with us always, in good times and bad.
  • Children will recognize that God helps us with problems.
  • Children will learn to call on God to help them do the right thing even when it is hard.
  • Children will learn that God is dependable and keeps his promises.
  • Children will understand that God uses all kinds of people to do his work in the world.
  • Children will understand that through God all things are possible!
  • Children will locate the following areas on the map: Egypt, Nile River, Midian, Mt. Horeb/Sinai.
  • Children will describe ways they can hear God’s voice today.
  • Children will memorize Psalm 94:14.

 

Background Information:


The epic story of Moses is central to Israel’s identity. It is foundational to our faith as well. For Christians it begins the description of God’s ultimate plan of salvation. It is a great story of the Providence of God. There is much that foreshadows the coming of Christ as the true deliverer! Older children can begin to see this, especially later in the rotation and in subsequent rotations as we discuss the Passover and the wanderings in the wilderness. Because this is such a HUGE story, we will spend several rotations studying it. During this first rotation we will explore Moses’ birth during a time of great persecution and slaughter of Hebrew babies including his ironic rescue by Pharaoh’s daughter herself, his flight from Egypt to Midian, his life as a shepherd and his dramatic call from God through the burning bush.

The book of Exodus is the second book of the Old Testament, a book of Law, traditionally written by Moses himself or at the very least based on his writings and stories. The dating of the events are placed between 1450 and 1200 BC, depending on the sources read. Exodus means “going out.” The book of Exodus tells the story of how the Hebrew descendants of Joseph were delivered from slavery in Egypt. It tells of the dramatic confrontation between the God of the Hebrews and the ruler of Egypt. This book initiates the special relationship between God and the Hebrews as a people. The Hebrews now have an identity as a special “nation” led by God.

A dominant theme throughout the book of Exodus is God wins! God is greater than any human-made god – or any god-like ruler such as Pharaoh. We see that God has a great and ultimate plan – of salvation and delivery for the Hebrews and all people. The book gives us a profound insight into the nature of God, his presence, his glory, his character of mercy, justice, truthfulness, faithfulness and holiness. We discover that God is a God who sees, hears, knows and remembers!

Exodus 1:1-22 – Rise of Egyptian Oppression and History of the Time.
There is great debate among scholars about the dates of the Hebrew sojourn in Egypt and the Exodus. The Bible does not give the Pharaoh’s individual names, making it difficult to determine exactly which ruler reigned during this time. Historians have traditionally believed the Pharaohs of the Exodus period were Seti I (1308-1290 B.C.) and his son Rameses II (1290-1224 B.C.) Newer archaeological investigation suggests that the Exodus might have taken place much earlier, during the reign of Ahmose or Amenhotep I(~1500-1450 B.C.). The two major events of this period were the series of spectacular cataclysms and the mass departure of a large group of people. There is no historical evidence that either of these events occurred during the later reigns. However, there is evidence for both earlier during Ahmose’s rule (or possibly Amenhotep I who followed Ahmose). A massive volcanic eruption on the Aegean island of Thera brought profound environmental and climatic changes to Egypt and a series of unprecedented disasters (plagues?). The Egyptian chronicler writes, “The Hyksos were defeated, driven out of all the rest of Egypt, and confined in a place called Avaris… [Later] no fewer than 240,000 entire households with their possessions left Egypt and traversed the desert to Syria.” This possible timeline is below:

2000 B.C. Egyptian Middle Kingdom
1870-1800 B.C. evidence for fluctuations in Nile leading to changes in ownership of land – given to kings (described in Genesis during Joseph’s leadership)
Joseph appointed Egypt’s highest official
Joseph’s family settles in Egypt’s Nile Delta in area of Goshen

1700 B.C. 2nd Intermediate Period
Semitic Asiatics tribes called Hyksos overrun Egypt, beginning in the Delta area. Establish Avaris as capital in Nile Delta (this city later becomes known as Ramesses)
Joseph and his family grow in numbers during this time.

1600 B.C. New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty
1550-1525 B.C. Pharaoh Ahmose reigns. He re-establishes Egyptian rule by conquering Avaris and enslaving the Hyksos who did not escape.
A huge mud-brick fortress is built in Avaris using slave labor.
A “new king” who had never heard of Joseph imposes slavery on the Hebrews.
A massive volcanic eruption on the island of Thera in the Aegean Sea sends ash and pumice to northern Egypt.
Avaris/Ramesses is abandoned.
? Moses and the Hebrews are allowed to leave Egypt.

The Bible account tells us that when Joseph’s family arrived in Egypt, they settled into an area in the west Nile delta, called Goshen. They multiplied in numbers until they reached an estimated two million! The rulers worried that the great Hebrew population would join forces with Egypt’s enemies and revolt. The first act of oppression was to enslave the adult males. Forced labor was not uncommon at this time, but tended to be seasonal. The enslavement of the Hebrews soon became a bitter, full-time subjection. This provided a steady source of free labor for the great Egyptian building projects. The Hebrews spent their days making bricks from clay, straw and water. Despite enslavement, the Hebrews continued to grow in numbers. Then Pharaoh ordered the Hebrew midwives to kill all Hebrew male babies at birth. This plan failed when the midwives revolted and refused to obey. Instead, they told Pharaoh that the Hebrew women were too vigorous and strong – they gave birth before the midwives arrived! The third and most vicious plan of destruction was next: Egyptian officials were ordered to throw newborn Hebrew boys into the Nile River. This is the setting in which Moses was born.

Exodus 2:1-10 – Birth, Rescue and Early Life of Moses.
Moses was from the tribe of Levi. His mother, Jochebed, gave birth to Moses and hid him for three months. When she was no longer able to hide him, she prepared a basket from bundles of dried papyrus (bulrushes), coated with pitch and placed him in the Nile. She appointed her daughter Miriam to watch and see what happened to the baby. Pharaoh’s daughter discovered and rescued the baby, realizing that he was a Hebrew child and having compassion on him. In God-style irony, she then hired the baby’s true mother to nurse the child! It is important to point out how God used these Old Testament women. At a time in history when women were often without rights and importance, these women: the midwives, Jochebed, Miriam, and Pharaoh’s daughter showed great courage.

After the child was weaned he was taken to live in Pharaoh’s court and adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter. There he was named “Moses.” The name Moses was a common Egyptian name meaning “son,” “boy,” or “is born.” The closest Hebrew translation of “Moses” was “to draw out” since he had been drawn out of the water. In the ancient near east, one’s name conveyed the essence of a person’s identity. Moses was “drawn out” of the water as a baby, but he would later “draw out” his people through the water as an adult!

Moses had the best of both worlds. As an infant he had been placed with his mother to be nursed and steeped in Hebrew tradition and life. As a youth, he lived in Pharaoh’s court, experiencing the best in education and culture. Most likely Moses was trained as a scribe, in the arts of battle and in foreign languages. But Moses never lost his true identity as a Hebrew.

Exodus 2:15-22 – Moses Flees to Midian.
It is possible that Moses was tallying the number of completed bricks when he viewed the Egyptian overseer beating the Hebrew slave. Moses lost his temper and in a fit of violent rage killed the Egyptian. When Pharaoh discovers his act of treason, he seeks to kill Moses. Moses flees into the desert, traveling to the land of Midian. Midian was a land of semi-nomadic tribes, located to the east of the Gulf of Aquaba. Here Moses meets Jethro and marries his daughter Zipporah. They start a family and Moses settles in to life as a quiet shepherd of Jethro’s large flocks. Some scholars believe Moses stayed in Midian for 40 years. There he lived in relative comfort and isolation, safe from the armies of Pharaoh and away from the suffering of his fellow Hebrews.

The life of a shepherd is a lonely existence. During these many years of isolation and solitude, Moses must have had a great deal of time alone for meditation. Wilderness experiences have long been times of reflection, testing and preparation. Such was the case for Moses. Moses needed to know how to control his temper for the task God had in store for him. He needed to submit his will to God’s will. For Moses was about to become the shepherd of much more than sheep! He was about to become the shepherd of a group of some 2-3 million Hebrews!

Exodus 2:23-25 – God is going to act!
The conclusion of the second chapter brings us to a great climax! The Pharaoh who knew Moses is dead. The people groan and cry out in their misery. God sees. God hears. God KNOWS. God remembers his covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! (The Hebrew word translated in this text actually means “paid attention to".  God is going to act! Today, we understand that the God who cared and “paid attention to” the Hebrews in their anguish is there for all who suffer or are in bondage.

Exodus 3:1-10 – The Call!
Moses has been living a satisfied and contented life. Although he no doubt felt compassion for his people’s suffering, would this compassion alone have been enough to lead him to act? If so, why did it take 40 years for Moses to do something? One day Moses takes his father-in-law’s flocks to pasture on the sacred mountain – Mt. Horeb (felt by most scholars to be the same as Mt. Sinai). This mountain had been considered sacred from ancient times. While there, Moses sees an incredible sight. A bush appears to be burning. Moving closer, he discovers that the flames are not consuming the bush! Then he hears a voice coming from the bush. “Moses! Moses!” (In Hebrew literature, calling a name twice signifies intimacy – this is the God of personal relationships!) Fire is associated with God’s presence throughout the Bible and particularly in the Old Testament. Moses is warned not to come closer, for the ground is holy. Rabbi Steve Sager ( reference ) explains that Moses does not need to move any further to reach holy ground. He is standing on holy ground right now. “In other words, Moses is just fine where he is (and, as we will see later, as he is).” God then identifies himself – “I am the God of your father… of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” I have seen, I have heard, I know, I am concerned, I will deliver them, I will send. God’s words are active and forceful! God is calling out the new nation of Israel from their bondage so that they can serve and worship God! Before the Exodus, the people were known as Hebrews; after they were called Israel!

Moses removes his sandals and hides his face in reverence to a holy God.

Exodus 3:11-4:17 – The Excuses!
In one of the longest and most amazing conversations between God and man in the Bible, God reveals his plan to Moses. Moses listens but his anxiety level rises…and the excuses begin. Isn’t it interesting to see the reluctance of this great giant of the faith? God’s perseverance and patience shows that he is willing to work with Moses (and us!) just as he is – to bolster his weaknesses, to help him throughout the journey. God once again, chooses unlikely people to do his work! Moses offers the following excuses:

  1. Who am I? I’m just a nobody shepherd, out here minding my own business. Perhaps at one time, while still in Pharaoh’s court, I had some influence, but now? What Moses fails to see is that his identity is more than who he was – God has been preparing him for 40 years for this task. God has used these years in the wilderness to deal with Moses’ pride and his temper, forming him into the kind of humble leader who looks to God for guidance. God’s response to Moses’ first excuse is, “I will be with you.” Moses is now “God with you.” He is not alone.
  2. Who are You? Tell me your name. What are your credentials? Remember, in Moses’ understanding, to know one’s name gives knowledge of one’s nature. It also was thought to give power over the other. Pagan gods never revealed their names because of this reason. But God is a personal God. He answers, “Yahweh.” Yahweh is the Hebrew name for God. Elohim is the word for God. God is personal – he has a name! The name Yahweh is written in Hebrew YHWH without vowels. The Jewish people believe the name of God is too holy to be spoken. This is usually translated into English as LORD. The root of the word comes from the verb “to be.” Thus this text is often translated, “I AM” or “I AM WHO I AM” or “I WILL BE WHO I WILL BE.” (Isn’t it interesting to think about the many times Jesus used the phrase “I AM” as he was describing himself!) The verb can also mean “to blow, sustain or maintain” which connotes God as Creator and Sustainer. In addition, God responds to Moses – I am the God of your father, of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This is the God of the Hebrew people -- the God who made those promises long ago – to God who does not forget his promises!
  3. But what if they don’t believe me? God gives Moses three miraculous signs to use to convince the Hebrews that he is God’s messenger:

    a. Rod becomes a snake – In Egypt the rod was a symbol of authority. The snake was a symbol of Pharaoh – a snake was typically used as a decoration on their headpieces.

    b. Hand becomes leprous like snow - leprosy was often viewed in Old Testament times as a punishment for pride

    c. Water from the Nile will turn to blood – Egypt’s prosperity depended on the Nile.
  4. But, God… I’m not good enough at speaking… Moses tells God that he is not a good speaker…although he ertainly has no trouble arguing with God up to this point! God’s response: I will be with you. I will tell you what to say. I will give you the right words.
  5. Please, God, send someone else… God agrees to send Aaron, Moses’ brother, to be his spokesperson. God will speak to Moses and Moses will speak to Aaron. Aaron will tell the people what Moses says.


Exodus 4:18-31 – Moses Returns to Egypt.
We conclude this rotation with Moses’ journey back to Egypt. He meets up with Aaron and is successful at convincing the Hebrews about God’s plan. The Hebrews rejoice and worship together!

