How to Teach Noah's Ark in Sunday School.

Man in black crew neck t-shirt standing beside woman in gray t-shirt.jpg

Noah's Ark is one of those Bible stories that is taught so often in Sunday school that teachers find themselves challenged to rise above a perfunctory reading and a coloring sheet. However, if you engage the children in the theme of the day, obedience, from the moment they arrive, they are more likely to take away a lesson they can apply to their everyday lives. Active participation activities drive home the key points with each portion of the lesson.

  • Lyric sheets or poster
  • Bible or Bible storybook
  • Large cardboard box
  • Masking tape
  • Animal pair cutouts
  • Markers
  • Craft sticks
  • Glue
  • Ark cutouts
  • Scissors
  • Paper plates
  • Crayons

1 Sing a story song

Sing a story song, such as "Arky, Arky," to introduce the story. "Noah Found Grace in the Eyes of the Lord" is another option, or DLTK Bible offers some other song choices. Pass out lyric sheets or display a lyrics poster for readers. Alternatively, you can teach the words in the repeat-after-me fashion for non-readers. Make up actions to go with the song to get the kids moving and engaged.

2 Read the story of Noah in Genesis

Read the story of Noah in Genesis, Chapters 6 to 9. You can condense the reading for younger children or read a storybook version instead, if you wish. Older children can take turns reading sections of the story. Give the children a reading response activity during the reading to hold their attention. For example, have them listen for key words and complete an action when they hear it. They could pretend to pound a hammer or say, "I will obey God," every time they hear "Noah," or rock back and forth like a boat when they hear "ark."

3 Play an animal pairs game

Play an animal pairs game to reinforce the key point that God blessed Noah because he believed God and did whatever God told him to do. Even the animals obeyed God's direction to get on the ark. Make a large cardboard box into a miniature ark, or create an ark outline on the floor with masking tape. Assign each child an animal, making sure there are an even number of each animal type. Have the children act out their animals and find a partner who is the same animal. The pair must come to the ark together and must say, "We will obey God!" before being allowed to board and eat a snack.

4 Make a take-home craft

Make a take-home craft to give children a daily reminder of the obedience lesson. Hand out markers and tell them to write on craft sticks different ways they can practice obedience at home or school this week, with parents and teachers. Glue the "planks" to the side of an ark cut-out shape. Cut a paper plate in half, and cut out the center portion, leaving an arch. Color the arch like a rainbow, and tape or staple it over the ark as a reminder of God's promise.

Tamara Christine has written more than 900 articles for a variety of clients since 2010. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in applied linguistics and an elementary teaching license. Additionally, she completed a course in digital journalism in 2014. She has more than 10 years experience teaching and gardening.