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Drama and Puppet Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources for Teaching "Jesus' Birth Through the Eyes of Mary, Joseph, Elizabeth, & - or Zechariah" in Sunday School.

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Mary Magnifies, Magnificat, Ponders, Gabriel, Mary, Joseph, Elizabeth, Song of Joy, Zechariah, , Luke 1:26-56, Luke 2:1-20, Jesus' birth, etc. Bible lessons for "Jesus' Birth Through the Eyes of Mary, Joseph, Elizabeth, & - or Zechariah" -with Drama, puppets, scripts, skits, acting, newsroom, etc.

The Writing Team's "Jesus is Born!" lesson set is open to all! Matthew 1:18-25 (Angel's Announcement to Joseph) and Luke 2:1-7 (Decree, Journey to Bethlehem, and Birth). Free registration is required to view the Writing Team's Jesus is Born lesson plans --if you are not already a Registered or Supporting Member.

In addition to all our public lesson ideas, the Writing Team has written a wonderful set of lessons for Supporting Members titled: "Mary Accepts, Magnifies, and Ponders." The set includes extra creative Art, Video, Game, Drama Workshop lesson plans (and more). Everyone can view its lesson summaries and Bible background.

A Drama Workshop lesson plan
Jesus' Birth through the Eyes of Mary and Joseph

written by Lisa Lehne
New Prague, MN

Summary of Lesson Activity:

Uses a drama skit to teach about Mary and Joseph's trip to Bethlehem before the birth of the Messiah. This skit is in three acts:

Act 1: Mary and Joseph start their journey and find themselves in the world of Shrek and encounter Donkey.

Act 2: They find themselves in our time period and feel very out of place.

Act 3: They find themselves back in a normal time entering Bethlehem.

Scripture Reference:

Luke 2:1-4

Key Verse:
"Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David." Luke 2:4

Lesson Objectives:
Children will understand the humble and human beginnings of the coming of the Messiah.

Leader Preparation:

  • Become Familiar with the script
  • Read the background information
  • If desired, gather costumes and props

Materials List:

  • A printed script
  • Costumes
  • Props
  • Bibles for each child


Opening- Welcome and Introductions

Greet the children and introduce yourself and any helpers that you have. Take attendance and split the children into 3 groups- one for each act.

Dig- Main Content and Reflection

The drama workshop was broken into 3 different acts getting different children (if needed) for each act.

Introduce the three scenes:

The 1st act Mary and Joseph start their journey and find themselves in the world of Shrek and encounter Donkey.

The 2nd act they find themselves in our time period and feel very out of place.

The 3rd act they find themselves back in a normal time entering Bethlehem.


Say: To start off with, we are going to pretend that Mary and Joseph find themselves in the world of Shrek. What are some of the things that they will find different about that world?

Do you think Mary and Joseph have seen fairytale characters walking around before?

Let’s sing the All Star song from Shrek

Have all kids open the act by singing the theme song from Shrek:

Hey now, you’re an all star, get your game on, go play’

Hey now, you’re a rock star, get the show on, get paid’

All that glitters is gold only shooting stars break the mold.’

Script For ‘Road to Bethlehem’

Act One (A Journey through Shrek)

Narrator – Mary – Joseph – Donkey – Shrek (no lines, just a brief appearance)

Setting up the scene for Act One-
Mary and Joseph, pretend they are walking along a road. Mary is beginning to get tired fast because she is going to have a baby soon. She really shouldn’t be walking.

Joseph – Oh Mary, I wish I had something for you to ride on. You really shouldn’t be walking.

Mary – Joseph, it’s not your fault we have to go to Bethlehem. We’ll just have to go a little slower then everybody else.

Suddenly, Donkey comes running in. He’s looking behind him, not where he’s walking. He crashes into Joseph and both fall down

Donkey – Hey, look where you’re going next time. What are you trying to do, hurt me?

Joseph – No, it was you who bumped into me.

Donkey and Joseph get up and wipe the dust off.

Donkey – Oh sure, blame the donkey. People can be so rude. You haven’t seen a big green ogre have you? I can’t find him anywhere.

