SummaryThese simple activities will help occupy your small children while helping draw them into the sacred. And as a bonus, they make for a quick clean up.
Blessed Holy Week!
We have arrived at the most complex and spiritually fulfilling week of the year. It is, at the same time, arduous and beautiful. It stretches us as mothers, fathers, and Catholics in many different ways, some in the sphere of practical matters and others in a more mystical and profound way.
We are called in this week to lay at the feet of the greatest sacrifice ever offered, all for love of us. To contemplate that sacrifice, to offer our lives in service to it, and to deeply live the liturgical life is the mission of all Catholics in Holy Week.
Oh wait; you have kids, don’t you? Kids that have been cooped up for weeks, kids that are wound up, confused, and missing things but they aren’t quite sure what, so having them contemplate the mysteries of Holy Week isn’t likely to happen. It’s enough to make a grown woman weep.
This week, to enter the quietness that we crave, it helps to have a few simple activities to occupy the children but to also draw them into the sacred. The Crucifix art we shared last year (which originated on the Catholic Sprouts website) is still a perfect project for small children, little fuss, quick clean up and can be done more than once using different colors
- Paper (watercolor paper works best, but plain white paper is fine too)
- Black marker
- First, have the children wet the paper with damp paper towels. Next, have them color the whole page with a sunset effect or an ombre effect. Softer, lighter colors work best. Let the paper dry.
- When the paper is dry, trace a crucifix in the middle of the paper. I found the thinner kind works best, but any kind you have is fine. Remember we aren’t fussing here.
- Color the crucifix black. An older child might want to paint it.
- When you tape it to a sunny window, the colors will really shine.
I don’t mind letting my older children make palm crosses. Still, I dislike letting younger ones fool around with palm since it is a sacramental and should be treated with reverence. This little craft gives them the pleasure of waving their own palm. If tracing and cutting seem like too much work, then have them paint their hands and stamp “palm” leaves onto white paper to make a palm poster.
Palm Branch Wavers
- Green construction paper, scrap papers, painted papers
- Wooden ruler, wooden spoon or pop/ice cream sticks
Trace both of your children’s hands on the paper and cut out 6-8 green hands. Tape them on to your stick, and there you have it, Palm Wavers. I don’t suggest actually having them in the room as you watch Mass. Still, they do make an excellent prop as you read the story of Jesus entering Jerusalem.