This article was previously published on latterdaysaintwoman.com

When I started doing sharing time for my LDS nursery, I did a different part of the theme each week. I soon found the children just wanted me to repeat the same lesson each week for the entire month (“But you didn’t do the boat!”) so I stopped changing it each week. However, this is the original plan. You can do it this way or choose your favorite parts to use in one lesson. Of course, you probably have even better ideas. Please post your own ideas in the comments or let us know what you learned when you did Noah’s ark in your own nursery.

Noah's ArkAlternative to the listed crafts: Let the children work on developing a picture over the course of the month. The first week, give them a cut out simple drawing of an ark to color. When they’re finished, let them glue it onto construction paper. The second week, give them the animals to color and then have them glue them onto the saved pictures. (You will probably only want to give them a few animals each.) The third week let them glue raindrops on and the fourth week, glue the rainbow onto the picture. It won’t be entirely accurate, since all those things weren’t present at once, but it covers all the important aspects.

If you make the stick puppets earlier, the children can still color them in just a few minutes, to use in the lesson.

Week 1: Introducing the story of Noah’s Ark

Before sharing time begins,  have a lesson-related craft. The first week, make stick puppets of Noah to hold during the lesson. Use the coloring page picture of three prophets found in lesson 23 of the nursery manual. Put it into your word processing or graphics program and crop it to show only the section with Noah. You can fit several on a page. Print on cardstock and cut out. (I keep it in the border it’s in.) Glue to craft stick or let your children do it. The children color the picture in class.

christian-1316201_640Lesson (five minutes) Use flannel board story. Tell, talk about the words (ark, rain, rainbow, flood) Have pictures for each one. Give each child a picture to add to the story. Repeat as desired.

The story is from the Friend.

Noah’s Ark Flannel Board story

Action Rhyme: Noah and the Ark By Stacey A. Rasmussen from the Friend

Singing Time: (Five minutes) related at least loosely to the lesson:

Follow the Prophet. (110 in Children’s Songbook) Teach the verse about Noah. Use pictures of Noah. Then let children march.

Rain is Falling All Around: (241b in children’s songbook) Add hand motions to the song.

The Wise Man and the Foolish Man (song 281 in Children’s Songbook)

Review of fun parts of regular lesson (songs, games, action rhymes, etc.) for five minutes.

Week 2: Animals on Noah’s Ark

Craft: Give each child cut out pictures from the Primary 2 manual, lesson 44: I Can Be Kind to Animals. Let them color them and glue them onto a simple ark drawing. These are meant to play a matching or memory game. You might want to make a set on cardstock to play with later in the day.

Tell story of Noah’s ark using a simple drawing of an ark (the size of large poster board, for instance) and toy animals. I purchased wood cut outs of animals at Michaels (the craft store), two of each kind. We use them often in nursery for matching games, Noah’s ark activities, or for guiding the children as they pretend to be animals. You can also buy a cute Fisher-Price Noah’s Ark.

labrador-805838_640Let the children help match the animals and put them on the ark.

Use the wood animals to talk about how Heavenly Father and Jesus created the animals and loves them, so he kept them safe.

Act out animals.

Action Rhyme: Noah (Sunbeam manual, lesson 35)

Hide the animals around the room and let the children find them. (They have to be in plain site at this age.) Then help them match them up and march them in pairs onto the ark.

Songs: Same as previous week.

Review of Regular Lesson

Week 3: Rain Theme for Noah’s Ark Lesson

Craft: Make shakers for the rain activity or draw a simple ark, make copies, and have them glue raindrops onto it. Use the large drawing of the ark from last week. Retell the story, placing the animals on the ark, and, if you have them, pictures of Noah and his family at the correct time. When you reach the rain, give each child some large paper raindrops. Let them take turns placing one drop on the picture at a time. This helps them learn to take turns. After you finish the story, talk about how Heavenly Father made the rain, and usually it doesn’t flood. Rain usually helps us.

Ask the children if they know why we have rain. Bring items or pictures to help the children learn ways rain helps us: umbrella, flowers, a cup of water. You might offer the children tiny cups of water to drink during the lesson. If you have a real umbrella, let them take turns holding it. If it’s large enough, have them all gather under the umbrella while they sing Rain is Falling All Around during singing time.

water-815271_640If you have shaker rhythm instruments in your nursery, let the children shake them to make rain sounds. Otherwise, try this game I did as a Girl Scout:

First have the children tap one hand with one or two fingers of the other. This is the start of rain. Next they rub their hands together. Have the other teacher snap her fingers, since the children can’t do this step, while they do the other steps. Then they can pat their knees and later add stomping if you’d like. If you have thunderstorms where you live, have them call out Boom! at the end. This can help storms seem less scary.

You might want to retell the story, letting the children act out the rain sounds again.

Songs: Same as before, starting with Rain, sung under an umbrella.

Review of regular lesson.

Week 4: Rainbow theme

Craft: Put the poem from this lesson onto construction paper. Punch three holes in the bottom of each one and string ribbon through it. Give each child a rainbow coloring picture also hole punched. Let them color it and glue it onto paper. Tie the rainbow onto the other end of the ribbon to make a mobile. You can assemble these in advance for larger groups.

Tell story of Noah, focusing on the rainbow. Use only packet and lesson pictures.
Put the bands of a rainbow around the room. Ask each child to retrieve one. fIf you have too many children, let them gather other Noah related pictures. Reassemble on the flannel board.

Column on Mormonism

To read more of Terrie’s articles, click the picture.

Tell the children the rainbow is a promise from God. Teach the word promise by telling the children you promise to do something. Then do it and say, “I kept my promise.” Repeat a few times. Let the children try it, too. (Susan, can you say, “I promise to shake your hand?” Now, shake Jimmy’s hand. Susan kept her promise!) Remind them God made the rainbow as a promise and He always keeps His promise. There will never be a flood over the whole world again. He also wants us to keep our promises.

Do this action rhyme: Noah’s Ark (For Little Friends,” Friend, May 1997)

Review activities done this month about Noah.

About Terrie Lynn Bittner
The late Terrie Lynn Bittner—beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and friend—was the author of two homeschooling books and numerous articles, including several that appeared in Latter-day Saint magazines. She became a member of the Church at the age of 17 and began sharing her faith online in 1992.

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