When we stop to look at the things in the world around us it is
pretty amazing. God made all of these things, he created the earth. He
made all of the animals from the tiny bug to the gigantic elephant. God
looked after all of the details that make for the splendid variety of
creatures, plants and terrain that cover the earth. It is exciting to
realize that the God who did all of that, made us. He knows each of us
intimately because he is our creator. He cares about us and He loves us.
God can seem big and distant to us. In this series God's
unconditional love for us will be set against the backdrop of creation.
Powerful yet personal.
The beach is a good place to recognize God's creation. This series
will be set there. The beach like the "swamp" is the home of many
interesting personalities who will teach and entertain the children. Our
puppet cast was transformed into seaside residents. This was done by
simple costume changes and some more complicated adjustments. Our vastly
talented costume designer Sandra Pattison takes care of this.
picture contained a boat. It was covered in fish netting
and tropical fish. A lawn chair was set up. Beach balls, towels, shells
and sand toys help create the scene. Use your imagination. The more you
bring to it the better it will look.
Lesson One - God Made Our
God is very powerful and is capable of amazing things. One of the
astounding things that He did was the act of creation. Genesis 1: 1-19
the account of the creation of the world is told. In order to know who
God is we need to have a basic understanding of His relationship with
This lesson will deal with who God is. God made the whole earth. He
is very powerful. God made us and he loves us very much. We are part of
- to teach the kids that God is the creator of
- to teach that God made each of us
- to teach that God loves us
This series was designed for the Zoo Van which is
used for the outdoor program. It can be adapted for indoors by changing
the games so that they require less space.
In the opening for this theme a puppet song was
selected. The song had an "under the sea" type flavour and puppets were
Welcome to the Beach. During the next three weeks we will be having a
beach party. So be ready to get wet and have loads of fun!
The rules are essential for smooth operation of the
Zoo program. Often times children come from homes or communities that do
not display consistent discipline. This is true in children from all
economic brackets. At the Zoo the rules provide structure that in turn
provides consistency. The children know what is expected of them and
what the consequences for misbehaving are. This gives a child stability.
In any program that was developed to be used
outdoors we try to include some prayer. The sound system that we use
allows us to be heard by the kids and projected into the community. Use
this as a teaching moment for the listening parents as well as the
At this point in the program, the children are all
given an opportunity to participate. On occasion this can be used as a
game. Prizes can be offered for the loudest teams, the best actions and
the best singing. Introducing new songs can add some variety to the
Since this is an outdoor program geared for warmer
weather, some games in the series will involve water.
- Water Balloon Toss
This game is an old favourite at the Zoo. It has been adapted to suit
a variety of themes. In this theme it will simply be water balloons.
Select four players: two from each team. Each pair has a beach towel,
one person holds each end. A water balloon is placed on the towel and
the pair must toss the balloon into the air and the other pair must
catch the balloon in their towel.
- Water Container Game
Select four players from each team. The players will line up behind
the start line. The first contestant gets a sponge and a bucket of
water. The contestant gets the sponge wet and runs to the empty bucket
and squeezes the water laden sponge into it. The first team to fill the
bucket to the line wins. Each player will get numerous chances to run
with the sponge.
The memory verse in this lesson has two parts. The
first is an interaction between a leader and a puppet.
A puppet was designed specifically for this segment. It was done by
creating an appropriate costume to fit one of our already existing
puppets. The puppet was a beautiful pink and purple glimmering octopus
OCTAVIA. (She has a high sweet voice and as she enters she is
surrounded by bubbles)
My dear, I have had quite a swim. Excuse me...Hello there!
Leader: Hi, who are you?
Octavia: I am called Octavia and I am a very old octopus. I
was swimming along when I happened to hear a crowd of children so I
stopped to see what was going on.
Leader: Well we are glad that you could drop in Octavia. My
name is (leader). You are at the Zoo. We are here to learn about God and
today we are going to learn about what God made.
Octavia: What did God make?
Leader: Did you know that he created the whole earth and
everything in it?
Octavia: Does that include things that live in the ocean?
Leader: Yes, God made the ocean and all of the creatures that
Octavia: That is amazing. All kinds of animals live in the
water. I saw some on my way here. Can you name some?
Leader: Let's see if the kids can name some... (allow the
children to raise their hands and make suggestions)
Octavia: You seem to know a lot about the ocean.
Leader: God made the land, too?
Octavia: That is amazing! God made a place for me to live and
a place for all of you people to live. Well, I had better get going. You
can't stay out of the water very long when you are an octopus.
Leader: We are really glad that you could come to join us
(She disappears with a splash)
Leader: We have a memory verse that talks about what God
The memory verse will be handled like a game. A piece of bristol
board will be shown to the children. It will have a bunch of blanks on
it, similar to hangman. The children will be divided into two teams. For
every blank that is successfully filled in the team that did it will
receive a point. Anytime a letter is selected that is not in the verse
there will be a penalty. On another page there will be a lovely beach
scene. If an incorrect letter is chosen the water will cover a little
bit more of the beach. Eventually it will cover your towel and site. The
team with the largest number of points wins. "Lord, you have made the
heavens and the earth by your great power." Jeremiah 32:17.
