Summary of Lesson Activities:
Use still shots (tableaux) of story scenes to retell the story of how God sends Deborah to help the Israelites. Allow children to plan for each shot based on provided story info. [A list of potential shots is included at the end of this lesson as an attachment. Also included are some suggestions for the leader, to help them guide the children.
Judges 4:3-16, 5:1-12
- Read the scripture for this lesson.
- Read and reflect on the overview material provided for this lesson.
- Gather the materials.
- a copy of the photo shoot page (download the attachment to this post; go to the bottom of this post & click on the underlined words "Deborah Drama.doc")
- camera (can be a phone camera or a ditital camera)
- appropriate props
- optional: a means of displaying the photos on a TV or a computer
Opening – Welcome & Lesson Introduction:
'Trailguides" (AKA Shepherds") will begin by gathering children in the circle, do some introductions, and a short ice breaker activity.
Once the Trailguide is finished, say: "Today we’re going to be talking about one of the strong, wise characters of the Old Testament and how God worked through her.
Ask: Now…who knows the difference between the Old and New Testament?” (answers may vary, but emphasize those that talk about stories of the Jewish or Hebrew people, stories about God before Jesus, the earliest stories of our faith.
Ask: What does it mean to be strong?
Can someone who’s really small still be strong?
How about wise?”
Ask: Would you all join me in prayer?”
After a moment of silence to let everyone calm down, say: “God, we admire people who are wise and strong. Thank you for your stories of people of faith who have gone before us. Help us learn more about wisdom and strength from them so that we, too, can grow wiser and stronger. Amen.”
Dig - Main Content & Reflection:
Explain that this story takes place after the Hebrew people had settled in the Promised Land. After the death of Moses, the people lived in Canaan, the Promised Land, and didn’t have kings yet. Instead, they had judges who helped them make decisions and live justly. This is a story of one of Israel’s judges.
Ask: What is a judge?
Say: Her name was Deborah.
Explain that, instead of reading the story to them, you’re going to have them figure out the story as you go along: the goal is to do a photo shoot at different locations in and around the church. You’re going to give the kids a list of shots that need to be taken—just like they might get if they were on a movie set—and they will need to figure out how and where to make each one happen.
Do the Photo Shoot:
- Pass out the list of shots. (Refer to attachment at the end of this lesson.)
- Have one or several of the kids read the information about the first shot (which tells the story of Deborah at the same time). Help the younger children with the reading.
- Then have everyone figure out who will be which character in the scene and where a good location for that shot would be (can be outside or inside). What props/costumes are needed? Go to the location and take the shot.
- Do the same with the next shots until you’ve completed the whole story.
- Optional: Retell the story by playing back the shots on a computer or a TV screen.
Ask the kids how Deborah was wise and strong (this is important because it connects the lesson to the opening). Ask for any prayer requests. Then pray for wisdom and strength and close by having everyone say this prayer together: “God, make me your hands, your feet, and your heart to love others in the world. Amen.”
I should also note that, in the attachment I posted with the photo shoot storyboard, I used a mixture of the Deborah story from the Spark Storybible (Sparkhouse Publishing, affiliate of Augsburg Fortress) and the Deborah Story from Ralph Milton's The Family Story Bible (Westminster John Knox Press)...as well as some of my own words. Both stories are good simplifications for kids, and both have slightly different language/angles on the story--merging them felt the most complete to me.
A lesson written by folks from Plymouth Congregational Church
Ft. Collins, CO, USA,
Printed from https://www.rotation.org
Permission to copy materials granted for non-commercial use, provided credit is given
A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.