Searching for unique ways to better understand the hearts of your Bible students? There’s a fun activity you can do that can help reveal how they view themselves and how they view God and His role in their lives.
Begin by reviewing the Creation story or any other story where this activity might naturally fit. Point out to your students the Bible says that we are created in the image of God. But what does that actually mean? Explain that first, it’s important to be honest about how we view ourselves. Tell them you want them to create a self portrait that is not necessarily artistically accurate, but reflects how they see themselves. They can use images, colors and words to make an accurate self portrait. They should use only half of their canvas for the project.
After they have finished, ask them to create a portrait of God on the other half of their canvas. Obviously, we don’t know what He looks like. Explain that the image they use to represent Him is not as important as portraying accurately the qualities and characteristics of God. Emphasize, that for this exercise you are looking for them to represent the things they believe to be true about who God is – regardless of whether or not they believe anyone else would agree with them.
Set out a variety of art supplies and provide some sort of canvas for each student. You can often find affordable art canvases in bulk – especially in the smaller sizes. Or you can provide heavy stock paper, cardboard, wood or any other material that could double as a canvas. For more ideas on the types of art supplies you may want to provide, I found this website had lots of fun ideas. (https://www.hellowonderful.co/post/12-creative-self-portrait-art-projects-for-kids/)
It is important to stress this is an activity, where you are looking for honesty, not specific answers. When students are finished, they can choose to share the explanation of their artwork with you privately or with the entire class. You may want to ask each student to name one thing they considered adding to their piece, but edited out for some reason. In some cases, that answer may reveal more of the heart of your student than the artwork. Also ask them to share how they believe they are accurately reflecting the image of God and where they are still struggling.
Have fun with this activity, but after class reflect on what it reveals about each of your students. What does each need from you to grow spiritually given what you have learned about them?