Sibling Stress Relief

Scripture: Genesis 25-26

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will review the story of Jacob and Esau.
  • Students will learn Jacob and Esau had sibling issues throughout their relationship.
  • Students will learn when their sibling or friend has a problem, they may be stressed by the problem as well.
  • Students will participate in an activity creating children’s books helping children deal with the various issues which could be effecting their relationship with their sibling (or friend).

Guiding Question: What can one do to help someone who has a sibling or friend who has an issue causing both of them stress?

Materials: materials to make student created books (This can be as simple as paper, pens and markers or as complex as computer programs which create actual books or pdfs.)

Procedure: Review the story of Jacob and Esau. Discuss with students the issues the two siblings have faced so far in the story. Ask the student if they think these issues caused stress for Jacob and Esau? Have students share the types of issues that can cause there to be stress in a sibling relationship. Encourage students to include topics like a sibling who is very ill or a sibling with special needs.

Have the students divide into small groups. Each group should pick an issue they want to address. Have the groups write a children’s book (and illustrate it) addressing the issue and giving helpful tips along the way. Encourage them to do some research or have volunteers who are counselors in the room to answer student questions and make suggestions. Have students share their books and place them where struggling children can read them. (Note: This project may take multiple class periods to complete. Encourage students to do their best work. You may want to also discuss books the students have read that helped them through a tough time to help them understand the impact their books could have on others.)

Additional Questions:

  • In what other ways can people serve children with seriously ill siblings or who have siblings with special needs?

Supplemental Activity: Have more advanced students research other ways to support and encourage children who have siblings who are seriously ill or have siblings with special needs. They may want to interview someone who works at a Ronald McDonald House or a children’s hospital for ideas. Encourage the students to plan and execute a project using one of the ideas generated during their research.

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