Jesus' Birth through the Eyes of the Shepherds, Angelic Host, and the Stable
Summary of Activities:
Uses paper mache cones to make characters to recreate the pasture scene.
Luke 2: 8-20 (the Shepherds and the Angels)
- To find the story of the shepherds and the angels in the Bible.
- To use imagination and creativity to recreate the pasture scene with the shepherds, angels, and sheep.
- Read the Scripture and Background Materials
- Gather Materials
- Pre-made paper maché cones about one foot high (see attachment)
- Styrofoam balls
- Cloth pieces of various sizes and colors
- Sequins, buttons, empty spools, etc.
- Metal clothes hangers
Opening- Welcome and Lesson Introduction
Greet the children and introduce yourself and any helpers that you have.
Dig- Main Content and Reflection
Begin the class session by looking up the story of the shepherds and the angels in Luke 2:8-20. Ask someone in the group to read the story. Take a few minutes to talk about shepherds. Shepherds:
· Were not wealthy
· Worked long hard hours
· Lived in the fields with the sheep
· Spent all their time outdoors, rain or shine
· Were sometimes old and sometimes young
· Protected their sheep from wild animals
· Made sure their sheep had enough food and water
Ask the children if they had any other idea about what shepherds were like. Take a few minutes to talk about the angels in this story. Angels in this story:
· Appeared in the heavens (sky)
· Brought good news of Christ's birth
· Said, "Do not be afraid"
· Said, "Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom God favors."
Ask the children if they know anything else (from the story) about angels.
Divide the class into three groups. Explain to them that they will be recreating the pasture scene. The scene will require three main sets of characters. Shepherds, angels, and (of course) sheep. Each group will decorate pre-made paper maché cones (the teacher will need to have these made in advance in order to ensure they are dry for Sunday morning. Think about different shapes and sizes for the different characters) to create the appropriate characters for the story (ask each group to chose one character to begin with, adding another if time allows). Encourage creativity.
Use Styrofoam balls for heads, sequins, buttons, & yarn for eyes, nose and mouth, fabric for robes and wings, hangers for arms and (sheep) legs, and cotton balls and yarn for sheep hair.
Close with a prayer.
Allow 5-10 minutes for clean up.
Display finished angels, shepherds and sheep in a public place during this Christmas rotation.
TIP from member "HilaryS":
Use plastic pop bottles as the bodies, adding a styrofoam ball for the head. Varying the sizes of bottles will add variety to the pastoral scene for this lesson set.
TIP from member "Jcarey":
The plastic bottles get weighted down with rice in them. Cone shapes can be easily made from poster board or even try something like transparencies that will hold up better and both ideas are less work than paper mache. I have done the poster board ones and I remember I had to cut them slightly curved on the base and then they were stapled.
A lesson written by St. Elmo's Choir, a rotation writer's group,
A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.