Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Jacob's Sons Toddler Bible Lesson

Welcome to Bible Basics!  I'm glad you stopped by.  If you're wondering what we're up to in this ongoing series, check out this introductory post.  For a growing list of toddler Bible lessons you can take a look at the Bible Basics page.

Last week we started learning about Jacob.  Jacob is a key character in understanding the Bible because it is through his family line that God calls the nation of Israel, the kings, the prophets, and eventually Jesus Himself.  I wanted to be sure that Abby had the opportunity to learn about Jacob’s family so that when she hears the many references to the twelve tribes of Israel she has some understanding and context to begin understanding who these guys were.

We will continue with Jacob next week when we learn how God changed his name and from there we will jump into the story of Joseph, which leads us to Moses as God sets His people free from slavery in Egypt (these are some of my favorite lessons to teach)!  Somewhere in the Moses lessons we’ll take a break and I’ll share with you a series of Christmas lessons (my other favorite lessons to teach!) that will bring the story of Jesus’ birth to life for your toddler.

Anyway…I’m getting a little carried away.  Before I launch into an outline of the Old Testament and profess every story to be my favorite one to teach, here’s this week’s lesson!

Genesis 29; 30:1-22; 31:16-26

Memory Verse:
Choose whichever version you feel is appropriate for your child’s age and abilities.

 “Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring.–Genesis 28:14

“Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth…” –Genesis 28:14a
“All peoples will be blessed through you and your offspring.” –Genesis 28:14b

Lesson Focus

Jacob had twelve sons.

Jacob’s Family Thumbprint Painting


- Construction paper, white or another light color will work best
- Washable paint or ink pad
- Marker



1. Dip your child’s thumb into the paint or ink pad.  Press it firmly onto the construction paper and lift.  Do this 12 times.  Allow the thumbprints to dry.
2. Once the prints are dry, take a marker and add a face, arms, and legs to each thumbprint.  Have your child to as much of this as they are able to on their own.
3. Write the memory verse or lesson focus on the top of the paper.  If you like, write the names of Jacob’s sons above each thumbprint.

How We Go Through the Lesson

1. Recite or sing memory verse.
2. Read Bible story.  We use the Beginner's Bible, but you can choose a children's story Bible or "grown-up" translation that suits you and your family.
3. Recite or sing memory verse.
4. Craft or project.  Depending on the day of the week this may be a project like the one above or it could be a coloring page or something completely different.

*Repeat the lesson almost every day.  This could mean doing it on weekdays or taking one day to work on the project, saying the memory verse together throughout the day, and reading the Bible story before bed each night.  It doesn't matter when or how, but the repetition is key for toddlers to retain the lessons presented to them.

 Here are some other ideas for this lesson:
This thorough post is definitely geared toward older children, but some of the free printables, lesson ideas, and background information could be adapted for a toddler/preschooler.  Or it could just help you learn a bit more about Jacob's twelve sons.

What ideas do you have for teaching your child about Jacob’s sons?

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