Scripture Reference: Genesis 1:20-23
Suggested Emphasis or Theme: God made the birds and fish on the fifth day.
God filled the oceans with all sorts of creatures on the fifth day. He also created birds on this day. Not only did He create these creatures, He made them with the ability to reproduce.
The stage had been set for an amazing cast of characters to be introduced to earth. By now the land and the sea are full of all sorts of plant life, big and small. Habitats have been created to support what God had in mind next. Just think of the minute details that had to be right such as the temperature of the water to support particular kinds of fish.
God did not just create one or two kinds of birds and a couple of types of fish. Genesis 1 says the waters were teeming with fish. God demonstrates His infinite creativity in the creatures of the sea and the birds of the air.
All kinds of creatures live in the sea—some of the smallest and some of the largest, some that are very beautiful, and some that are bizarre, or odd. The smallest creatures that live in the sea are tiny, microscopic, single-celled forms of life, such as bacteria, protozoa, and algae. Not all algae are tiny, however, although many have only a single cell. Seaweeds, which grow to be many feet in length, are algae. There are invertebrates such as sponges, jellyfish, clams, oysters, sea urchins, sea cucumbers, starfish, sea lilies, lobsters, worms, snails, and many more.
All sorts of fish live in lakes, rivers, and seas. Many mammals live in the sea including dolphins, whales, porpoises, seals, sea lions, and sea cows. Consider even the ancient marine reptiles which are now extinct. God created all of these.
All sorts of birds now filled the skies. Remember the age-old question: “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” Genesis is clear that God created the birds and then they reproduced after their own kind.
- What happened before this story?
- What happens after this story?
- List of all Bible stories and themes on this website.
Way to Introduce the Story:
If possible, arrange to bring a live bird or fish to class today. Let the children spend time looking at it and noticing all of the details about it. Birds- feathers, beak, wings, wing-span, claws, nostrils, seeds that it eats . . . Fish- fins, shiny scales, gills, tail, eyes . . . “God created the beautiful sky and water on the second day. He created plants on the land and in the water on the third day. Today we are going to learn about the birds and fish that God created to fly in the sky and swim in the sea.
Every part of the creation was made in a certain order. Just think what would have happened if God would have made the fish before He made the water. What would have happened? No, everything that was made was carefully planned by God and made at the right time.
On the fifth day of creation God made birds to fill the skies. The birds had beautiful places to fly and wonderful trees in which they could build their nests and perch. There were plenty of plants with all sorts of seeds and fruits that the birds could eat.
On the fifth day of creation God also filled the seas and rivers with living things. Not just fish but every sort of creature which lives in the water was created. Let’s see how many water creatures we can name: (fish, crabs, sting rays, crayfish, whales, dolphins, shrimp, snails, sharks . . .)
God looked at everything He had created on the fifth day and He saw that His creation was good.
Ways to Tell the Story:
If teaching the story of the creation as a unit over a few weeks or days then repeat the whole creation story each time and follow this by going back and emphasising more details about a particular day. Try using a variety of story telling and visual aid methods. Although there will be a repetition of the creation story, you will be going a little deeper on one day. By the end of Day Seven all of the children will remember the story really well.
Two versions of the same slide show and visual aid are provided below.
Click here to download the slideshow: God Created the World or click here to download the pictures to print: God Created the World. Each teacher is unique so only use the illustrations that best relate to the way YOU are telling the story in THIS lesson. Too many illustrations can be confusing so eliminate any that cover other stories or details you do not wish to emphasise in this lesson.
- What did God create on the fifth day? Birds and fish
- Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The chicken (and then it reproduced after its own kind)
Learning Activities and Crafts:
- Do some science experiments concerning birds or fish.
- Craft: Decorate boiled eggs with dye, paint, markers, glitter, stickers, etc.Serve samples of fish for the children to taste. Or how about fish shaped crackers or chocolate fish.
- Bring a goldfish and/or bird to class.
- “Go fishing” with small dowel rods with string attached. Tie a magnet to the end of the string and then “catch” paper clips or other small metal objects.
- Bring a collection of feathers to show the students. Or you could go on a walk and try to find feathers. If available show different kinds of bird nests and/or eggs.
- Brainstorm all the sayings associated with birds (birds of a feather, bird brain, etc.). Do the same with fish (fish breath, something is fishy, etc.
- Bring a real fish to class. Cover the fish with tempera paint and then press it onto paper to make “fish prints.”
- Creation Mural: Attach a long strip of paper to the wall and divide it into 7 sections for the days or creation. As the children study each day of creation glue items or paint pictures onto the corresponding section of the mural. For today’s lesson add pictures of birds and fish. Also add real feathers, nests, or egg shells.
- Songs: Days of Creation, Hippo Song, My God is So Big
- Check the Teaching Ideas page on this website for ideas that are adaptable to any lesson.
Other Online Resources:
- Colouring page at http://www.coloring.ws/t.asp?b=m&t=http://www.coloring.ws/bible/day5.gif
- Great audio files of bird sounds at http://www.christiananswers.net/kids/sounds.html
- Craft: Make a bird. You’ll need to scroll down on their page but you’ll find lots of bird crafts to choose from at http://www.artistshelpingchildren.org/birdsartscraftsideaskids.html
- Craft: Make a bird. Lots to choose from at http://www.freekidscrafts.com/bird_crafts_for_kids_%7C_handprint_crafts_for_kids-t76.html
- Craft: Printable paper bird craft at http://www.dltk-kids.com/animals/mpaperducky.htm
- Craft: Make a fish. Choose from a selection at http://www.dltk-kids.com/animals/fish.html
- Craft: Make a fish (or other sea creatures). Lots to choose from at
- Craft: Rainbow fish made from a coffee filter. Instructions at http://www.dltk-teach.com/books/rainbowfish/coffeefilter.htm
- Craft: Rainbow fish. Cut out and then glue on bright paper. Instructions at http://www.dltk-teach.com/books/rainbowfish/rainbow_fish_craft.htm
- Craft: Cute fish with scales made with paper and glue. Instructions at http://littleartmonkeys.com/Projects/Paper%20Projects/FishwithScales/Fish%20with%20Scales.php
- Craft: Fish made from a paper plate. Instructions at http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/animals/fish/
- Craft: Fun tropical fish made with paper and round stickers. Instructions at http://www.craftscope.com/fish-craft/2/
- Craft: Printable paper fish with moving tail. Instructions at http://www.craftscope.com/craft-fish-with-moving-tail/
- Craft: Paper crafts for pre-schoolers (days 4 and 5) at http://ourcraftsnthings.com/2008/10/creation-days-4-and-5/
- Craft: Video instructions (3 minutes) on how to make a paper fish on a popsicle stick at http://www.simplekidscrafts.com/video/easy-puppets-craft-puppet-fish
- Craft: Crepe paper sea shell. You could also adapt this idea and make a fish. Video instructions (2 minutes 31 seconds) at http://youtu.be/KJfq6K41HTQ
- Craft: Cute fish mobile made from toilet paper or paper towel tubes. Instructions at http://www.catholicicing.com/glittery-jesus-fish-craft-make-a-mobile/
- Songs and crafts for preschoolers at http://www.icanteachmychild.com/2011/03/day-5-of-creation-birds-fish/
Individual Days of Creation:
(Click on the individual days. Each number is an additional lesson)
Scriptures quoted from the International Children’s Bible®, copyright ©1986, 1988, 1999, 2015 by Tommy Nelson. Used by permission.