God took Elijah in a chariot of fire, according to 2 Kings 2:11. The kids can discuss how much Elisha wanted to be like Elijah and how he refused to leave Elijah until the chariot took Elijah. No one saw Elijah again after that and Elisha assumed the prophet’s mantle left by Elijah. Your child can remember and retell the story using crafts.
Many Sunday school kids think riding in a chariot of fire could be cool. Your child can create a chariot of fire by recycling a small plastic or paper container from the deli. Cut away a portion the container that leaves the bottom half of the container intact but removes half of the container top, leaving a chariot-shaped form. Poke a hole across the bottom of the container and insert a dowel for the wheels. Form clay wheels and place one on each side of the dowel or use 1-inch paper cup bottoms to create the wheels. Your child can add paper tongues of fire or add them with markers or paints. Tie paper horse cutouts or plastic toy horses to the chariot with yarn. Alternatively, your child can form a chariot from red, yellow and orange clay to create the look of fire.
Elijah dropped his mantle, or cloak, for Elisha to wear when he became the major prophet for Israel. Your child can create a prophet’s mantle from a piece of fabric, attaching yarn ties to the top corners of the mantle to tie it into place. The mantle should be wide enough to wrap around the shoulders of a child, doll or puppet, depending on how you plan to use it. Alternatively, your child can cut a mantle from construction paper. Allow your child to decorate the mantle with markers, finger paints or fabric paints. Hang painted mantles to dry before the child uses them.
Dramatizing the story helps the child remember it. Your child can make a child-size chariot by cutting a large cardboard box into a chariot shape and decorating it with markers or paint. She can wear a mantle to drop to the young Elisha. Alternatively, she can create a diorama of the event using a shoebox, clay, construction paper and glue. For a third option, she can use a large craft stick for the body of each prophet, a small craft stick glued across the larger craft stick for arms and scraps of materials tied on the craft sticks for clothes. She can draw the facial features on the craft stick with markers and use bits of glued yarn or cotton to create hair and beard.
Portions of the Bible were written on scrolls and stored in synagogues. Your child can make a scroll and write the verse from 2 Kings 2 on the paper. He can illustrate the story on the scroll. Glue two segments of a drinking straw to each end of a long strip of paper to make the scroll. He can create a holder for the scroll by cutting a length of fabric 1 inch wider than the rolled scroll and twice as high. Fold the length of the cloth in half and glue the very edges of the folded cloth together. When it dries, he can insert his scroll inside. Add fire stickers to the cover to identify the scroll as Elijah’s flaming chariot.