Lesson 1: An Angel Announces Jesus’ Birth

Classroom: My Classroom Leader Guide for Grades 1 & 2
05/18/2022
Luke 1:26-38; Matthew 1:18-25

Teachers Dig In

 

Dig In to the Bible

  • Read: Luke 1:26-38; Matthew 1:18-25
  • In This Passage: Mary was a young woman from Nazareth, engaged to Joseph, a carpenter. Neither of them seemed particularly remarkable, and yet in these passages an angel appears to each of them with an impossible message: They’d be the ones to parent God’s Son. Mary would give birth to God’s Son, bringing God to earth in a tangible way! Through these unlikely candidates, God did the impossible. He became a baby.
  • Bible Point: God does the impossible.
  • Summary Verse: “For nothing is impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).

 

Dig Deeper

  • You’ll Be Teaching: God does the impossible. Kids often feel as if they aren’t good enough or special enough for God to work in their lives. But God used two ordinary people to do something so incredible and impossible. Kids need to know that God can do the impossible in their lives, too!
  • Think About: What’s an impossible situation you’re dealing with? How have you tried to take control of the situation? What would it look like to trust God to do the impossible?

 

Dig In to Prayer

  • Think of the kids in your group who are in difficult situations. Pray for God to do the impossible in their lives.

 

Quick Tip

  • Having elementary kids follow along in their Bibles as one person reads helps them focus, and it helps them learn how to navigate the Bible. But try to ask only experienced readers to read aloud in order to keep everyone’s focus.

This Lesson at a Glance

Opening

Kids share about a topic related to the lesson.

Supplies

  • Bible

Core Bible Discovery

Kids discover messages the angel shared with Mary.

Supplies

  • Bible
  • “Message Clues” handout (download here)
  • 3 envelopes

Easy Prep

  • Number the envelopes with a 1, 2, and 3.
  • Print out a copy of the “Message Clues” handout. Cut apart the pictures. Put the picture of the angel in the envelope marked “1,” the picture of the baby in the envelope marked “2,” and the picture of the crown in the envelope marked “3.” Seal the envelopes.

 

Life Application Wrap-Up

Kids hold on to a rope as they follow a prayer path.

Supplies

  • bedsheet
  • ball
  • rope

Easy Prep

  • Put the bedsheet in one corner of the room.
  • Put the ball in a different corner.
  • Place a rope in the center of the room.

Music Video

Kids sing songs of praise to God.

Supplies

  • “Nothing Is Impossible” (Luke 1:37) music video (watch or download here
  • “He Loved Us First” music video (watch or download here
  • “We Can Trust Him” (Psalm 33:4) music video (watch or download here)

Talk-About Video

Kids watch a video and discuss God doing the impossible.

Supplies

  • “Al Risket, Stuntman” teaching video (watch or download here)

Object Lesson

Kids try to make a sheet of paper taller than them.

Supplies

  • paper
  • scissors (1 pair for each child, plus 1 for you)

Deeper Bible

Kids explore why Mary was favored.

Supplies

  • Bible
  • mailing labels
  • pen

High-Energy Game

Kids run to share a message with others.

Supplies

  • upbeat music (optional)
  • music player (optional)

Low-Energy Game

Kids listen for others to direct them across the room.

Supplies

  • blindfolds (optional)

Craft

Kids make paper angels with handprint wings.

Supplies

  • construction paper (white and beige)
  • markers
  • scissors
  • glue sticks
  • gold or silver chenille wire
  • clear tape

Easy Prep

  • Use half a sheet of white construction paper and tape to make a 4-inch-tall tube for each child.
  • Cut a 6-inch piece of chenille wire for each child.
  • Use the instructions below to make a sample craft.

Take-Home

Kids receive a take-home page about the lesson.

Supplies

  • this week’s “Dig In @ Home” handout (1 per child) (download here)

Easy Prep

  • Add your church announcements to the “Dig In @ Home” handout.

*Marked supplies can be reused from Core Bible Discovery

Let's keep kids safe! You can help by using supplies as instructed for only ages 3+, purchasing child-safe items, and being aware of allergy concerns.

Opening [5 min]

Welcome

Supplies

  • Bible

Welcome

            Thank kids for coming.

            Just for fun, have kids shake hands with four friends using the back of their hands.

            Make announcements.

            Introduce new kids.