Discussion Topics:

  • Hearing God’s Call

There are some important life application points to make with the children. The Bible is full of examples of God speaking to his people in dramatic ways – burning bushes, dreams and visions, angel visitations, in clouds of smoke and pillars of fire… How do we hear God’s call today? How do we listen for God’s word in our own lives? Be sure the children understand that God is with us today, just as he was for Moses. He still speaks today! God’s voice is heard in many different ways:

  • Bible
  • Preaching
  • Worship
  • hymns, music in worship
  • Sunday school – G.R.E.A.T. Adventure and Wednesday night programs
  • Retreats
  • Sacraments – baptism and communion
  • Prayer
  • Dreams
  • Visions
  • Conscience (the “still small voice within us") – whenever we ask ourselves, “What is the right thing to do?”

 

  • Making Excuses

Why do we make excuses? What prevents us from answering God’s call? Why do we resist when we know what we should do? We often make excuses to avoid responsibility or because of fear. Talk about who felt fear in this story. The Hebrews – when their babies were being killed. Who showed courage? (the midwives – who refused to kill the babies, Jochebed – who devised a plan to save her baby, even Pharaoh’s daughter who risked defying Pharaoh’s law to save a powerless Hebrew baby) Help the children understand that God helps us to act with courage even when we are afraid. (Recall the story of Esther and her courage despite her fear – her prayers and faith helped her). God helps us through our experiences. God will use everything that happens to us to help us grow. Gradually we grow in our ability to be more and more responsible. God is with us when we face challenges and obstacles. God wants us to choose the right path, to do the right thing. Sometimes this may mean standing up to others or going against the flow. Sometimes we may be afraid. But God is with us. He sees, he hears, he knows, he remembers, he acts!

  • God’s Plan (Providence)

Why would a loving and merciful God allow his people to be enslaved for 400 years in Egypt in the first place? During this time, the Promised Land was a huge battlefield with great hordes of conquering armies moving across the land. What would have happened to a tiny band of people in that situation? Instead, God allowed the Hebrews to be safe in Egypt, to grow and multiply. Even during their slavery and suffering, God was at work – accomplishing his plan. (Remind the children of Romans 8:28 – All things work together for good to those who love God who are called according to His purpose.)

  • Our Abilities and Our Limitations

God has given each of us different talents and abilities. God wants us to use those abilities to do good in the world, to do what God wants us to do. When God calls us to do something, he equips us with the abilities needed to do the job. Just as God equipped Moses, God will equip us with what we need! When God gives us an opportunity we should take advantage of it! Our experiences will help us grow. On the other hand, we all have limitations. God wants us to understand what we can and cannot do. God wants us to be willing to accept his help. Sometimes God will use our weaknesses to help us do something very much greater than we could have ever done on our own. (Just like he did with Moses!)

  • Accept Discipline

God does not like pride. God wants us to be humble and willing to obey. We have to face the consequences of our actions – Moses had to leave his home because he lost his temper and killed the Egyptian. Moses spent 40 years in the Midian wilderness as a result of this rash action.

  • Sometimes we are Disappointed

God has not promised that the Christian life will be free of pain, suffering or disappointment. God often uses difficulties and hardships in our lives to prepare us for service later on. (just like being a shepherd in the wilderness prepared Moses) God has promised to be with us always, to lead us and guide us and to love us forever!

Words to Know:
Pharaoh: Egyptian ruler or king. The name Pharaoh comes from an Egyptian word per-aa which means “great house.” The Egyptians believed that Pharaohs were descended from the sun god Re. They were considered to have absolute power!


Prophet: messenger of God, a special person chosen by God to bring an important message to the people.


Sources:
Schoville, Keith. Cokesbury Basic Bible Commentary – Exodus and Leviticus. Graded Press, 1988.
Invitation Bible Studies. Graded Press, 1989, 1992.
Richards, Laurence O. Bible Teacher’s Commentary. CO: Cook Communications Ministries, 2002.
Kirk of Kildaire Presbyterian Church – Faith Quest Leader’s Bible Study. http://www.kirkofkildaire.org
Napier, David. Layman’s Bible Commentary. Atlanta:John Knox Press, 1963.
Murphy, Michaela. Egypt – Exploring Ancient Civilizations. Carthage IL: Teaching and Learning, 2002.
Walton, John and Victor Matthews and Mark Chavalas. IVP Bible Background Commentary – Old Testament. IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000.
Disciple: Into the Word Into the World Study Manual. Nashville: Cokesbury, 1991.
Wilson, Ian. The Bible is History. Washington DC: Regnery Publishing, 1999.
Nelson’s Complete Book of Bible Maps and Charts. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1993.


Important Workshop Teacher Notes:
Each workshop begins with the Bible story. One of the primary goals is to improve the children’s Bible literacy! If children did not bring their Bibles form home, use the classroom Bibles. Shepherds should help the children locate the stories. Use the handout “Helping Children Learn to use their Bibles” and Background information to help you introduce the story.

** Remember, that as the rotation progresses, the children will become familiar with the story. When this happens, allow the children to tell you what they know. The children should still locate the story in their Bibles every week. Use the bold headings in their Bibles to guide your discussion. You can then fill in any missing information and add additional details using the Background information. One of the greatest advantages of this model is that the children who come regularly learn the story in great depth.


 

A lesson set from State Street United Methodist Church
Bristol, Virginia

 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source.

 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

 

Original Post

Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Art Workshop 

Summary of Lesson Activities:
The children will begin work on a mosaic tabletop. The table will be on ongoing project for three of the Moses rotations and will portray different aspects of his life. While others are taking their turn at the table, the children will draw their own pictures, which they feel describe this part of Moses’ life. 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Advanced Preparation and Room Set-Up:

  • Review background information, teaching tips and lesson materials.
  • Gather necessary supplies- see activity list.
  • Table - We used an old small classroom table as the base of our table.
  • Cut a section of thin plywood, to fit the table top and screw it onto the table using wood screws.
  • Images and information about mosaics. Do an internet search and print out some examples for the children to see.
  • Write the memory verse on the board in the room
  • Review the Music CD. Plan to play the music as the children arrive, work on their art projects and during journaling.

Supplies List:

  • Music CD
  • Mosaic images
  • Plywood
  • Wood Screws
  • Glass tile/pieces for the mosaic, separated by color
  • Mosaic tile glue
  • hand wipes or tubs of soapy water
  • Paper towels
  • Mosaic design sketched with pencil onto a thin piece of plywood previously prepared - we did three sections.
  • Construction paper, cut in half (5.5 X 8.5 inches, colored construction paper pieces (this is a good way to use up scraps, scissors, glue


Time guidelines:
Welcome and introductions: 5 minutes
Bible Study: 15 minutes
Mosaic table/coloring pictures: 30 minutes
Journals/closing: 10 minutes



Lesson Plan 

Opening:
Welcome all children and introduce yourself. Make sure each child is wearing a nametag. Give the children a simple one or two sentence synopsis of what you will be doing during the workshop. 

Prayer:
Dear Lord, Thank you for this beautiful day- for our friends and families. Thank you for our safety and security. As we work together on our project, help us to recognize and appreciate the different gifts that you have given each one of us, as well as the ability to share them here today. Amen. 

Dig:

Introduce the Story: Exodus 1-4:31
The story of Moses is one of the most important stories in the Bible. We are going to spend several months learning about Moses and his many adventures. We’ll see how God used him to help save his people. Moses lived a long time before Jesus did, during the time of the Pharaohs in Egypt.

Define:
Pharaoh: Egyptian ruler or king. The name Pharaoh comes from an Egyptian word per-aa which means “great house.” The Egyptians believed that Pharaohs were descended from the sun god Re. They were considered to have absolute power!

Where would we find this story in the Bible, in the Old Testament or the New Testament? (Old Testament) The story of Moses begins in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Exodus is the second book of the Bible. The name Exodus means “going out.” (note the EX in Exodus, like Exit). It tells the story of how God’s people went out of Egypt. Let’s find the story in our Bibles now.

Have the children locate the story in their Bibles.

Grades 1-2:
Help the children locate the story “Slaves in Egypt” on page 40 in The Little Kids' Adventure Bible. Read as the children follow along. Next read “The story of Moses” on page 40-41. Stop when you come to “Moses grew up.” Paraphrase the rest of the story. Later Moses was forced to leave Egypt when he killed an Egyptian. He ran away to a land called Midian where he was a shepherd. He lived there for 40 years. One day Moses saw an amazing sight. He saw a bush burning. God spoke to Moses from the bush and told him to go back to Egypt and lead the Hebrew people out of Egypt. God gave Moses miraculous signs to do to help convince the people about God’s message. Moses had many excuses why he shouldn’t do what God wanted, but eventually he did go back.
Read and discuss the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 37
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 41
People in Bible Times: Moses page 42

Grades 3-6:
Exodus 1 -2:10 – Birth, Rescue and Early Life of Moses.
Help the children locate Exodus 1 in their Bibles. Read Exodus 1-2:10 as the children follow along. Paraphrase the rest of the story using the Bible headings or the above paraphrase for Grades 1-2.
Read and discuss the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 52
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 65
People in Bible Times: Moses page 66

Conclusion (All Grades):
The Hebrew people had been in Egypt for 400 years. At first they were welcomed there but as they grew in numbers, the Egyptian people became afraid and made the Hebrews into slaves. Their lives were bitter and hard. But God had not forgotten them. God saw their hardships and felt their pain. Our memory verse for this rotation reminds us that no matter what happens to us, God is with us. He will never leave us.

Memory Verse: Each rotation we ask the children to memorize one scripture verse. Review the memory verse with the children at this time. “The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14

Moses Mosaic Table
Children will work together as a group to create a tabletop mosaic of Moses’ life.

Supplies Needed:

  • Glass tile/pieces for the mosaic, separated by color
  • Mosaic tile glue
  • hand wipes or tubs of soapy water
  • Paper towels
  • Mosaic design sketched with pencil onto a thin piece of plywood previously prepared - we did three sections.
  • For this rotation, children worked on the first section which included three images: the burning bush, baby Moses in a basket in the reeds and a shepherd's crook. (see postscript below about our design!)


Preparation:
Set out supplies
Cover tables with old tablecloths.

Directions:

  1. Explain the project to the children - we will make a mosaic table top about the life of Moses. We'll work on it over the next few months as we learn more about Moses.
  2. Ask if the children have heard or or seen a mosaic.
  3. Explain that mosaic art is a very ancient art form, using small pieces of pottery, glass, stone or other material to form a larger picture.
  4. Show some of the pictures of mosaics you have brought.
  5. Point out the use of color, shading and shapes to create a design. Note the contrast of the background to the image/picture.
  6. Call the children up to work on the mosaic two or three at a time - those not working on the mosaic will choose an image to draw from the story.
  7. Divide the amount of time children can work on the mosaic based on the number of children in each group and the number of sessions you have.
  8. Show the children how to select sizes and colors of glass pieces to fill in the images drawn on the table top, beginning first with the sketched images, then filling in the background. The designs will show up better if the background is done in one solid color (learned this the hard way).
  9. Glue the glass pieces to the board. Use just enough glue to cover the glass piece, but not so much that it oozes up around the glass.
  10.  Children should leave at least 1/8 to 1/4 inch space between the glass pieces for grout.
  11. While they await their turns, have the children work on their individual Moses’ pictures.
  12. Children who finish early may work on journals.


Option: You could have your older children meet in this workshop first - or this could be an extra activity outside of class. Have them work individually and then together to design a panel that reflects this stage of Moses' life -- as a baby and his call from God.
Then the design could be traced onto the wooden panel, before the next session.

Individual Moses Mosaics
Children will create a paper mosaic of a time in Moses’ life.

Supplies:

  • Construction paper, cut in half (5.5 X 8.5 inches, colored construction paper pieces (this is a good way to use up scraps, scissors, glue


Directions:

  1. Discuss with the children the images that reflect Moses' life.
  2. Give each of the children a sheet of construction paper.
  3. Have them sketch out a simple outline on the paper that reflects a part of Moses' life. The image should large enough to almost fill their paper.
  4. Show the children how to tear the paper into pieces. Paper has a grain and will tear in a straight line in one direction.
  5. Have children glue the torn pieces onto their paper, filling in their outline.
  6. Background may be filled in or left blank.
  7. Take pictures of their finished mosaics!


Modification for younger children:
Draw some simple shapes ahead of time onto card stock or poster board. Have them trace around the patterns onto their paper.
Some possibilities: Basket (in the river),reeds by the river, burning bush, staff, sheep.

Finishing the Mosaic Table
To finish the table, allow the glue to dry for at least 24 hours. Scrape off any glue that oozed onto the top of the glass. Choose a grout color that complements your design (we used a medium tan color). Mix the grout according to package directions or use premixed grout. Apply using a grout float, pushing the grout into all the spaces between the mosaic pieces. Allow grout to sit for a few minutes (check the package for specific times). Fill a bucket with water and wet a large sponge. Wipe off the excess grout, rinsing your sponge in the bucket often. (do not rinse in the sink!) Continue until all the excess grout has been removed. Allow to dry for several hours, then polish the grout haze off the mosaic using a soft cloth or towel. Enjoy your beautiful mosaic table!

