Reply to "The Walk to Emmaus Lesson Set -- FUMC Ann Arbor, MI"

The Walk to Emmaus:

Newsroom Workshop:

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Experience the story by producing, watching, and discussing a news broadcast in which Cleopas and his friend describe their encounter with Jesus on their walk to Emmaus. [Note: 4th – 6th graders visited this workshop.]

For scripture and objectives - see above.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture for this lesson.
  • Read and reflect on the overview material provided for this lesson.
  • Gather the materials.
  • Check to make sure video equipment is set up and ready to use.
  • Make an outline of the class on the easel. Write in bullet form: choose parts/costumes, rehearse the script, pre-production meeting, videotape the newscast, watch the news, discuss: what if they had access to a news show?
  • Label the 5 index cards: Camera operator, News Anchor (Demetrius), Reporter (Jacob), Cleopas, Friend.

Supplies List:

  • Easel with appropriate marker
  • Bibles
  • Copies of script (4) with each part highlighted
  • Index cards (5), marker
  • Videotaping equipment: video camera or digital camera, tripod, extension cord, TV/DVD Player
  • Digital still-camera (optional)
  • Props: Microphone, Scene clapper, news desk with a sign: “WFUMC”, road painted on canvas backdrop

Lesson Plan


Greet your students warmly, welcoming them to the WFUMC Newsroom. Introduce yourself and any other adults.

[Note: The Shepherd will be taking care of attendance while you are starting your lesson.]

Say: This is the newsroom of WFUMC, so we’ll be reporting news from the Bible. Before we get started, let’s begin with prayer.

Ask for any prayer requests. Ask if anyone would like to lead the group in prayer. Use the Lord’s Prayer as the ending. A suggestion: “Dear God, We are so thankful that you are with us everyday. Help us to realize that we are not along on this journey called life. Help us to see you in those around us. (End with the Lord’s Prayer) Amen.”

Say: Today we’ll be videotaping a news broadcast on a portion of the story, The Walk to Emmaus. We want to get to the bottom of the story. We want to find out what’s going on, because it’s our job to report the news. Like all newscasts, ours will need reporters and people being interviewed. We’ll get it all ready, practice, and videotape it, and hopefully we’ll have time to watch our news show. Let’s first review our story.


Distribute Bibles.

Ask: Where in the Bible would we find the Gospel of Luke– in the Old or New Testament? (New)

Have everyone find Luke - Chapter 24, Verses 13 – 35 in the Bible.
Have kids take turns reading verses 13 - 35 out loud.

[Note: After the first week of the Rotation the students will become more familiar with the story. Have them locate the scripture in their Bibles. Then ask them to tell you the story. Fill in any missing details by using their Bibles.]

Say: When we are done reading our Bible story we are going to say what is said in church after the scripture is read. Be ready to say “Thanks be to God!”
“For the Word of God in scripture, for the Word of God among us, for the Word of God within us...”
The class says: Thanks be to God!

Refer to the easel.
Say: We are going to explore this story by creating a news report. We will choose parts, choose costumes, rehearse the script, have a short pre-production meeting, video tape either one or two groups acting out the newscast (depending on the number of kids in attendance), watch the newscast, and then discuss what people may have felt like back in the time when Jesus was resurrected if they had access to news media.

Prepare the News:
To determine who plays each part, each student will randomly choose an index card. There are 5 cards with one part on each card. If there are 7 or more kids, there should be two groups. After the first group has selected their parts, the second group can do the same.

Parts are:

  • Camera operator – should be a kid (or could be the shepherd if there are not enough kids)
  • News Anchor (Demetrius)
  • Reporter (Jacob)
  • Cleopas
  • Friend

One newscast will be filmed
4 kids – one kid per part, shepherd or workshop leader operates video camera
5 kids – one kid per part
6 kids – one kid per part with “Friend” part split into two

Two separate newscasts will be videotaped
7 kids – kid operating the video camera and kid playing the news anchor do so in both newscasts
8 kids – shepherd runs the video camera in both newscasts, everyone else gets a speaking part
9 kids – camera operator is the same in both newscasts
10 kids – one kid per part
11 kids – Friend part is split into two parts for one of the newscasts
12 kids - Friend part is split into two parts for both of the newscasts

Say: We will now prepare our news show. Everyone will choose costumes and we will run through the script once or twice. You have about 5 minutes to prepare your scene; then we’ll videotape it.

You and the shepherd should mingle with the groups helping them stay on task.
As you help the students rehearse the newscast, if it seems appropriate, you can enhance their learning by telling them what you learned from the Overview material.

Watch the clock; after 3 minutes, give a two-minute warning. [Start taping by 10:10, maybe even earlier if you have two groups]

When the time is up, gather everyone together for a quick pre-production meeting. Decide where each actor will be sitting/standing.
Make sure the camera is in place, power is on, tape is in camera, lens cap if off, recording (camera) mode is selected.
Decide how the actors will be signaled when the scene is being started or stopped.

Videotaping the news:
Run through the script as rehearsed, but now with the camera going! Make sure that all of the spectators are sitting down quietly during the taping of the newscast. If there are two groups, instruct the first group to leave “the set” and ask the second group to take their places. Then begin the second taping.

If there is a still camera available, the workshop leader or shepherd could take a few still photos for our website.

View the news:
When done taping, eject the tape from the camera. Pop it into the VCR and rewind. While the tape is rewinding, have the kids help you tidy up the workshop space and put costumes back. Now, enjoy viewing the creation!

Discussion (possible questions):

  • How might people in Jesus’ time have reacted after seeing this news report?
  • Why do you think Jesus did not tell Cleopas and his friend who he was until they realized who he was when he broke bread with them?
  • How did Cleopas and his friend feel when Jesus was walking with them?
  • How we might recognize that Jesus walks with us today?
  • In what ways can we see Jesus in the lives of others?


Say: In our story today, it took awhile for Cleopas and his friend to identify Jesus, but as our key verse says, “Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him.” Luke 24:31a

Say a prayer of your own to close the workshop, or use the following:
“Thank you, God, for loving us so much that you sent Jesus to our world. Help us to recognize and see you in our lives. Thank you for traveling with us through our journeys. Amen.”

Marshall, Jan. “ The Walk to Emmaus: Lesson Set from Brookhaven Church.” 2002. 

Written by Beth Pascoe for First United Methodist Church
Ann Arbor, MI 

Copyright 2008 First United Methodist Church, Ann Arbor, MI.
Permission to copy materials granted for non-commercial use provided credit is given and all cited references remain with this material

If you use this material, even in a modified form, please include the following reference:
Pascoe, Beth. "The Walk to Emmaus - Newsroom." April 2008. Place URL where lesson found inside angle brackets<>.

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