            Celebrate birthdays by singing a birthday song off-key.

            Collect the offering.

 

Introduce the Lesson

            Say: God does the impossible. Today we’ll learn that an angel told Mary and Joseph that God would do something impossible in their lives—he'd give them his Son for a baby.

 

Share

            Say: The angel told Mary and Joseph to name the baby Jesus.

            Tell kids something about your name, such as where it came from or what it means.

            Have kids form pairs and share with their partners something about their names.

 

Summarize

            Open a Bible, and say: Today we’ll explore how God does the impossible and what that means to us. We’ll dig in to the Bible to find out. The Bible isn’t an ordinary book; it’s God’s special book. The Bible is one way God talks to us. God is here right now, ready to talk to you.

            Pray, thanking God that he does the impossible.

Core Bible Discovery [20 min]

God Does the Impossible (Luke 1:26-38)

Supplies

  • Bible
  • “Message Clues” handout (download here)
  • 3 envelopes

Easy Prep

  • Number the envelopes with a 1, 2, and 3.
  • Print out a copy of the “Message Clues” handout. Cut apart the pictures. Put the picture of the angel in the envelope marked “1,” the picture of the baby in the envelope marked “2,” and the picture of the crown in the envelope marked “3.” Seal the envelopes.

 

Tell About the Angel

            Gather children in a circle on the floor.

            Hold up your Bible, and tell children that this true story is from the Bible.

            Say: The Bible tells us that long ago, God promised to send a Savior to help his people. A savior is a person who rescues you from danger. Before God sent the Savior, he sent a message about the Savior.

            Ask: • What are some ways we get messages today?

            Hold up the envelopes, and tell kids that sometimes messages come in envelopes in the mail. Tell them that today you’ll explore God’s message with some clues.

            Let a child open up the envelope marked “1” and show the picture of the angel.

            Ask: • What have you heard about angels?

            Say: An angel is a special messenger from God. God sent the angel named Gabriel to visit a young woman named Mary. She was engaged to a man named Joseph. Mary had never seen an angel before. She was scared.

            Ask children to show you what their faces would look like if they saw an angel.

 

Pass Special Messages

            Say: Let’s play a game to discover the special messages Gabriel had for Mary. I’m going to tell a message to the person sitting next to me. Then that person will whisper the message to the next person. We’ll pass the message around the circle.

            Whisper to a child next to you: “Don’t be afraid, Mary!”

            After the message goes around the circle, ask the last child to repeat the message. If they don’t quite have it right, repeat the message for everyone: “Don’t be afraid, Mary!”

            Repeat the activity with the second part of the angel’s message: “You are special to God.” (You may want to pass this message around the circle in the opposite direction.) Be sure to repeat the correct message after it’s been passed around the circle.

            Ask: • If you were Mary, how would you feel about that message?

 

Open the Messages

            Say: Let’s see what else the angel said.

            Let another child open the envelope marked “2” and show the picture of the baby. Ask children what they think that might mean.

            Say: Gabriel’s message got pretty interesting! He said, “You’re going to have a baby. Name the baby Jesus. He is the Savior God promised to send.”

            Ask: • How do you think Mary felt when she heard that message?

            Lead kids in pretending to hold a baby. Talk about how small and helpless babies are.

            Say: It might have seemed impossible to imagine a tiny, helpless baby becoming the Savior—someone who could save people. But God does the impossible.

            Let another child open the envelope marked “3” and show the picture of the crown. Ask children what they think that might mean.

            Say: The angel said, “Jesus is God’s own Son. He’s a king!” Mary’s baby would grow up to be a king. Wow!

 

Talk About It

            Ask: • Think about what you want to be when you grow up.

            Let kids take turns acting out what they want to be when they grow up, while other kids guess.

            Say: It may seem impossible to think about being a [name some of the things children said] when you’re just a kid! But God does the impossible!

            When Mary heard the angel’s message, she asked, “How can that be?” Gabriel answered, “Nothing is impossible with God.” God does the impossible! Mary said, “I love God. I will do what he has chosen me to do.”

 

Prayer

            Say: God does the impossible. Nothing is too hard for God. Let’s thank God for his love and power right now.

            Lead children in prayer, thanking God for his ability to do impossible, surprising things.

