10 Tools for Effective Story Telling

By Seth Carlene




You will need a nylon cord 15 feet long, a package of plastic clothespins, and 16 pieces of construction paper or poster board. These can be in squares or in the form of clothing. Draw the symbols shown on the following page on the papers. Hang pictures on clothesline.


1. Use to teach an overall view of the Bible by event–as you go through the Bible.

2. Use to teach the events in the life of a Bible character—(Example: Life of Jesus) These may be shuffled as cards so that the children may learn to place them in order.




This is excellent for stories on which no printed material is available–for example, the story of John the Baptist. Many of these stories can be found in “The Picture Bible for All Ages” by David C. Cook Publishing Co.*



Directions & Uses,

Press finger on ink pad and then press on poster board to make the body of desired character. Legs, arms, and other features are drawn on in color with a fine point magic marker.

The story of Philemon is shown on the left. Many characters can be drawn like this. Stories like “All Wrong Miss Bear,” “The Little Acorn God Forgot,” “The Three Little Hens,” “Little Bunny Half-a-Tail,” etc. can be made into flip books.



Take one cardboard box, cut out one end; cover the inside with white paper. Cover the open end with three layers of waxed paper. In the opposite end, cut a hold and place a 60 watt bulb–place 2 large rings
at the top of the waxed paper side. For the pictures–on 6 or more plastic sheets (cellophane or acetate sheets) draw the pictures with a permanent magic marker to give the over-lay effect. These are flipped
down as you tell the story.


This can be used to teach creation, the crucifixion, or the “one body” or the building of the ark, etc.




Make a cardboard church from a cardboard box–place open top down. Cut a window in the long side, and a hole in the top. Cut 3 pieces of cardboard or poster board to make top and sides of roof–then add a
cardboard steeple and tape with duct tape on top of bus. Cover church house with contact paper. Draw on doors and windows. Cover inside of church building with white or yellow contact.


To teach the following concepts: (1) the church is the people, not the building (2) the spiritual structure of the church; (3) and the place of each of us within the church.*




This lesson is done with paper plate puppets–made by using a paper plate and stick tongue depressor or popsickle stick attached. Make the following paper plate puppets: Jesus, apostles, elders, deacons,
preacher, teachers, members, children –using pictures or drawings in the middle of the plate.

Uses: Using the church house, page 60 say the following: This is the church that Jesus built (hold up people). This is not the church that Jesus built (point to church building). Jesus is the head of the
church that he built (hold Jesus plate from above back so it can be seen thru front window). The apostles taught the word in the church that He built (hold apostle plate in the window). The elders oversee
the flock in the church that Jesus built. The deacons serve the flock in the church that Jesus built. The preachers preach God’s word in the church that Jesus built. The teachers teach God’s word in the church
that Jesus built. The members hear God’s word and do God’s work in the church that Jesus built. The children come and learn of Jesus so that they can grow and become a part of the church that Jesus built.

Other lessons can be taught, church mouse lesson, acts of worship, etc.




Numbers indicate the script for the picture used. Did you know people read our lives–just like a book–this means they can tell what kind of person we are by how we act. People could read the Bible to see what Christ was like, but many people do not read the Bible instead they watch our lives as though they were reading a book.

1. The first book is Torn. This person is careless and sloppy-doesn’t say please or thank you doesn’t pick up his clothes or toys when his mother tells him to. He doesn’t care how thoughtless he is.

2. This book is stained and spotted with Dirt. It is like the person who is soiled-not just dirty faced- but soiled within. This person has a dirty mind. He uses bad words. The Bible says to keep our minds “pure and clean.” Phil. 4:8

3. What kind of book is this? You guessed it–a Joke book. We all enjoy a laugh at times, don’t we? But life is more than fun. It is to glorify God and tell others about his son.

4. What is the title of this book? Let’s see-well, the cover says “Story of Dogs” but on the inside it’s a bird book. Something is wrong here. The book doesn’t agree with the cover. You know, though, some people are like that. They claim to be living for Jesus. They sing, pray, give, take the Lord’s Supper every Sunday, but when they get home they forget about being a Christian. They argue, get mad, lie. steal, curse, etc. These people are like a book with the wrong cover. They fool people for a while, but God knows what is on the inside.

5. Now here is a Dictionary. When I need to know what a word means, I go to the dictionary. I know I can depend on it to give me the right answer. I know some Christians who are like this dictionary. When
someone needs help they are right there to help. You can trust what they say because they never lie.

6. There is one book I hope all our lives read like, and that one is the most important of all–the Bible. The Bible tells what Jesus is like and our lives should be telling others what the scriptures say. Remember what the name Christian means? It means Christ-like. Remember, too, others will read our lives as though they were books. Let us be the right kind of book so that the world can know Christ through us.




You will need 1 sheet black poster board, 1 sheet white poster board, and 1 small strip of elastic. Cut a large Bible out of black poster board. Cut another Bible-about 1 inch smaller out of the white poster board. Cut a hole in the center of each at exactly the same spot.

Fit the white Bible on top of black ; Bible, and staple all around outside and all around the center opening. (You may want to brace the back to make it less floppy by taping on some card board strips. On front letter Old Testament and Genesis 1:1 on the left side, and New Testament and Rev. 22:21 on the right side. Add a piece of elastic on back so it will stay on better, if you desire.


To teach memory verses. To tell Bible stories. To use a part of B-I-B-L-E TV.*



Hello, boys and girls– I’m the Talking Bible. Did you know that I am very old– I don’t feel very old– I feel young. That’s because I am as up to date and in style today as I was 2000 years ago. Guess what? I’m not just one book but many books–in fact I am 66 books in all. Can you believe that? There are 39 in my old part. It is called the Old Testament. There are 27 books in my new part and it is called the New Testament. It took about 40 men to write me. About 32 wrote my old part and 8 wrote my new. It took about 1000 years to write me. These men were told by God what to write. That is called inspiration.

I have 1,189 chapters and 31,102 verses. Boy: That’s a lot. My longest chapter is Psalms 119 and my shortest verses are John 11:35- “Jesus wept.” and I Thess. 5:16 “Rejoice always”. How many of you have been
reading me or have had your mother read me to you? Good. I want to tell you a story from me today. It is found (Give location).

(Now tell story)

Well, I hope you enjoyed my story today. Read me all week, and I’ll see you in class next week.




Take a large family size laundry box. Remove end. Cut a circular hole (large enough to put your hand through) in the side. Cover the top and side where you have cut hole with white poster board. Take a piece of ribbon or felt and cut to form a marker to hang over the side. Glue it. Take a large sheet of black poster board and fold to fit around the box as a book cover. Glue on. Glue white letters-“Holy Bible”- on the cover. Make a worm puppet.


Used to tell of the Bible in the same way the talking Bible is used, Also used to introduce and review the story.




Take the top or bottom of s large Valentine box of candy or cut a large heart from heavy cardboard. Cut an oval hole, large enough for your face, in the center. Cover with red material–leaving hole open. Connect a piece of elastic about ear level from one side to the other. (This is used to hold the heart on. A rubber Halloween mask holder could be used.) Cut a 20″ x 20″ piece of material and place around the top back to produce a hood effect. The heart does not have to have the hood, if you do not want it.


This heart is very versatile. It is used to teach what the Bible heart is, how the devil tries to get into our heart, as a review of lessons, to check out memory verses, etc.*


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