Noah's Story with Songs!
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Noah's Story with Songs!

Categories Genesis-B’reishit , Noach 
Tags: Lisa Baydush , Noach 

Lesson Summary:

The Torah tells the story of Noah. Noah built the Ark; animals went on two by two; the flood lasted 40 days and 40 nights; after the flood, a rainbow appeared, God promised not to flood the earth again.

Be Inspired:The ideas included are offered as starting points as you and your students explore, discover and live the lessons. Be sure to elicit and encourage student and parent participation, consistently reinforcing the value being addressed. Allow lessons to authentically develop and change based on engagement and interests.

Lesson Plan Components

For the educatorJewish Thought, Text, and Traditionsmore

Jewish every dayIncorporate Jewish Valuesmore

Materials and resourcesmore


  • rain stick 
  • musical hammer or bag of laminated tools
  • rainbow ribbons, rainbow boa 
  • Arks and animals 
  • (if desired for storytelling)megaphone
  • Copy of a book of your choice from the Literature Connections section below


Set Induction:
Share with children that today the class will be learning a story from the Torah. Activate background knowledge by supporting students as they think and discuss what stories and people they already know from this very special book for Jewish people. 

Tell the story through dramatic, interactive storytelling.

A storytelling example (this is a guide, not a script, make this story your own an make sure to highlight the parts that are most interesting to your students). The story puts the songs in context! Children participate in story with motions and repetition:

Once upon a time, a long, long time ago, there was a man named Noah.
Walking in the park, hearing the wind in the trees (whoosh!), the birds singing (tweet!), the squirrels scampering (scampering sound), Noah heard his name, but no one was there!

Activity 1
Use the megaphone, say: “Noah!” God tells Noah: “It’s going to rain; you must build an ark!”
Noah said to himself, “What’s an ark?” Discuss with children what they know about an ark.

Activity 2
Take out the magical musical hammer and let each child take a turn at “building the ark", or use bag of laminated tools. If you know it, sing "Noah Built the Ark by Ellen Allard" (link will be posted as soon as it is available). 

Teacher Tips:
You might not want to give out tools unless you have one for each child… also it takes too long to sing the song if everyone has a different tool, so consider these challenges as you facilitate this experience.
With 2’s, pull a tool out of the bag and ask them what it is, practice the motion, then sing.
With 3’s and 4’s, ask if they can think of tools that Noah might have used, then pull the picture out of the bag and put up for everyone to see. (This facilitates important skills such as grouping, sequencing and rhythm patterning)

Activity 3
Use the rain-stick to make rain sounds. Close eyes and listen; what does that sound like? Encourage the children to “make it” rain by sharing turns turning the stick(sensory experience).
Noah took his family onto the ark. He also brought animals on the ark, but he didn’t have room for ALL the animals, so he brought two of each kind.

Activity 4
Give out arks and animals.
Sing Good Ol’ Noah. (Sequencing, animal sounds, fine motor skills)
To the tune of Old MacDonald Had a Farm, adapted by Lisa Baydush
*Consider using hebrew words for the animal’s names!


Good ol' Noah built an ark ‘cause God said it would rain;
And on that ark he took two cows* who moo'ed everyday.
They mooed here, and they mooed there,
They mooed and mooed and mooed everywhere!
Repeat with animals and sounds suggested by children

*replace with other animals and sounds

End song:
Good ol' Noah built an ark 'cause God said it would rain,
It rained and rained and rained and rained  til the sun came out one day!
So Noah opened the door of the ark and the animals rushed out…
The cows went there and the horses went there and the sheep went
there and the frogs went there and the monkeys went there… etc.
Good ol' Noah waved goodbye, “Shalom, shalom, shalom!”

Continue with the story:
After 40 days, the sun came out and Noah opened the door of the Ark and the animals went all over the earth.Take out rainbow boa and hold it over their heads. Ask what it looks like. Noah saw a rainbow in the sky! Then wear it around your neck.

Activity 4:
Rhythm dance with Rainbow Ribbons:
Choose a song from this list, or choose your own favorite that aligns with the concepts in the lesson: Noah!