Mary – Hey! You-you can talk!

Donkey – Why yes I can. Just call me Donkey. Haven’t you ever seen a talking donkey before?

Mary and Joseph look at each other, and then look back at Donkey shaking their heads.

Mary and Joseph – No.

Joseph – No ogres around here.

Mary – Hey Donkey. We’re going to Bethlehem, and well, I shouldn’t be walking.

Joseph – Oh yes, Donkey would you please let Mary ride on your back until you find this ogre?

Donkey – Well that’s what we donkey’s do best. I guess it would be okay, but I need to find Shrek the Ogre. He’s lost without me and needs me to keep him out of trouble.

Mary – Of course, and I will keep looking for him so you can watch where you’re walking.

Donkey – That’ll be great. Then maybe I can avoid all these people that walk into me.

Mary gets a piggyback ride from Donkey. (or Donkey can get on all fours and Mary can ride that way)

Joseph – Thanks Donkey, you see, Mary is going to have a baby very soon, and that is why see shouldn’t be walking.

Donkey – Having a baby! Wow, congratulations! But don’t you go having a baby while you’re on my back, ya here? I don’t want a crying, burping, smelly baby on my fur. You just wait until you’re far away from me before that baby comes out.

Mary – (laughing) Don’t worry, he’s not coming yet.

Donkey – Why are you going to Bethlehem anyway, if you’re about to have a baby?

Joseph – The king said everyone has to go to their hometowns to record their names.

Donkey – King schming. I’m sure if you told him about the baby, he would let it slide.

Mary – I don’t think it works quite like that.

Donkey – Take my advice. Just stay home. There must be thousands of people in his kingdom. He won’t notice one person missing from his records.

Mary – It’s the law. We always try to do the right thing.

Donkey – I see. Hey, you sure are sweating! Can you stop dripping on me, please? I don’t like being dripped on.

Shrek appears in the distance, sees Donkey, and quickly heads the other way.

Donkey – Hey, there’s Shrek. I need to catch up with him. I don’t want him getting lost again!

Joseph – Well, thanks for the ride you gave my wife.

Donkey heads off toward where he saw Shrek. Mary and Joseph leave stage in another direction.

Act Two (Super Highway)

Characters – Mary – Joseph – Limo driver – Taxi driver – Bus driver – 2 people to be the bus door – bus passengers – Tricycle

Setting up the scene for Act Two -Pretend like Mary and Joseph suddenly came to our time. Have they seen cars before? Do they know what a highway is?

Mary and Joseph, pretend like you are walking by the highway.

Mary – Bethlehem is still so far away. I can’t walk anymore.

Joseph – I know. We have to find something for you to ride.

Limo driver pulls up.

Mary – Oh my, what the heck is that?

Joseph – It looks like a giant monster. May God protect us!

Mary – Hey, it has a mouth on the side of its head. Look, it’s opening up!

Mary and Joseph scream.

Limo driver pretends to get out of the car.

Limo driver – What’s all this yelling about? You look like you need a ride.

Joseph – A ride?

Mary – (whispering to Joseph) I don’t want to be eaten by that monster. Let’s get out of here!

Joseph – We don’t need a ride. We’re just out for a stroll.

Limo driver – In the middle of a highway? (shrugs shoulders) ok. Whatever.

Limo driver gets back in the car and drives away.

Taxi driver pulls up.

Mary – There’s another monster, only it’s smaller and yellow.

Joseph – Maybe it’s just a baby. Hey, look, I can see a person inside its stomach.

Mary – The mouth is opening. Let’s get out of here!

Joseph runs and Mary waddles after him.

Taxi driver – Hey wait, where are you going? You need a ride?

Mary and Joseph keep running.

Taxi – Some weird folk coming around her these days.

Taxi driver leaves. Bus driver pulls up.

Mary – Whoa. That thing’s huge!

Joseph – Must be a grandpa monster.

Mary – There are lots of people in its stomach!

Bus driver – (opens doors and calls out) Get on in. I’ve got a schedule to keep.

Joseph – Maybe we should try it. It doesn’t look like those people are getting hurt.

Mary – I will if you will.

