Reply to "DRAMA, PUPPET, STORYTELLING Lessons & Ideas for Isaiah foretells the Messiah"

Jesus' Birth Through the Eyes of Isaiah
Drama/Video Workshop


Summary of Lesson Activity:

The children will meet Isaiah, the prophet, and understand that he brought God’s words to the people. His prophecies did not immediately come true, but they were fulfilled hundreds of years later when Jesus was born.

Scripture Reference:

Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 9:6-7a

Memory Verse: Isaiah 9:6 (NLT)

Objectives for the rotation
(listed in Teachers' Background above)

Additional objectives for the drama/video workshop
At the end of the session, the students will

  • Know that Isaiah, a prophet whose name means “God has saved,” speaks for God and gives the people hope.
  • Know we can share this hope by telling the world of God’s promise fulfilled in Jesus Christ.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture passages and lesson plan and attend the Bible Study....
  • Prepare a closing prayer.
  • Learn the memory verse.
  • Consider the age level adjustments needed each week (those included in the lesson plan and your own). Confer with the Shepherd on “Stretchers” to use, especially with the youngest children.
  • To our teachers at RCC: The design of this workshop is very intentional. The activities and discussion questions for this workshop were designed to meet the goals of the entire rotation and the educational objectives of the Rotation Model (tm) at River Community Church. While we feel it is important to follow the serendipitous leading of the Holy Spirit, please do not change the lesson plan without consulting a Curriculum Planning and Writing Team member.
  • Check out the room before your first Sunday workshop so that you know where everything is located.
  • The bin with supplies is located in the Sunday School room. Purchase or request additional supplies ....
  • Learn how to operate the church's video camera.

  • SCHEDULING NOTE: the oldest class should be in this workshop at the beginning of the rotation so they can tape the newscast for the others to watch.

Room set-up:
Put a table and two chairs set up as a news desk. You can put a large map of the Holy Land on the wall along with a banner with the call letters WRCC. 

Materials List:

  • Bible Times Costumes (bathrobes and head scarves are fine)
  • A “microphone” for the interviewer. (A handheld microphone is also a necessity or a mike can be made with a toilet paper tube and a nerf ball!)
  • Station call letters on poster board, masking tape
  • Map for the “weather”
  • Props for commercials: Clay jar or pot, picture of a camel or a toy camel, a pair of sandals, grapes, jewelry, tambourine, perfume bottle, bottled water, etc.
  • Flip chart or whiteboard and appropriate markers
  • Video camera loaded with film and tripod
  • TV and cables to connect camera to tv
  • Popcorn for viewing time (optional)
  • Script on transparencies, overhead (FIELD TEST NOTE: this did not work for us in our setup -- the print was too small -- make sure it is legible)
  • Memento: Pencil stickers (So the children can understand Corrie ten Boom's quote “I want to be a pencil in the hand of God."). Prophets were pencils in God's hands!
  • Shepherd Time: pencils (to give to the children), precut rebus pieces, glue sticks


Opening- Welcome and Lesson Introduction
Greet the children and introduce yourself. Wear your name-tag. (Remember, you are interacting with a different group of students each week who may not know you.) Make sure the children are wearing name-tags.

We had an opening prayer during the gathering time, but you may open with prayer if you feel led to do so.

Explain the purpose of this workshop: This workshop is designed to take you back in time, to help you get to know Isaiah, and to understand his role as a prophet.


Read the scripture (Isaiah 7:10-14, 9:6-7a) from your open Bible.
Encourage the children to use their Bibles in looking up verses and read along.

Give the children some background information on Isaiah and his times. (See the Teachers’ Background Notes.)

Dig- Content and Reflection
Application: Grades 4 and 5 will do the news cast.
Gather the children around the news desk and ask them if they ever watch a news program. Tell them that today we are going to pretend that we are traveling back in time, all the way back to the time of Isaiah (approximately 2,500 years ago), and we are going to recreate a news broadcast. Explain that the call letters after the W stand for River Community Church. The focus of the broadcast will be community news. We will need a weather person, a sports person, and at least 2 news anchor people. We will also have a live interview with a local prophet, Isaiah!

Ask for volunteers to read the news and volunteers to place the correct transparencies on the overhead. (The script is attached to this lesson plan.) You will also need a camera operator. You need a director, too. LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION

Rehearse and then film. (If it is moving quickly, you may want to have the older children do commercials also.)

When you finish the filming, the students will want to see their production, so be prepared to hook the camera to a tv and watch. Serve popcorn if you desire!

Dig: for K/1 and 2/3
Show the newscast the older children taped to the younger classes.

Tell them that they are going to create a variety of commercials to be played during the newscast. Show them the items on the table (grapes, jars, camels, etc.). Have them vote on the first item they want to create a commercial for.