Life Application Wrap-Up [5 min]

Prayer Path

Supplies

  • bedsheet
  • ball
  • rope

Easy Prep

  • Put the bedsheet in one corner of the room.
  • Put the ball in a different corner.
  • Place a rope in the center of the room.

Hold the Rope

            Say: Today we learned that God does the impossible. Hold on to this rope while we pray, to remind us that we can always hold on to God—even when things seem impossible. Have kids find a spot on the rope.

 

Walk the Prayer Path

            Lead kids to the bedsheet.

            Have kids hide under it (still holding the rope), pretending to be scared.

            Ask kids to share things they’re afraid of.

            Say: God is so big that he can do anything—even things that seem impossible. So we don’t have to be afraid. He’ll always take care of us.

            Pray: God, help us trust you to do the impossible, even when we’re scared. Lead kids to the ball, and have them sit in a circle (still holding the rope).

            Say: Sometimes we want to learn something new, like reading or playing a new game, but it seems too hard. It might even feel impossible.

            Toss the ball to one child, inviting the child to tell about something new he or she wants to try. Let that child roll or toss the ball to a different child to share. Continue a few times.

            Say: Nothing is impossible for God. And we can ask for his help when we want to try something new.

            Pray: God, thank you that we can always ask you for help, knowing nothing is impossible for you.

            Have kids squeeze the rope while you close the prayer.

            Pray: God, we’ll always hold on to you. We know you love us, and you can do the impossible. In Jesus’ name, amen.

            Thank kids for coming, and remind them to trust God to do the impossible this week. Tell them you look forward to seeing them next week.

Music Video [10 min]

Nothing Is Impossible

Supplies

  • “Nothing Is Impossible” (Luke 1:37) music video (watch or download here
  • “He Loved Us First” music video (watch or download here
  • “We Can Trust Him” (Psalm 33:4) music video (watch or download here)

Tip 

  • Don’t have internet in your classroom? That’s okay! You can download the videos before class using the “download” button at the link provided, or just purchase this quarter’s DVD here.

 

Sing Songs to God

          Sing the three songs in any order. 

Talk-About Video [10 min]

Al Risket, Stuntman

Supplies

  • “Al Risket, Stuntman” teaching video (watch or download here)

Tip 

  • Don’t have internet in your classroom? That’s okay! You can download the videos before class using the “download” button at the link provided, or just purchase this quarter’s DVD here.

 

Discuss and Watch "Al Risket, Stuntman"

          Have kids form pairs. Say: Talk to your partner about a time you did something difficult. What made you decide to try to do that thing, and what happened? I’ll go first. Share your own story about a time you did something difficult. Take about a minute to share to model the type of sharing you’d like kids to do. Then invite kids to share their own stories with their partners.

          Allow about two minutes for kids to share with their partners, and then continue.

          Ask: • What’s something that would be impossible for you to do? Allow two minutes for kids to share with their partners, and then invite a few kids to share their answers with the whole group.

          Say: Let’s watch a video about someone who likes to try to do the impossible.

          Watch “Al Risket, Stuntman.”

          Ask: • What did you think was the funniest impossible trick that Al Risket tried? Invite several kids to share with the entire group.

          Say: Al tried some funny things and some dangerous things—but even he admitted that there were things that were impossible for him or other humans to do; things that are only possible for God.

          As we are looking at the Bible today, we’ve been learning that an angel came to Mary and told her that she was going to have a baby—and that he would be king over Israel and everyone! That seemed impossible to Mary, but she trusted God to do something that seemed impossible to her.

          Ask: • What are impossible things that you believe God can do?

          • Mary trusted God even though what he said was going to happen seemed impossible. When have you trusted God with something that seemed impossible? I’ll tell you something from my own life first. Share about a time you trusted God with a situation that seemed impossible. Then invite kids to share with their partners. Allow about two minutes for sharing.

          Say: Only God can do what seems impossible to us. He did the impossible—and something wonderful—when he brought Jesus to earth for us.

Object Lesson [10 min]

Paper Stretch

Supplies

  • paper
  • scissors (1 pair for each child, plus 1 for you)

Cut a Spiral

          Hold up a sheet of paper for kids to see.

          Ask: • What things can you do with a sheet of paper?

          Say: I’m going to do something really amazing—and kind of impossible. I’m going to make this sheet of paper taller than any of you.

          Ask: • Do you believe I can do that? Why?