Reflection and Journal Time:
The last ten minutes should be reserved for journal time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pens/pencils. Place the journal question sticker for the day in each journal. Memory verse stickers are also in the children's journals. Children may copy the memory verse and illustrate it as an alternative to journal questions.

Discuss:
Moses must have seemed like a very special person. He was a beautiful baby, saved in a dramatic way and raised as a prince in the Egyptian court.
Ask: I wonder if Moses thought he would do great things for God when he lived with Pharaoh…
Moses took matters into his own hands when he killed the Egyptian. God had an important plan for Moses’ life, but Moses needed to learn some important lessons first. Moses spent 40 years in the desert as an ordinary shepherd. Shepherds live a lonely life with lots of time to think. Moses certainly didn’t think of himself as a prince anymore.
Ask: I wonder what Moses thought about during those 40 years…
Ask: I wonder if he thought about life back in Egypt…

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: Draw a picture of Moses when he was living as a shepherd. What do you think he was thinking about?
Grades 3-6: When Moses was a shepherd he probably had lots of time to think. When do you do your best thinking? Are you alone or with others? What do you think Moses thought about when he was in Midian? 

Reflection:

Prayer: Gather all the children together in a circle. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Pharaoh, fear, trust, faithfulness) Encourage them to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite their friends. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and close in prayer.
 


Postscript: This was a pretty involved project. We kept the materials out for the entire four months, in a corner of our art classroom. The kids enjoyed working on it before class began and often begged parents to let them stay late to continue working on it. It would be a fun thing to do if you have an extended time or for a special event, maybe an intergenerational activity, even. It's nice because the finished table really tells the story of Moses from baby in the basket to the ten commandments.

We have discovered over the years that SIMPLE mosaic designs work best. This design really had too much detail. And it's definitely better to have the contrast of a simpler background, rather than having the kids use a hodge-podge of colors of glass. I will see if I can find some pictures, but this was done a LONG time ago!


A lesson from State Street UMC
Bristol VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Computer Workshop 

Summary of Lesson Activities:
The main focus of this workshop is on God’s call to Moses. Children will use Bible software "ILumina" to explore the life of Moses. They will write a paragraph (or sentence for 1-2 graders) about Moses’ experience with the burning bush using software such as "Word" (moderator recommends "Kid Pix Deluxe 4"), Bible Clipart CD that include pictures of Moses (see Sunday Software's website for Bible Clipart CDs). 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31 

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Preparation and Room Set Up:

  • Review the Background Information, Teaching Tips and Lesson plan.
  • Preview the software prior to teaching.
  • Software Needed:  ILumina Bible CD.
  • Turn on computers, insert CDs and open programs at each computer station before class.
  • Make copies of the Navigation tips and Handouts for each computer station.

Supplies List:

  • Computer Software
  • Handouts


Time Guidelines:
Introductions/Opening Prayer: 5 minutes
Bible Study - Introduction: 10 minutes
Computer Exploration: 10 minutes
Story Discussion: 10 minutes
Illustrating the Story: 20 minutes
Reflection/Closing Prayer: 5 minutes

Notes for Computer Workshop Leaders:
This workshop can always use extra hands, especially for the younger children. Ask the shepherds to sit with the children at a computer station and help with navigation, reading text and discussion. At the 10:45 session, use your shepherds and the 5-6 grade helpers. You might also want to pair older students with younger ones. As much as possible, try to sit with your students as you go through the software together. The lesson is not what’s on the computer. It’s what you and the students do with what’s on the computer. Guide your students through the content, share yourself and facilitate their sharing with each other. Model your enthusiasm for the Word of God. Please make sure that children take turns at the mouse and keyboard. If necessary, use the timer in the room to help the children switch roles.



Lesson Plan 

Opening:
Gather the children together at the large center table with their Bibles. Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Always begin each class with introductions. Remember that workshop leaders rotate often and the children may not know you.

Prayer:
Pray something like this: “Dear Loving and Powerful God, Thank you for this day and for all the people who are here today. We thank you especially for the story of Moses and how you showed him your great power and faithfulness. Help us to remember that you are always with us, in good times and bad. Thank you for loving us. In Jesus’ name, AMEN. 

Dig:

Introduce the Story: Exodus 1-4:31
The story of Moses is one of the most important stories in the Bible. We are going to spend several months learning about Moses and his many adventures. We’ll see how God used him to help save his people. Moses lived a long time before Jesus did, during the time of the Pharaohs in Egypt.

What was a Pharaoh? (an Egyptian ruler or king. The name Pharaoh comes from an Egyptian word per-aa which means “great house.” The Egyptians believed that Pharaohs were descended from the sun god Re. They were considered to have absolute power!)

Where would we find this story in the Bible, in the Old Testament or the New Testament? (Old Testament) The story of Moses begins in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Exodus is the second book of the Bible. The name Exodus means “going out.” (note the EX in Exodus, like Exit). This Bible book tells the story of how God’s people went out of Egypt. Let’s find the story in our Bibles now.

Have the children locate the story in their Bibles.

Grades 1-2:
“Slaves in Egypt” and “The Story of Moses” pages 40-44, in The Little Kids’ Adventure Bible. Use the headings in the children’s Bibles or the guide below to briefly paraphrase the story describing how the Hebrews became slaves. Stop after Moses flees to Midian. The children will explore the rest of the story using computer software.

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt. Long ago, the Hebrew people’s ancestor, Joseph, was sold by his brothers and brought to Egypt. During a famine, the brothers came to Egypt to seek food. Joseph’s brothers and their family stayed in Egypt and were reunited with him there. The Hebrews grew in numbers and a new Pharaoh came into power. He enslaved the Hebrews and forced them to work hard making bricks for the buildings of Egypt. But the number of Hebrews continued to grow and the Egyptians were worried…. They were afraid that the Hebrews would take over. So, they ordered the Hebrew baby boys to be killed by throwing them into the Nile River.
  • Moses is Born. During this time, a Hebrew baby boy was born. His mother, Jochebed, hid him for three months. When she was no longer able to hide him, she put him in a basket made of bulrushes or papyrus and set it in the Nile River. The baby was rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter and he grew up in the palace of the Pharaoh.
  • Moses Escapes to Midian. Moses grew up in Pharaoh’s palace, but he never forgot that he was a Hebrew. One day he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew slave. Moses killed the Egyptian and then ran away because he was afraid. He excaped to Midian, a land away from Egypt in Arabia. There he became a shepherd and married a woman named Zipporah. He lived in Midian for 40 years.

Have the children locate and review the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 37
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 41
People in Bible Times: Moses page 42

Grades 3-6:
Paraphrase the story using the headings in the children’s Bibles or the guide below. Begin with how the Hebrews came to be slaves in Egypt and stop with Moses fleeing to Midian. • (Exodus 1 – 2) The children will explore the story of the burning bush through the Bible software.

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt. Ask the children if they remember how the Hebrew people came to be in Egypt. Briefly review that many years before, their ancestor Joseph was sold by his brothers and brought to Egypt. During a famine, the brothers came to Egypt to seek food. Joseph’s brothers and their family stayed in Egypt and were reunited with him there. The Hebrews grew in numbers and a new Pharaoh came into power. He enslaved the Hebrews and forced them to work hard making bricks to build the buildings of Egypt. But the numbers of Hebrews continued to grow and the Egyptians were worried…. They feared that the Hebrews would take over. So, they ordered the Hebrew baby boys to be killed by throwing them into the Nile River.
  • Read Exodus 2:1-2:10 Moses is Born.
  • Moses Escapes to Midian. Moses grew up in Pharaoh’s palace, but he never forgot that he was a Hebrew. One day he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew slave. Moses killed the Egyptian and then ran away because he was afraid. He ran away to Midian, a land away from Egypt in Arabia. There he became a shepherd and married a woman named Zipporah. He lived in Midian for 40 years.

Have the children locate and review the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 52
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 65
People in Bible Times: Moses page 66

Conclusion (All Grades):
Moses has gone from an important prince to an ordinary shepherd. Working as a shepherd was considered one of the lowliest jobs anyone could have. Moses must have been amazed and maybe even sad at how his life had changed. After living in the Midian desert for 40 years he must have thought that any chance for him to do something important was over. But something was about to happen that would change everything once again! Let’s go to the computers now to see what happened next in Moses’ life!


God Calls Moses: Computer Exploration


Preparation, Supplies and Software:

  • ILumina Bible software – installed on computers
  • Before the children arrive, open the program and perform the first 7 navigation steps so that it is ready for viewing.

Directions:

Divide the children into pairs at the computer stations.
Have them use the headphones to listen to the narration.
Make sure the headphones are plugged into the speaker ports.


Navigation:

  1. Double click on the ILumina icon on the desktop to open the program.
  2. Click Bible.
  3. Click Go to and scroll down to Exodus.
  4. Click on the next box with the number 1 and scroll down to 3.
  5. Click go button.
  6. Animation screen will be on left hand side of screen.
  7. Click Full to enlarge the size of the animation.
  8. Click the middle single arrow to begin the animation.
  9. Make sure the volume is high enough to hear when Moses speaks. (God’s voice is quite a bit louder)
  10. Listen to the narration.
  11. Click back to exit the narration.
  12. Click on the X on the upper right hand corner to close the window.
  13. Click Exit now to exit the program.

After the children have watched the animation of Moses and the Burning Bush, bring them back to the center tables for discussion.


READ and DISCUSS the following Bible Insights (adapted from the Quick Verse Life Application Bible software). If you do not have time to discuss all of them, choose a few of them. Be sure to include the last two Insights about Moses’ excuses.
Discuss the questions following each Insight. 

Insight - Exodus 3:1
Moses’ life in Midian was certainly different than when he was an Egyptian prince! As a prince he had everything done for him; he was the famous son of an Egyptian princess. As a shepherd he had to do everything for himself; shepherds were the lowest of the low! He lived as an unknown foreigner in a strange land. What a humbling experience this must have been for Moses! But God was preparing him for leadership. Living the life of a shepherd and a wandering nomad, Moses learned about the ways of the people he would be leading. He also learned how to survive in the wilderness. Moses couldn’t appreciate this lesson, but God was getting him ready to free Israel from Pharaoh’s grasp. 

Question: Why did God let Moses go from being a prince to being a lowly shepherd? (to help Moses learn more about the people he would lead and life in the wilderness) 

Insight - Exodus 3:2
God spoke to Moses in an unexpected way: from a burning bush. When Moses saw it, he went to investigate. Sometimes God gets our attention in unexpected and unusual ways! Sometimes that might be through people, thoughts, or experiences that we have. Be willing to investigate, and be open to God’s surprises.

Question: Has God ever surprised you? 

Insight - Exodus 3:2-4
Moses saw a burning bush and spoke with God. Many people in the Bible experienced God in visible (not necessarily human) form. Abraham saw the smoking firepot and blazing torch; Jacob wrestled with a man or angel. When the slaves were freed from Egypt, God led them by pillars of cloud and fire. God made these appearances to encourage his new nation, to guide them, and to prove that he could be trusted. 

Question: How do you think the Hebrews and early Bible people felt when God came to them or spoke to them in these ways? 

Insight - Exodus 3:5-6
At God’s command, Moses removed his sandals and covered his face. Taking off his shoes was an act of reverence, showing that he was unworthy compared to God. God is our friend, but he is also our sovereign and holy Lord. To approach him frivolously shows a lack of respect and sincerity. When you come to God in worship, do you approach him casually, or do you come as though you were an invited guest before a king?


Question: How do you act when you are in worship? Do you think about God being holy and awesome?


Insight - Exodus 3:10
Moses made excuses because he didn’t think he could do the job God asked him to do. It was natural for him to feel that way. By himself Moses couldn’t do it! But God wasn’t asking Moses to work alone. He offered other resources to help (God himself, Aaron, and the ability to do miracles). God often calls us to do tasks that seem too difficult, but he doesn’t ask us to do them alone. God offers us his resources, just as he did to Moses. We should not hide behind our inadequacies, as Moses did, but look beyond ourselves to the great resources available. Then we can allow God to use our unique contributions.

Question: What is something hard you have been asked to do? What helped you? How could God help you?


Insight - Exodus 3:13-15
The Egyptians had many gods by many different names. Moses wanted to know God’s name so the Hebrew people would know exactly who had sent him to them. God called himself I AM. The letters in Hebrew spell out Yahweh, a personal name for God. By calling himself I AM, God told Moses that He was the God who always has always existed, who is now, and who will be forever! This name describes God’s eternal power and unchangeable character. In a world where values, morals, and laws change constantly, we can find stability and security in our unchanging God. The God who appeared to Moses is the same God who can live in us today. Hebrews 13:8 says God is the same “yesterday, today, and forever.” Because God’s nature is stable and trustworthy, we are free to follow and enjoy him rather than spend our time trying to figure him out.


