Basic Format
of Dramatised Family Devotions

This section of the book "Building the Next Generation" has 10 chapters and deals with the what, why and how of parenting and family devotions. Other chapters include "Why Use Bible Stories and Dramatisation" and "How to Prepare for Family Devotions".

The following format of dramatised family devotions is a condensed version of Chapter 7 in "Building the Next Generation."

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Open with prayer

  1. Open with prayer to establish a quiet and listening atmosphere

  2. Maintain order and control before beginning the devotion

Tell and act out the story

  1. Use your Bible and theirs and keep them open

  2. Be familiar enough with the story to tell it in your own words

  3. Tell the story focussing on the main point

  4. Pause at different points to act out each scene

    1. The parent must recognise that each child is unique and guide each appropriately.

    2. Children who have never acted out a story may express reservation or shyness. This is a natural reaction.

    3. Do not expect great actors/actresses. The emphasis is on acting (playing) to learn the message not to entertain!

    4. Vary the presentation

      In telling the story of "The Flood," I told the boys to take off their clothes and go into the bathroom for family devotions. My elder son, YP exclaimed, "What? Bible story in the bathroom!" YZ, the younger added, "Daddy! Don't be silly!" Their responses were of surprise and excitement. Doing the unexpected creates fun.

      Nonchalantly, I repeated, "Let's go in." YP shouted, "I know! I know! Today's Bible story is about Noah's ark." We had toy animals in the washbasin that had been transformed into Noah's ark.

      I explained that during Noah's time, God had not sent rain and that a mist rose from the earth and watered the plants. This was illustrated by turning the shower head upside down ... water gushed up and hit the ceiling.

      Then the rains came. Everybody was excited; they had never seen rain before. They were running and playing in the rain. "This is exactly how you are feeling right now ... it's fun."

      It rained for one day, two days, three days ... and I began to direct the shower at their faces ... four days, five days, six days. Water was getting into their eyes and the boys shouted, "Stop! Stop!" I said, "Yea, that's exactly how the people were feeling after it has been raining for many days."

      To this day, that was the most memorable family devotion they had.
      Noah's Ark

    5. Protect the flow of the story

  5. Keep your devotions short

Relate and apply

  1. End the story and have the whole family seated on the floor in a circle. Keep the children quiet and help them focus on the story and its meaning.

  2. Questions are helpful in ensuring understanding of the story and its main idea

    1. Ask them to imagine how they would feel if they were a particular character in the story

    2. Ask about what is right and what is wrong of the character's attitudes and actions

    3. Ask the children to suggest alternatives to wrong attitudes and actions

  3. Personalize the application geared specifically to your children and their needs/problems

  4. Focus on one main point or principle for each devotion.

End in prayer

  1. We suggest that the other parent (who was not the storyteller) close the family devotion in prayer.

  2. Mention the main point and its application in your closing prayer.

  3. Seek God's help in application

  4. Pray for the needs of others, especially those whom the children know.


You are not me; and your children are not like my children. Moreover, devotions in your family are for your family (not mine). No family can be a carbon copy of another. So if what I share does not work in your situation, adapt or drop them. Do what works for you and your family. It is my prayer that what we share will help you get started on your own family devotions.

Your adult children will look back and recall the fun times they had together as a family in the word of God. May the Lord bless your family with a tradition of refreshing family devotions that will go on generation after generation.

"Building the Next Generation" - Dramatised Family Devotions for Preschoolers and Early Primaries
Copyright by Alan S.L. Wong

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Format of Dramatized Family Devotions
Copyright © 1995 by Alan S.L. Wong