They get on the bus. The driver closes the doors. Then the doors open again and Mary and Joseph get off.

Mary – What did he mean ‘exact change only?’

Joseph (shrugs, looking confused)

Bus leaves.

They find a tricycle by the side of the road.

Joseph pushes on it with his foot.

Joseph – Look a miniature chariot. You can stand on the back and I will push you.

Mary – All the way to Bethlehem? You’ll break your back!

Joseph – We don’t seem to have any other choices. I would rather push this than get swallowed by one of those monsters anyway.

Mary – I guess, if you think you can push me.

Mary gets on the bike and Joseph pushes her off stage.

Act Three (No room in the inn)

Characters – Mary – Joseph – Inn Keepers 1, 2, 3, and 4

Setting up the scene for Act Three - Mary and Joseph stagger into Bethlehem, looking extremely tired. Pretend like you are dodging around invisible people, because the streets are crowded.

Mary – We finally made it. Look at all the people. I hope we can find a place to stay!

Joseph – Let’s try that place over there.

They knock.

Inn Keeper 1 – (Looks flustered and tired) What do you want?

Joseph – We’re looking for a room.

Inn Keeper 1 – (Laughing) you and about a thousand other people.

Inn Keeper slams the door.

Mary – That was rude.

Joseph – I know of another place we can try. The owner is a friend of the family.

They knock.

Inn Keeper 2 – Hi there! Aren’t you the son of Jacob the carpenter?

Joseph – That would be me. Look, we really need a place to stay.

Inn Keeper 2 – I’m so sorry. I have two families sleeping in each of my rooms and several on the waiting list. I’ve never seen it so busy. I just don’t have any space.

Mary – Well, thanks anyway.

They plod on.

Joseph – We’re never going to find a place.

Mary – Don’t say that. Look, let’s try that place.

They knock.

Inn Keeper 3 – Yes?

Joseph – Do you have any room?

Inn Keeper 3 – Are you kidding? I was booked days ago.

Inn Keeper slams the door.

Mary – It doesn’t look good.

Joseph – I know one more place we can try.

They knock.

Inn Keeper 4 – Hello there. You look tired!

Joseph – We are. We really need a place to stay.

Mary – (Holding her stomach) Ooh.

Inn Keeper 4 – (Looking concerned) What’s wrong?

Mary – I think it’s coming.

Inn Keeper 4 – What’s coming?

Joseph – We’re having a baby.

Inn Keeper 4 – Oh my!

Joseph – Do you have any room for us?

Inn Keeper – (Looking sad) No, I don’t. I’m sorry.

The Inn Keeper starts to close the door, then stops.

Inn Keeper – Hey wait! I do have some hay around back. If the baby does come, you can use the manger to put him in. I will call my wife, and she will get some towels and hot water. She can help you.

Mary – (Looking pained) Ooh. That one hurt.

Joseph – Thank you so much! I’m sure God will bless you for your kindness.

Joseph leads Mary off stage.


Discuss the skit and ask the kids what they learned from it.

Have them put their props and costumes away.

Close with a prayer.

Last edited by Dena K
Original Post

A Twilight Zone JOSEPH DRAMA Workshop

-Where all the kids are Jesus' Dad, and have plenty to say.

-This drama ends with a reflection using the song "Joseph's Lullaby" by Mercy Me.


This drama idea can be used for many other Bible characters. The key is that you only have ONE character in the skit -other than the teacher's character, --and ALL the kids are dressed like that ONE character.

So for example, you could have a room full of Mary's. You wouldn't have a room full of shepherds because that's not funny. I've done a version of this drama with a room full of Moses' (Mosi?) and a room full of Sarah's all laughing at the same time (the guys enjoy getting to play the women, btw).

Now you know why I call this concept the "Twilight Zone". Smile

This lesson also illustrates how you get the kids "in character" and begin to provide them with the CONTENT that they can ad-lib back to you during the drama, RATHER than using a script. They will think they're helping you create "cue cards" but you will actually be leading a discussion.

Lesson Outline: A "Twilight Zone" JOSEPH DRAMA Workshop

-Where all the kids are Jesus' Dad and have plenty to say.

