God Bless the Gargoyles: A Short Unit Study about Compassion Based on the Book

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God Bless the Gargolyes

God Bless the Gargoyles is a beautifully illustrated, moving book about compassion.

 

god bless the gargoyles compassion

God Bless the Gargoyles is written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey.  It is a moving story about the compassion of the gargoyles and for the gargoyles.  This book flows with magnificent art throughout along with a touching story line.

…Dav Pilkey…

Hmm… Dav Pilkey, now where have we heard that name before? Perhaps this will give you a hint.

captain underpants dav pilkey  captain underpants dav pilkey

That’s right.  Dav Pilkey is none other than the author of the hugely popular Captain Underpants book series.  (Wait, isn’t this also a major motion picture now?) Pilkey has actually written many many books outside of the underpants series.  In fact, to learn more about Pilkey, I encourage you to check out his biography:

dav pilkey author book

But we’re not here to talk about Dav.  We’re here to talk about Gargoyles.

A Reading of the Book

I hope you enjoy the reading of this book – God Bless the Gargoyles. Once you are done watching the video keep reading for some useful tips on how to teach some of the valuable concepts presented in this book.

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=DFEZRbbabOE

Learning Experiences Using God Bless the Gargoyles

God Bless the Gargolyes

Learning Concepts

  • Understanding and Showing Compassion
  • Architecture (Mathematics)

Bible Story

There are many wonderful stories in the bible about compassion.  After all, who better of an example of compassion than Jesus?  However, one of my favorite bible stories demonstrating compassion is the Parable of the Good Samaritan.

The Parable of the Good Samaritan (NIV)

25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]

28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”

29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

So the above was the actual biblical text of the Good Samaritan parable.  However there are many wonderful retellings and interpretations around that are truly unique.   One of my favorites is Rattlebang: The Parable of the Good Samaritan by Mark McCord.

Other Bible Verses that apply

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Colossians 3:12)

“They will neither hunger nor thirst, nor will the desert heat or the sun beat down on them. He who has compassion on them will guide them and lead them beside springs of water.” (Isaiah 49:10)

“Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the LORD comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.” (Isaiah 49:13)

“As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” (James 5:11)

Mathematical Concepts

This is a great time to talk about architecture.  Gothic cathedrals have a particular architecture all of their own.  For more about Gothic architecture the website Exploring Castles has a great article, “The Seven Key Characteristics of Gothic Architecture: From the Gargoyle to the Flying Buttress“.

While you are on the topic of architecture, why not take a moment and talk about arcs.  The shape of the curve at the top of most arches is called an arc.  Now, I’m not going to pretend to know a whole lot about arcs.  I suggest you consult the Math-Prof.

Writing Prompts for all ages

The meaning of compassion is to recognize the suffering of others, then take action to help.  Who do you know that could use a little compassion and what can you do to show it to them?

Who do you know that could use a little compassion and what can you do to show it to them? Click To Tweet

Crafts

A great craft to help your kids learn to show compassion can be found in blessing bags.  A blessing bag is a care package or survival kit that can be created and given away to the homeless in your area.  These are great things to keep in your car as well for when you happen to run into someone in need.  This is an activity that everyone in the family can be a part of.

Blessing Bags for the Homeless

Enclose these items in a large plastic Ziploc bag

  • A pair of socks
  • A water bottle
  • Deodorant
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Baby Wipes
  • A bar of soap
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Peanut butter crackers
  • A note or card with an uplifting message

Field Trips

A study of compassion is a wonderful opportunity to get in the habit of doing community service as a family.  Volunteer at a food bank or soup kitchen.  Visit a nursing home together.  Participate in a habitat for humanity build.  There are many ways to give back and show compassion in your community.

Other Books that Fit this Theme

If you loved God Bless the Gargoyles, then you’ll love these other books as well.

how to heal a broken wing  uncle willie and the soup kitchen  the great fuzzy frenzy

 

And, lest we forget about our older siblings and children..

 

me before you  an open heart by the dalai lama

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