"Jonah and the Whale" is a traditional Bible story used to teach young children in Sunday school. It reinforces the idea that as Christians we should work to be obedient and serve God's will. Crafts can be made from a paper plate to reinforce the story's main idea.
Paper Plate Whale Game
Tape or staple two paper plates together, curling the edges to create a pocket in the centre. Leave an opening between the plates on one side to represent the fish's mouth. The mouth must be large enough for children to slide their hands inside. Paint the body of the fish. Cut fins and a tail from construction paper that matches the body. Glue on the fins and googly eyes. Put felt objects, small toys or pictures cut from construction paper inside the fish. These objects should include Jonah. Have children reach inside the fish and pull out an object that the whale could have swallowed. The child who pulls out Jonah can win a small prize.
Paper Plate Whale Picture Window
Have students draw a picture of Jonah and the whale on the first paper plate or colour a page which can be cut out and glued into the centre of the paper plate. Cut the centre out of a second paper plate so only the ribbed outer ring remains. Decorate the outer ring. Children can decorate the ring with markers, sticks, sequins and any other craft supplies you make available. Glue a piece of blue cellophane to the back of the ring to create a window pane. Glue or staple the ring over the plate that has Jonah and the whale in the centre of it. This will make it look like you are looking through a tinted window.
Inside the Whale's Belly
Cut a triangle out of a paper plate so it looks as if it has a mouth. Attach the triangle to the back of the plate to create the whale's tail. Decorate the plate to look like a whale, adding a googly eye and drawing on scales. Children can glue sequins on the body to represent scales as well. Cut a rectangular flap out of the centre of the whale's body. The rectangle should only be cut on three sides, so that it forms a lift flap. Glue or tape a piece of paper to the back of the paper plate, covering the hole under the lift flap. Draw Jonah onto the piece of paper so when you lift the flap you see Jonah in the whale's belly.
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