Question: God said his name was I AM. What is it like to know a God who always was and always will be? I wonder what Moses thought about God’s name…


Insight - Exodus 3:16
God told Moses to tell the people what he saw and heard at the burning bush. Our God is a God who acts and speaks. One of the most convincing ways to tell others about God is to describe what God has done and how he has spoken to his people. If you are trying to explain God to others, you can tell what he has done for you, for people you know, or for people whose stories are told in the Bible. 

Question: What could you tell others that God has done for you? What is the memorable thing you think God did for someone in the Bible?


Insight – Exodus 4:1-13
While God was telling Moses his plans, Moses came up with a lot of excuses about why he couldn’t do what God asked. Moses actually gave God five different excuses – What were they? (If the children do not remember these excuses, have them look them up in their Bibles -- Exodus 3:11-4:17)
(Who am I, They won’t believe me, Who are YOU, I’m not good at speaking, Please send someone else) 

Question: Why do you think Moses made up so many excuses? What do you think he was really worried about? (Moses worried about what people might think – would they believe him? After all, he was just a shepherd now – no longer a prince. He worried about whether he would be able to do this great task – after all, he wasn’t a very good speaker. He worried that people wouldn’t believe that the one TRUE God had asked this.) 

It’s important to remember that whenever God asks us to do something, he leads us. He helps us. He does not desert us. That reminds me of our memory verse for this rotation. Review the memory verse with the children at this time… “The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


God Calls Moses: Illustrated Stories!

Preparation, Supplies and Software:

  • Moses graphics CD – one for each computer (find a variety of graphics showing Moses from this part of the story – use clip art CDs or download images from the internet and save these to a CD)
  • Program: Microsoft Word or other word processing program that will allow importing images (example: Kid Pix Deluxe 4).
  • Sample story to show the children
  • Copy of Question Guide and Navigation Tips – one for each computer station


Directions:

  1. Divide the children into pairs or groups of three at the five computer stations.
  2. Children will write a short paragraph (or 1-2 sentences for 1-2 graders) that tell about Moses’ experience with the burning bush.
  3. Show the children the sample story and illustration.
  4. Give each group a Question Guide with Navigation tips sheet. Tell them to answer these questions as they write their paragraph.
    a. Where was Moses?
    b. What was he doing?
    c. What did he see?
    d. What did he hear?
    e. Who spoke to him?
    f. What did the voice say?
    g. What did Moses do?
  5. After the children have written their paragraph, have them select a graphic to illustrate it. Insert the graphic into the document and center it above or below the text.
  6. Children may choose a font and size they like.
  7. Make sure that children take turns at the mouse and keyboard! If necessary, set the timer in the room and have the children switch roles when the timer goes off!

1-2 Grade Modification:
For 1-2 graders choose a specific graphic for each character and assign it to the computer group. This age group will probably need help with the insertion of the graphics and the text writing. Assign a shepherd to each group to assist with this.

3-6 Grade Modification:
If desired, the 3-6 graders can make a compilation of several photos of this event. Just make sure that they have completed their paragraph before they begin inserting the graphics.

Navigation for Story Illustrations: 

  1. Insert the Moses Graphics CD into each CD drive.
  2. Click on the Start pop-up menu on the bottom of the screen.
  3. Scroll up to Programs.
  4. Click on MS Word to open the program.
  5. Type the title of the story.
  6. Center the title.
  7. Type the text of the story – be sure to answer the questions on the Question Guide.
  8. Adjust the font and size of the text..
  9. Click Insert on top menu bar.
  10. Scroll down to Picture and across to From File.
  11. Double click Moses Rotation (D):.
  12. Click once on a picture to view a sample. Then double click on desired picture to insert the picture into the page.
  13. Adjust the size of the picture by clicking on the boxes at the corner and dragging to enlarge.
  14. Save document – Go to File at top menu bar.
  15. Click Save As – Type in Name of Character, grade level and name. (Example: Moses1-2emily.doc)
  16. Go to File at top menu bar, scroll down and click Print.
  17. Make 1 copy of each story to post on the bulletin board in the hallway. Print extra copies for the children to take home.
     

Concluding Discussion:
When all the groups are finished with their stories, bring the children back to the center table for discussion and sharing of their stories. (If stories are still printing, move around to the different computer stations to read the stories.) Wrap up the lesson by discussing some of the following questions with the children:

  • I wonder what it must have been like for Moses to go from being a favored prince to an ordinary, lonely shepherd…
  • I wonder if you have ever experienced a time of change, or being lonely…
  • I wonder what went through Moses’ mind when he saw that burning bush!
  • I wonder what Moses thought when God spoke to him….
  • I wonder how God speaks to us today….
  • I wonder if God has ever spoken to one of you….


Extra Activity:
If you have extra time, allow the children to type out the memory verse and illustrate it with one or more of the graphics from the CD. Or children may draw or write about something from the story in their journals.

Reflection: 

Prayer:
Gather the children together in a circle. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Obedience, God’s faithfulness, listening, trusting are some suggestions) Encourage children to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite their friends, especially their friends who do not belong to a church. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and pray together. You may ask one of the children to say the closing prayer, or you may pray something like this, Dear Lord, Thank you for the gift of your Bible which tells us of how you take ordinary people with ordinary gifts and talents and use them in extraordinary ways. Thank you for always being there for us. Help us to be more faithful. Help us to be the kind of people you can use to help others and to spread the good news of your love for everyone! Help us to remember that no matter what happens in our lives, YOU are in charge and you are with us. AMEN.


God Calls Moses – Illustrated Stories: Question Guide
Answer these questions in your group. Write some sentences that answer these questions and tell about Moses. When you are finished writing, pick a picture that you like and insert it.

1. Where was Moses?

2. What was he doing?

3. What did he see?

4. What did he hear?

5. Who spoke to him?

6. What did the voice say?

7. What did Moses do?


Directions:

  1. Work as a team. Be sure to take turns with the mouse and the keyboard.
  2. Click on the Start pop-up menu on the bottom of the screen.
  3. Scroll up to Programs.
  4. Click on MS Word to open the program.
  5. Type the title of the story.
  6. Center the title.
  7. Type your story – be sure to answer the questions on the Question Guide.
  8. Adjust the font and size of the text.
  9. Click Insert on top menu bar.

    Add your Picture
  10. Scroll down to Picture and across to From File.
  11. Double click Moses Rotation (D):.
  12. Click once on a picture to view a sample. Then double click on desired picture to insert the picture into the page.
  13. Adjust the size of the picture by clicking on the boxes at the corner and dragging to enlarge or make smaller.
  14. Save document – Go to File at top menu bar.
  15. Click Save As – Type in Moses, grade level and name or initials. (Example: Moses1-2emily.doc)
  16. Go to File at top menu bar, scroll down and click Print.
  17. Make 1 copy for each child and 1 copy to post on the hallway bulletin board.

 

SOURCES:

  • Life Application Bible Software

A lesson from State Street UMC
Bristol VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Cooking Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Children will create edible Moses basket treats. The main focus of this workshop is Moses’ birth and early life. 

Edible Moses Basket TreatsPhoto Courtesy Hampton United Church, Hampton, ON, Canada

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Preparation and Room Set Up:

  • Review the Background Information, Behavioral Covenant, Teaching Tips and Lesson plan.
  • Review the Music CD. Plan to play the music as the children arrive, work on their projects and during journaling.
  • Gather all necessary supplies for activities.


Supplies List:

Ingredients: For 18 "baskets":

  • 6 large shredded wheat biscuits
  • 12 oz. semisweet chocolate
  • 1 chilled sugar cookie dough roll (for a non-bake option use small bear-shaped cookies)
  • Fruit Roll ups (assorted colors)

Other Supplies:

  • Double boiler or microwave
  • Muffin pan
  • Paper muffin liners
  • teaspoon
  • Wooden spoon
  • Flour
  • Knife
  • Baking sheet
  • Toothpicks
  • Cutting board
  • Circle cookie cutter


Important Note for Cooking Workshop Leaders:
Children LOVE to cook and create various concoctions in this workshop. But occasionally the cooking activity does not have as obvious or concrete a connection with the lesson as do some of the other activities. Help the children make that connection by intentionally discussing the way the activity relates to the lesson of the day. Discuss during preparation, eating and clean-up times.

ALLERGY NOTE: If you have anyone with a Peanut allergy check ingredient labels to make sure nuts and nut oils are not included in any cooking activities!!

Time Guidelines:
Welcome and Introductions: 5 minutes
Prepare Moses Babies: 5 minutes (do the Bible study while babies bake in the oven)
Bible Study: 15 minutes
Make Baby Moses "Baskets": 30 minutes
Reflection/Closing: 5 minutes


Lesson Plan 

Opening:

NOTE: As children arrive, direct them to the table to roll out the bodies of the Moses' babies from cookie dough. If this is the first week in the rotation, explain that the story today will be about a special baby.

Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Make sure everyone is wearing a name tag. Tell the children that they will be making edible baby Moses baskets. They will be learning about baby Moses, his growing up and how God called him to do an important job.

Prayer:
Loving God,
We thank you for today and this time we share with You. We thank you for our families, friends and teachers. Teach us, dear God, to hear your call and to follow you. In Jesus Christ’s name, Amen 

Dig: 

  1. Give each child a quarter-sized piece of cookie dough. Have them mold it into a baby shape (head and body).
  2. Place the babies on parchment lined baking pans and mark the children's names with pencil next to their cookie.
  3. Bake the babies according to package directions. Have the shepherd keep a close eye on them so they do not burn.
  4. While cookie babies are baking:

Introduce the Story: (Exodus 1-4:31)
Do you remember how the Hebrew people arrived in Egypt? The Bible tells us that Joseph's family came searching for food because there was a famine (no food) in their land. Their brother, Joseph, whom they had sold to Egyptians as a slave, was now second in command in Egypt. Joseph’s family grew and grew until there were nearly 2 million of them! They were called Hebrews. Today’s story is about a man named Moses, an ancestor of Joseph. He was born in Egypt and lived many years before Jesus was born.
Where would we find his story in the Bible? (Old Testament).
The story of Moses is found in the book of Exodus. Exodus means “going out.” Later on, we will see how Moses helped the Hebrews “go out” or EXIT Egypt. Let’s find out what the Bible says about Moses.

Grades 1-2:
Help the children locate the story “Slaves in Egypt” on page 40 in The Little Kids' Adventure Bible. Read as the children follow along. Next read “The story of Moses” on page 40-41. Stop when you come to “Moses grew up.” Paraphrase the rest of the story. Later Moses was forced to leave Egypt when he killed an Egyptian. He ran away to a land called Midian where he was a shepherd. He lived there for 40 years. One day Moses saw an amazing sight. He saw a bush burning. God spoke to Moses from the bush and told him to go back to Egypt and lead the Hebrew people out of Egypt. God gave Moses miraculous signs to do to help convince the people about God’s message. Moses had many excuses why he shouldn’t do what God wanted, but eventually he did go back.
Read and discuss the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 37
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 41
People in Bible Times: Moses page 42

Grades 3-6:
Exodus 1 -2:10 – Birth, Rescue and Early Life of Moses.
Help the children locate Exodus 1 in their Bibles. Read Exodus 1-2:10 as the children follow along. Paraphrase the rest of the story using the Bible headings or the above paraphrase for Grades 1-2.
Read and discuss the following Bible notes:
Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 52
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 65
People in Bible Times: Moses page 66 

Discussion (All Grades):
If time is growing short, discuss some of the following as the children are working on the cooking activity. 

Hebrew Wives
Discuss the bravery of the Hebrew midwives in resisting Pharaoh’s order to kill the babies when they were born. 

  • Why did Pharaoh order this evil thing? (there were too many Hebrews, slavery had not cut down their numbers enough, he worried that the Hebrews would take over Egypt)

SAY: This plan failed when the midwives revolted and refused to obey. Instead, they told Pharaoh that the Hebrew women were too vigorous and strong – they gave birth before the midwives arrived!

(the children may not know what midwives are – explain that in Bible times – and many places today – women did not go to hospitals to have babies. Specially trained women helped the mothers as they were having their babies). 

The midwives were smart enough and brave enough to figure out a way around the Pharaoh’s order. They did what they knew was right, even though it went against the Pharaoh’s law! They followed God’s law! It’s interesting that the Bible tells us the names of these two midwives, but it doesn’t tell us the name of the Pharaoh.
  • Why do you think that is?
  • I wonder what the Hebrews thought about what the midwives did?
  • I wonder what God thought about the Hebrew midwives’ bravery?

 

Jochebed 

Next Pharaoh ordered all the Hebrew baby boys to be thrown into the Nile River. Moses’ mother, Jochebed, was very brave too.

