Jonah and the Big Fish Ideas


Big Fish Puppet
Give each child a business-size envelope, and have him or her seal
it shut. Help each child cut one end off the envelope, about
one-half inch from the edge. Then demonstrate how to cut out a
triangle mouth from the other end. Set out markers, glitter glue,
crayons, and other art supplies, and have children decorate their

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Have each child put one hand and arm in the envelope to make the
fish come “alive.” Then show them how your fish puppet can
“swallow” the fingers of your other hand!

Use the puppet fish to get household chores “gobbled up” and done
with a smile. On slips of paper, write down (or draw a picture of)
household tasks, such as clearing the table, making beds, sweeping
the floor, or watering flowers. Place the slips on the floor, and
have children wear their puppet fish to “swallow” tasks they would
like to do. Talk about how Jonah was swallowed by a fish when he
didn’t do the task God set before him.

Fish Food
Set out tuna salad, bread, and a heart-shaped cookie cutter. Have
chil-dren cut the bread with the cookie cutter, then spread tuna
salad on each piece of bread. Point out that when you turn the
heart-shape on its side, it looks like a fish. (The pointed end is
the face, the rounded end represents the fins.) Have children place
a gummy bear on each fish snack to represent Jonah in the belly of
the great fish.

Glitter Jars

Children's Ministry Local Training

Play this variation of Hide-and-Seek to help children learn that we
can’t hide from God and that God loves us. Have family members hide
while you count to ten. Each time you find a family mem-ber, give
him or her a hug and say, “God sees you and so do I.” Then have
that person help you find the others. As you find each person, give
group hugs and say together, “God sees you and so do we.”

Runaway Game
Use this game to help children re-member that even though Jonah ran
away, God forgave him. Have family members form a circle and put
their hands behind their backs. Choose someone to be “Jonah,” and
give Jonah an object such as a plastic ball or small toy. Jonah
will carry the object around the outside of the circle, while
family members say, “Jonah, Jonah disobeyed. God forgave him
anyway.” At the end of the phrase, Jonah will put the object into
another family member’s hands, and that person will chase Jonah
around the circle. If Jonah makes it back to the open spot in the
circle without being tagged, the person holding the object will be

Fish Bank
Set out construction paper; mark-ers; glue sticks; and a clean,
empty two-liter bottle. Lay the bottle on its side, then have
family members work together to decorate it so it looks like a
fish. As you work, talk about how hard it might be to go to a
faraway place to tell people about God’s love. Place the completed
“fish bank” on the table. Encourage children to look for spare
change or to donate a portion of their allowance and add it to the
fish bank each week. When the fish bank is full, send the money to
a missionary, along with letters of encouragement.

Candlelight Prayer Object Lesson


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