The Apostle Paul helped lay the foundations of the Christian
church. His missionary zeal and commitment to God's truths are a
shining example for all Christians. To help you celebrate Paul's
teachings and life, we asked Children's Ministry Magazine
readers to give us the best ideas they've used to teach about
On the following pages, you'll find environments, snacks, crafts,
and Bible activities that'll help your kids grow as they learn
about the Apostle Paul.
To help children better understand the world of Paul and the places
he went, set up these environments in separate rooms for children
to travel through. Have the leaders in each room dress in
appropriate costumes as well.
Decorate the room with nice furnishings, including lots of purple
cloth and Bible-time vases and pitchers. Have a woman tell the
story as a monologue from Acts 16:14-15. Part of the monologue can
include showing kids how to dye cloth purple and illustrating the
importance of being good hosts and hostesses.
Give each child fabric crayons and a piece of purple fabric. Have
them draw pictures on their fabric. Then gather the pieces and make
a wall hanging.
Dip square sponges into brown paint and stamp them onto newsprint
to create "bricks." Cover the room walls with these bricks. Put a
menorah on a table and a large scroll on a lectern. Have children
leave their shoes at the door. Give children prayer shawls to cover
their heads as they enter. Then have them kneel on mats during the
teaching time. (If possible, research Hebrew traditions or
interview a rabbi so you'll be prepared to answer children's
Provide sandboxes and a poster of the Hebrew alphabet so children
can practice writing in Hebrew (check out www.jewfaq
.org/alephbet.htm). Children can also make small scrolls as a craft
to remind them of the Scriptures that were read in the
Stuff large paper grocery bags with newspaper and tape them shut.
stuffed bags on each other to create the "stone" walls of the jail,
but don't tape them together. Lay black plastic on the floor of the
jail. Spread out shredded raffia and plastic rats and bugs on the
floor. Glow-in-the-dark bugs with black lights are even better!
"Chain" high-school prisoners to the jail walls. Make your
storyteller a jailer who takes the kids back in time for the story
from Acts 16:22-40. When the earthquake hits, push
the "stones" onto the children so they can experience the
earthquake as Paul did.
To help tell this story, use The Great Escape video from The Visual
Bible for Kids Series (Tommy Nelson, 800-933-9673, 800-663-3133
To simulate the belly of a ship, unroll a 20-foot roll of black
plastic. Use duct tape to connect the long edges on the outside,
keeping the short edges open to make a tube. Set a box fan at one
of the ends of the plastic, and tape the edges closed around the
fan's edges (not behind the fan). Turn on the fan, and the plastic
will inflate. Put sand and driftwood next to the ship, and paint a
sky backdrop on the wall behind the ship.
Have kids crawl through the opening in the other end to enter the
ship's inner cavity. Mist children with water from spray bottles,
and play sound effects of the beach and storm as you tell the story
of Paul and the shipwreck from Acts 27:14-44.
Have children use nails to make tin punches of the Ichthus symbol
in aluminum pie plates. Explain that this "fish" symbol was
important in Paul's life because after Jesus died, it was dangerous
for a person to be a Christian. To tell others that they were
Christians in Paul's day, people would draw this symbol in the
sand. As Christians today, we can also use this Ichthus symbol to
tell others that we believe in Jesus.
The Apostle Paul's ministry was immortalized in his letters that
became the bulk of the New Testament. Understanding Paul's
letter-writing ministry can help children learn more about
Have children make paper. This activity works well with children as
young as 4. Children can use the small round paper to write love
notes to family members or to Jesus.
You'll need a 34.5-ounce coffee can; a 11.5-ounce coffee can with
the top and bottom removed; one 8x8-inch piece of plastic
needlepoint canvas (available at sewing or craft stores); two
8x8-inch pieces of window screening (available at hardware stores);
one plastic tub; newspaper (minus the slick ads); warm water
(coffee carafes work great to keep the water warm); paper towels;
marigold seeds, dried flower petals, or glitter; and old stamps,
printed Bible verses, or small newspaper cartoons.
For each child, you'll need a plastic jar with a lid such as a
peanut butter jar.
Paper-Making Station Setup
One paper-making station for every five to seven children is most
• Set the plastic tub on a flat surface at a height that the
children can easily reach.
• Place the larger coffee can in the center of the tub.
• Place the following items on top of the larger can in this order:
plastic needlepoint canvas, one sheet of window screening, and the
smaller coffee can.
• Have the second piece of window screening and paper towels
Tell Kids To:
• Tear an 8x8-inch piece of newspaper into dime-sized pieces.
• Place the pieces into your plastic jar.
• Add marigold seeds, dried flower petals, or glitter as
• Fill your plastic jar two-thirds full with hot water and close
• Cover the lid with a paper towel to catch dribbles. Then shake
for five to 10 minutes to make paper pulp the consistency of runny
• When the newspaper has turned to pulp, move to the Paper-Making
• At the Paper-Making Station, swiftly dump the paper pulp into the
smaller coffee can.
• Allow the water to drain through the screen and plastic
needlepoint canvas into the larger can.
• Carefully remove the smaller can and set it aside.
• Place old stamps, Bible verses, or cartoons on top of the paper
pulp as desired.
• Place the second piece of window screening on top of the paper
pulp and blot it with paper towels.
• Remove the top piece of window screening. Lay a paper towel on
the paper, flip it over, and remove the back window
• Cover the paper with more paper towels and press to absorb
• Carefully remove the paper creation and lay it flat on a fresh
paper towel to dry overnight.
• When your paper is completely dry, use a fine-point Sharpie pen
to write your name and message.