Complete Lesson Set: David and Goliath, from River Community Church

Riverkidz Workshops Summaries:

  • Movie Workshop: the children will see Veggie Tale’s Dave and the Giant Pickle and explore the idea that when they trust God they can be certain that his purpose for their lives will be fulfilled and will be good.
  • Drama Workshop:  uses Readers’ theater is used to dramatize David’s battle with Goliath. Many of the Psalms attributed to David are featured in the script. Younger students will use a tape recording of the older students’ reading as the soundtrack for a puppet show.
  • Games Workshop: the children will review the story of David and Goliath by playing a game that involves throwing a sock sling at a cardboard Goliath and answering questions about the Bible story.
  • Art Workshop: the children will consider the presence of the Holy Spirit as their helper as they work with wire to create sculptures of David and Goliath or of themselves facing a “giant” in their lives.

River Community Church
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David and Goliath


Scripture Reference:

1 Samuel 17

David was a shepherd, soldier, song writer, musician, and king, as well as a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). He was a man of many faults as well as of great faith. The many stories about his life can be found in 1 and 2 Samuel and many are retold in 1 Chronicles.

The story of David and Goliath is a story from his childhood. While David’s situation is not one most kids can connect to directly (how often do they find themselves in a literal battlefield?), it is one that can be a reminder that even when things look hopeless, children are not powerless when they have the power and Spirit of God in their lives.

Our memory verse for this Rotation is in David’s own words: “The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the strength of my salvation, and my stronghold, my high tower, my savior, the one who saves me from violence.” 2 Samuel 22:2b-3 (NLT)

What we will learn:
At the end of the rotation, the students will

  • know that the story of David and Goliath (and other stories about King David) is in 1 Samuel and will be able to find it in the Old Testament.
  • understand that even a child can do God’s work.
  • rely on God because God is more powerful than any challenges we will face in this world.
  • know that God works in ways that we do not expect.
  • be able to repeat the memory verse.


Family Time with God:
This article first appeared in January/February 2002 issue of Christian Parenting Today (Volume 14, Number 3, Page 20). Used by permission of Christianity Today International, Carol Stream, IL 60188.

Family devotions don’t have to be formal sit-down events. Use these quick ideas (and others which can be found at www.heritagebuilders.com ) to connect with your kids during meals, in the car, or at bedtime. Whether you use one of these ideas each week or only manage to squeeze in a couple during the next two months, you’ll be teaching your children that any time is a great time to learn about God.

Trust Test
Read the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17.
David was able to defeat Goliath because he trusted God to be with him and to help him. God is also with us, all the time. All we have to do is trust him. What things can you trust God with in your life?

Dear God, Thank you that you are with me and also with (child’s name). Please help us to trust you in all we do. Amen.

A Puzzlement
Find a puzzle that’s easy. Put the puzzle together with your child. Then, share that sometimes things in life seem to be falling to pieces, like this puzzle before we made it. But with God’s help, those pieces can be put back together. What pieces of your life can God help you with right now?

Dear God, Thank you that you are there for us when we need you. Please help (child’s name) with (list the things they said and any others you can think of). Amen.

Heritage Builders, a ministry of Focus on the Family, is dedicated to training and equipping parents to pass on a spiritual heritage to their children. For more information or to request resources visit: www.heritagebuilders.com.

Thank you to our David and Goliath Rotation Team:
Curriculum Writers: Cathy Greenwood, Jamie Senyard, Amy Crane

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 8 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.



River Community Church

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David and Goliath

Scripture Reference:

1 Samuel 17: 1-58

Teacher Background Notes:

David was a shepherd, soldier, song writer, musician, and king, as well as a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). He was a man of many faults as well as of great faith. The many stories about his life can be found in 1 and 2 Samuel and many are retold in 1 Chronicles. The story of David and Goliath is a story from his childhood. While David’s situation is not one most kids can connect to directly (how often do they find themselves in a literal battlefield?), it is one that can be a reminder that even when things look hopeless, children are not powerless when they have the power and Spirit of God in their lives.