Take out rainbow ribbons and give one to each child. Tell the children that the rainbow filled the world with color. Practice fluttering the ribbons in the air over heads. (Gross motor skills) Play a song and encourage to move around the room, waving their ribbons and their bodies the way the music moves, to the beat.
Collect the ribbons and ask children to be seated. Discuss with children what the significance of the rainbow. Discussion Questions may include:
  • What words can you use to describe a rainbow?
  • How do you feel when you see a rainbow?
  • How do you think Noah and his family felt when they saw the rainbow?
Conclude the discussion by explaining that the rainbow was a way for God to show God's promise to never flood the earth again.

Summarizing Activities:
Choose a storybook from the literature connections, below, to explore the story and characters again. 
Dramatic ReTell:
Encourage children to using the props that were utilized in the initial sharing of the story (megaphone, rainstick, animals, etc.) to present the story to another classroom or community members.


Explore, Discover, and More Extension and Reinforcement Activitiesmore

Music Connectionsmore


literature connectionsmore

TitleAuthorIllustratorBook Summary
The Littlest Pair Sylvia A. RoussHolly Hannon

None of the animals want the termites to come aboard Noah’s Ark. After all, termites eat arks. But when the rain starts pouring and the animals start slipping helter skelter across the Ark, the termites use their wood munching abilities to save the day. The entire book is done in rhyme.

Noah's Bed Lis and Jim CoplestoneLis and Jim CoplestoneIt’s bedtime on the Ark. The boat is finished, the animals are on board, and everyone is ready for a good night’s rest. But how is a little boy to sleep in a huge boat that rocks and sways as the floodwaters rise? Soon, rolling thunder and crashing lightning force Eber out of his warm bed, down the dark hall, and into Grandpa Noah and Grandma Nora’s bed. As they all snuggle down, Grandma and Grandpa realize Eber’s hair is awfully tickly, and aren’t his toenails a little . . . long? Could it be that Eber isn’t the only one afraid of the storm? Enchanting, colorful illustrations enhance this lively retelling of the Ark tale.
Naamah and The Ark At Night* Susan Campbell BartolettiHolly MeadeAs Noah’s wife sings the animals to sleep, an age-old tale is told afresh in a soothing poetic form brought to life with beautiful collage illustrations.

Naamah is the wife of Noah, and her name means "great singer." For forty days and forty nights, as the ark tosses on storm-wracked seas, Naamah sings. She sings to the animals, two by two. She sings to her husband, her sons, and their wives. She sings, and they all sleep, finally at peace. Acclaimed author Susan Campbell Bartoletti’s rhythmic, lyrical text pairs with Caldecott Honor winner Holly Meade’s luminous collage for a cozy, tender lullaby, and an ode to the power of son
Noah's Bark* Stephen KrenskeRogé Noah’s trying to build an ark, but with the snakes quacking, the beavers crowing, and the pigs howling, he can’t even hear himself think, much less make a giant boat. Pretty soon Noah’s barking in annoyance—and then it starts to rain! Discover how each animal came to make the noise it does today in this whimsical retelling of the beloved Noah’s ark story.
Old MacNoah Had An Ark* Sally Lloyd-JonesJill NewtonA riotous romp through Noah’s Ark (to the tune of Old MacDonald)
After building his ark and loading it with animals, Old MacNoah must deal with mealtimes and their aftermath on the high seas!
Move over Old MacDonald! The rain is falling fast on Noah, and the animals refuse to stay quiet.
With an Oink! Oink! here and a Quack! Quack! there, everyone piles into Old MacNoah’s ark to escape the rising water.
Old Noah's Elephant Warren LudwigWarren LudwigAn updated, illustrated version of an Israeli folk tale. When the misbehavior of the two elephants aboard Noah's ark threatens the survival of the other animals, God tells Noah that the solution is to tickle the hyena.

PJ Library Reading Guide: Old Noah's Elephants
* PJ library Books
Lesson Contributors

Lisa Baydush,
Adapted from Music Unit on Noah