          Cut a spiral shape—in a single, continuous cut—from the outer edge of the paper to the center of the paper. Make the cut about ½-inch wide. (The narrower the cut, the longer the spiral will be.)

          As you cut, say: God told Mary and Joseph he’d send his Son, Jesus, as a baby. To Mary and Joseph that seemed impossible. But God does the impossible!  When you’re done cutting, ask a child to hold one end of the spiral to the ground while you hold the other end as high as you can.

          Have children take turns jumping to see if the paper is taller than they can jump.

 

Let Kids Try

          Hand each child a sheet of paper and a pair of scissors. Let kids cut their own spirals. As they work, talk about these questions.

          Ask: What did you think when you saw me do something impossible with the paper?

          • Why do you think God does impossible things?

          Say: I had a plan for this little sheet of paper. I wanted it to do something big and amazing! God has plans, too…and sometimes he has to do something impossible to make those plans happen. God did something impossible when he sent his Son, Jesus. God does the impossible.

          Let kids find partners, and have one person hold one end of the spiral to the ground while the other person stretches the spiral as high as possible. Kids can also experiment with stretching the paper horizontally and seeing if anyone can jump as far as the paper stretches.

Deeper Bible [15 min]

What Did Mary Do to Be Favored?

Supplies

  • Bible
  • mailing labels
  • pen

Make a List

          Ask kids to share some characteristics that make people popular or famous. Write each characteristic on a different label as kids name them.

          Have kids divide the labels evenly and stick them on each other’s backs.

 

Get Popular

          Kids will try to be the most popular by accumulating the most labels. Kids can gather labels by taking them off each other’s backs. When they take labels, kids can stick them to the fronts of their shirts where they can’t be stolen.

          End the game when there are no labels on anyone’s back. Count labels and see who’s the most popular.

          Ask: • What are some things that famous or popular people do that seem impossible for you to do?

 

Read

          Say: In the Bible, God chose Mary—a young woman who wasn’t famous or popular—to have his Son, Jesus. Let’s dig in to the Bible to find out more about Mary.

          Tell kids to listen to some verses so they can answer this question: What do you think it means that Mary is called “favored”?

          Read Luke 1:28 and 30.

          Ask: • What do you think it means that Mary is called “favored”?

          • How is being “favored” like being popular or famous? How is it different?

 

Learn About Mary and Jewish Culture

          Ask kids whether Mary was a man or a woman. Explain that women were not seen as very important in that culture.

          Explain that we know from other books that Jewish women at the time usually got married around age 12 or 13. Have kids name someone they know who’s about 12 or 13 years old.

          Explain that we also know women at that time didn’t get to go to school or learn as much as men. Have kids share something they’ve learned in school.

          Read Matthew 13:55, and ask kids to say what Joseph’s job was. Explain that research tells us that carpenters didn’t have much money.

          Say: So, Mary was a very young, poor woman with little education. Does that sound like someone who’d be popular or famous? Allow responses.

 

Compare

          Ask: • How does what you know about Mary compare with the things you said make someone popular?

          • Is there anything we learned about Mary that shows you why God would favor Mary? If so, what?

          • Does Mary seem like a good candidate to do something impossible? Explain.

          Say: Mary seems like a surprising choice to do God’s impossible work. But we don’t have to be popular or famous for God to do impossible things in our lives. God does the impossible!

High-Energy Game [10 min]

Angel in the Night

Supplies

  • upbeat music (optional)
  • music player (optional)

Tip

  • If you used the Music Video block, consider repeating the songs from today’s lesson during the game. You can find the album here

 

Recommended for 6 or more kids.

 

Important Messages

            Say: Today we heard that an angel came to Joseph with an exciting message.

            Tell about a time you had an exciting message to share, such as a new job or a surprise trip to an amusement park.

            Ask: • When have you had an important message to tell someone?

            • How did you share that message?

 

Joseph Hears the News

            Say: While Joseph was sleeping, an angel came to him in a dream to tell him the amazing, impossible news that Mary was going to have a baby. The angel said the baby’s name would be Jesus! Through the angel’s message, Joseph and Mary discovered that God does the impossible. Let’s play a game to remember how God sent an angel with an important message.

 

Spread the News

            Turn out the lights.

            Have kids spread out across your room and lie down on the floor like they’re sleeping. These kids will be “Joseph.” If they want to, kids playing Joseph can pretend to snore or make other silly sleeping sounds.

