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Art Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources for the Parable of Talents, Pounds

Post your Sunday School ART lessons, ideas, activities, and resources for the Parable of the Talents, Pounds.

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Matthew 25:14–30, master who entrusts his property to his servants, Buried talent, stewardship, Kingdom, giving, etc. 

Bible lessons and ideas about the Parable of the Talents, Pounds -with Art, craft, painting, construction, drawing, etc.

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer
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Parable of the Talents

Art Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Children will hear the story the Camelephantelopelicanary then make either a wind spinner or a picture frame.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the story ahead of time. 
  • Gather the materials.
  • Prepare story pictures for the Camelephantelopelicanary story, see note below for details.

Supplies List:

  • Paper
  • Pencils, crayons, markers
  • Wind spinner kits
  • Frames
  • Paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Glue 
  • Mosaic Tiles


Opening - Welcome and Lesson Introduction:

Greet the children and introduce yourself.

Open with a prayer.

Dig - Main Content and Reflection:

Begin by reading the story CAMELEPHANTELOPELICANARY. Follows this lesson plan.

Pass out paper. Have each person choose one piece. Put pencils, crayons and markers in the center of the tables. Have each person write his or her name on the paper. Write down one gift you think you have. Each person should then pass their paper to the others in their family and when you receive your family member’s paper, write down a gift that you think that person has, then pass the paper to someone else in your family.

Give these examples: Mom writes down “service” on Joey’s paper because she remembers Joey stays after school often to the help the teacher straighten desks and chairs. Sally writes “teaching” on Dad’s paper because she knows that Dad helps teach at The LIGHT.

Let this activity go on for a few minutes, then encourage them to finish it at home, continuing to add things as they see them.

Art Choices:

Families will have their choice of one of two craft activities: a spinner mobile or a picture frame. Show each sample and explain why these crafts were chosen:

1) Wind Spinner

In families who chose this craft, each family member will choose a different “plastic blade spinner”. The different color beads they add will represent different talents. Just like the wind will add the power to make the spinner spin, God’s Holy Spirit adds the “power” to our lives to enable us to share our gifts with others.

(This project pack was purchased from S&S Crafts - moderator could not figure out which S&S craft they used - suggest search for pinwheel crafts?)

2) Picture Frame

Families who chose this craft will receive a frame, paints and paintbrushes, glue and some mosaic tiles. All family members will use paints to paint the frame to show that they’re one family together. Take turns gluing on tile pieces, representing different talents of each person and unique gifts. 

In both projects, the idea is that the complete art is COMPOSED of many different things that work together.

NOTE: Let families know they can leave this project here to dry and pick it up the following week if they prefer.mosiac picture frame

(This project pack was purchased from S&S Crafts - pictured "Mosaic Tile Picture Frames Craft Kit".)

Have each family make one project at this time. They can complete it at home if they need to but are welcome to stay after class time ends to finish. 

As they work, encourage families to discuss among themselves the spiritual gifts and talents they have and concrete ways they can use those talents for God’s glory. 

If there is additional time, encourage them to go back to their affirmation pages and add to them. 

Story: Camelephantelopelicanary

(You can google this long name and see the picture)

By David Fleming, Kent, UK found at https://talks2children.wordpre...ephantelopelicanary/

Update 2016: 
Moderator Luanne notes the story of Camelephantelopelicanary has been retold since the 1920's (original author is unknown).  Clive Dale who had told this story for over 50 years and could never find a published copy finally decided to write one himself.  It's called Dales Tales: Clive the Magic Camel at the Zoo, by Clive Dale & Ben Gander (illustrator) Diverze Publishing, 2013, 9781909386204.


Materials: a roll of paper with the word CAMELEPHANTELOPELICANARY written on it. (Optional) An acetate of a camel onto which can be overlaid big ears, thin legs, a bill and a beak 

NOTE: I adapted it in this way: I printed out a picture of a camel from clipart onto a piece of cardstock. I printed out 5 copies of this. Then I printed out from clipart the remaining items needed and glued to the correct number of camels. In doing it this way I just held up a different picture with each part of the story.


Once there was a camel called Brian. (unroll wallpaper to read CAMEL). 

He was perfectly made for the desert where he lived. He had wide feet so that he didn't sink in the sand. He could close his nostrils in sand storms, he could store water for days in his hump. 

But he was not happy. You see he was bothered by flies all the time. They flew in his eyes and ears and really got on his nerves. 

He said "If only I had big ears like the elephant. Then I could flick the flies away." 

So he began to exercise his ears. He would wiggle them, and try to step on them to stretch them, until at last his ears grew and grew (SHOW PICTURE WITH BIG EARS). 