This rotation’s story of the victory of an underdog is a familiar one in our culture, even to those not familiar with other Bible stories. Some scholars feel that this larger-than-life hero story may be a legend about David, especially since in 2 Samuel 21:19, Elhanan is credited with killing Goliath of Gath. More giants from Gath were also killed in 1 Chronicles 20: 4-8. The chronology in 1 Samuel indicates that the story may have been inserted at a later time (in chapter 16 David serves King Saul as a harpist, but Saul does not recognize him in chapter 17), or perhaps it shows Saul’s confused state of mind after the Lord rejected him (see 1 Samuel 15:23 and 16:14). Nonetheless, this story of a boy who does what trained soldiers did not dare do wonderfully exemplifies David’s trust in the Lord and the Lord’s faithfulness to his servants. It emphasizes the Old Testament theme that Yahweh is with the small nation of Israel and gives them victory over powerful enemies.

The situation the armies find themselves in was not all that unusual in that day. It was not uncommon for an army to avoid the high cost of battle by pitting its champion against the champion of their enemy.

The memory verse is particularly appropriate, as it is part of David’s song of praise after the Lord had rescued him from all his enemies and from Saul. In this song, David gives credit where credit is due. He recounts God’s faithful love in detail. Note that this song at 2 Samuel 22 is almost identical to the song of praise in Psalm 18, also written by David.

Read through some of the Psalms attributed to David. He was a great musician and song writer. The many moods of the Psalms reflect the ups and downs of David’s life as well as his prayers and petitions to God.

Q: How can I nurture children's self worth?
A: Invite questions.

(Adapted from an article on Nurturing a Child. Copyright © 2003 by Christianity Today International/Christian Bible Studies. Used by permission of Christianity Today International, Carol Stream, IL 60188.)

Have you ever been in a heated discussion when a quiet child who has gone unnoticed pipes up and asks, “But what about …?” or, “Why can't we just …?” This child, uncluttered with all the nuances that overwhelm adults, has seen the big picture and has the courage to speak up.

Children can simplify things by asking cut-to-the-chase questions. Sometimes it’s even good to approach a child and ask, “What do you think about …?” Whether or not they say something profound, you’re letting them know you value their opinions, that you believe they have something to contribute to the discussion.

You know you’ve forgotten these truths when a child asks, as David did, “What have I done now? I was only asking a question.” (1 Samuel 17:29). As teachers and parents we need to do our best to encourage questioning and the expression of ideas, then honor them with attention and thoughtfulness—even when there’s a Goliath or two of a problem waiting to be solved.

Good Words To Remember: David said to Goliath, “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the LORD Almighty … It is His battle, not ours. The LORD will give you to us.” 1 Samuel 17:45,47

Today’s Challenge: In what ways do you invite questions from children?


Resources:

  • Cohen, Barbara. David: A Biography. New York: Clarion Books, 1995. (Adds details to story using midrash, archaeology, history, psychology, Bible study, etc.)
  • Mark, Jan. God’s Story: How God Made Mankind. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Candlewick, 1998.
  • McCarter, P. Kyle. The Anchor Bible: I Samuel: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary. Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc., 1980.
  • Spangler, Ann and Robert Wolgemuth. Men of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Men in Scripture. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2002.
  • Life Application Study Bible notes. Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1986.


Books for sharing during Shepherd Time:
There are many picture book versions of David and Goliath available in the public library. There are also a number of books about the Twenty-third Psalm, the Good Shepherd, and Psalms. Ask your librarian for help, or look for

  • Auld, Mary. David and Goliath. New York: Franklin Watts, 1999.
  • de Regniers, Beatrice Schenk. David and Goliath. New York: Orchard Books, 1965, 1996.
  • Eisler, Colin. David’s Songs: His Psalms and Their Story. New York: Dial, 1992.
  • Fisher, Leonard Everett. David and Goliath. New York: Holiday House, 1993.
  • Miner, Julia (illustrator). The Shepherd’s Song: The Twenty-third Psalm. New York: Dial, 1993.
  • Walker, Paul Robert. Giants!: Stories from Around the World. New York: Harcourt Brace and Company, 1995.

Other Resources for Shepherds (just in case you have some extra time to fill):


Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.


A lesson set from River Community Church

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