Hooks for Teaching 1 Samuel 15

You may be familiar with the Hook, Book, Look and Took of instructional design. A hook captures attention and introduces the lesson in a creative way. The rhyme "Who Stole the Cookie from My Cookie Jar?" is a good hook for teaching 1 Samuel 15 on Saul's disobedience.

  1. Fill a jar with bite-size cookies.

  2. Tell the children that they are to agree among themselves who is to take and put one to two cookies into his mouth while your back is turned.

    • You may have more than one child to do this.
    • Substitute cookies with marshmallows if you do not want the children to eat the marshmallows but simply to put them into their mouths.

  3. When that child had done so, you will turn around and guess "Who Stole the Cookie from My Cookie Jar?"
(in a gruff voice)
"Who Stole the Cookie from My Cookie Jar?"
Walk around the children, staring into their faces and
keep on repeating "Who Stole the Cookie from My Cookie Jar?"
Who Stole the Cookie from My Cookie Jar?
You: "(Name of Child), you stole the cookie from my cookie jar!"
Note: Even if you know who is the "culprit", do not identify the child, the first time round.
Child #1: "Who, me?"
You /
Other children:
"Yes, you, (name of child)!"
Child #1: "Couldn't be!"
You: "Then, who stole the cookie from my cookie jar?"
Make your second guess
Note: The children may run away from you.

Play the game a couple of rounds then begin the lesson. Gather the children and say, "Today, we will learn about someone who did something wrong but refused to admit his sin; instead he blamed it on others."

Alternative hook for older kids:
  1. Open a bag of marshmallows and approach a child and ask, "Would you like a marshmallow?" Give out a marshmallow.

  2. Do the same for the second child.

  3. For the third child, take a bite of the marshmallow before handing the ½ marshmallow to him. He is likely to refuse your offer.
Transition: Don't you want the ½ marshmallow? Do you think God wants ½ a marshmallow? Today's lesson is about a king who offered half obedience to God. Does God want half obedience?

Note: Do not use this hook if the (third) child will be embarassed by your action. Also be prepared as to what to do and say should the third child stretch out his hand for the ½ marshmallow.

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Alan's Gleanings | Copyright © April 2010; edited January 2017 by Alan S.L. Wong