The story of Zacchaeus, the tax collector whose heart is turned by Jesus, comes from the Gospel of Luke. Zacchaeus was a despised tax collector in Jericho who got rich off the the backs of the people and was an avowed sinner. The short-in-stature man climbed a tree to see Jesus as he came into town, and was called out by Christ, who later joined him at the tax collector's house. Zacchaeus had a spiritual transformation, which allowed him to turn from his wicked ways and follow the Lord. This tree project helps the children remember the story of faith in God and how Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus so badly that he was willing to climb a tree trunk to do it.
Sketch out an image of a tree trunk, leaves and a little Zacchaeus on a piece of paper and print out the templates before class starts. Make as many copies of each image as you need. Include 10 leaves for each child.
Gather the children together and read them the story of Zacchaeus from a children's Bible.
Give each child a pre-cut tree trunk and white piece of construction paper. Let the children glue the tree trunk onto the bottom of the white piece of construction paper.
Give each child five brown pipe cleaners and 10 pre-cut brown leaves.
Have the children glue the pipe cleaners onto the white paper coming out of the trunk at the bottom of the paper. Let the children glue their leaves all around the paper like they are hanging off the pipe cleaners.
Give each child a pre-cut Zacchaeus. Let them glue him onto the paper like he is standing high in the tree.
- ['White sheets of construction paper (one for each child)', 'Pre-cut brown tree trunks (one for each child)', 'Pre-cut green leaves (10 for each child)', 'Brown pipe cleaners (5 for each child)', 'Glue sticks (one for each child)', 'Pre-cut Zacchaeus (one for each child)']
Have all the materials separated and pre-cut before class.
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