  • What did Jochebed do?  (hid the baby for 3 months, then put him in a basket made of papyrus or bulrushes and put the basket in the Nile)

Jochebed was willing to give up her baby because she wanted so badly for him to be able to live. She didn’t know if she would ever see her baby again. What a great sacrifice of love she made.

  • I wonder how Jochebed felt?

Miriam 

Miriam, Moses’ sister stayed at the river to watch.

  • I wonder what Miriam was thinking as she watched the baby in the basket?

Pharaoh's Daughter 

Who found the baby? (Pharaoh’s daughter)

  • What did she say and do? (recognized he was a Hebrew baby, named him Moses)
  • I wonder what was going through Pharaoh’s daughter’s mind?

Pharaoh’s daughter discovered and rescued the baby. She realized that he was a Hebrew child and had compassion for him. 

Miriam bravely went up to Pharaoh’s daughter and asked if she would like a Hebrew nurse. And whom did Miriam have in mind? Why, the baby’s own mother of course! So, Miriam and Jochebed’s bravery was rewarded – the baby got to come back home until he was older and didn’t need to be nursed anymore.

Think about these brave women: the midwives, Jochebed, Miriam and even Pharaoh’s daughter – who knew that this baby should be left to die, but defied the Pharaoh’s order because of her great compassion and saved him!

Memory Verse:
Each rotation the children are asked to memorize one scripture verse. Review the memory verse with them at this time.
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14

Our memory verse reminds us that no matter what happens to us, God will never leave us. Even when the Hebrews were living in Egypt and were slaves, God cared for them. God was with them and he had a plan. When we are afraid, God can help us by giving us courage. God is with us. He sees, he hears, he knows, he remembers, he acts!


Baby Moses Baskets

(Adapted from Bible Food Fun, A Step-By-Step Cookbook, Lesley Wright, Dorling Kindersley Limited, London, 2000)

Preparation:

  • Gather supplies and ingredients.
  • Give each child a tray to work on.


Directions:

  1. Have all the children wash their hands and put on aprons.
  2. Make sure everyone gets an opportunity to help.
  3. Break up the chocolate and place in bowl.
  4. Melt the chocolate over a pan of water in a double boiler or in a microwave.
  5. Shred the shredded wheat into small pieces and add to melted chocolate.
  6. Stir and coat the wheat.
  7. Place paper muffin cups in muffin pan, spoon mixture into each cup.
  8. Use the back of a spoon to make an impression in the basket.
  9. Let them harden in a cool place.
  10. After taking the babies out of oven, use toothpicks to make nose and eyes. Let the babies cool.
  11. Roll out one color fruit roll up. Use a circle cookie cutter and cut out one per baby.
  12. Wrap around baby from the back and use the upper portion for a shawl around the baby’s head.
  13. Take a different color roll up and cut in 2” x 3” strips, one for each baby.
  14. Wrap this around the baby from the front for a blanket.
  15. Set the baby in the basket!
  16. Take pictures of the finished product!
  17. Eat and enjoy!


Reflection/Journal Time:
The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal and Reflection time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pencils/pens and the journal sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Faith Journals. Children may also copy the memory verse and illustrate.

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: Draw a picture showing Moses in the basket. How did his mother and sister feel?
Grades 3-6: Moses’ mother loved Moses so much that she was willing to give him up, hoping that he would be able to live. Jesus sacrificed his life out of love for all of us. Has anyone you known ever made a great sacrifice out of love? Tell about that. 

Reflection:

Prayer:
Gather the children together in a circle. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Obey, Moses, Pharaoh, trust are some suggestions). Ask for prayer requests and pray together.


A lesson from State Street UMC
Bristol, VA  

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is given to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

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Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Drama Workshop 

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Children will re-enact the various parts of the story of Moses, including his birth, early life and call. 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Leader Preparations:

  • Read the Background Information, teaching tips and lesson.
  • Gather the props and materials for the drama.
  • Copy the drama script for the older children.
  • Review the Music CD. Plan to play the music as the children arrive and during journaling.


Materials:

  • Bible tunics draped over the chairs in the classroom.
  • Various props – potted plants, blue fabric for water, large basket with baby doll, shepherd staff, stuffed sheep, rubber snake, white glove, gold coins, “whip” for Egyptian (stick or dowel rod with yarn tied to the end), burning bush (make a bush ahead of time using an artificial plant and attaching red, orange and yellow tissue paper streamers to it, use a fan to make the bush appear to “burn".


General Tips for Drama Workshop Facilitators:

  • You may wish to organize costumes ahead of time to cut down on a flurry of activity and possible hurt feelings. Have props ready ahead of time. This is especially important for the younger children. The older children often are very creative with props and costumes.
  • You will want to limit the amount of time the children are allowed to dress-up. (They can easily spend the entire class time selecting costumes!)
  • Be sure that all children are involved in some way. Some children are intimidated by the prospect of being on a stage. Offer them alternative roles as well as the children who do not have main parts. They can always be “sound effects” or “crowds” or stagehands to help change scenery, or video camera operators (for the older children). Remember as well that children can draw the backdrop for the drama on the blackboard or videotape the plays (older children).
  • To eliminate competition, you may wish to place the names of characters in a hat and have children choose their parts.
  • Be sure to explain the activity to the children and ask for questions to be sure you are clear.
  • Even though videotaping the activities may seem unnecessary, videotaping seems to encourage better behavior from the children.
  • Have fun and make this fun for the children!


Time Guidelines:
Introductions/Opening Prayer: 10 minutes
Introduction to Story: 15 minutes
Drama Activity: 25 minutes
Reflection/Closing Prayer: 10 minutes



Lesson Plan 

Opening:
Gather the children together in the center of the room with their Bibles. Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Make sure you are wearing your name tag and that the children have picked up their name tags. Always begin each class with introductions. Remember that workshop leaders rotate often and the children may not know you.

Prayer:
Please begin each session with prayer: “Dear God, Thank you for this day and for all the people who are here today. Thank you for this wonderful story of Moses. Help us to open our hearts and minds to understand what you would like to teach us today.” In Jesus’ name, Amen

If it is the first or second week of the rotation, you will need to spend more time on the Bible story. Later in the rotation, summarize the story with the children's help, then move to the drama activity. 

Dig:

Introduce the Story: (Exodus 1-4:31)
The story of Moses is one of the most important stories in the Bible. We are going to spend several months learning about Moses and his many adventures. We’ll see how God used him to help save his people. Moses lived a long time before Jesus did, during the time of the Pharaohs in Egypt. Where would we find this story in the Bible, in the Old Testament or the New Testament? (Old Testament) The story of Moses begins in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Exodus is the second book of the Bible. The name Exodus means “going out.” It tells the story of how God’s people went out of Egypt. Let’s find the story in our Bibles now.

Help the children locate the story in their Bibles.

Grades 1-2:
“Slaves in Egypt” and “The Story of Moses” pages 40-44 in The Little Kids’ Adventure Bible. Paraphrase the first part of the story using the headings in the children’s Bibles.

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt.(Paraphrase this part of the story for the children.) Long ago, the Hebrew people lived in Egypt. They were slaves to an evil king, the Pharaoh. The Pharaoh forced them to work hard making bricks for the buildings of Egypt. But the number of Hebrews continued to grow and the Egyptians were worried…. They were afraid that the Hebrews would take over. So, they ordered the Hebrew baby boys to be killed by throwing them into the Nile River.
  • Read “Moses is Born, “The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People” and “Miraculous Signs for Moses to Do” as the children follow along in their Bibles. (pages 40-44)


Grades 3-6:
Paraphrase using the Bible headings or the guide below:

  • The Hebrew people lived in Egypt as slaves the the king or Pharaoh.

Pharaoh ordered all Hebrew baby boys to thrown into the Nile.

  • Moses is Born.

Jochebed hid Moses for three months.
Placed him in a basket in the Nile.
Sister Miriam watched.
Pharaoh’s daughter found the baby.
Baby returned to Jochebed until he was ready for school.
Moses grew up in Pharaoh's palace.

  • Moses Escapes to Midian.

Moses killed an Egyptian.
Ran away to Midian
Married and lived as a shepherd.

  • The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People.

Read Exodus 3:1-8.
Moses was reluctant to do what God asked.

 

  • Miraculous Signs for Moses to Do.

God gave Moses the power to do miraculous signs.
God gave Moses a helper, his brother Aaron.

Conclusion (All Grades):
The Hebrew people had been in Egypt for 400 years. At first they were welcomed there but as they grew in numbers, the Egyptian people became afraid and made the Hebrews into slaves. Their lives were bitter and hard. But God had not forgotten them. God saw their hardships and felt their pain. Our memory verse for this rotation reminds us that no matter what happens to us, God is with us. He will never leave us.



The Life of Moses - A Drama
For 1-2 grades, plan to narrate the story, pausing to allow the children to perform actions that correlate with the narration – in italics in the script. Older children may want to actually read the various parts. With each group, be sure to pause and allow the children to respond to the emotions or situations in the drama - this is a time when good discussion can take place! Children may need to assume more than one role, depending on the number of children attending.

Scenery: Have some of the children draw background scenery on the blackboard. They might want to draw pyramids, the Nile River, some papyrus bushes, and slaves making bricks.

Characters Needed:

  • Narrator
  • Jochebed
  • Moses
  • Miriam
  • Pharaoh
  • group of Hebrew people
  • Aaron
  • Egyptian overseer
  • Egyptians
  • Voice of God
  • Hebrew slave


Props:

  • potted plants
  • stuffed sheep
  • white glove
  • blue fabric for water
  • rubber snake
  • large basket with baby doll
  • gold coins
  • shepherd staff
  • “whip” for Egyptian
  • “burning bush” fan

Act One: The Hebrews are enslaved.


Set: Have Pharaoh seated on one side of the stage. Place the Hebrew people in a group opposite him at the edge of the stage.

Narrator: Long ago in a land called Egypt, there lived a group of people called the Hebrews. They were not originally from Egypt, but they had come there searching for food. They had a good life for many years in Egypt. But then a new Pharaoh came to power…. He didn’t like the Hebrews. There were too many of them. He was afraid….

Pharaoh: There are way too many of these Hebrews! We have to do something! I know! They are strong. I need workers for all my buildings. I’ll make them my slaves!

Hebrew people: Oh, No!!! We don’t want to be slaves! Oh, God! Help us, help us! (crying out, wringing hands together)

Pharaoh: Too bad! I’m in charge here and you will be my slaves! You will make bricks for my buildings. Now get to work! Take them away!

(Egyptians grab the Hebrews and force them to walk offstage. Hebrews cry and wail loudly)

Narrator: But even though the Hebrews were enslaved, they continued to grow in numbers. They were hard workers and strong. Pharaoh decided he would have to do something else to keep the Hebrews under control….

Pharaoh: There are STILL too many of these Hebrews! (Pharaoh acts like he is thinking hard….)
We’ll have to do something else to get rid of them. I know! I’ll kill their newborn baby boys. All the baby boys will be thrown into the great Nile River and left to drown!

Hebrew People: Oh, no! Our poor babies! 

Act Two: Moses is born.

Set: Place a long piece of blue fabric on the stage (Nile River). Place potted plants next to the “water.”

Narrator: One day a sweet little baby boy was born to a Hebrew woman named Jochebed.

Jochebed: (cradling the baby doll and rocking him) Sweet little baby! What shall I do? That mean Pharaoh has ordered that all baby boys are to be thrown in the Nile River. I’ll hide you. Now, you’ll have to be quiet so they don’t hear you. Shhhhh…. Don’t cry!

Narrator: Jochebed hid the baby for 3 months. As the baby grew it was harder and harder to hide him. Finally Jochebed knew that she would have to do something. So she called her daughter Miriam to her and told her about a plan to save the baby.

Jochebed: (talking to Miriam) Take your sweet baby brother and put him in this basket. Place him in the Nile River right where the Pharaoh’s daughter comes to take a bath. Then stay and watch and see what happens…

Miriam: Yes mother, I will.

(Miriam takes the baby and places him in a basket and sets him into the water. She hides and waits for Pharaoh’s daughter to come)

Pharaoh’s daughter: Look! A baby in a little basket! It is one of the Hebrew babies. Oh, isn’t he sweet? I will take him home with me and raise him as my child! Hmmmm…. What shall I name him? I know! I’ll call him Moses because I took him out of the water. That’s what Moses means in Hebrew!

Miriam: (bowing down to Pharaoh’s daughter) Ma’am, would you like me to find a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby for you?

Pharaoh’s daughter: Oh, yes! That’s a good idea! Here is some money (hands Miriam some gold coins) Take the baby and then when he is older bring him back to me!

(Miriam takes the baby and runs to give him back to Jochebed. Miriam and Jochebed act joyful!)

