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Jacob's Ladder Toy

Hi Cynthia.....
The first thing that popped into my head was those souvenir "toys" kids (and a few of us adults) play with ---the little blocks of wood held together by ribbons. When you pick up one end and tilt it the little blocks go flapping down like a waterfall. "Jacob's Ladder" I believe they are called.

Here's a WEBSITE that has visual instructions on how to make one.

(the Internet is amazing, isn't it)

I was thinking "blocks of wood" because we just threw out a stack of wood blocks someone had painted the books of the Bible on (they were beat up and not very well done). <>< Neil

Updated:  For directions on how to create a "Jacob's Ladder" toy, view this Jacob and Esau Art lesson in the  Writing Team set. (You must be a Supporting Member to view this lesson.)

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer
To add to Neil's idea, how about getting a carpenter to lead the workshop and have the kids cut, sand, paint and label wood blocks - each one a book - and then maybe even make a small bookcase for them, too.


Clay Jars (Dead Sea Scrolls) Art

We spent 9 weeks during a summer on a Rotation to learn about the Bible's structure, books, etc.  We did several activities (we had 3 Art sessions during the 9 week period).

Art Session 1- Make Paper

We talked about how the Bible was originally written, on papyrus, parchment, codex, etc. We made our own paper then wrote our Bible verse using soot ink and sharpened sticks.

First the children made paper (the lesson tie-in was how the Bible was first written on various materials such as papyrus, and parchment -- we found scriptures that talked about papyrus, parchment and scrolls that they looked up).

Then they turned the paper into scrolls. They wrote their memory verse on the paper scroll using "soot ink" and a sharpened stick, much as biblical people might have. We also provided clay pots that the children could break up into small pieces (pot shards) and write on.

Art Session 2- Create Small Clay Jars

We told the story of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the children created small clay jars to hold their small scrolls.

Art Session 3 - Glazing a Large Ceramic for church

During the last session, the children glazed and painted a very large ceramic jar to house the giant scroll made in the computer workshop.

We glazed a very large pottery jar and wrote on it in Greek lettering (again our Bible verse) -- Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet . . . (The tie in here is the story of the Dead Sea Scrolls and how the ancient scrolls were almost identical to more recent translations -- lending credibility to the Bible's being truly the "inspired Word of God.")

We also sang that song, along with books of the Bible songs.

Computer Session

We make a giant scroll that tells the "One Big Story" of the Bible (using key characters and stories of the Bible, with added facts and illustrations).

Games Session

We are also doing the small wooden block Bible books - put in the correct order, in our games workshop. See what other games they played, it's under the games workshop.

This has been the most ambitious Rotation we've done -- all because I didn't want to "waste a story" during the summer when attendance typically is so low. (I wasn't sure how our first WoRM summer would be attendance-wise, but so far, our attendance was almost double what it was last summer.)

Volunteer Moderator notes: you may wish to visit 3 sessions of Jaymie's Bible overview lessons done with children/families on another summer; not the art lessons described above, but others in this series.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

"Cereal Boxes and Plastic Tubing"

Our Wed. Night Kids Fellowship has been studying "About" the Bible. Here are some things we've done. More later. <>< Neil

New Books of Bible Art Project

We collected cereal boxes (Word is bread!) and had kids decorate one for each book of Bible, cover the box with paper. They had to research each book and write certain materials on each cereal box. Then we used books to memorize in order. They liked it a lot. We put paperclips in top of boxes and hung our Bible boxes on a line in Fellowship Hall.

Torah/Mezuzah -Art Project for First 5 Books

Now we're teaching them about the "categories of books" (Law, History, Wisdom/Poetry, Prophets, Gospel). Using games, etc. Our kids are really responding to these lessons and memory work. HERE IS THE ART PROJECT we just did for LAW category:

We identified Moses' statement in the Torah (Deuteronomy 6 below) about the importance of writing/seeing the word where you live/work/sleep/rise up. So we made Mezuzahs -traditional Jewish scripture boxes that go on a doorpost.

We made ours out of 1" CLEAR plastic tubing -figuring the kids would want to CONTINUE TO SEE what was in it and probably play with it a bit at home.

We bought the clear tubing from local hardware, cut it into 7 inch pieces. Kids decorated it with markers and glitter glue (but not smothering the whole thing -gotta be able to see what's inside). Then they selected one of the following verses, cut it to fit inside the tube.

If you cut the verse paper width and height JUST RIGHT, the paper will curl a bit inside the tube so that you don't need to seal the tube to hold the paper inside. Then we provided double-sided tape so they could stick it on their bedroom doorpost or front doorpost at home. The project itself took about 20 minutes and turned out neat. The helpers and students enjoyed thinking about how to decorate their Mezuzahs with symbols and words.

Possible verses:

“Hear O Israel, The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.” Deuteronomy. 6:4

“Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them on your hand and forehead and write them on your doorpost....” Deuteronomy 6:6-9

Moses said to Joshua: “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Deuteronomy 31:8

“The Lord is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation.” -from the Song of Moses in Exodus 15:2

Sarah said, “God has brought laughter to me.”
-Genesis 21:6

“And God saw everything that he had made, and indeed it was very good.” Genesis 1:31

There are many Bible songs to sing.
We made up verses for the popular (and funny) "Give Me Oil in My Lamp" (which includes such fun standard verses as give me gas for my ford keep me truckin for the Lord).

Our verses were: "Give me strength from the Bible, it's my guidebook for survival" and "Gimme a cheer for the Covenant, cause I'm part of it and lovin' it."

Neil MacQueen

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer


Making their favorite Bible Story come to Life in Art -- We had the kids look up a favorite bible story in the bible and then create it using all types of art material: clay, wax sticks, pompoms, markers, paint,material, felt, etc. (The wax sticks work great for making people stick figures).

Bible Books for Shelf Art -- Here are several ideas that are much easier than saving cereal boxes.

  1. use empty video cases. Insert a label for each book in the spine and on the front. Students put these in order in the bookshelf.
  2. One of the teacher suppliers (Trend or Good Apple) has a book shelf with books available at teacher supply stores. We laminated it, put a label on each book and attached it to a metal sheet. Put magnets on the back of the books. You can do Velcro if you prefer.
Last edited by Luanne Payne

We took spring type clothespins and wrote the name of each book on them.  I had made cardboard signs:  Gospels, Letters, History, Law (Torah), Prophets, Songs and Poetry.  The children then had to figure out where each book went and place the clothespin on that heading.  We first talked about the different parts, then they played the game looking at a poster with the correct answers, and then tried to do the game without the poster.

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