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(WT) Jesus and Zaccheus Software Workshop Lesson Writing Team

Jesus and Zaccheus

Software Workshop Lesson

for in-class or at-home use

Summary of Activities

Students will play through the Story of Zaccheus as presented in Sunday Software's Awesome Bible Stories software -- a free download for the Supporting Members of and the families in their congregations.

Zaccheus software menu

This lesson has been written for "at-home" use with a parent as a guide, or for a Sunday School classroom where the teacher leads students through the software on one or more PCs. Permission is granted to download and install the software on as many computers as needed either within the church or among the families of a Supporting Member's congregation.

Scripture for the Lesson

Luke 18:15-42 ~ Jesus blesses the children, Jesus sends a rich man away, Jesus restores sight to a blind man.

Luke 19:1-10
~ The story of Zaccheus ~ a rich man looking for Jesus who is restored to the family of God and invited into Jesus' Kingdom.

Key/Memory Verses: “Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:9-10, NRSV)

starThis software lesson is the only one in the Writing Team's Zaccheus lesson set that begins the lesson with narration about the people Jesus encounters in Luke 18 when Jesus is on his way to Jericho. He encounters children to bless, a rich man who walks away, and a blind man whom he heals. These short vignettes in Luke 18 are thematically related to the story of Zaccheus in Luke 19. With the blessing of the children, Jesus is telling others the kind of spirit they need to enter God's Kingdom. He sends away the rich man who covets his wealth (a stark contrast to Zaccheus who offers his). He restores sight to the blind man, invites Zaccheus the one who climbed up to see him, and addresses the crowd's "blindness" to his mission, which is "to seek and save the lost."

Lesson Objectives

See the Bible Background at for insights and this set's complete list of objectives.

Preparation and Materials

  • Read the Bible Background and scripture.
  • Print the attached "Butterfly Notes" PDF to give the teacher a heads-up about what's in the interactive notes and questions found in the program.
  • If needed, print the Guide to Awesome Bible Stories. It includes a tech note about how to make the program fill more of your screen.
  • Print and share the "Teaching with Software" pamphlet.
  • Preview the software and its functions. See the Navigational and Tech Notes below.
  • Have a whiteboard (or drawing paper) ready. Write "Jesus" at the top and draw a vertical arrow pointing to Jesus. (See picture below.)
  • A cloth tape measure

Lesson Plan


Welcome students and explain what they'll be doing and learning today.

Jesus arrow line activityInvite them to write their name somewhere along the vertical line that you've drawn on the whiteboard (or on a piece of paper). Have them choose a location on the line that's closer or farther away from Jesus depending on "how well they think they are doing following Jesus."

Tell them that they will return to this "line activity" at the end of the lesson, once they have learned some very important information.

Play the Story

Start the Awesome Bible Stories software, then navigate to the Zaccheus option. Click "Play the Story" and advance through the story.

At the end of the story on screen, click the butterflies to open up a discussion question panels. Read and respond. Copies of what's in each of the five butterfly panels can be found in the printable Butterfly Notes PDF.

The interactive story is your scripture reading for this lesson.

Play the Zappin Zach story memory game

In this game, a question is asked, and then students "zap" the two wrong answers that float down out of the tree, letting the correct answer land safely. There are 14 questions. Take turns playing.

Play the "How Do You Measure Up?" life application activity

Click the green Story Options button to play the "How Do You Measure Up?" game.
This section presents a series of good things Jesus wants you to do, against which you measure yourself by selecting how well/often you do those things. The questions are presented together on the last screen when you get your "score."

Measure-up game

Note: We don't know how Zaccheus's life changed after meeting Christ and welcoming him into his home, but it's a great discussion to be had!  The "Measure Up" activity suggests a number of things that a disciple would want to do and/or improve in their life.

Measure-up questions

Return to the "line activity done at the start of class

Write "Jesus" NEXT TO every student's name, pointing out that while it's good to see how well you are following Jesus or "being like Jesus," that Jesus doesn't choose or reject you based on how good YOU are, or how "close" you think you are to him, or what other people think about you!  Rather, Jesus chooses us to be in his family based on his LOVE for us.  Jesus came to find us and save us knowing that none of us is perfect or "good enough" to deserve to be part of his kingdom (his family). Jesus includes us anyway, as an act of love. Therefore, we too should treat others as part of God's family.

Close with a prayer thanking Jesus for seeking us and making us part of his family. Ask Jesus to help you do a better job of "measuring up" to being the kind of person he wants you to be—knowing we have already been "measured" by his love for us.  (Tip: To emphasize this point, form a tape measure in the shape of a heart.)

a cloth measuring tape in heart-shape


For Non-Readers:

Help them click the flying Butterflies during the story. Using the Butterfly Notes PDF, pick those butterfly notes you want to follow up on or skip.
Zappin Zach Game - let non-readers click the spacebar to select the two wrong answers that you are pointing to using the keyboard arrow keys.

For those with more class time and for Older Students:

Ask: What kinds of spiritual and moral behaviors are not included on the "How Do You Measure Up? list?

Note that the "behaviors" do not exactly equate to a person's strength of "faith" or "belief." Think about Zaccheus that day and how little he knew about Jesus, and yet he "measured up" to Jesus as one deserving of acceptance and salvation. What does that say about "measuring faith" versus "measuring your worthiness in God's eyes for salvation"?

For At-Home Use or Shorter/Simpler lesson plan:

Consider skipping the opening "line activity." Pick which "Butterfly" question panels you want to talk about at the end of the story.

See the follow-up post for a link to Jericho in Google Earth and discussion suggestions.

Technical and Navigational Notes:

To make the program's window fill more of your screen, adjust your Windows "scaling" display option. Read the AdjustingDisplaySizes.PDF which is part of the download.

Clicking the "Butterfly Notes" during the story isn't easy. Anticipate and aim for the center of a butterfly!  To exit the Butterfly Further Study screen, click the green Story Menu button.

When you first enter the program, after the Intro click the NEXT button until you reach the Zaccheus story, then click Play Story. This will open the Story Menu. Click the PLAY STORY option first and work through the story. When you reach the end of the story, click the green Story Menu button to go to the Zappin Zach game menu. After playing the Zappin Zach Game, return to the green Story Menu button and click the "Measure Up" game option.

Written by Neil Macqueen, Luanne Payne, and the Writing Team

Copyright Inc.

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Images (5)
  • Zaccheus software menu
  • Jesus line activity
  • measure-up
  • Measure-up questions
  • Measuring tape
Files (1)
Last edited by CreativeCarol
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