Bible stories are often dramatic and filled with adventure and danger. Kids love them for the drama and the excitement, but learn important life lessons at the same time. The story of "Jonah and the Whale" teaches about obedience and forgiveness. Incorporating activities into the classroom lessons helps children take an active part in learning and creates a lively and inclusive atmosphere in the classroom.
Salt Dough Whales
Salt dough is simple to make with 1 cup of salt, 1 cup of warm water and 2 cups of flour. You can adjust actual quantities to make larger batches. Give each child a lump of salt dough and have them model either a whale or a man to be Jonah. Pictures of whales can give the kids an idea of what they are aiming for, but most kids will be able to make some kind of big fish to represent the whale. The kids can paint the finished models and display the around the classroom.
Colouring and Painting Activities
Colouring and painting classroom activities engage young minds and help keep the child's mind concentrated on the subject being taught. "Jonah and the Whale" colouring pictures are widely available as free downloads on the Internet which you can be print out and use as classroom activities.
Kinds can make whales out of paper lunch bags by stuffing them with torn-up newspaper, then taping or tying the ends closed. The body of the whale is the stuffed part with the tail being the tied-off end. Paint the whales with blue or grey paint, or black and white for orca-type whales. Cut out fins from construction paper and stick them onto the whale once the paint is dry.
Gather the whole class together for a singalong about "Jonah and the Whale." Kids love singing, especially simple songs that have actions to go with the words. One such song is sung to the familiar tune of "London Bridge" and includes action of shaking the head, rubbing the tummy and holding hands in a prayer position at the end of the song. You can download the words from the Internet for free and sing them to the children, having them join in when they learn some words.