Friday, March 2, 2012

Facing the Giant...

I'm back!  Rested, relaxed and with renewed focus.  Sometimes, it is so helpful to refocus and take a break from the norm.  But I'm thankful to return and I have so much that I'm eager to write about...

I set out to battle my personal giant - 'the black hole that is the internet', as my sister aptly describes it.  I enjoyed going computer-free for three days a week and plan to continue this habit for the month of March.    

The boys don't have issues with screen time, because I am ever so vigilant to limit it for them.  {Funny how I can be so good about setting limits for them and let slide the same limitations for myself...} Instead, in our focus on the character trait of COURAGE, we literally came face to face with Goliath.

Adding a hands-on element to our lessons goes a long way to solidify learning and increase retention.  How many times do children hear the story of David and Goliath?  I'd venture to guess it is pretty frequent.  As we read the Biblical account this time, I decided to help make it a little more 'real' for them.  So I challenged them to make a life-size drawing of Goliath.  We were all in awe at his size when it was made toweringly visible.  Seriously, he's big, really big.  Albeit, our version was on the skinny side.  As wonderful as a roll of butcher paper is, I guess it does still have limitations.

I try as often as possible to give minimal directions and back-off to see where they will go with it.  They learn so much more when they have to figure things out for themselves.

Armed with a roll of butcher paper and the knowledge of Goliath's gargantuan 9 feet of height the boys grabbed daddy's tape measure to get started.

The {almost} four year old is convinced that he will need armor for this upcoming battle...  hmmm, maybe we should re-read the story again. :)

Mommy did have to step in to hold a discussion on body proportions as their initial estimates were six feet of legs with three feet remaining for torso and head.  They adjusted this a bit before drawing their outline.

Afterwards, we set out to paint 5 little stones for their 'David' role playing that was to come.  We are grateful for non-toxic paint as the {nearly} four year old swiped a painted, stale marshmallow while I wasn't looking.  One was enough and he didn't attempt any more.

We recited this poem to correspond to the colors of our 'stones.'
Five Little Stones by Ronda Duvall

Red, Blue, Yellow, Orange, and Green,
These five little stones remind me of many things.

Red means stop and pray for courage.
With God on my side never be discouraged.

Blue means it's okay to feel sad.
But, with the right amount of courage, I don't need to get

Yellow reminds me to slow down and pray.
Thank God for His blessings every day.

Orange, this stone is very bright.
God is with me, there's no need to feel fright.

Green means for me to get up and go,
God shows me that He loves me so.

Slingshot and {marshmallow} stones in hand, they stepped up to the challenge of taking him on.  We have a new-found respect for David and the courage that God gave him to face this giant. Sadly, our marshmallow stones did not stand up well to the rigors of being squeezed in our traditional slingshot.  Large pom poms stepped in as default 'stones'.  {While I like to think of myself as a 'fun' mom, I draw the line at anything that could damage windows, lamps, etc...}

This handy little verse card seen below can be found on Danielle's Place.
God is bigger in our eyes now and there is a calm assurance that He will fill us with courage to do incredible things!


  1. I like how you have combined Bible, math, and language arts together for an enjoyable learning activity.

  2. This is great! I would love to do it with my SS class of 1st graders at church. What does the card that your son is holding have on it in the last picture?...That looks like something that would be great for the kids to take home with them!

  3. Tara, Inspiration for this came from Danielle's Place. Check out her link: for more info on those cards.

  4. I love it! I'm pinning this for David.

  5. I did this yesterday with my first grade SS class. They LOVED it! I have actually taught them David and Goliath before (but I do have new kids every week b/c we have a big bus ministry at our church) but they seemed to "get it" so much better with all these things to go along with it. I'm planning on posting a picture of my class with their "stones" sometime today on my blog! Thanks again! :)

  6. Tara, your comment made my day! I just love seeing (or in this case, hearing about) the lightbulb go on in a child's eyes as they really grasp something!!! I'm glad this was a hit with your ss class!