David and Goliath

Primary Pals for Teachers
Unit 26 - David the King

TEXT: 1 Samuel 17:17-51; Isaiah 26:3


The students will be able to explain that David trusted in God because he had proven God to be his strength, and will be able to relate how this was proved in his encounter with Goliath. They will be able to tell what promise is given to those who trust God. (They will be kept in perfect peace.)


Introduction: Draw a face with large, scared eyes at the top of your chalkboard. Ask your class to tell some of the things they are afraid of, or things they know others fear. Write these down. Then explain that the things we are afraid of can be like a giant to us, but God promises to help us win the victory, even over giants!

  1. David was sent by his father to take food supplies to his brothers in the army, and there he saw the giant Goliath.
  2. God had helped David kill a lion and a bear, and he volunteered to fight the Philistine champion.
  3. David refused to wear armor he had not proved, but instead took his sling and five smooth stones from the brook.

Climax: God helped David slay the giant.

Conclusion: David was able to win the victory because he trusted in the living God and not in his own ability. We can also have victory if we will trust God to help us.

Response: The students will be able to tell the story of how David slew the giant, and will be able to relate this to how we can also trust God when we face problems or troublesome situations.


The familiar story of David and Goliath is still inspiring to all who study it. It must have been an amazing sight to see a stripling like David face the massive giant some nine feet tall. Saul's armor was of no use to David, for he chose to rely on the weapons he had proven, his sling and his God. There was also a spiritual side to this battle. Saul and his army were cowering before this man who defied God, apparently because they had forgotten God's promises and commands to never fear their enemies but to trust in the Lord (see Exodus 14:13-14; Numbers 14:9; Joshua 10:8). David recognized the problem immediately and said, "Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?" and a little later, "Let no man's heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine" (1 Samuel 17:26,32). David's confidence was not in his own prowess but in the power of God (1 Samuel 17:37). Through God's direction only one stone was needed to put the whole Philistine army to flight. A man skilled in the use of a sling could hurl a baseball-sized stone with great accuracy at the speed of 100 miles per hour.

Having rejected Saul's armor, David went out to meet the enemy with the equipment of a shepherd: a staff, a shepherd's bag, and a sling (1 Samuel 17:40). And this was appropriate, seeing that he was the newly-appointed shepherd of the people going out to defend the threatened flock of God. He was willing to jeopardize his own life for the sake of the sheep, proving again that he was "a man after God's own heart."


  • Make a foot from colored paper for each child in your class (see Patterns). Let each of them finish the circles for the faces of David and Goliath.
  • Make a pencil box felt board for each child. Use a cardboard pencil box (found with the school supplies at the store) and cover the inside of the lid with felt. Use construction paper or some other type of heavy paper to make a copy of the David and Goliath story characters for each child (see Patterns). Glue a piece of felt on the back of each piece so it will stick to the felt board lid. The children may use this to help you tell the story and then store the pieces in the box, close the lid, and take it home!
  • Copy David, Goliath, and soldiers stand-up figures onto heavy paper (see Patterns). Cut out and give one to each child in your class to color. Have each child use these figures during the class time when you give the lesson.

Special Instructions for Unit 26: Prepare the "David and Goliath" place mat for your students.


  1. Why wasn't David afraid of the giant Goliath?
  2. What are some things that might seem like "giants" to us—things we might be afraid of?
  3. Why wouldn't David use Saul's armor?
  4. Do you think it was just a good shot that David hit the giant in the head or did God direct that stone to the giant's head?
  5. Will God help us fight our battles?
  6. What kinds of battles do Christians have?
  7. Why did Goliath curse and make fun of David when he saw him?
  8. How do you feel when people laugh and make fun of you? Do you run or stand up for what you know is right?


  • Make a small drawstring bag for each child. When you come to the part in your story where David goes to the river for five smooth stones, give each of the children five pieces of rock candy to put into their bag to take home.
  • Bring some objects to class that might represent things children would be afraid of; for instance, a stuffed dog, a picture of a crowd of people, a flashlight (to represent the dark). Use these things along with a picture of Jesus to illustrate that no matter what frightens us, Jesus promises that if we trust in Him He will be with us and take care of us.
  • A class of boys would enjoy setting up two opposing armies of plastic figures in different colors. Have a plastic figure from a larger set, or a bendable action figure to represent Goliath. You may wish to set up your scene on a piece of large green felt with a strip of blue felt running through the middle to represent the stream. Place several small rocks on the stream bed and let one boy choose five smooth ones.


Use people to act out the story of David and Goliath. To show the contrast in size, use the tallest man you can find in your church and one of the children in the Sunday school department. Tell the children that with God on our side even the smallest person can win the battle with a giant.

Set up a puppet show for the children, using whatever puppets you need, to tell the story of David and Goliath.

There are some excellent tape/record and book combinations telling the story of David and Goliath. Consider doing an overhead review using the book as the basis for your illustration, and the tape as the background narration.


  • The Boy With a Sling — Arch book, Concordia
  • Bible Children — Classroom story and activity book, 8 each of 6 stories and pictures, Standard Publishing
  • Bible Play Along — book and tape
  • The Story of David and Goliath — coloring book by Dorothy Smith
  • David and Goliath — Stories That Live, Series 1, Book 3