The book of Ruth is a beautiful, Hebrew short story which focuses on Ruth’s unselfish loyalty to
Naomi and Boaz’s commitment to these two widows. The story is
primarily about Naomi’s transformation from despair to joy due to the self-giving love of Ruth and Boaz.
You might ask, "Why is this story important for today's
kids?" I'm glad you asked! The story of Ruth is
ultimately about God's love and provision for those who are part of
God's family, not because of birthright, but because of their faith
and loyalty in God. In this story we also learn about Boaz, Ruth and
Naomi's Kinsmen Redeemer. It is he who paid off their debts and
restored their relationship in the community. In turn, Jesus is our Kinsmen-Redeemer, who has brought
us out of slavery to sin, cancelled our debt and has restored us,
giving us a hope and joy for
The skits in this series require
little to no set up for staging or costuming. However, if you’re
looking to enhance the skit, consider these suggestions. For example,
children can participate in decorating, costuming or improvising as
part of their hands-on Bible skit experience. Ideally a costume box,
clothes rack or wardrobe closet will be provided for the actors. If
your church cannot afford costumes, then improvise by using various
wide strips of cloth, towels or smocks to drape over shoulders and
heads and tie off with cloth belts. Wigs, beards, costume jewelry and
theater makeup are also fun items. If you don’t prefer to use
costumes, then simply assign parts and/or pin signs on actors to
indicate who they are portraying.
Whenever possible, and before handing out the scripts to the actors, read the Bible story from a child-friendly
Bible or relay it in your own words. After you’ve told the story, choose your actors, and have them highlight their parts. The length of each script varies; allow plenty of time for practice. Make sure you help children learn to pronounce difficult words before beginning. Encourage your actors to “ham it up” or keep it serious when appropriate. If possible, videotape your skits. Not only will this make it more fun for them, it will serve to reinforce the lesson while the class watches their video, and it will provide a “living Bible” memory-maker for your church! You could also provide a copy for each actor to take home. The amount of time you put into the skits is determined by how elaborate you want to make them. You could easily spend several weeks creating the sets and costumes, or spend no time at all with that aspect of it.
For smaller classes, children may act out more than one part. For larger classes, certain parts such as narrator, crowd or elder may be expanded into more than one part if needed. Before class you would number or split those parts, depending on how many extra actors you have.
Directors, Actors and Backstage Hands:
Director is always the teacher who instructs actors during practice.
Narrator can be the teacher or an older child who reads well.
Camera-person should be an adult, or an older, responsible child.
Lighting - This is a perfect position for a child or children who do not want a speaking part. Use spotlights or large flashlights to shine on the other actors during the performance.
Set Design - An actual stage is not necessary. The children can design background scenes using large sheets of butcher paper and colored markers or crayons. Read the story or part of the story from the Bible passage first, and then allow the class to imagine and create the background scene for
the “stage.” You can also copy pictures onto overhead sheets and project them onto large sheets of paper for children to trace the scenes and color them. Improvising is the key to a successful performance! Have fun teaching your kids to act on their faith!
For Jesus and his Kingdom,
S. A. Keith <><