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Catholic Homeschool Articles, Advice & Resources

In the Schoolroom – Lenten Crafts for Children


A salt dough Crown of Thorns is a Lenten craft idea that you can use to point your children toward the Cross and show how their sacrifices will bear fruit.

In Lent we are preparing for the Passion and death of our dear Lord.

Children learn and remember so much better when they can be engaged with the subject in a hands-on way.

Toward that end, here are a few Lenten craft ideas that you can use to help point your children toward the Cross.

Salt Dough Crown of Thorns

Make a salt dough crown of thorns to encourage children to make pious sacrifices and to pray with consistency.

  1. In a large bowl mix 1 cup of salt with two cups of water and add ¾ cup of water.
  2. Hand mix until it is the consistency of dough.
  3. Divide the dough into three equal parts and roll into “snakes” about 16 inches long.
  4. Weave the snakes together and join the ends.
  5. Using a box of plain toothpicks, insert as many as you can fit into the crown.
  6. Air dry for twenty-four hours.

As the children make sacrifices, have them break off a thorn and place it in a jar or bowl in the middle of the crown. The goal is for the crown to be empty of thorns by Easter Sunday. On that day, when the children wake, the jar of thorns is replaced by a jar of candy and the crown is woven with ribbons. Their sacrifices bore fruit, the same way God uses our sacrifice and suffering to bring us eternal salvation.

Lenten Activities Guide

Using a large piece of purple oaktag, attach one library pocket for each day of Lent. Using a few stickers to decorate makes it more pleasant.

In each pocket put a note detailing one Lenten activity for the day – a family rosary, visiting a sick friend, cooking a meal for someone, visiting a cemetery and praying for the souls, going to adoration, praying the Stations of the Cross, things like that.

Children respond very well to counting down activities, and it helps to have a little something to look forward to each day in a somber season.

Stations of the Cross Posters

These beautiful Stations of the Cross posters are available at and are a perfect visual aid to your children’s prayers.

Crucifixion Watercolor Art

This is a very simple craft that turns out quite beautifully and can be hung up during Holy Week to remind us of what we’re about.

  1. Using wet watercolor paper, have the children watercolor the whole page. Sunset type colors look best; but whatever they choose, make sure it’s on the lighter side.
  2. Have the children trace a crucifix (I found that a thinner one worked best). For the young ones you might want to do this step for them. Then little people can color the tracing black while the older ones should paint it.
  3. When taped on a sunny window these pictures are really very pretty.

*Note: This craft originated at

Stations of the Cross for Children Prayer Book

Use this prayer book to pray with the children (also available at

More Activities…

Looking for more Lenten activities for homeschoolers? Check out Jennifer Elia’s 5 Lenten Family Projects to Yield Abundant Fruit.

Or Emily Molitor’s 5 Ways to Include Our Children in Lenten Practices has some wonderful insight on creating empathy for Our Lord’s suffering and much more.

About Mary Ellen Barrett

Mother of seven children and two in heaven, Mary is wife to David and a lifelong New Yorker. She has homeschooled her children for eleven years using Seton and an enormous amount of books. She is a columnist for The Long Island Catholic and blogs here . Meet Mary Ellen.
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