After the game part is over explain the verse and have the children
repeat it. This repetition should continue until they can do it without
looking. Always emphasize the fact that the verse is from the Bible. The
Zoo does not make them up. This will help to eliminate any confusion.
At this point a long time friend of the Zoo is
announced. His name is Revelation Rex. He is a green dinosaur. It is a
costume designed for the Zoo by a member of the community. He has made
appearances previously and is always a big hit. The costume will fit an
adult. Revelation Rex does not talk, he communicates through exaggerated
gestures and hand movements. (If you do not have a costume available for
your program you could dress someone up or use a puppet.) This segment
is an interaction between a leader and Rex.
Leader: Good afternoon everyone. I would like to welcome
someone that you all know. His name is Revelation Rex. Come on out Rex.
Rex enters waving. He has an inflatable ring around his arm, he is
wearing sunglasses and he is carrying a bag.
Leader: We are really glad that you could make it, Rex. It
looks like you have been spending some time at the beach. Rex nods.
Leader: I see that you are wearing sunglasses and you brought
a toy to play with in the water. What is in your bag Rex?
Rex holds the bag out to the leader.
Leader: Let me see...(reaching into the bag)... Oh some
shells. Those are really nice did you find those on the beach?
Leader: What else is in there? (reaches in) Some sun screen.
That is really important. You need to protect yourself from the sun.
Leader: I think there are a couple of other things in the bag.
(reaches in) A plastic shovel. Did you make a sand castle ?
Leader: There is one more thing in there from Rex's day at the
beach. Let me get it out. An empty pop bottle. Did you have a drink
while you were at the beach?
Rex shakes his head.
Leader: But Rex, if you didn't have a drink why do you have an
empty pop bottle? Did you bring it to help with your sand castle?
Rex shakes his head and begins to make a throwing motion.
Leader: Oh I see you are saying that someone threw that empty
bottle on the beach. They littered. That wasn't very nice. So you
brought it along to remind us not to litter.
Rex nods vigorously while jumping up and down.
Leader: You know Rex has taught us something very important.
We are learning about how God made the earth and you know He wants us to
take care of it. Thanks for helping us today Rex maybe you can come back
another time. Bye Rex.
Rex exits waving.
This story is told by a puppet with some
interaction with a leader. Storyboards are effective too. They are
simply illustrations that go with the story. They are helpful because
they help to give a child more stimulation so that they can be more
attentive. Use more than one medium at a time.
Leader: Since it is "Amazing Beach Days" we have brought along
a friend of ours who spends a lot of time under water. Here is
Diver Dan: Hi, how are things on dry land?
Leader: Things are great up here. How are things under water?
Diver Dan: That is exactly what I wanted to talk to you about.
I had such a great day under the water that I wanted to share it with
all of you. Do you mind if I tell you about it?
Leader: Go right ahead. It sounds amazing....
Diver Dan: Early this morning just as the sun was coming up I
jumped out of bed and into my wet suit. I could hardly wait to get into
the water. I am a diver. It is my job to go out and explore the bottom
of the ocean. It is the most exciting thing to do. Most days are pretty
wild. I find all kinds of beautiful fish and shells. Today, I had my
snorkel and mask and I was studying different kinds of seaweed. As I was
swimming along I saw other divers. They waved and kept on swimming. Then
I went right to the bottom to look at the seaweed. I took a little bit
and put it in a bag so that I could study it later. I noticed that my
air tanks were starting to run a little low so I thought that I should
head back up to my boat on the surface. I started to swim and my foot
got tangled in the weeds. I pulled and pulled and I couldn't get free. I
knew I did not have a lot of air left so I was starting to get nervous.
I took out a small knife and tried to cut myself loose. It didn't work.
I was running out of air. Finally, with a huge pull I managed to get
free. Wow, that was close! I swam to the top and as I did I could see
all of the things in the ocean. It was really neat. I got back in my
boat. I went back to the shore. What a day! I began to whistle as I put
away my stuff. Then my friend Phoebe came over to help. I told her about
all of the exciting things I saw under the ocean. She was really
excited. That was when she told me about God. She told me that God made
all of that and if I looked in the Bible it says that God made the whole
earth. She said that everything we see around us was made by God. That
is pretty amazing!
Leader: Dan, you had quite an adventure in the ocean. You know
what Phoebe told you is the truth. God did make the earth. Look around
and see if you can see some things that God made. Maybe the kids have
some answers. (allow the kids to say some things that God made that they
can see: trees, sky, grass etc.)
Thanks for sharing with us Dan. You know God is
amazing. He made some interesting things. But the most important thing
he made is you. He created each and everyone of us and he loves us.
Prayer, quiet seat prizes and treats.
Copyright 1997, Bread of Life Ministries