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Lesson Prep

Background Scripture (read 2-3 times during the week)

Exodus 7:14 - 12:30

Story Summary

The Hebrews (Israelites) had been enslaved by the Egyptians for about 400 years. God sent Moses to demand for their release, but Pharaoh's heart was hardened and he refused to let them go. Each time, Moses went before Pharoah with God's message: "This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says: 'Let my people go, so that they may worship me.'" Exodus 9:1

God sent 10 different plagues upon the land of Egypt. Ultimately, it was the last plague that prompted Pharaoh to let the Hebrews (Israelites) go. 

Pharaoh finally let them go. During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the Lord as you have requested." Exodus 12:31

It interesting to note that the Egyptians themselves did not appear to support Pharaoh in his willingness to defy God. Exodus 11:3

The Ten Plagues:

Blood (Exodus 7:14-24) "This is what the Lord says: By this you will know that I am the Lord: With the staff that is in my hand I will strike the water of the Nile, and it will be changed into blood." Exodus 7:17

Frogs (Exodus 7:25-8:15) "The Nile will teem with frogs. They will come up into your palace and your bedroom and onto your bed, into the houses of your officials and on your people, and into your ovens and kneading troughs.  The frogs will go up on you and your people and all your officials." Exodus 8:3-4 

Gnats (Exodus 8:16-19) "Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the ground,’ and throughout the land of Egypt the dust will become gnats.” Exodus 8:16

Flies (Exodus 8:20-30) "If you do not let my people go, I will send swarms of flies on you and your officials, on your people and into your houses. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies, and even the ground where they are." Exodus 8:21

Livestock (Exodus 9:1-7) "And the next day the Lord did it: All the livestock of the Egyptians died, but not one animal belonging to the Israelites died." Exodus 9:6

Boils (Exodus 9:8-12) "It will become fine dust over the whole land of Egypt, and festering boils will break out on men and animals throughout the land.” Exodus 9:9

Hail (Exodus 9:13-35) "Throughout Egypt hail struck everything in the fields—both men and animals; it beat down everything growing in the fields and stripped every tree. The only place it did not hail was the land of Goshen, where the Israelites were." Exodus 9:25-26

Locusts (Exodus 10:1-20) "So Moses stretched out his staff over Egypt, and the Lord made an east wind blow across the land all that day and all that night. By morning the wind had brought the locusts;  they invaded all Egypt and settled down in every area of the country in great numbers. Never before had there been such a plague of locusts, nor will there ever be again.  They covered all the ground until it was black. They devoured all that was left after the hail—everything growing in the fields and the fruit on the trees. Nothing green remained on tree or plant in all the land of Egypt." Exodus 1-:13-15

Darkness (Exodus 10:21-29) "So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and total darkness covered all Egypt for three days.  No one could see anyone else or leave his place for three days. Yet all the Israelites had light in the places where they lived." Exodus 10:22-23

Firstborn (Exodus 11:1-10) "So Moses said, “This is what the Lord says: ‘About midnight I will go throughout Egypt.  Every firstborn son in Egypt will die, from the firstborn son of Pharaoh, who sits on the throne, to the firstborn son of the slave girl, who is at her hand mill, and all the firstborn of the cattle as well." Exodus 11:4-5 No doubt, this was God's judgment on the Egyptians for killing the baby Israelite boys during the time Moses was born (see Exodus 1).

What You Will Need

Supplies
A large stick (for Aaron's staff)
Snack Suggestion
locust recipe (see activities), crushed graham crackers with raisins (sand with flies)

Resource Sheet

Plagues Coloring Sheet

This coloring sheet depicts Pharaoh and the 10 plagues

Lesson

1. Warm Up

get your kids talking and engaged

Ask them if they like bugs and reptiles. Especially if they answer yes, ask them if they would like bugs and frogs to cover every inch of their bedroom!

We are going to learn about a time in the Bible when that actually happened!

2. Teach the Story

teach a holistic story

All of the activities on the lesson are structured a little bit differently. The activities are intended to be used as you go though the story. Each reinforcement activity has the plagues listed before the title. Your lesson will take up more of your class time, but will be broken up with a short activity to reinforce each plague and what occurred. For example, begin telling the students the story. Tell them about the first plague of the Nile river turning to blood. Fill the cup with water and watch it turn red, as you are talking. Then move on to the next plague and another reinforcement activity. It might be a good idea to write each plague on a large sheet of paper or chalkboard, as you go along, to keep their thoughts organized.