Ask them to think of commercials they like to watch. Ask them how they would sell the item they chose. The teacher should be the scribe and should write the script or key words with a marker on a flip chart to be used as cue cards. The students can go to the costume box and dress up, gather their props, rehearse their lines, and then LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION. The Shepherd should then film while the Workshop Leader holds up the cue cards. These commercials can be taped at the end of the older children’s newscast.

If possible, view each commercial before going on to write another commercial for the next item. The commercials can be FUNNY.

Pulling it all together (closing discussion):

Did you have fun making this news broadcast? Can you learn something and have fun at the same time? I hope you learned some things about Isaiah. Let's see how much you remember.

  • What did his name mean? [May the LORD save.]
  • When did he live?[before Jesus; when Ahaz was king in Jerusalem; around 740-680 B.C.]
  • Name one of the King’s he brought messages to. [Ahaz, Ussiah, Jotham, Hezekiah]
  • What did Isaiah tell everyone that the LORD promised? [Isaiah 7:14] Who is that child? [Jesus]
  • What did he say Jesus would be called? [Immanuel]
  • Do people always listen to and do what prophets tell them to do?

Review the memory verse.
(the students will learn the verse with movements so that their bodies will help their minds remember the words; accompanying movements are in italics; note that these movements are NOT ASL.)
Isaiah 9:6 [hold up 9 fingers, then 6]
For a child is born to us, [rock a baby]
a son is given to us. [hold out both hands palms up as if giving something]
And the government [hands on hips, stand tall and authoritatively]
will rest on his shoulders. [pat both of your shoulders]
These will be his royal titles: [hands circle head like a crown]
Wonderful Counselor, [start with both hands at mouth, reach them out with palms up as if giving something]
Mighty God, [hold both arms up to show muscles]
Everlasting Father, [both hands start at heart, reach and point out to sides showing eternity]
Prince of Peace. [hold two fingers up in a peace sign]

Talk about what the names mean and then repeat several times until all are comfortable with it.

By 11:45 a.m. ask the Shepherd to pass out the journal pages and pencils/markers. Suggestion: You may wish to give the children a sticker of a pencil to paste in their journal as a reminder that prophets were and are "pencils in the hand of God."

Shepherd Time:
for Grades 2,3,4,5:
A woman named Corrie ten Boom said, “Prophets are pencils in the hand of God.” I wonder what she meant?

  • Does the pencil write the message or is it the hand that writes the message?
  • The pencil is only a tool, isn't it?
  • Each child can then write in their journal how God might use them to be a pencil in His hand. What message does God want them to bring to the world? (You may have to ask them questions that make them think about how God might want them to be a message to others.)
    Give each child a pencil to take home today!

Shepherd Time for Grades K,1:
A rebus story is a story where the naming words (later on in school you will learn that these words are called nouns) in the story are replaced by a picture. For your journal page today, you have a story with some words left out. There are some pictures on the table. You can choose pictures to glue into your story to replace some of the words. Your teacher will help you read the words that are printed on the page. (You will need to create a rebus worksheet using clip art.)

This is meant to be a time of reflection and introspection. Writing about faith helps clarify lessons. In addition to the suggested activity, children may draw pictures relating to today’s scripture or memory verse, list highlights of the day’s activities, or rephrase the memory verse. The journal pages will be saved and given to the children at the end of the school year.
You may want to provide an extra activity or worksheet for children who finish their journals quickly, such as coloring sheets, crossword puzzles, word searches, games. See the Workshop Leader’s Background Notes and for ideas.

Before noon, ask the students to stop journaling for a moment and sit quietly for prayer so they can leave when their parents arrive. Allow them to finish journaling afterwards.

Closing prayer:
Think about what God gave us at Christmas,
God gave us His Son, just like Isaiah said He would.
I pray that we will also think of what we can give Him.

What shall I give Him,
As small as I am?
If I were a shepherd,
I'd give Him a lamb.
If I were a wise man,
I'd do my part.
I know what I'll give Him,
I'll give Him my heart.
by Christina Rosetti

Tidy and Dismissal:

  • Ask children to help tidy the room. Give any specific instructions for clearing the workshop room.
  • Collect the journal pages before they leave. Make sure their names and the date are on them.
  • Give everyone the parent take-home flyer the first week of the rotation; give it only to children who were absent and have not yet received it the other weeks of the rotation.

Additional Suggestions:
You will need to decide how best to adjust the lesson for older and younger students. Keep the children active and involved in activity. Do what works for you and the children. Some ideas:

Older children: Older children will need practice reading the script before filming, but they should enjoy playing all of the parts.

Younger Children: Younger children may need to have adults play the parts of the newscasters. They can hold cue cards and run the camera and write and act in the commercials.