The other camels thought he looked ridiculous, but he did not care. He had no more flies buzzing round. His friends said "We can't call you a camel any more. We will call you a (UNROLL WALLPAPER) CAMELEPHANT..... 

Well, Brian was happy. For awhile. Then he began wishing he could run really fast like the antelopes. He thought it would be great. So he began a daily exercise routine. He’d get up really early and jog, and then do wind sprints and deep knee bends. And he ran everywhere instead of walking. 

The other camels thought he was ridiculous, but he did not care. He could run fast. His friends said "We can't call you a camelephant any more. We will call you a (UNROLL PAPER) CAMELEPHANTELOPE ..... 

Well, Brian was happy. For awhile. Then he began to wish that he could catch fish. He had seen pelicans with their huge bills just reach into the water and scoop up fish to eat. Brian thought that was a wonderful thing so he pinched and pulled and wiggled and waggled his snout and soon enough, he had a huge bill like a pelican!

The other camels thought he looked ridiculous, but he did not care. He could catch fish! His friends said "We can't call you a camelephantelope any more. We will call you a (UNROLL paper) CAMELEPHANTELOPELICAN ..... 

Well, Brian was happy. For awhile. Then as he listened to the canaries singing so pretty, he wished he could sing like them. So he tried. But he didn’t sing well at all. The other camels all covered their ears when he sang. But Brian kept singing. 

The other camels thought he looked and now sounded ridiculous, but he did not care. He thought he was singing beautifully. His friends said "We can't call you a camelelphantelopelican any more. We will call you a (UNROLL paper) CAMELEPHANTELOPELICANARY ..... 

Well, as time went on, Brian began having troubles. He kept tripping over his big ears, stumbling when he tried to run on his thin legs, dragging that bill that was too heavy, singing way off key and hurting everyone’s ears …. And finally Brian realized that he was much happier as he was made to be … as a camel!

The moral of the story is:

Don't spend your life wishing you were something else. God gives us all unique gifts and abilities. Use them. 


End with a prayer.

A lesson posted by member Jan of Napa

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.


Images (1)
  • mosiac picture frame
Last edited by Luanne Payne

Luanne Payne posted:


Similar to the "CAMELEPHANTELOPELICANARY" animal described above....


"Boris the Camel" – is an online presentation about a camel who saw the talents of other animals and added them to his own.


View the download/viewing instructions for Boris the Camel in the Video forum.


I was also thinking you could print this on coloured overheads (if you don't have a video projector). You would not get the animation, but it would make a great story opening when you first gather – or make up you own flannegraph or have a picture of an elephant and pre-drawn pictures of body parts to add to story as you go as Jan did above. 

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer

A Talent Coat of Arms (or Family Shield)

Art Workshop

Wormy Notes:

A coat of arms or "family shield" in ancient times was a Family Flag, an Emblem with symbols that told people "who you belonged to", "what you were known for", and "what people could expect out of you".

This is a project that goes home and hangs in a child's bedroom. It was suggested by one reviewer not to think of it only as a "drawing" but something that could hold objects, such as a Nail Cross, a favorite Bible verse, the child's outlook on life, photographs of the child and "church family", and clippings from magazines about what the student likes, and who their HEROES are.  (Jesus! for example.)

The Coat of Arms typically has FOUR SECTIONS on it, with a main emblem surrounded by smaller ones.  You can designate one section as "faith", another as "your talents" and personality  --what others would say is good about you, another as "your likes/dislikes", and another as "people you look up to" or heroes, or family.   Words can be written around the edge of the shield.

Many coat of arms have an ANIMAL on them that represents the person's character.

You can make the shield on PAPER in the shape of a Coat of Arms shield, and then glue it to a pre-cut cardboard shield when finished. Tie a string on the back of the cardboard so that the shield can be hung.

Younger students may need items 'pre-found' but let them choose from a wide variety.

Sit with them during this project, helping them select. Do not have them glue anything on their shield until you have had a chance to talk with them.

To set up the idea:  Tell them "Imagine if all that was left of you one day was this Coat of Arms. What would you want people to know about you just by looking at this shield?  What would you want to tell them was important to you?  

What were your talents?

What was your character like?

By way of closure... bring the coat of arms concept back around to the TALENTS parable and the "burying" aspect of the story.  "How do we SHOW PEOPLE what we're made of? What our character and faith is like?  How do we BURY/HIDE our faith from others?   In the olden days, people hung their shields on their castles, and on the flags so that others could see what they stood for. How do we do that today?  How do people know us?  Do they know you are what your shield SAYS you are?

You might even sing a short version of "This little shield of mine, I'm gonna let it shine".

