Scripture: Genesis 39-41

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn God has a plan, but sometimes bad things still happen.
  • Students will learn God is always working, even when bad things happen.
  • Students will learn God can use whatever happens to us (good or bad to prepare us for what He wants us to do).
  • Students will learn God sometimes God will ask us to wait for the next step of His plan to happen.
  • Students will learn we can serve God anywhere we are.
  • Students will learn how to have hope in God.
  • Students will learn about irrigation.

Guiding Question: How can placing hope in God be beneficial?

Materials: Crops to plant, watering cans, water, pans/shallow containers

Procedure: Review the story of Joseph in Egypt. Remind students that Joseph was able to have hope when most people would have felt hopeless. He was able to do so because he had faith that God would take care of him. Ask students to think about a time when they needed hope and what they do to find hope. Students may share if they wish. If appropriate, provide a personal example of a time when you had to put your hope in God during a tough situation and he showed his faithfulness.

Introduce the activity. Set up several fake Egyptian fields in pans or other shallow containers. Plant crops. Explain to students that in Egypt farmers counted on the Nile river to initially flood the crop lands and then keep them wet throughout the growing season. When the seven years of family happened those were years when the Nile probably did not get enough rain water runoff to flood. The fields did not start the growing season saturated and dried out entirely before groups could be grown and harvested. Water one of the fake fields with periodic “rain” from a watering can. Have the “Nile river “ flow through the other. Let the other one gradually dry out as if in a drought. Monitor how the plants grow or fail to grow. Students may want to try various modern irrigation techniques to see which would work better in areas with a river and without a nearby river.

Additional Questions: How can students understand the importance of irrigation?

Supplemental Activity: Ancient Mesopotamia Irrigation Activity:

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