David and Goliath
- Students will play a game that gets them thinking about giant problems, and ways to get close to God, like David was.
- Students will learn that David trusted God to be bigger and stronger than his "giant" problem. Because David was close to God, he did not fear his problem.
- The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories;
- Large Goliath drawn on refrigerator box (see optional drawing idea below)
- Smooth stones and socks to tie them into.
- questions cut up and put in container so they can be drawn out at random; pencils.
- Read the Bible passage.
- Read over the background material included in your teacher packet as you become familiar with the Bible story and the lesson plan.
- Make the Goliath target
- "Rock in a sock" --Put a smooth river rock in sock and tie the sock closed with some string. Make several these "rocks in socks" for the game.
(Added by Rotation.org Editor)
Students will be slinging their "Rock in a Sock" at a Goliath target. If you don't want your kids tossing stones at a "person," then we suggest "de-person-izing" your Goliath target. Draw a "giant's outline" on a large box or sheet of cardboard that you can prop up against the wall.
Cut holes in the cardboard target, then write a title/label next to each hole, such as: "giant problems we need to defeat," "ways to get close to God," and "Story trivia." Those labels correspond to your set of questions. When a student gets the ball/bag or sock sling into that hole, you ask a question from that category to award points.
Award 1 point for getting the rock/ball/bag in the hole, and 1 point for answering the question right or coming up with a good response.
When they hit the hole marked, "giant problems we need to defeat" they must name a problem that people face (personal, community, world, societal, environmental), and then for 1 more bonus point, name one way a Christian can help solve that problem. Naming our "giants" is the first step to defeating them!
When they hit the hole marked, "Ways to get close to God," they must come up with a way someone can get close to God, something they can do, or say. They may also name a "place" or activity where they can go or do to feel God close.
When they hit the hole marked, "Story Trivia," use your Bible to ask a question about something in the passage you and your students read. Adjust your questions for the age of your students. (By coming up with questions "on the fly" from your Bible for each student, you can adjust how hard you want to make the question for that particular student.
1. Have the students sit where you would like them to during the reading of the story from the Bible. Hand out The Children’s Bibles. Say the following, “Today we’re going to read and talk about a story you’ve probably heard before: David and Goliath. Then we’re going to play a game where you’ll get to throw stones like David did -in a way that will show how much you know about the story.”
2. Have them turn to the David and Goliath story in their storybook or Bible and read through it together (or as read by the teacher). Your "discussion" questions will be asked in the Goliath game.
3. Divide the class into two teams and get ready to play the Goliath game.
4. Let the kids take turns being “David” and throwing sock slings at the Giant target. Have them stand behind a line to toss their "rocks in socks" at the target and answer the questions.
A Closing "Perspective"
With about 10 minutes of class time left, gather together for this talk and demonstration of "perspective."
Say: Hopefully, most of us will never have to stand and face a giant on a battlefield. God doesn't want us to fight each other. This story teaches us, however, that all of us WILL confront other kinds of "battles" in our lives. Other kinds of "giants."
Giants in your life can be: (write these out as you say them, and ask students for more)
people who bully, people who hurt others, people who try to hurt you. Your giants can be personal and inside you, like: depression, addiction, lack of self confidence, lack of faith. Giants can be health problems like cancer or a disability. You can have a "giant" in your family if someone dies, or parents divorce. Giants can be when you or a parent loses your job, fails a test at school, are told you aren't good enough to make a team. Some "giants" we bring on ourselves, such as, when we act bad or foolishly. Other "giant problems" just happen because life isn't perfect and bad things happen to good people.
But I want to show you something that David knew that day on the battlefield with Goliath. He knew that if he kept God close, and called upon God, that he would know that GOD is BIGGER and STRONGER than any of our GIANTS.
To demonstrate this, I have two big labels, one for GOD, and one for GOLIATH -and I want to show you something important with these labels that will help you face your giants.
Instructions for teacher:
- Place the God label on one student, and the Goliath label on your BIGGEST student.
- Have the rest of your students stand close together at one end of the room.
- Have Goliath stand close in front of the group of students, and have God stand at the other end of the room.
- Have the group of students cup their hand around their eye like a "spyglass" aimed at Goliath, and positioning themselves so that they can also see God at the other end of the room. Goliath will appear large and God will appear small when he's far away.
- Say: "When your problems are close and you think God is far away, or you keep him away, your problems will look giant to you."
- Now switch Goliath with God, putting God close, and saying" "But when you call upon God and realize he's right there with you, you'll realize God is BIGGER than your giant problems."
- Immediately suggest several ways to know God is close and feel God close when you are dealing with giants in your life (prayer, scripture, glorifying God like David did,
- Close with a prayer that each student here today would see that God is bigger than any of their problems, and close enough to help.
An optional closing activity:
MAKING A PROBLEM SOLVING ROCK
Take a rock from your game and wrap it COAT IT with modge podge (thin glue). Next, write the name "God" and "Goliath" on strip of colorful tissue paper. Write God's letters BIG, and Goliath's letters small. Place the strips of colorful paper onto the rock and smooth it down into the glue. Let dry.
Adjustments for Older/Younger Children:
For Younger Children: Position Goliath where he’s fairly easy for the kids to hit. When you ask a question, offer a choice of answers.
For Older Children: Position Goliath where he’s a little bit challenging to hit. If it still seems too easy, you might try having the kids swinging the sling around their head (more or less David-like) before releasing. When you ask a question, don’t offer the multiple choices unless the team needs them.
A lesson idea originally posted by Jan Marshall from: Brenthaven Cumberland Pres.
A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability. Rotation volunteers also improved the game concept.