Do As I Say

Scripture: 1 Samuel 8-11

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn that even though God wanted the people to rely on him, he allowed the Israelites to have a king to lead them because of their insistence.
  • Students will learn common English verbs by playing a version of “Simon Says”.  

Guiding Questions: What English words are used to show action?

Materials: marker, giant paper or dry erase board or chalk board to list verbs

Review the story of God allowing the people to have a king even though he warned them that a King would make them do things that they did not like. God knew what was best for them, but gave them what they wanted, which they would later regret. Kings had the power to get what they wanted. That included making people do things. Sometimes it seems easier to ask a person for instructions. However, God is the best one to go to when we need to know what to do. Always ask for God’s guidance.

Tell students that they are going to play a game to practice action words and giving commands. As a group, make a list of action words on a dry erase board or giant piece of paper. As each verb is mentioned, do the action to check that students know what it means. After making the list, go over each one to practice the new terms. Say the word in English while doing the action and students repeat the word and action. Tell them that action words are called verbs.

Example verbs:
1. Jump
2. Run (in place)
3. Walk
4. March
5. Clap
6. Sing
7. Sit down
8. Leap
9. Spin
10. Stand
Play a game with students to practice action words. Instead of saying “Simon Says,” say “King Saul says”. Choose one student to be “King Saul.” King Saul chooses an action. Then he/she tells students to do that action by saying “King Saul says___________.” When King Saul says to do something, everyone must do it. If he says a command without starting with “King Saul says” then students do not do it. Anyone who does the action that does not start with “King Saul says” has to sit down. The last one still in the game wins and is the new King Saul. “King Saul” can try to trick people by saying commands quickly.

Additional Questions:

  • What are some actions that God might ask you to do?
  • What are some other verbs that mean almost the same thing as the ones listed? Are there more than one words for some of the actions?

Supplemental Activity:
For more advanced students:
Introduce more specific verbs. Make a chart or web of action words that group variations of a basic verb together.
Run: race, gallop, jog
Jump: hop, leap, bounce
Walk: step, stroll, hike, tread
Talk: whisper, shout, ask, command
Eat: chew, munch, savor, taste, nibble,
Turn: twirl, spin,

Divide students into partners. Give each pair of students one of the specific verbs, a piece of paper, and drawing supplies. The student will then draw a setting for that word. Consider where that word would be used in order to better understand the difference between it and other variations of the verb.

Draw a race track for race, draw a playground hopscotch board for hop, draw a mountain for hike, draw a library for whisper, draw a neighborhood for stroll.

Let students share their artwork by demonstrating the word and verb.

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