Narrator: That smart Miriam! She brought the baby Moses back to his own mother where he stayed until he was old enough to be apart from her. Later Moses was taken to live in the Pharaoh’s court. He grew up like an Egyptian prince with the best clothes and education. But he never forgot that he was really a Hebrew…. 

Act Three: Moses Gets in Trouble

Set: Remove the Nile River and plant props. Have Moses stand on one side of the stage with a pad of paper and pencil. An Egyptian and a Hebrew slave are on the other side of the stage.

Narrator: One day Moses was out counting the number of bricks the slaves had made and he saw something that made him very mad! An Egyptian was beating a poor Hebrew slave. Moses lost his temper and ran up to the Egyptian and killed him!

(Moses pretend to be tallying and writing down numbers)

Egyptian: Take that you lazy slave! Take that, and that and that! (beating the slave with the “whip").

Hebrew slave: OW!….. Ouch! Ouch! Oh, please stop!

Moses: Hey, Stop that! What do you think you are doing? (runs over to Egyptian, grabs him and kills him)

Moses: (Looking around to see if anyone is watching….) Oh, no! Now I’m in BIG trouble. What if someone sees me? I better do something with this body. Moses pulls the body aside and hides it. Then he runs away! (Moses runs off stage)

Narrator: Someone did see Moses. And soon Pharaoh found out what had happened. Moses was in BIG trouble. He had to leave Egypt and FAST! So Moses headed away from the only home he had ever known. He walked and walked. He walked for many days until finally he came to a land called Midian. He decided to stay there.

Act Four: Moses in Midian

Set: Set out stuffed sheep around the stage. Moses sits on stage with staff and sheep. Burning bush off to one side – with fan turned off.

Narrator: Moses lived in Midian for 40 years and worked as a shepherd. He got married and had children. Being a shepherd was a lonely life. It gave Moses lots of time to think.

Moses: (sitting with shepherd staff and stuffed sheep).

Narrator: One day as Moses was watching his sheep, he saw an amazing sight! A bush was on fire! (turn the fan on so the flames move around and appear to “burn"). Flames were shooting out all over, but it did not burn up! Moses walked over closer to see this amazing sight. That’s when he heard the voice!

Voice of God: Moses! Moses!

Moses: (looking around – acts startled) Here I am!

Voice of God: Do not come any closer! Take off your sandals. This is holy ground!

Moses: Who are you? (taking off his shoes)

Voice of God: I am the God of your father, of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I have seen the suffering of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries. I love them and I will help them. I will bring them into a new land. YOU will lead them there. I am sending you to Pharaoh to tell him to let my people go.

Moses: What ME????? You’re sending ME? But, who am I to do such a thing! I’m just a poor old shepherd…. I can’t do this!

Voice of God: Moses! I use all sorts of people to do my work! Shepherds, kings, peasants, it doesn’t matter! I will be with you. Don’t you know that if I am with you anything is possible! I will give you miraculous signs to do. You will bring the people out of Egypt to worship me on this mountain.

Moses: But the people will never believe me. Who am I going to say has sent me?

Voice of God: Tell them I AM has sent me to you! I am the Lord. I have always been and I will always be! Tell the Pharaoh that the Hebrews must come out of Egypt to worship me for 3 days here on this mountain.

Moses: But what if Pharaoh doesn’t believe me? What if he won’t listen? What should I do then?

Voice of God: Take your staff and throw it down on the ground.

(have Moses drop his staff – quickly have one of the children replace it with a rubber snake)

Voice of God: Now grab the snake! (have a child switch the snake back and return the staff to Moses)

Moses: WOW! That’s pretty cool!

Voice of God: Now here is another sign. Put your hand inside your cloak. When you take it out it will have leprosy. (have child put on a white glove from inside costume, then remove hand from costune) Then put it back inside and it will be cured. The last sign is this. You will be able to turn the water from the Nile River to blood. Use these miracles to show the people that I have sent you.

Moses: But, Lord…. I have never been a good speaker. It’s hard for me to talk to people.

Voice of God: I will help you speak! I will teach you what to say!

Moses: Lord, please no! Please send someone else!

Voice of God: Moses! You have too many excuses! Don’t you believe me? Don’t you know that I can do anything! Fine! If you insist that you need MORE help, I will send Aaron, your brother to help you. Both of you will talk to the people and to Pharaoh.

Narrator: And so Moses finally agreed to do what God had asked. Moses believed God. He trusted him and had faith that God would do what he said. He believed that God would be with him no matter what! He left his home and went back to Egypt.
To be continued…..


Discussion:
Gather the children at the chairs in the center of the room to discuss the drama. Use the questions below and the Background Information to discuss the story with the children.

  1. Moses certainly led an interesting life. What part of the story did you like the most?
  2. I wonder what it must have been like to be a Hebrew and be taken to live in the palace of Pharaoh….
  3. I wonder what it must have been like for Moses when he lost his temper and killed the Egyptian and then had to run away.
  4. I wonder what it must have been like to live in a strange country for 40 years….
  5. I wonder what it must have been like to see the burning bush and hear the voice of God….
  6. I wonder how God speaks to people today….


Reflection/Journal Time:
The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal and Reflection time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pencils/pens and the journal sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Faith Journals. Children may also copy the memory verse and illustrate it.

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: Draw a picture showing Moses listening to God’s voice. What will Moses do?
Grades 3-6: Moses heard God speaking to him through the burning bush. How does God speak to people today?

Closing: 

Prayer:
Gather the children together. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Faith, obedience, God’s love, God’s faithfulness are some suggestions) Encourage children to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite their friends, especially their friends who do not belong to a church. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and pray together.


A lesson from State Street UMC
Bristol, VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Moses #1: From Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Games and Bible Skills Workshop 

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Children will play a life-sized board game to review the events of the story. 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Preparation and Room Set Up:

  • Review the Background Information, Behavioral Covenant, Teaching Tips and Lesson plan.
  • Gather all necessary supplies for games.
  • Review the Music CD. Plan to play the music in the background as the children arrive, play games and do journal questions.
  • Unroll the game board prior to children’s arrival.


Supplies List:

  • Life-sized board game - for directions to make & a photo see this link.
  • Large foam game dice
  • Question list – see below.
  • Props for Game: Basket of cardboard blocks, baby doll, shepherd’s crook,
  • White board and markers
  • Unroll the game board off the carpet roll


Important Note for Games Workshop Leaders:
The purpose of the games workshop is two-fold: to develop Bible skills and to reinforce that knowledge by having fun with games. The games are not frills and fluff! Playing games helps to cement the knowledge and reinforce the skills you introduce during the Bible lesson. Children learn best when actively involve, so please do not skimp on the games portion of the lesson! Follow the time guidelines to help you stay on track.. Remember – children will study this story for 4 weeks, so if you can’t cover all the details of the Bible story it’s ok.

Time Guidelines:
Introductions/Opening Prayer: 10 minutes
Bible Study: 15 minutes
Journey with Moses Game: 25 minutes
Reflection/Closing Prayer: 10 minutes



Lesson Plan 

Opening:
Gather the children together at the tables with their Bibles. Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Always begin each class with introductions. Remember that workshop leaders rotate often and the children may not know you. Make sure you are wearing your name tag and that the children have picked up their name tags.

Prayer:
Dear God, Thank you for this day and for all the people who are here today. Open our hearts and minds to your Word as we study and play here today.” Amen 

Dig:

Introduce the Story: (Exodus 1-4:31)
The story of Moses is one of the most important stories in the Bible. We are going to spend several months learning about his many adventures and the ways God used him to help save his people. Moses lived a long time before Jesus did, during the time of the Pharaohs in Egypt. The story of Moses begins in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Exodus is the second book of the Bible. The name Exodus means “going out.” It tells the story of how God’s people went out of Egypt. Let’s find the story in our Bibles now.

Have the children locate the story in their Bibles. Note: This story is too long to be read in its entirety. Follow the prompts below and use the headings in the children's Bibles help you paraphrase the story.

Grades 1-2:
“Slaves in Egypt” and “The Story of Moses” pages 40-44 in The Little Kids’ Adventure Bible. Paraphrase the first part of the story using the headings in the children’s Bibles or the guide below.

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt. Long ago, the Hebrew people lived in Egypt as slaves. (Take the children to the wall map and locate Egypt and the Nile River on the map. The king of Egypt was called Pharaoh. He made the Hebrews work in the hot sun making bricks for his buildings.The Pharaoh was afraid there were too many Hebrews in Egypt so he ordered the Hebrew baby boys to be killed by throwing them into the Nile River.
  • Read “Moses is Born, “The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People” and “Miraculous Signs for Moses to Do” as the children follow along in their Bibles. (pages 40-44)


Grades 3-6:

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt.

Review how the Hebrew people came to be in Egypt.
Take the children to the wall map and locate the following places: Canaan -- where Joseph’s family came from originally, Egypt, Nile River)
New Pharaoh enslaves the Hebrews.
Pharaoh orders all Hebrew baby boys to be thrown into the Nile River.

  • Moses is Born.

Moses' mother Jochebed hides him for three months.
Moses placed in a basket in the Nile.
Miriam watches
Pharaoh's daughter finds Moses.
Moses returned to Jochebed.

  • Moses Escapes to Midian.

Moses sent to Pharaoh's palace.
Moses kills Egyptian slave master.
Moses runs away to Midian.
Moses marries and works as a shepherd.

  • The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People.

God speaks to Moses though a burning bush.
God has a plan for Moses to save his people.

  • Read Exodus 3:4-4:17 as the children follow along in their Bibles.
  • Moses Returns to Egypt.

 

  • Read and discuss the following Bible notes with the children:

Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 52
Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 65
People in Bible Times: Moses page 66
Let’s Live It! Don’t Give Up page 67

Bible Study Conclusion:
The Hebrew people had been in Egypt for 400 years. At first they were welcomed there but as they grew in numbers, the Egyptian people became afraid and made the Hebrews into slaves. Their lives were bitter and hard. But God had not forgotten them. God saw their hardships and felt their pain. That is what our memory verse from this rotation tells us.

Memory Verse:
Each rotation we ask the children to memorize one scripture verse. Review it with them at this time. “The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Moses’ Journey of Faith Game


Children will play a life-sized board game designed to help them review the story. (The game board was created by painting a trail on canvas painter’s cloth. For pictures of the game board see:


Supplies and Preparation:

  • Life-sized board game - for directions to make & a photo see this link.
  • Large foam game dice
  • Question list – see below.
  • Props for Game: Basket of cardboard blocks, baby doll, shepherd’s crook,
  • White board and markers
  • Unroll the game board off the carpet roll

To Play: 

  1. Divide the children into teams of two to four.
  2. Teams roll one die to determine how many spaces to move forward. All team members must move together and stay on the game board spaces together. (The crowding adds to the fun!)
  3. When teams land on a specially marked space (cross, question or dynamite) ask them a question from the appropriate question list. Be sure to ask the questions in order.
  4. Teams MUST CONFER together before answering – absolutely NO CALLING OUT OF ANSWERS! (This is important – we want all children including newcomers, visitors or infrequent attendees to feel comfortable. If necessary, tell teams who call out answers without conferring together, that they will lose a turn.)
  5. If children need help and there is a Bible reference, encourage them to use their Bibles as a lifeline! (After all – we want them to learn that they can find answers in their Bibles!)
  6. There are several arrow shortcuts on the board. If a team lands on a space with an arrow and answers the question correctly, they may take the shortcut.
  7. If a team answers the question correctly, follow the directions on the question list. (move forward or back). Play then passes to the next team.
  8. After following the instructions on the question list, play passes to the next team. (even if the cards tell teams to move ahead and they land on another marked space their turn ends!)
  9. Have the team with the youngest child go first.
  10. First team to get to the finish line is the winner.

If you finish the game, but have not read all the questions, use the remaining ones for discussion.


Moses’ Faith Journey Question List:

Question Mark Spaces:
Teams that answer correctly may move ahead one space.

  1. The story of Moses is found in which testament of the Bible? (Old –Table of Contents in their Bibles)
  2. Where did the story take place? (Egypt and Midian or Mount Sinai – page 64, Introduction page to Exodus) Run to the wall map and show Egypt on the map!
  3. What book of the Bible tells Moses’ story? (Exodus)
  4. To what category of Bible books does Exodus belong – Law, History, Poetry or Prophets? (Law – check the chart on the wall in the room)
  5. The ruler of Egypt was called _______________ (Pharaoh)
  6. The Hebrew people first came to Egypt because of a famine. True or False? (True)
  7. What happened to the Hebrews after living for many years in Egypt? (they grew in numbers – Exodus 1:7)
  8. What unusual thing happened to Moses as a baby? (he was placed in a basket in the Nile River – Exodus 2:3)
  9. Who found Moses in the basket? (Pharaoh’s daughter – Exodus 2:5)
  10. Where did Moses run after killing the Egyptian? (Midian – Exodus 2:15) Show this on the wall map.
  11. When Moses was watching the sheep in Midian, what amazing sight did he see? (a burning bush that wasn’t consumed by the flames - Exodus 3:2)
  12. Why did God ask Moses to remove his shoes? (it was a holy place because God was there – Exodus 3:5) Take off your shoes and go to the Temple area and bow down and say, “God, you are so holy!”
  13. God told Moses he saw and heard the Hebrew people as they ____________ (cried out and suffered – Exodus 3:7)
  14. What did God ask Moses to do? (go to Pharaoh and tell him to let God’s people go – Exodus 3:10)
  15. What are some excuses Moses gave God for not wanting to go? (Who am I? Who are YOU? They won’t listen to me. I am not a good speaker. Send someone else, not me! Exodus 3:11-4:16)
  16. Who did God say would be with Moses through everything? (God – Exodus 3:12)


Cross Spaces:
Teams may move ahead two spaces after answering or doing the action (Remember it is important to know the answers to questions, but it is more important to SHOW that we know by acting that way!)

