Monday, 17 June 2013

Godly Play: Creation

The first time I ever saw Godly Play - the story of the Good Shepherd, at an IME 4-7 (curate training) event in Newcastle diocese - I was hooked.

Godly Play is a Montessori-inspired way of telling Bible stories, the idea being that they are translated not into another language, but into 3D. Little wooden figures, sand boxes for the desert, green felt to represent the world or a meadow.

The Godly Play creation story is done using 7 cards showing the 7 days of creation in stylised form, with felt collage, on a background of black or navy felt. I made this set several years ago, when I was a curate, and used it in Sunday School and at a school Bible story lunchtime club that a friend and I ran.

Tomorrow I am doing an assembly on Creation at the local infants school, and wanted to use this set. But it is relatively small, so hard for 100 little ones to see (ideal audience size is probably 6-12). So I decided to use an accompanying Powerpoint presentation on the interactive whiteboard. However, I couldn't find any images of the cards on a Google Image search, so I have taken my own. Do feel free to use them under Creative Commons if they would be helpful for you.

This is the original Godly Play book that I use; there is also a whole range now available. I know the Durham and Newcastle diocesan resources center have a good set, and I imagine they are widely available.

For copyright reasons I shan't give the full text here, but in summary:

1. You start with a box: mine is covered in rainbow paper!

2. Opening the box, the first thing you take out is a long piece of dark felt: you unroll this (and - my favourite bit - trace the outline of God's smile on it!).

3. The cards are presented and placed in turn:

4. Finally, you ask the 'I wonder' questions: I wonder which is your favourite day? Could we do without any of the days? etc.

If you want to use them in your own presentation etc, here are the images:


  1. These are lovely Miranda. Thank you for sharing them.

  2. To share a Powerpoint presentation try‎

    I've wondered about Godly Play, but mostly work with 360 KS1&2 schoolchildren or 60 reception children - all rather large numbers to work with.

    1. Thanks, I will try slideshare.
      Yes, I am grappling with how/whether it can work with school numbers. Will let you know how it goes doing it in tandem with powerpoint!

    2. Now up on slideshare, thanks for the tip.

      The assembly worked really well: they seemed to really like the combination of the real cards (I did the presentation on one of those school benches at the front of the assembly hall so it was real and tangible) and the big screen version. I traced the smile of God on the screen version rather than the real felt, so it was more visible. I 'blessed' (touched and said 'and God saw that it was very good') the real cards.

  3. Great idea Miranda - I really like it. Just to reiterate what you've said about the Religious Resources Centre at Church House and Carter House, they have LOADS of Godly Play sets - all for loan. We are also developing some larger scale sets which would be more suitable for large groups... more news on these soon!

    The website for the Centre is: . Search the catalogue on-line to see if we have what you'd like - everything is key-worded!