Give a brief account for what happened leading up to the plagues. (Exodus 4-7:13) (Do not focus too much on the passover during this lesson. It will be discussed in more detail in the next lesson. It is being included as a separate lesson due to the significance of this celebration throughout the rest of the Bible).

Give students a hand signal to call out “Let my people go!” during the story, each time a plague is introduced.

Make sure you do not go into the Passover story, as that is reserved for the next lesson (it is so important to the story of redemption, it deserves its own lesson!)

3. Bible Mastery

give them basic Bible skills

Scripture for Kids to Read Aloud: Exodus 7:14-18, 11:3

4. Comprehension Questions

make sure they understand the story

First, ask the children if they have any questions about the story. What to do if you don't know the answer?

  • Who was Pharaoh? (King of the Egyptians)
  • How many plagues did God inflict on the Egyptians? (ten)
  • Name two of the plagues from memory.
  • Why was it so hard for Pharaoh to let the Israelites go? (because God hardened his heart - see Exodus 7:3-4)

5. Faith Questions

help them apply the story to their lives and open up a conversation about faith and the gospel; close with prayer
  • God judged Pharaoh for having a hard heart against Him.
  • God is a perfect and holy God, and he has to judge those who rebel against him. Even us, who sin against God, deserve judgment. But did you know that if we repent of our sins and ask God to forgive us, he does forgive us and doesn't judge us for our sins?!

6. Memory Verse

hide God's Word in their heart
God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son. Anyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life. John 3:16

Reinforcement Activities

Livestock: Paper plate masks

Scripture If you refuse, my powerful hand will bring a terrible plague on you. I will strike your livestock in the fields. I will strike your horses, donkeys, camels, cattle, sheep and goats. Exodus 9:3

Supplies Paper plates

  • Make sheep & goat masks as instructed in the link below.

Plague of Locust

Heads up! paint or buy clothes pins to be green

Scripture "So Moses stretched out his staff over Egypt, and the Lord made an east wind blow across the land all that day and all that night. By morning the wind had brought the locusts; they invaded all Egypt and settled down in every area of the country in great numbers.

Supplies one clothes pin per child, wiggle eyes, pipe cleaner, glue, scissors

  • Buy green clothes pins or use paint or magic marker to color wooden clothes pins green
  • glue on wiggle eyes on either side of the clamp part of the clothes pin
  • glue on pieces of pipe cleaner to be locust legs

Finger Puppets~ The Ten Plagues

Scripture Exodus 7-12

Supplies Finger puppet printables, double sided tape, scissors and either markers, crayons or colored pencils.

  • 1. Print finger puppet printables
  • 2. Have the children color them in and cut out the figures
  • 3. Use double sided tape to wrap them around their fingers
  • 4. Read about the plagues use the puppets to demonstrate what is happening

Plagues Dominoes

Supplies Plague dominoes cards (download from link below), cardstock, glue, scissors

Blood: Science experiement

Heads up! Phenolphthalein (around $3-$6) and sodium carbonate (under $10) can be ordered from any scientific supplier

Scripture Here is how you will know that I am the Lord. I will strike the water of the Nile River with the staff that is in my hand. The river will turn into blood. Exodus 7:17

Supplies phenolphthalein pH indicator, sodium carbonate, water, 2 glasses, stirring rod, straw

  • Follow the link below for a science experiment using phenolphthalein pH indicator and sodium carbonate.
  • You can turn clear water into blood, and then turn it clear again.

Frogs: Origami jumping frogs

Scripture The Nile River will be full of frogs. They will come up into your palace. You will have frogs in your bedroom and on your bed. They will be in the homes of your officials and your people. They will be in your ovens and in your bread pans. The frogs will be on you, your people and all of your officials. Exodus 8:3-4

Supplies 1 sheet of paper per child, scissors

  • Make origami frogs out of paper according to the instructions at the link below.

Students as teachers

  • Put students into groups and assign them a plague to teach the other students.
  • Give them props to teach about their assigned plague.
  • Have students read the verses that apply to their plague and then decide how to teach their plague to the other students.
  • Encourage creativity!

