Activity 3: Story - The Answer Is In Your Hands

Activity time: 10 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the story a few times.
  • Consider telling the story rather than reading it. Practice telling it aloud. Try adopting different voices for the boy and the wise old woman. You may find it helpful to close your eyes and to picture the place where the story happens, and to observe the action and characters in the story as if you were watching a movie.
  • Think about how you might use items from the story basket as props, such as holding a bird behind your back during the appropriate part of the story.

Description of Activity

Before you begin, look around the room and make eye contact with each person. Read or tell the story, "The Answer Is in Your Hands."

Ring the chime (use other sound instrument) to indicate that the story is over. Pause for a moment. Then guide a discussion with these questions:

  • How do you suppose the bird felt, when it was in the boy's hands?
  • How do you suppose the old woman felt, when the children were testing her? When the boy had the bird behind his back?
  • How do you suppose the boy was feeling? Why do you think he wanted so badly to prove the old woman wrong?
  • What would you have been feeling if you were one of the children standing with the boy?
  • Why did the old woman answer the boy's question by saying, "The answer is in your hands?"
  • What would you have done, if the bird was in your hands?

The object of this discussion is to encourage empathy for all of the characters in the story, while helping the children to understand and integrate the moral teaching.

Including All Participants

There are children for whom it is very difficult to sit still, even when they are paying attention to what is happening around them. This can be frustrating for teachers, as well as for the children who are expected to maintain stillness for prolonged periods of time. If you have children in the group for whom this is the case, consider adopting the use of "fidget objects" as described in Leader Resources. These fidget objects can provide a non-disruptive outlet for the need to move.

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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