Luke 10:25-37 in the Bible tells the story of a man who asks Jesus about gaining eternal life. Jesus says that he must love God and love his neighbour as much as he loves himself. Jesus tells the man the parable of the Good Samaritan when the man asks him, "Who is my neighbour?" With this story, Jesus illustrates that we are all neighbours, regardless of our residence or heritage. Children can grasp this message and share it with others through various activities.
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Have children write a skit based on the parable. It can reflect the biblical time period or be a contemporary version of the parable. You'll need at least seven children to dramatise the story. Parts must be created for the man who is beaten, two or more robbers, the priest, the Levite, the Samaritan, and the innkeeper. You can also have people play Jesus and the law expert if you want to establish the context of the parable being told. Children can make their costumes and props. Once the children have practised and memorised their lines, have them perform the parable for an audience.
Children can work together to create a puppet show based on the parable. They can use pre-made puppets or make puppets of each character. The age of the children will determine the type of puppets to make. Younger children will enjoy making finger puppets or paper bag puppets. Another option for younger children is to let them colour pictures of the characters, cut them out, and glue each character to a stick. Older children can make more advanced puppets, using materials such as styrofoam and fabric. A puppet stage can be made from a refrigerator box, wood, or decorated doorway. Once the puppets are made, the children can practice a puppet show based on the parable. Then they can perform it for an audience.
Children can organise a community service project to reflect the parable's message of loving other people, even strangers. Children can brainstorm about ways to help other people. They may want to focus on a local project, like collecting food for a homeless shelter, making cards for children with cancer, or cleaning up a local park. They may want to raise money to buy books for impoverished children in other countries or send care packages to deployed soldiers. You may want to work on a different project each month or focus on one project for the year. You could even do one local service project and one international project.
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