Summary of Lesson Activities:
In this workshop the learners will have the opportunity to think about some of their own gifts and talents while hearing about how people throughout history have used their particularly gifts and talents for good. The learners will create a personal shield that will be another way for them to recognize and name their talents and how they can use them.

Supplies List:

  • The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories
  • books with biographical information
  • 8½ x 11 paper in different colors for cross
  • 8½ x 14 paper for shield
  • Cardboard shield pre cut.
  • Magazines
  • some copied images of crosses, logos, super heroes.
  • scissors
  • glue
  • patterns for shield and cross
  • crayons
  • markers
  • dry erase board and markers
  • pencils

Teacher preparation:

  • Read the Bible passage. Read over the background material included in your teacher packet as you review the lesson plan. Become familiar with the biographical information, especially for those news and historical personalities with whom you are not as familiar. Make your own shield, filling it out with your own personal information.
  • Gather the materials.


Opening - Welcome and introductions:
Greet the children and introduce yourself. Remember that you are interacting with a different group of students each week—some may not know you. Wear your nametag and make sure that the children are wearing theirs if there are new students or visitors.

Open with a prayer.

Dig - Main Content and Reflection:

Lesson Plan:

1. Have the students gather around the table. Explain that you are going to read the Parable of the Talents from The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories. Read story #311 entitled “The Three Servants” on page 353. After reading the story, briefly review with the students the important points of the story. Ask the students if they have any questions about the story.

2. Ask the students the following questions:

  • Do you think God gives each person a talent or ability to do something well?  
  • Name some talents.
  • Do you think God gives us all the same talent?  
  • Why does God give us different talents?
  • What do you think God expects from us when God gives us a talent?
  • Do you know what your God-given talent is?  Name one!

Tell the students that we are going to do some projects that help us with some of these questions.

3.  Describe a Coat of Arms and Seed the Project with Ideas!

Show the children some COAT OF ARMS  (easily found on the internet)

Show them your denomination's logo. The PCUSA cross, for example, has many images in it.

List five different "gifts" or "talents" God gives people, and ask students to describe their OWN talents.

a. an ANIMAL that has those qualities.

b. a person they know or superhero that has those qualities.

List five different good personality traits, good character, ...such as "honesty"

List 3 symbols of our Faith  (cross, nails, what else?)

4. What's My Talent?

Discuss with the students that we all have different things we like to do and we are all good at different things. No one talent is better than another. Invite the students to play a game called “What’s My Talent?” In the game, you will read from the list below. As you read the list, ask the students to stand as you read an item that they like to do, or that they do well. Pause after each item allowing students to stand for a moment and then take their seat again before the next item is read. After you are done with this list, you could ask the students to add their favorites.

Paint a picture
Sing a song
Take a walk in the woods
Play a board game
Make cards to give others
Play an active sport
Talk to a friend on the phone
Read a book
Put together a model
Do math homework
Write a story or poem
Bake cookies
Write letters to friends or family members

5. Tell the students that they will be making their own personal shield that will demonstrate their talents and how they want to use them to serve God.

Show them the pattern and/or the one you made for yourself. Ask the students what they know about shields. Accept all answers. Be sure they know that sometimes shields have pictures or words on them that tell about who you are.  Discuss the different sections they can put on their  (show them your example).

Most Christian family coat of arms have a cross on them, sometimes as a way to create the sections on the shield.

Let the students select two sheets of paper--one piece of 8½ x 11 paper for the cross and one 8½ x 14 for the shield. Show them how to cut out the cross and shield by folding the paper or by using the pattern provided. Have the students glue the cross on top of the shield so that it divides the shield into four sections.

6. Summarize the activities and lists you've previously worked on and make specific suggestions about what each person should consider to be on their shield. Move them to consider not only HOW they are, but WHAT THEY SHOULD BECOME

  • What I do well
  • How I can help my family
  • How I share my talents with my friends or my school or church
  • How I make God happy by using my talents

Take time. Work with individuals


Taking turns, ask the students to share their shields with others in the class. If you filled one out, you could share yours with the class first to get the ball rolling.

A lesson originally posted by member JanMarshall,
the above "Talents Coat of Arms" (shield) project was originally suggested in
two other art workshops posted by Desoto Pres and Bedford Pres churches.

During 2013's review and renovation, this lesson was kept as the best of the three,
and some modifications provided by reviewers and Wormy.

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

The Parable of the Talents is a great foundation for encouraging our students to discover and share their own talents and gifts while valuing the talents of others. The story of the CAMELEPHANTELOPELICANARY is now available in an engaging video on YouTube. This could be inserted into any of the above Talent lessons. 

Last edited by CreativeCarol

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