One of my favorite parable to share with kids is the parable of the sower.
The Parable of the Sower
The parable of the sower is found in each of the Synoptic Gospels. It’s short, and I suggest reading all three versions with your kids. The story in Matthew and Mark are very similar, but the translation of the story in Luke has some interesting differences.
Where you’ll find the parable of the sower:
Jesus tells the story of a sower. To put it in our cultural context, kids may understand this to be someone who scatters seed, like a farmer.
The sower scatters the seed in four distinct places:
- On the path: This seed is eaten by birds.
- On rocky ground: This seed quickly produces seedlings, but in the hot sun with little soil, the seedlings quickly wither.
- In thorns: The seedlings that grow are choked by thorns.
- In good soil: These seedlings become plants which produce 30, 6o, or 100 times the grain they were sown with.
Symbolism in the parable of the sower:
- The seed represents the word of God (the gospel).
- The sower is the one sharing the gospel.
- The soil represents the heart of the one hearing the gospel.
- The plants represent the fruit of the gospel.
The parable of the sower is explained by Jesus:
- On the path: This hearer hears but does not understand the word of God. Satan snatches the seed from this heart to keep the person from salvation.
- On rocky ground: This person is joyful about the good news of Jesus. But, once there is persecution or tribulation because of the word of God, they fall away.
- In thorns: This hearer believes the word of God, but is distracted by life’s cares, riches, and pleasures. This person does not produce mature fruit.
- Note: There is disagreement among scholars about whether this is a person who is saved and perpetually spiritually immature, or is someone who appears to be saved yet is not.
- In good soil: This person hears the gospel, understands, and lets it take root in their lives. From one seed, this person bears the fruit of 30, 60, or even 100 seeds.
The parable of the sower is a wonderful illustration of the way people receive the gospel. More importantly, it is an opportunity for us–and for our children–to examine our hearts to see how we have received the good news of Jesus, and to question whether we are cultivating the garden of our heart by continuing to seek God’s word in Scripture.
The Parable of the Sower Craft
Check out this fun video of the parable of the sower craft!
Parable of the Sower Craft Supplies
You’ll need a few supplies to make your parable of the sower craft:
- Paper Plate
- Permanent Markers
- Printable Template and Symbols Card with Instructions
Cardstock PaperFiskars Scissors[300 Pack] Bulk Disposable White Uncoated Paper Plates, 9 Inch LargeSharpie 30078 Permanent Markers, Fine Point, Classic Colors, 8 Count (Assorted)Elmers Washable No-Run School Glue, 4 oz, 1 Bottle (E304) – Pack of 2Elmer’s-E5010 Extra Strength Glue Sticks, 0.28 Ounces, 4 CountPentel Twist-Erase Express Mechanical Pencil, 0.5mm, Assorted Barrel Colors (QE415LZBP4), 4 packRulers
Creating Your Parable of the Sower Craft
Before you get started on the craft, read the parable of the sower in at least two of the Synoptic Gospels.
Help your child fill out their Symbols in the Parable of the Sower card.
- What each symbol in the story means.
- Discuss the gospel. Can your child articulate what it means to be saved?
- Talk about what it means for someone who is saved to bear fruit.
- Discuss what kind of soil we want to have in our hearts for the word of God to grow in.
1) Print and cut out the template pieces.
Print the template page from step-by-step instructions and cut out the pieces.
Lay the template pieces over the cardstock in the colors your child would like to use for the each piece. Trace the pieces on the cardstock and cut out the pieces.
2) Cut out and assemble the birds and seeds.
Let your child choose the colors for the birds. As you work to assemble them, talk about what they represent in the parable.
Glue the birds together as shown. Use a permanent marker to draw the eye of each bird.
3) Cut out and assemble the seedlings on the rocky path.
Trace and cut out the sun, rocks, and seedlings.
Glue the pieces of the sun together. Glue the rocks together as shown, then glue the seedlings on the back of the rocks. Talk about what seeds need to prosper (light, soil, and moisture). Discuss how difficult it is to retain moisture in rocky soil, and talk about how difficult it is for small roots to prosper in rocky ground.
4) Cut out the seedlings and thorns.
Trace and cut out the seedlings and the thorns.
5) Cut out and assemble the healthy seedlings.
Trace and cut out the thriving seedling as shown.
Glue the small leaves to the open ends of the stems.
6) Cut out the soil from the path templates.
You should have 3 different shapes of soil.
7) Cut out and assemble the sower.
Trace and cut out the pieces of the sower from the template.
Use a permanent marker to add hair to the head. Then, glue the hat on the top of the head.
Glue the boots on the back of the bottom of each leg.
Glue the shirt und the overalls before gluing a hand to each sleeve as shown.
Cut a slit along the yellow line on the sack. Insert half of the seeds through the slit. Apply glue to attach the seeds to the sack.
Glue the sower’s head to his body and glue his sack to his hand. Draw his face with a permanent marker.
8) Create your parable of the sower story wheel.
Cover the inside flat area of a paper plate with paper. Using a permanent marker and your ruler, divide the paper into four even parts.
Glue your scenes together as shown. Then, glue the sower in the middle of your wheel.
Display your parable of the sower story wheel with your child’s symbol card somewhere your child will see it as a reminder of the parable of the sower .
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