  1. The brave midwives refused to obey the Pharaoh’s order to kill the baby boys. They knew that God would not want those baby boys to die.
  2. Jochebed, Moses’ mother, refused to throw her baby into the Nile River. Instead she hid him for three months. Take the baby doll and wrap him in a blanket and hide him somewhere in the room.
  3. You obeyed your parents when they told you to do something.
  4. Miriam was brave and strong. She boldly asked Pharaoh’s daughter if she wanted a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby. Then she took baby Moses home to his mother.
  5. Moses did not think he would be able to do what God asked. When is a time you have been afraid. What helped you have courage?
  6. You decide to read your Bible each night before going to bed so you could learn more about God.
  7. God told Moses that he had heard the cries of his people. Go to the white board and write out our memory verse. Then stand as a group and recite it together. (Psalm 94:14)
  8. God called Moses from a burning bush and spoke to him. Name three ways God speaks to us today. (Bible, prayer, song, worship, G.R.E.A.T. Adventure, our conscience, sermons)
  9. God remembers and God keeps his promises. Tell about a time you kept a promise to someone.
  10. God asked Moses to do a hard thing. When God asks us to do something he always gives us the strength or ability to do the task. What is a hard thing you have done?
  11. God showed Moses how to do miracles to help convince the people of God’s message. Name one of the miracles Moses was able to do. (turned stick to snake, made hand white with leprosy, turned Nile water to blood – Exodus 4:2-9)
  12. You invite your neighbors to come to church with you.
  13. Sometimes God doesn’t answer our prayers right away and just the way we want them. God knows best. God always wants what is good for us. Tell about a time God answered one of your prayers.
  14. God told Moses to bring the Hebrews out of Egypt to worship God. Where is the place you like best to worship God?
  15. You tell your new neighbors about the story of Moses that you learned at church.
  16. You and your family memorized our memory verse and say it together as a family.
     

Dynamite Spaces:
Teams must go back one space, unless otherwise directed, after landing on this space.

  1. The Pharaoh of Egypt forces the Hebrew people to be his slaves. Go stand against the wall and cry out, “We don’t want to be slaves. Help us God!”
  2. The Hebrew slaves are forced to make bricks all day in the hot sun. Go to the basket and remove all the blocks (“bricks"). Stack them up and count them.
  3. You didn’t make your quota of bricks today. Go back to START!
  4. Pharaoh orders that all the boy babies are thrown into the Nile River and killed. Go to the wall map and point to the Nile River. Then cry out together, “Pharaoh is killing our babies!”
  5. Moses decides to take matters into his own hands and kills the Egyptian. He is forced to leave Egypt. He heads to Midian. Find Midian on the map.
  6. Moses lives as a shepherd in Midian. Hold the shepherd’s crook and walk around the room “baaa-ing” like sheep.
  7. God calls to Moses from a burning bush but Moses makes up excuses. What excuses has your team made before when you were afraid to do something?
  8. You were afraid you weren’t very good at softball, so you didn’t try out for the team.
  9. You made fun of someone on your soccer team who missed an easy shot.
  10. Moses is afraid that what God wants him to do is too hard. What is something hard you have had to face before?
  11. You spent the night with a friend and decided not to come to church.
  12. You disobeyed your parents and lied about it so you wouldn’t get in trouble.
  13. Moses spent 40 years in the land of Midian. As a team do 40 jumping jacks.
  14. Moses was afraid to speak to Pharaoh because he wasn’t very good at speaking to others. What is something you are good at? Not so good at?
  15. You got mad at your brother and punched him.
  16. You didn’t do your homework and lied to your teacher about it.


After the game, roll the game board back up on the carpet roll and push to the edge of the wall to store.

Reflection and Journal Time:
The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal Reflection time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pencils/pens and the journal question sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Faith Journals. Children may copy the memory verse and illustrate it as an alternative to journal questions.

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: Draw a picture showing your favorite part of the story.
Grades 3-6: Moses made up lots of excuses about why he couldn’t obey God. Why do you think people make up excuses? When is a time you made up an excuse? 

Reflection:

Prayer:
Gather the children together in a circle. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Faith, obedience, God’s love, God’s faithfulness are some suggestions) Encourage children to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite their friends, especially their friends who do not belong to a church. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and pray together.


A lesson from State Street UMC
Bristol, VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission

granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Moses from Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Music and Movement Workshop 

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Listen to several songs which tell the story. Do a Tinikling rod activity. Learn about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad. 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Leader Preparation and Room Set Up:

  • Read the Background Information, teaching tips and lesson materials.
  • Gather necessary supplies.
  • Preview the music.


Rotation Music Selections:

  • “Moses Theme,” Righeous Pop Music, Volume 1, One Way Street, Inc.
  • “Go Down, Moses,” Invitation Bible Studies, 1992 by Cokesbury
  • “I Am” by Ginny Owens, Something More, Word Entertainment, 2002
  • “Awesome God” by Rich Mullins, WOW the 90’s, 1999 World Music Group, Inc.


Materials List:

  • CD of recorded songs and overhead projector
  • Large chart paper and magic marker
  • Drama scarves in a variety of colors
  • Overhead transparencies of song lyrics and memory verse
  • Book: Harriet Tubman: They Call Me Moses! by Linda D. Meyer (this book is out of print – it may be available at used bookstores or at amazon.com. If not, other storybooks about Harriet Tubman can be used. Some suggestions are: Harriet Tubman: Conductor on the Underground Railroad by Ann Petry, Minty: A Story of Young Harriet Tubman by Alan Schroeder, Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith Ringgold. Or do an internet search of Harriet Tubman and include information from biographical sites.)


Guidelines for Music and Movement Workshop Leaders:
Music is one of the best memory aids. The use of music utilizes additional pathways in the brain that facilitate learning and retention. The musical selections have been chosen to coordinate with the lessons. Urge the children to find the connections in the lyrics and the style of the music. 5-6 graders are at a very self-conscious stage and may feel that some songs are too unsophisticated for them. Encourage them to participate by modeling participation.. Encourage the shepherds to participate as well. Try to find ways to take the spotlight off individual children. Give them microphones, rhythm instruments, costumes, etc. to help them “get into the spirit.” Younger children will respond better when physically involved, so include props, rhythm instruments, etc. to involve their entire bodies in the experience.

Time Guidelines:
Introductions/Opening Prayer: 10 minutes
Bible Study-Discussion: 10 minutes
Music Activities: 35 minutes
Reflection/Closing Prayer: 5 minutes



Lesson Plan 

Opening:
Gather the children together in the chairs with their Bibles. Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Make sure you are wearing your name tag and that the children have picked up their name tags. Always begin each class with introductions. Remember that workshop leaders rotate often, and the children may not know you.

Opening Prayer:
Dear God, Thank you for bringing us all here together. We thank you for the stories in the Bible that teach us about you. Help us to learn and understand more about you and your love for us. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

Say: Today’s story is about a man from the Old Testament named Moses. But before we begin this lesson, let’s share what you already know about Moses. (Allow the children to share information. List these facts, even if some are not accurate, on a large chart board. 

Dig: 

Activity #1: Moses’ Theme
Listen to this song, “Moses’ Theme” and give me a few more ideas that you may have forgotten.

1. Turn on the overhead (or they may just listen) of the song “Moses Theme”.
2. Play the CD of the song - Ask the children to follow along.
3. Ask the children to add more facts they remember about the life of Moses to the chart.
4. Tell the children that they will be learning about the different phases of Moses’ life as told in the book of Exodus.

Introduce the Story:
Now that we know a little bit about Moses, let’s see what else we can find out. The story of Moses is one of the most important stories in the Bible. We are going to spend several months learning about his many adventures and the ways God used him to help save his people. Moses lived a long time before Jesus did, during the time of the Pharaohs in Egypt. The story of Moses begins in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Exodus is the second book of the Bible. The name Exodus means “going out.” It tells the story of how God’s people went out of Egypt. Let’s find the story in our Bibles now.

Have the children locate the story in their Bibles. The main focus of this workshop is on Moses’ call from God.

Grades 1-2:
“Slaves in Egypt” and “The Story of Moses” pages 40-44 in The Little Kids’ Adventure Bible. Paraphrase the first part of the story using the headings in the children’s Bibles or the guide below.

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt. Long ago, the Hebrew people lived in Egypt as slaves. (Take the children to the wall map and locate Egypt and the Nile River on the map. The king of Egypt was called Pharaoh. He made the Hebrews work in the hot sun making bricks for his buildings.

The Pharaoh was afraid there were too many Hebrews in Egypt so he ordered the Hebrew baby boys to be killed by throwing them into the Nile River.

  • Read “Moses is Born, “The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People” and “Miraculous Signs for Moses to Do” as the children follow along in their Bibles. (pages 40-44)


Grades 3-6:

  • The People of Israel Are Slaves in Egypt.

Review how the Hebrew people came to be in Egypt.
Take the children to the wall map and locate the following places: Canaan -- where Joseph’s family came from originally, Egypt, Nile River)
New Pharaoh enslaves the Hebrews.
Pharaoh orders all Hebrew baby boys to be thrown into the Nile River.

  • Moses is Born.

Moses' mother Jochebed hides him for three months.
Moses placed in a basket in the Nile.
Miriam watches
Pharaoh's daughter finds Moses.
Moses returned to Jochebed.

  • Moses Escapes to Midian.

Moses sent to Pharaoh's palace.
Moses kills Egyptian slave master.
Moses runs away to Midian.
Moses marries and works as a shepherd.

  • The Lord Sends Moses to Save His People.

God speaks to Moses though a burning bush.
God has a plan for Moses to save his people.

  • Read Exodus 3:4-4:17 as the children follow along in their Bibles.
  • Moses Returns to Egypt.


Bible Study Conclusion:
The Hebrew people had been in Egypt for 400 years. At first they were welcomed there but as they grew in numbers, the Egyptian people became afraid and made the Hebrews into slaves. Their lives were bitter and hard. But God had not forgotten them. God saw their hardships and felt their pain. That is what our memory verse from this rotation tells us.

Memory Verse:
Each rotation we ask the children to memorize one scripture verse. “The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14 

Activity #2: “Some Histories ARE Repeated”
You remember from today’s Bible lessons that Moses stayed away from his people for 40 years. During that time the Hebrew people groaned and cried out in their misery of slavery and bondage. They suffered untold anguish because of their lack of freedom and oppression.

Discussion:
“What does it mean to be a slave? Do you know of any other person who suffered slavery and spoke out or did something about the injustice of inequality?” (Possible answers might include Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., etc.)

Today we are going to talk about someone else who worked for freedom -- Harriet Tubman. Harriet Tubman was sometimes called Moses because she led many black people out of slavery in the south to the north, just like Moses led the Hebrew people out of slavery in Egypt. Show her book, Harriet Tubman: They Call Me Moses! by Linda D. Meyer to the children. (You will not have time to read the entire book, but you can read excerpts and show the pictures to the children.)

Discussion: What are times and places today where people are not allowed the same freedoms as others? (Those not allowed to worship as they choose, unjust criminal system, etc.)

SONG: “Go Down, Moses”
The children will listen to this sad, mournful song about the enslaved Hebrew people. It is a plea for Moses to take a stand against Pharaoh and help them.

1. Turn on the overhead of the lyrics of the song “Go Down, Moses”.
2. Play the CD of the song - Ask the children to listen closely to the song paying attention to the emotions expressed in the music.

Interpreting the music: Children will interpret the music using colored drama scarves. Explain to them that they should use their bodies and their scarves to react to the music. Before beginning, warm up with the children and their scarves. What might sad look like? Tired? Fearful? Traveling? Determined?

1. Set out a variety of colored body scarves.
2. Have the children choose a scarf and have the children respond to the music.
4. Encourage them to use all their space and utilize varied planes of movement- low to the ground and downtrodden, reach high as if pleading for help, etc.
5. Have children fold and put drama scarves away after activity.

