With this craft, students create their own copy of the Ten Commandments.
By Sara Jonckheere
Teaching our students the Ten Commandments is an important part of our curriculum and also important for teaching them how to lead a moral life.
Even though some of the terminology can be difficult to explain on a child’s level (yes, I’ve had the privilege of trying to explain adultery to my first grade class while parents were visiting the classroom … ahh!!), it is important that they know the commandments. The Ten Commandments are our obligations to God and our neighbor.
With this craft, students create their own copy of the Ten Commandments. They can use this to help them memorize the commandments. They can also choose to illustrate this craft to help deepen their understanding of the commandments.
Paper grocery bag
Draw a tablet shape on the back of a brown paper grocery bag. Even if there is writing on it, you can flip it over to the blank side once you cut it. Try to make the tablet take up the entire space on the bag. If you are creating more than one, use the first tablet that you make as a template, and then trace it onto other paper bags to ensure they are the same size.
Cut out the tablet shape. Crinkle the tablet up once you’ve cut it out. Open it up and lay it flat again. This gives the tablet an aged look.
Cut out the ten strips that list the commandments. Have students put them in order and space them out on the tablet with five on each side.
Once they are sure there is enough space for each one, have them glue the commandment strips to the tablet.
Go through each commandment and explain it in kid-friendly language. Talk about what that might look like in their lives today. These commandments weren’t just for Moses! They are relevant to all of us. With young children especially, try having them create a quick drawing under each commandment after you explain it. For some of the commandments, it might be easier to draw the “bad thing” and then put an X to represent “don’t do this.” Adding in a quick drawing will help them to understand and remember each commandment better.
The Ten Commandments in order for your reference:
- I am the Lord your God: you shall not have strange Gods before me.
- You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
- Remember to keep holy the Lord’s day.
- Honor your father and your mother.
- You shall not kill.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife.
- You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods.
Sara Jonckheere is an elementary school teacher turned stay-at-home mom. She now creates digital curriculum and resources and shares teaching ideas on her blog, Sara J Creations.