Fun Way to Teach Noah's Ark: Hand Shadow Puppets

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Noah’s ark is quite possibly the most taught Bible lesson in children’s ministry and for good reason. It has it all, animals, and a boat, an interesting and inspiring hero and of course a rainbow, and undeniable evidence of God’s love. What great lessons we can learn from Noah and his ark; lessons like obedience to God saves us from calamity and that God has made us many precious promises. If you want to revisit this lesson without tissue paper rainbows and a felt board, try this cool method—shadow animals!
You’ll need:  a bright flashlight or lamp without the shade, a sheet, paper cutouts, bamboo skewers and tape
You can teach using shadow animals two ways. The first and easiest is to use paper animal cutouts taped to bamboo skewers. By using paper cutouts, you won’t have to master learning hand shadow animals, although these are pretty easy. It’s good to have two of several different types of animals. You should choose animals that are easy to recognize when projected on a wall. Here’s a list of some cutout suggestions:

  • Noah
  • The Ark
  • Elephants
  • Rabbits
  • Donkeys
  • Cats
  • Dogs
  • Birds

Tell the story of Noah and play out the loading of the ark scene. Have kids identify the animals as they “load” on to the boat. You could even ask for volunteers to help you show the shadow animals. Pass the cutouts in front of the light in a darkened room and watch them come to life on the walls of your classroom.
The second method for shadow animals is to create the animals with your hands. Even if you only know how to make a few animals like a bird or a dog, you’ll make a big impact with your class. The following websites have good tutorials on basic shadow animals:

Enjoy this nifty lesson idea! Read more from Mimi by visiting her blog at Tools for Kids Church.

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