Activity #3: “God takes Charge”
This sad story does not end here. We know that God saw the Hebrew’s misery. God heard their pleas. God knew of their suffering and knew the time was right to act. He chose a man who deserted his people 40 years earlier, who was slow to speech, and who was very unsure of his abilities. Who? Moses.

God called to Moses through the burning bush and instructed him to return to Egypt and lead his people from slavery. Moses replies, “I am nobody, just a shepherd. What could I do? “
God’s response to Moses’ first excuse is, “I will be with you.” Moses is not alone. God shows that he is willing to work with Moses (and us!) just as he is – to bolster his weaknesses, to help him throughout the journey. God, once again, chooses unlikely people to do his work!

“Can You Hear Me Now, Moses?” (Grades 3-6 only)
Moses is still unconvinced about God’s message and asks, “Who are You? Tell me your name. What are your credentials?” God is a personal God. He answers, “Yahweh.” Yahweh is the Hebrew name for God. God also responds to Moses – I am the God of your father, of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God who made those promises long ago – the God who does not forget his promises!

Moses also says, “I’m not good enough at speaking. Please, God, send someone else.” We can hear God’s answer to Moses excuses in the next song. Listen and see if you can tell me what God said to Moses.

Song: “I Am”
1. Turn on the overhead of the song “I Am”.
2. Play the first verse of this song - Ask the children to listen and sing along.
3. Ask the children, “ What was God’s response to Moses?”
4. Allow them to give possible answers. (Some may be able to quote the scripture and tell you that Moses’ brother, Aaron, was sent as spokesperson for him.)

Conclusion: We know from the scripture that Moses did return to the Hebrew people, perform miracles of God, and convince them that he was indeed sent there to free them from bondage. The people bowed and worshiped God because he was indeed an “Awesome God”.

Reflection/Journal Time:
Song “Awesome God”
The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal and Reflection time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pencils/pens and the journal sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Faith Journals. Memory verse stickers are also included for each lesson. Children may also copy the memory verse and illustrate.

Journal Questions:
Display the lyrics to the song, “Awesome God” by Rich Mullins and have the children listen to it as they respond to the journal questions.

Grades 1-2: What is the most amazing thing you have learned about God? Draw a picture about it.
Grades 3-6: Moses must have been amazed to hear God speak through a burning bush! God showed Moses what an awesome God he was. What is the most amazing thing you have learned about God?

Closing: 

Prayer:
Gather the children together in a circle. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Faith, obedience, God’s love, God’s faithfulness, God’s awesome nature are some suggestions) Encourage children to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite their friends, especially their friends who do not belong to a church. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and pray together.


A lesson written by Jaymie Derden from: State Street UMC
Bristol, VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Moses from Bulrushes to Burning Bush!
Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Children will view portions of the video The Prince of Egypt and discuss the events of the story of Moses. 

Scripture Reference:
Exodus 1-4:31

Memory Verse:
“The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14


Leader Preparation and Room Set Up:

  • Read the Background Information, Teaching tips and lesson plan.
  • Preview the video: The Prince of Egypt , (Dream Works Home Entertainment)
  • Prepare the popcorn before the children arrive and have it bagged and ready to distribute so your attention can be given to the children. Preview the resource book: The Exodus – Moses’ Story from the Bible. You might want to use parts of this book for discussion after the movie. It contains pictures taken from the movie The Prince of Egypt.

Supplies List:

  • Extra Resource: The Prince of Egypt: The Exodus – Moses’ Story from the Bible, with notes from Charles R. Swindoll, compiled by Bruce Bickel and Stan Jantz, Tommy Nelson, Inc., Nashville, 1998. ISBN 0-8499-5854-7
  • Popcorn


Important Note for Video Workshop Leaders:
Children love this workshop! Often the video is a direct correlation with the Bible story and creates a concrete, visual image in the children’s minds. They refer to this image over and over throughout the rotation as they visit other workshops. Some videos may take some liberties with the story-you may need to point out these discrepancies. As much as possible sit down with the children and watch the video together. Feel free to pause the video to discuss something that you especially want them to note. Please ensure that the children treat the room with respect-no standing, jumping, or otherwise abusing the seats.

Time Guidelines:
Video and Discussion: 40 minutes
Welcome/Introduction: 5 minutes
Bible Study: 10 minutes
Journal/Closing: 5 minutes


Lesson Plan 

Opening:

Greet the children and introduce yourself. 

Opening Prayer:
Dear Amazing and Wonderful God, Thank you for gathering all of us here today to hear your word. Thank you for the Bible so we may learn about you. Please guide us to be still and hear your voice. Amen 

Dig: 

Start video promptly. As children arrive, seat them in the theater seats. Begin the video and distribute the popcorn once children are seated.
This video will be broken down into segments that pertain to this month’s lesson. Start video where the slaves are raising the bricks.

Stop the video after Jochebed, Moses’ mother, finishes singing and the video just shows her face (this is after Moses is set afloat in the basket)

Fast forward to the basket arriving at the Pharaoh’s palace.

Start the video as the Pharaoh’s daughter is checking the basket and continue the video until the screen goes blank.

Before restarting the video again, discuss:

  • How was Pharaoh’s daughter able to care for Moses? (Moses’ sister saw the Pharaoh’s daughter rescue him and told her she would get a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby)
  • Who was this woman? (It was Jochebed, Moses’ mother. The Pharaoh’s daughter paid her to care for the baby, unaware this was actually Moses’ mother. Once he was old enough and did not need to nurse, she returned the baby to the Pharaoh’s daughter and he was raised as an Egyptian.)


Restart the video to Pharaoh speaking with Moses and Raamses.

Stop when Pharaoh says “I will see you tonight” and fast forward to Moses and Raamses going through the curtain. (Note: Scholars are not sure which Pharaoh ruled Egypt during the time of Moses. The video assumes it was Raamses, however nothing in the Bible indicates the specific Pharaoh. Many scholars believe the story actually took place much earlier in history than previously believed. Older children may be interested in discussing this. See Background Information.)

Continue the video throughout the confrontation with Miriam, her song and Moses running back home.

Fast forward to Moses around the rocks tending the sheep. Before starting this section, discuss:

  • Why did Moses run away? (He had killed an Egyptian and punishment was death.)
  • Where did he run to? (He ran to Midian. Through acts of kindness, he met the priest’s daughters. Moses lived here and married Zipporah, one of the priest’s daughters.)
  • Where was Moses when the Lord appeared to him? (He was tending sheep in the desert at Mt. Horeb - felt by most scholars to be the same as Mt. Sinai)


Start the video at Moses around the rocks tending the sheep and continue until he enters the Pharaoh’s home. Stop, this finishes Moses #1.

After the video is finished, bring the children back to the center tables with their Bibles to review the Bible story.

Tell the children today we are learning about Moses and how God is always with us. This does not mean that things must always go as we want. Things may not happen at the time we want but God always hears our prayers and is with us. Sometimes God’s time line is not the same as what we would like.

Review the Story: (Exodus 1-4:31)
How many of you have watched this video before?
Did you know about the story of Moses before watching it?
This is one of the most well-known stories in the Bible. It took place many years before Jesus was born while the Hebrew people were living in slavery in Egypt.
Where would we find this story in the Bible – Old Testament or New Testament? (Old Testament) The story of Moses is found in the second book of the Bible – the book of Exodus. (EX- of Exodus reminds us of EXIT – and it means going out – because Moses was called by God to lead the Hebrew people out of Egypt)

Grades 1-2:
Help the children locate the story, “Slaves in Egypt and The Story of Moses” in The Little Kids' Adventure Bible (pages 40-44). Read and discuss the following Bible notes:

  • Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 37
  • Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 41
  • People in Bible Times: Moses page 42
  • Let’s Live It! Don’t Give Up page 43

It is not necessary to read the entire story. Instead, use the headings in the Bible to review the story with the children. Use some of the Discussion questions and the Background information to guide your discussion.

Grades 3-6:
Have the children locate Exodus 1 in their Bibles. Review some of the information on the Introduction page to Exodus.
Read and discuss the following Bible notes:

  • Life in Bible Times: The Nile page 52
  • Life in Bible Times: Moses’ Basket Boat page 65
  • People in Bible Times: Moses page 66
  • Let’s Live It! Don’t Give up page 67

It is not necessary to read the entire story. Instead, use the headings in the Bible to review the story with the children. Use some of the Discussion questions and the Background information to guide your discussion. 

Discussion questions:

  • Why were the Hebrews in Egypt? (they had come looking for food during a famine)
  • Was God still with the Hebrews when they were slaves? (YES! Even though the Hebrews were in slavery for 400 years, God was with them. In Egypt, they grew in numbers)
  • Why did Pharaoh make the Hebrews into slaves? (He worried because there were so many of them, he was afraid they would overtake the land)
  • What else did Pharaoh do to try to keep the numbers of Hebrews down? (killed the male babies)
  • What happened to Moses when he was a baby? (placed in a basket in the Nile River, found by Pharaoh’s daughter)
  • Why was Moses forced to flee to Midian? (he got angry and killed an Egyptian who was beating a Hebrew slave – Moses tried to take matters into his own hands, rather than waiting on God’s plan. Because of his temper and his anger, Moses had to live in the desert for 40 years. Sometimes we are tempted to do things our way, rather than God’s way – especially when it seems like God is taking a long time!)
  • Who spoke to Moses in the desert? (God – through a burning bush)
  • What excuses did Moses come up with when God asked him to go back to Egypt and tell Pharaoh to let the Hebrews go? (Who am I to do such a thing? Who are YOU? They won’t believe me. I’m not a good speaker. Please send someone else)
  • How did God answer Moses’ excuses? (Said he would be with him, remember, NOTHING is impossible with God! Gave him miraculous signs to use to convince the people, told him Aaron could be his helper and speak for him)
  • God was asking Moses to do a very difficult thing. But God knew that Moses was capable of doing this amazing thing with God’s help. I wonder what Moses was thinking when God told him to go lead the people out of Egypt…. I wonder what you would think or do if God spoke to you from a burning bush….

Memory Verse:
Each rotation we encourage the children to memorize one scripture verse. Review the verse with the children at this time. “The Lord will not abandon his people; he will not desert those who belong to Him.” Psalm 94:14

Say: The Hebrew people must have felt that God had abandoned them. For 400 years they had lived in Egypt. They were slaves and forced to work hard in the hot sun, making bricks for Pharaoh’s building projects. But God spoke to Moses and told him that he had heard the cries of his people. He had seen their suffering. God remembered his promises to be with them always and to give them a land and to make them a mighty people. Our memory verse reminds us that no matter what we go through, God is always with us. He loves us and will never desert us!

Reflection and Journal Time:
The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal Reflection Time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals, pencils, and the journals question sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with the children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Journals. Memory verse stickers are also included for each session. Children may also copy the memory verse and illustrate.

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: First Moses was a prince. Then he was a shepherd. Then God asked him to do something really hard. What did God ask Moses to do?
Grades 3-6: God had a big plan for Moses. But Moses was afraid. Have you ever been asked to do something difficult? What helped you? What happened?

Closing: 

Prayer:
Gather the children together. Review with them one word or concept that they learned in today’s session. (God’s faithfulness, promises, obedience are some suggestions). Encourage the children to come back next week for another workshop, and to invite a friend, especially friends who do not belong to a church. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Ask for prayer requests and pray together.


A lesson written by Jaymie Derden from: State Street UMC
Bristol, VA 

This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source. 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

Lesson Set Changes:

 

Hey all,
We've done Moses twice now... and second time through we made some changes -- for one we only have four workshops now, instead of seven, so we tend to pick the best ones to do. At the time we had a full 60 minutes and now only 50 so that has affected our lessons where before we had 1-6 graders. Having non-readers is sometimes a challenge.

UGH... going back through this I realized just how wordy it really is. For long stories such as this, we like to paraphrase the story as the kids have their Bibles open to the story. The Bibles we use have great headings that provide a natural outline. I spent some time reworking the Bible study text to be bullets, rather than in paragraph form....we have evolved to that style now and it decreases the amount of text, a little anyway... and helps the teacher not be inclined to read it verbatim from the lesson. I'm reminded of an earlier comment from the Genesis review about our "early lessons."

I also deleted a few activities that we didn't do the second time around because we felt they were weaker. And I modified the art workshop - change the Moses' illustration to making a simple paper mosaic also -- seemed to work better with the larger mosaic project. I also added (ha! don't you love that I ADDED more to it!) some better instructions and included how to finish the mosaic. Hope this helps.

In answer to Carol's question... yes we actually did do these activities, although probably not all of them were done on the first week or two.

Thanks for the input. It was good to take a short break from VBS prep.

Jaymie

I used the game module today with a broadly graded class.  I picked questions that fit with the age of the student, and it went really well.  We used a life size game board that was made awhile ago (didn't need a new one to make this work).  The kids were excited to see it pulled out.

 

Thanks!

Ann

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Blittle524BUMC SS

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