-This drama ends with a reflection using the song "Joseph's Lullaby" by Mercy Me.

In this workshop, each student gets to make and wear a grey beard (and take it home). That right there is lesson GOLD (or silver?). They loved that.

First Step:

The beard is cut out of 'fun fur' and is worn by tieing an elastic strap to the fur. It has a hole for their lips. It's ridiculous, and the kids love it. Buy a couple of grey costume wigs (el-cheapo online), or have bandanas or grey cloth for their heads. Finish dressing your "Josephs" by giving each a robe out of your costume locker, and a piece of wood (he was a carpenter, after all).

The teacher at this point should dress like an "angel reporter" and from here on in, act as if you ARE the angel who appeared to Joseph in his dream. The more you stay in character, the more fun and pointed the lesson will be.

Second Step:

Next, in costume, have them practice speaking like a carpenter in a deep gruff voice. This will warm up the kids and get them into character. Give them lines to repeat during the warmup, like: "Give me that board", and "What in the World is God up to?" and..."I suppose Jesus will be ordering me around as soon as he discovers he's the Messiah."

Third Step:  Read Matthew 1:18-25
Pass around the Bibles and have the kids read the story Joseph and the Angel using their best Joseph voices. Stop to ask Joseph a question or two, such as, "Joseph, how did you know it was an angel?" "How did you know it was God talking to you?" Let various Joseph's answer. As the angel, the teacher can counterpoint and offer his/her point of view.

Fourth Step: Cue Cards

Next, have the kids help you write out ANSWERS to several questions you have posted on the flipchart. These will be used a cue-cards and discussion starters. (This is the learning and life application step)

1. How do you think Joseph was going to tell Mary and Mary's family that he no longer wanted to marry her?

2. What was Joseph's initial reaction to the dream of an angel?

3. What kind of doubts might Joseph have had about this whole thing?

4. What was going through Joseph's mind when he was told he had to take his wife on a donkey 35 miles to Bethlehem?

5. What did Joseph think about there being no room at the inn? How did he calm down Mary?

6. What did Joseph probably say when the shepherd/Magi showed up?

7. Imagine Joseph praying to God as he watched Jesus become a toddler. What would Joseph have been WORRIED about?

8. What ADVICE would Joseph give to people today about allowing their lives to be led by God? ...even if God asks hard things?

9. What ADVICE would Joseph give to Christians today about the BEST PART of the Birth of Jesus story? and what his son means for the world?


The Drama:

Our Angelic Reporter enters "The Twilight Zone" where there is a room full of "Josephs" all milling around. The angel reporter has a microphone and the whole thing is being videotaped. The reporter seems dumbfounded by all the Joes, but the Joes don't seem to think anything is wrong.

The reporter interviews the crowd of Josephs who are milling around with their wood. Different kids step forward to answer some questions, and the reporter can ask the same questions of various Josephs. It's the Twilight Zone, afterall.

The Angel Reporter asks questions from the flipchart and various Joes answer. Encourage AD-LIBBING. Trip over a few Jesus baby toys, for example. Throw some curveballs: "So tell me Joseph, do you change Jesus' diapers?" Does he like to spit his food?

It ends with a lot of hammering of wood as the Joseph's work together to try to make a bicycle for Jesus.

Hope you like this lesson sketch. It really depends on having the TEACHER being the REPORTER, and having a good sense of humor.

You can finish by using the song described below.

We originally did this with our older kids on a Wednesday evening fellowhship, and we let them take their beards home. Several of them wore the beards out into the hall, and the younger kids clamored to do it too, so we had them in there the next week.

We had the little kids finish by singing a Joseph Song that we had made up to the tune of --I don't remember the song but seeing all those Joe's singing it was worth the price of admission.

I've since heard Mercy Me's "Joseph's Lullaby" and recommend it for listening, and maybe even singing along (you can see it on YOUTUBE, below is one example by a fan of Mercy Me, that includes lyrics and nice photos).

Locate the lyrics online and discuss them with your Josephs.

<>< Neil

Last edited by Luanne Payne

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