For classes composed primarily of pre-readers, show the children how to find the passage in the Bible (for example, “To find the Gospels, open the Bible in the middle and then open the second half in the middle - you should end up in Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. Our passage is in Mark." and then have them do it. After everyone has found the passage, have them close their Bibles and listen while you read.


Great People of the Bible and How They Lived Reader's Digest Publishing Co.

Camp, Anne. lesson plan: Rotation.Org Writing Team Jesus' Birth Through The Eyes Of Isaiah Video Workshop.

Christina Rosetti's poem "What Can I Give Him?"

Clipart: Gospel Light’s The Complete Bible Story Clip Art CD-ROM and Corel WordPerfect.

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 written by Judy McIntyre from: River Community Church

Prairieville, LA

Copyright 2003 Judy McIntyre. Permission granted to freely distribute and use, provided the copyright message is included.


A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability

Drama/Video Workshop
Newscast script


News Anchor 2: And I’m _______ here with today’s news.

News Anchor 1: The top story of this evening’s news deals with the gold and silver utensils from the palace and the Temple. King Ahaz has collected these treasures to send to Assyria. Some people are grumbling about sending so much money to an empire which threatens to invade the city, but others think more should be sent. The people are afraid of an invasion.

News anchor 2: The local water supply has become polluted and the water is unfit to drink. Residents of Jerusalem are urged to travel to the Gihon Spring in order to draw water for cooking and drinking. And now for a word from our sponsor…


News anchor 1: A leper was arrested for entering the city gates today without announcing “Unclean!” He was banished from the city and should not present a health hazard to the people anymore.

News Anchor 2: There was a disturbance in the marketplace today. Young thieves stole food and knocked over booths before the police arrested them. They were hauled off to the local jail.
Stay tuned for more local news…


News Anchor 1: A local prophet was making a disturbance of his own today. He was challenging King Ahaz to trust God and not to form an alliance with our enemies, the Assyrians. Jerusalem has always had its share of noisy prophets. The local population is tired of hearing these people bringing messages from God. When asked his name, this prophet answered “Isaiah” which means “may the Lord save.” Many local people are hoping the LORD will save them from the Assyrian army, but the Jews have a history of not trusting God like they should. We now have a report from our STREET BEAT REPORTER, ________.

Street beat Reporter: Tonight people are grumbling because Isaiah has challenged the King. He went so far as to advise the King to ask for a sign. Isaiah said the LORD’s exact words were: "Ask me for a sign, Ahaz, to prove that I will crush your enemies as I have promised. Ask for anything you like, and make it as difficult as you want.” But the King refused, saying “I wouldn’t test the LORD like that.” I want you to hear from Isaiah himself what he dared to say to the King.

Isaiah: I told the King, “Listen well, you royal family of David! You aren’t satisfied to exhaust my patience. You exhaust the patience of God as well!” What I meant by that was that God is getting tired of King Ahaz being so stubborn! I went on to tell him, “All right then, the LORD himself will choose the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel — ‘God is with us.” Now I ask you, _____, how is that for a sign!!?

Streetbeat Reporter: Isaiah, you really caused quite a stir. The King was very upset. Did he listen to you?.

Isaiah: No, so I have a message for the people of Israel from the LORD.
“For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. And the government will rest on his shoulders. These will be his royal titles: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

Streetbeat Reporter: These prophets predict some wild things. God giving us a baby to solve our problems!!! You hear everything out here! Back to you, ______.

News Anchor #1: Thank you, ____ for that thought-provoking visit with a prophet. A child will be given to us. Hmmm. What do you make of it, _____?

News Anchor #2: I don’t know, ______. Of course, they always say, “With God, nothing is impossible.”
Sports news after this commercial break.



SPORTSCASTER: Argos the Terrible retained his wrestling championship by defeating Michael the Mean last night in one hour and fifteen minutes. The crowds roared as the two struggled to pin each other in the dust.

The donkey races were held outside the city wall, and some of the contestants never made it to the finish line. Phineus was injured when his donkey stopped, but he didn't!

The local runners from Jerusalem have challenged the runners from Bethlehem to a marathon race across the desert. Each runner will need to carry a skin filled with water in order to make it to the finish line. The winner will be announced next week during Sports Showcase.


Newsanchor #2: AND NOW ____ WITH THE AREA WEATHER:

Meteorologist: The temperature in Jerusalem today was a chilly 52 degrees. North of the city in Damascus, it was 46 degrees. Area residents should prepare for a warming trend. Sand storms are raging in the desert north of the city and residents are urged to stay tuned for severe sand storm reports throughout the evening.

The five day forecast is for the temperature to remain in the high fifties during the day and drop into the forties at night. No rain is expected.

News Anchor #1: This is _______

News Anchor #2: and this is _______.

BOTH: Shalom from Jerusalem!

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