Scripture: Joshua 5-6

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will review how God fulfilled his promise to make Jericho’s wall fall if the Israelites obeyed him.
  • Students will practice using evidence from a text to make predictions about what will happen next.

Guiding Question: What is a prediction and how can we use evidence to predict what will happen next in a story?

Materials: variety of books on the students’ reading level, paper, pencil

Procedure: Review the fall of Jericho’s wall, focusing on how God told the Israelites what they could expect if they obeyed him. Tell students that before reading the solution to the story’s problem, they could predict what would happen. To predict is to tell what will probably happen before it actually does happen. When a prediction is made, people base it on good reasons. It is not just a random guess. For instance, they students can predict that the wall would fall. The reason was because God is all-powerful and told Joshua that he would do so when they obeyed him. Some predictions are easier to make than others. Not all predictions have to be correct.

Students can practice make story predictions. Provide a variety of books (preferably ones that are not as well-known). Pair students in partners. As students read, have one of the students ask their partner what they think will happen on the next page. Always have them ask why so that they give reasons. Then students can flip the page and see if they were correct. Students can make a three column chart with the following sections: page in book/question, prediction, reasons for prediction/ evidence from the text. It is helpful if you can pre-read the stories for your students and place sticky notes on specific pages that would warrant good predictions. This tells students where to stop and predict. Emphasize that there is not necessarily a “wrong” prediction. It is okay if what you think will happen is different than what actually happens as long as you have good reasons for thinking as you do.

Additional Questions:

  • Where your predictions more often correct or incorrect?
  • What makes a story easier to predict?
  • When God promises to do something do we ever have to doubt the outcome? Why not?

Supplemental Activity: Have students read a variety of children’s predictable story books. Discuss commonalities between the books: They follow a certain pattern, they leave a lot of clues along the way, clues are hidden in the illustrations, parts of the book are regularly repeated with small changes, etc. Students can write a predictable story book. What makes your book predictable? Students can illustrate their books and share them with each other.