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Cartoons link Visual aids ...and all age talks
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All-age talks are really difficult. Even the name (all-age, I ask you) is a bit cringy. And it's hard to speak to a congregation ranging in age from nought to ninety-nine, so that everyone leaves the building with a deeper faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. Sometimes I've found myself talking ever more loudly to be heard above the noise of bored children, or caught sight of people yawning and nodding off, or seen half-smiles on adults' faces as they endure a "children's talk" which teaches them nothing about the wonderful salvation we're offered by God in his Son.

Visual aids aren't a complete cure for this. But they do help to hold the attention of the children - and often the teenagers, though they won't admit it - and they give the adults something to help them remember the main points of the talk. There are two golden rules for visual aids:

  • they should be as large as possible
  • 3D is better than 2D
  • the quality should be as high as possible.

OK, that's three golden rules. The last one - by the time you've been to the art shop / timber merchants / garden centre / toy shop / chemists / Christian bookshop / pub - can make them seem a bit pricey. But if you compare your visual aids with (say) a meal for four at Ottomans "dine like the sultans" restaurant in Finchley, and then consider the importance of the message you want to put across, they are remarkably good value. And they won't leave you wondering whether female customers have to dine like a sultana.

So here are a few visual aids that have worked reasonably well, along with the Bible passages they were used to illustrate. If you want to use them, please take a look at the copyright page first.

puppet theatre Exodus 13-20
runner beans for harvest link Deuteronomy 26:1-11
crackers again Jeremiah 31:2-14
Daniel in lions' den link Daniel 6:1-8
wise men's gifts Matthew 2:1-12
Yon from Snowvenia Matthew 4:1-11
epic explorers Mark's gospel
up on the roof Mark 2:1-12
Christmas crackers Luke 2:8-20
giant present Luke 2:8-20 again
the lost mouse Luke 15:11-24
Zacchaeus the tax collector Luke 19:1-10
Zacchaeus (harvest) Luke 19:1-10 again
giant Christingle John 1:1-14
Feeding the 5000 John 6:1-13
Giant Easter eggActs 5:17-32
the fruit of the Spirit Galatians 5:22-26
Mega Maker Ephesians 3:17-21
the full armour of God Ephesians 6:10-20
the road cones of faith Ephesians 6:10-20 again
rooted in Christ Colossians 2:1-10
every good and perfect gift James 1:17-18
living stones1 Peter 2:4-10
Drawing huge pictures Hints 'n' tips


Desert island church by John Parker. Contact me via the about page. Text and images copyright © 2016 John Parker www.desertislandchurch.co.uk.