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Kids Resources – Acts 15:36-41

Hello everyone on this foggy Tuesday morning (at the time of writing…). Hope you’re all doing ok and your children are fending off the usual coughs and colds that a new school year brings. And you’ve managed to hold off from putting the heating on. It’s too early for that nonsense. 😁

This week we will be focusing on the last few verses of Chapter 15 and the topic of disagreement, a subject I’m sure we have little to no experience in…

For the craft:

  • 4 Plastic Spoons (or 1 will make one character!)
  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Permanent marker

Game

Build a bridge! Who can build the best bridge? The best at holding something? The best looking? The best at allowing one side to be joined to another?

We’re looking at arguments today and we must never forget that whilst arguing isn’t necessarily a bad thing, they can get out of control and become unhelpful, hurtful and wrong. Always be ready to build a bridge, keep 2 sides together and forgive.

Bible Bit

Paul and Barnabas Separate

36 After some time, Paul said to Barnabas, “We preached the message of the Lord in many towns. We should go back to all those towns to visit the believers and see how they are doing.”

37 Barnabas wanted to take John Mark with them too. 38 But John Mark had left them at Pamphylia; he did not continue with them in the work. So Paul did not think it was a good idea to take him. 39 Paul and Barnabas had a serious argument about this. They separated and went different ways. Barnabas sailed to Cyprus and took Mark with him. 40 But Paul chose Silas and left. The believers in Antioch put Paul into the Lord’s care. 41 And he went through Syria and Cilicia, giving strength to the churches.

Videos

This one is pretty good for today. It retells the passage with a bit of extra context for kids.

Ages 3-7: The passage is fairly short to retell or read for the older end of this group. Or use the video link to the passage above and watch it together.

  • In the video, I reference this video that shows what happens when you put Orbeez in a hot pan (!)
  • Feel free to watch it too and talk about what it can be like when people argue. Use the video to show when people disagree, they can get loud with their opinion and perhaps it is hard to listen to the other points of view. I pointed out that the different colours split up could represent the different sides of an argument, or people on different ‘sides’. When all the colours are together in the pan, it’s impossible to hear the individual ‘bouncing noises’ and so how can you sort out the argument? Mention the cooling action of the cold water being poured over them. Talk about taking a step back when in an argument and how it helps you to cool down and hear the other person/people. Turn taking is important to give everyone a chance to say how they feel or what they think.
  • You might want to talk about the principle of disagreeing not being a bad thing in itself, but as ever, it’s about how we go about it. You could use this as an opportunity to talk about your expectations for your child/ren when it comes to disagreements.
  • In the argument between Paul and Barnabas, it was so bad that they couldn’t agree and so decided to split up and go separate ways. This must have been sad for them.
  • The good news was that they both still wanted to tell other people about Jesus and so they carried on doing that and more people got to hear about Jesus and followed Him too.

Ask:

  • Can you remember any of the names of the men in the story today? (Paul, Barnabas, Silas, John Mark)
  • Paul and Barnabas argued about who should go with them on their next journey. Did they sort it out well? (No, not really. They couldn’t agree and so split up.)
  • Have you ever had an argument? How did you sort it out?
  • Pray. Pray that if you have an argument or don’t think the same as someone else, you can keep cool and try to understand what the other person/people think. Pray that you have good ideas to sort it out.
  • This is a video with a puppet character called Douglas who talks about arguing and it’s pretty good for ages 5/6+ 😊

Ages 7-11: Read, retell, or watch the video of the passage together.

Ask: 

  • Can you say what happens in the passage in a few sentences?
  • Does anything jump put to you? Is there anything you don’t understand?
  • Have you ever had a real argument with a friend?
  • Whose side are you on? Paul’s or Barnabas’? Why?
  • How do you think Paul and Barnabas should have resolved this argument?
  • How do you resolve any arguments with your friends?
  • Do you think anything good came out of this argument?

The good news was that they both still wanted to tell other people about Jesus and so they carried on doing that and more people got to hear about Jesus and followed Him too.

Here is the video of the Orbeez in a pan!

Use the video to talk about what can happen in an argument. Here’s some thoughts from me:

  • When people disagree, they can get loud with their opinion and perhaps it is hard to listen to the other points of view. The different colours split up could represent the different sides of an argument, or people on different ‘sides’. When all the colours are together in the pan, it’s impossible to hear the individual ‘bouncing noises’ and so how can you sort out the argument? Mention the cooling action of the cold water being poured over them. Talk about taking a step back when in an argument and how it helps you to cool down and hear the other person/people. Turn taking is important to give everyone a chance to say how they feel or what they think.

This video explores the topic of arguing with a puppet called Douglas. Some older children might find him a bit babyish to look at, but the content is far from babyish!

Craft/Activities

  • Have a go at making Paul, Barnabas, Silas and John Mark! Follow the photo instructions 😊 If you made a boat a few weeks ago, you could Paul and Silas in one and they could sail off without Barnabas and John Mark.

On the back of a plastic spoon, draw the face:

Using some coloured, patterned or plain paper, cut a strip about 2 inches wide 6 inches long. Fold it in half length ways and cut a v shape out across the fold line in the centre to create a coat like this:

Cut two arms out of the paper and secure them on the inside of the coat with a bit of glue or tape:

Slide the spoon through the hole at the top and using a bit of glue, glue it in place so the coat doesn’t slip down. Like this:

Repeat a further 3 times to make the other men!

  • Create a poster with ‘Top Tips for Dealing with Disagreements’! Here are some ideas you might like to include:
    • Listen to both sides
    • Choose your words carefully
    • Try to avoid arguments
    • Deal with disputes, don’t ignore them or carry them on
    • Don’t be nasty
    • Don’t be quick to judge
    • Don’t look down on people
    • Put other people first
    • Think the best of others
    • Always act with love