Thank you so much for recommending the "Jacob's Ladder" videos and posting the link for the study guides!
Overall, I'm extremely pleased to have the resource, especially the study guides, which give me plenty of extension ideas to use "out of the box" or incorporate into other activities (questions for quiz games/Bible bowling/dramas/etc.). Makes a great finisher for those rotations for which you have an open slot, don't have enough material, or just don't have a video yet.
We're working on Saul, and focusing on the "be careful what you wish for" theme (Israel demanding a human king), Saul's human flaws and struggles, and how we must rely on God/Christ as our perfect King, instead of focusing on the "Witch of Endor" part of the story--so I'm finding more materials geared toward teens and adults than younger kids. I've seen, however, that kids are smarter than most adults give them credit for, so I try not to dumb things down for our kids, and they rise to the occasion! They have come up with some great insights!
Review on the videos:
The settings and costumes come off more like medieval Europe than Old Testament-era Israel, compounded by the British accents (I realize, however, that this is what they had to work with in England; it was low-budget, and it shows). I don't think most of the kids notice, but older kids might and teens would, and I worry if the kids could get the wrong impression from some parts (I guess I just don't want them retaining the inaccuracies). The acting is actually pretty good, but the low-budget production definitely highlights any poor acting which may slip through.
You WILL want to use the study guides and/or have another activity planned, as each video only lasts for about half of a one-hour class (OR you could watch two videos back-to-back in one class--there are SEVERAL videos covering Samuel, Saul, and the transition to David).
Tips About Downloading These Videos from Amazon.com:
If you'll be downloading them from Amazon, PAY ATTENTION to the download time estimates! You should try downloading the video(s) well in advance, as you could hit a snag...certainly don't (ahem) try "instant download" fifteen minutes before class starts, as your church Internet connection may not REALLY be as fast as the WiFi says it is..."instant" isn't always so instant, Murphy's Law applies, and you'll be really grateful for the "pre-video" activities on the study guides...not speaking from experience here at all...
My opinion is to go ahead and install the Amazon Unbox player on your laptop if that's what you'll be using to show the kids the videos, as you can then download the videos to your laptop in advance and play them even without an Internet connection (mind, though, that you'll only be able to download the videos to two devices, in addition to being able to watch them online on the site from anywhere). Prayer works--use it--and yes, it is better to just download the entire one whopping season that is available (you'll end up wanting it anyway, and you'll save a lot of money). I just wish that: a) I'd found out about this sooner, so we could have used the Gideon, Ruth, and Samuel resources, too; and b) there was more of this series to use with the rest of the Bible!