            Choose one child to be the “Angel.” If you have a large group, have two or three Angels at once so more children can have a turn.

            Play upbeat music, and have the Angel run to a sleeping Joseph, tap him or her on the shoulder, and say, “God does the impossible!”

            Have Joseph jump up and take the Angel’s hand and both of them run to share the news with another sleeping Joseph.

            Have that Joseph take the hand of the previous Joseph, and so on, forming a long line led by the Angel.

            Pause the music every few seconds.

            Whenever the music stops, the Angel must immediately freeze in place. If the Angel freezes right away, he or she can keep playing as the Angel when you turn the music back on. If the Angel keeps moving after the music stops, that child becomes a sleeping Joseph and you’ll choose a different child to be the Angel.

            Play several rounds so multiple children have the chance to be the Angel.

Low-Energy Game [10 min]

Trust Trek

Supplies

  • blindfolds (optional)

Mary Trusts God

            Say: When the angel Gabriel appeared and told Mary that she was going to have a baby, Mary was confused and probably a little scared. How could she be having a baby? That seemed impossible! But Mary was also brave because she trusted that God does the impossible. Even though she didn’t understand, Mary was excited for this baby God was sending! Let’s play a game in which we’ll need to have trust like Mary did!

 

Walk in Trust

            Have kids stand on one side of your room. Choose about a quarter of the kids to stand on the opposite side of the room, across from the rest of the group.

            Explain that these kids must close their eyes (or you can use blindfolds).

            Say: I’ll spin you around three times, and then you’ll try to walk across the room to join your friends. Be brave! It’s not impossible! Your friends will cheer and help guide you! You can trust their voices.

            Spin kids around and have them walk toward the other children, listening to the cheers and guidance. Remind kids to use each other’s names as they guide their friends.

            Make sure every child has a chance to walk across the room. Once everyone has had a turn, gather kids together.

 

Talk About It

            Ask: • What was it like to walk with your eyes closed?

            • How would you have felt if no friends had called out to help you?

            Say: Sometimes we feel confused or sad about things in life, like going to a new school or when someone in our family is sick. Those problems can feel impossible! There’s a Bible verse that can help us when we feel like that.

            Read Luke 1:37: “For nothing is impossible with God.” Then have children say the words with you.

            Ask: • How does it make you feel to know that nothing is impossible with God?

            Lead children in jumping up and cheering, “Nothing is impossible with God!”

Craft [20 min]

Announcing Angels

Supplies

  • construction paper (white and beige)
  • markers
  • scissors
  • glue sticks
  • gold or silver chenille wire
  • clear tape

Easy Prep

  • Use half a sheet of white construction paper and tape to make a 4-inch-tall tube for each child.
  • Cut a 6-inch piece of chenille wire for each child.
  • Use the instructions below to make a sample craft.

Talk About Angels

            Ask: How do we get good news today?

            • What would be some fun and crazy ways to send a good message?

            Share your own wild idea, such as sending a message by parakeet or spelling it out in cotton candy clouds. Then let children share creative ways they might send a message.

            Say: God sent an angel to give Mary surprising news. It may seem impossible that an angel would talk to a person, but God does the impossible. The angel said that Jesus would be born.

            Show children a sample craft, and tell them that today they’ll make angels to remember that God does the impossible.

 

Make Angels

            Give each child a paper tube, a half sheet of white construction paper, about a quarter sheet of beige paper, and a 6-inch chenille wire.

            Have kids set their hands on the white paper and trace around their open fingers to make outlines of their hands.

            Let children cut out the hand outlines.

            Tell kids to draw an angel face on the beige paper and then cut it out in a circle.

            Show them how to wrap the end of the wire into a loop to make a halo.  

            Have kids glue the handprint “wings” to one side of the tube and then glue the face to the other side.

            Let kids tape the halos in place.

            Kids can use their angels to practice saying the Bible Point or retelling the story of the angel giving Mary surprising news.

      

Take-Home [0 min]

Dig In @ Home

Supplies

  • this week’s “Dig In @ Home” handout (1 per child) (download here)

Easy Prep

  • Add your church announcements to the “Dig In @ Home” handout.

           Distribute a copy of the “Dig In @ Home” handout to kids as they leave, or email it to parents during the week.