Blood: Water with red food coloring

Scripture The Lord says, "Here is how you will know that I am the Lord. I will strike the water of the Nile River with the staff that is in my hand. The river will turn into blood" Exodus 7:17

Supplies clear cup, red food coloring , water

  • Have a clear cup with red food coloring in bottom.
  • Add water, allow students to watch it change colors.

Frogs: Leap Frog

Scripture The Nile River will be full of frogs. They will come up into your palace. You will have frogs in your bedroom and on your bed. They will be in the homes of your officials and your people. They will be in your ovens and in your bread pans. The frogs will be on you, your people and all of your officials. Exodus 8:3-4

Supplies students!

  • Play leap frog.

Frogs: Stretchy frogs

Scripture The Nile River will be full of frogs. They will come up into your palace. You will have frogs in your bedroom and on your bed. They will be in the homes of your officials and your people. They will be in your ovens and in your bread pans. The frogs will be on you, your people and all of your officials. Exodus 8:3-4

Supplies Stretchy frogs $3.75 per dozen

  • Play with stretchable flying frogs.

Flies: Ice Cubes

Scripture If you do not let my people go, I will send large numbers of flies. I will send them on you and your officials. I will send them on your people and into your homes. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies. Even the area where they live will be full of flies. Exodus 8:21

Supplies plastic flies $3.78 for 144 ct on Amazon.com

  • Freeze plastic flies into ice cubes. Use them for your drink at snack time.
  • Can you imagine flies being everywhere!

Boils

Scripture The ashes will turn into fine dust all over the whole land of Egypt. Then boils will break out on people and animals all over the land. Their bodies will be covered with them. Exodus 9:9

Supplies red dot stickers, crushed oreos

  • Rub the crushed oreos on each student's arms.
  • Then put red stickers on their arms and hands to represent the boils.
  • It would not be recommended to eat the oreos afterwards...

Hail: Mini marshmallow or cotton ball shower

Scripture Give an order now to bring your livestock inside to a safe place. Bring in everything that is outside. The hail will fall on all of the people and animals that are left outside. They will die. Exodus 9:19

Supplies bag of mini marshmallows, bag of cotton balls

  • This activity uses the element of surprise.
  • As you are telling the story of the 10 plagues, throw marshmallows or cotton balls into the air to rain down on students to demonstrate the plague of hail.
  • Have a cotton ball fight when done with lesson.

Locust: Make a grasshopper snack

Scripture If you refuse to let them go, I will bring locusts into your country tomorrow. They will cover the ground so that it can't be seen. They will eat what little you have left after the hail. That includes every tree that is growing in your fields. Exodus 10:4-5

Supplies Strawberry Shortcake Roll, White Frosting, Green Food Coloring, Two colored Jelly Beans, Pretzel Sticks

  • Students make individual grasshopper snack out of snack cakes.

Darkness: Make room dark

Scripture Reach out your hand toward the sky. Darkness will spread over Egypt. It will be so dark that people can feel it. Exodus 10:21

Supplies dark room or blindfolds for each student

  • Teach this plague in complete darkness, if possible.
  • Blindfolds can work as an alternative.

Gnats: Find Them!

Scripture Tell Aaron, 'Reach your wooden staff out. Strike the dust on the ground with it.' Then all over the land of Egypt the dust will turn into gnats. Exodus 8:16

  • If it is summer, go outside for a few minutes, and try to attract gnats around someone's head.

Boils

Heads up! remember to ask if any of your students are allergic to red dye

Scripture The ashes will turn into fine dust all over the whole land of Egypt. Then boils will break out on people and animals all over the land. Their bodies will be covered with them. Exodus 9:9

Supplies Red Cookie Icing

  • Instead of using the red dots and crushed cookies, our class used red cookie icing in the piping bag you can buy at the store.
  • Place a red dime size dot of icing on their arm as you are explaining about the boils.

Locust: Grasshopper Cookie Snack

Scripture If you refuse to let them go, I will bring locusts into your country tomorrow. They will cover the ground so that it can't be seen. They will eat what little you have left after the hail. That includes every tree that is growing in your fields. Exodus 10:4-5

Supplies Keebler Grasshopper Cookies

  • This one is simple buy the Grasshopper cookies from the store for your class to serve as snack.
  • Serve it during your explanation of the locusts decent upon Egypt.