We were in Milton Keynes yesterday at the Chinese Overseas Christian Mission HQ leading some workshops on ‘Teaching Sunday School’. We had a great audience who joined in with all the different discussions and shared ideas. It was a busy few hours! We thought about ‘The Main Character – the child’, ‘The Main Event -the Bible Story’ and ‘The Supporting Acts -creative ideas that support the Bible Story’.
A simple Easter garden is a great way to introduce young children to Easter. You can use natural materials such as soil/compost and leaves or you can make a garden like the one here. The playdough will last a couple of weeks before it dries out – so this won’t keep for ever – but then next Easter the children can make another garden.
At the end of this post there is an idea for telling the Easter story using different faces – there is a PDF for you to use too.
To make an Easter Garden like this one each child needs
- Green square paper plate
- Plain ice cream tub
- Green playdough
- Foam self adhesive flowers
- Crumbled Weetabix
- Brown paper cut into squares
- Glue stick
- Sticker/label with the words ‘Jesus is alive!’ printed on to them -here’s PDF of a sheet to print onto labels Jesus is alive! (label)
Make a garden to give children and adults an idea of what they are aiming for.
If you click on the links above you will be taken to where I bught the plates, ice cream tubs and flowers. You could use different plates – just make sure they are the shiny coated type so the dough won’t soak through.
To prepare the craft cut a ‘stone’ out of ice cream tub and make the dough. You will need a lot of dough!
2 Cups plain flour (cheap flour is fine)
2 Cups water
Food colouring (add this to the water)
1 Tablespoon cooking oil
1 Teaspoon cream of tartar (don’t be tempted to leave this out)
1 Cup salt
Put everything in a large saucepan and mix over a medium heat till it comes together as a dough.
Take out of the pan and kneed on a lightly floured surface for a of minutes till smooth. It will be hot!
Store in an airtight container/bag in the fridge till you need it. Let it come to room temperature before the children use it.
This amount will make 5 square plate Easter Gardens if you cover the entire plate. You could cover less of the plate as in the picture above.
To give you an idea of how everything gets put together..
Have a look at an Easter garden I made to show the children at Toddler Group during story time.
Telling the Easter Story
This idea uses faces to explain the story – angry, sad, surprised and happy. As you tell how some people were angry with Jesus show the any face and ask everyone, ‘can you look angry?’. When Jesus died his friends were very sad – show the sad face and ask everyone, ‘can you look sad?’. Then something amazing happened; Jesus came alive again. His friends were surprised! Ask everyone, ‘can you look surprised?’
Jesus is still alive today! Show the happy face and ask, ‘can you look happy?’ We can be happy because Jesus is alive!
Here are the faces as printable PDF’s if you would like to use them
or plain circles to make your own – Circles for paper plates
The above ideas also appeared in the 1277 newsletter – if you are running a church based toddler group in the UK take a look at their website
If you’ve visited here via the newsletter thanks for stopping by 🙂