The Diocese of Youngstown Offices of Religious Education & Youth Ministry hosted an awesome networking session today about engaging families between Baptism and first Holy Communion.
A lot of fantastic brainstorms, resources, and activities were shared.
One of the biggest take-aways was suggestions for families to make Easter season as engaging to young children as the Christmas season.
Folks recommended Empty Tomb Sets in addition to Nativity Sets.
Another active discussion was about Resurrection Eggs. This is an activity my boys really enjoyed as pre-schoolers.
You can easily make a set at home! Start with an empty egg carton.
Next you can print and cut up this document with 12 scripture verses that tell the story of Easter:
Each of the 12 verses corresponds with an object in a plastic Easter egg (not color coded).
- Cotton ball or puff with perfume
- Piece of palm (from Palm Sunday)
- Piece of bread
- Knot of rope
- Cotton ball or puff (cloud)
- Miniature cross, no corpus
- Miniature nail or cross with corpus
- Candy hearts or other sweet item (paradise)
- Small strip of cloth or linen
- Empty (tomb)
Because the strips are numbered, you can hide the eggs for kids to find and then put in order.
Kids will quickly eat up the candy and bread, so for full effect you might want to write a number on the outside of the egg.
Or you can just open them in order within the carton.
You will have to replace the bread, candy, and perfumed cotton each year or use. Olive oil or other natural smelly substance can be used for families with scent sensitivies.
Another activity to explore for Elementary age kids are “Stations of the Resurrection” with a similar format of pictures and prayer continuing the story after the “Stations of the Cross.”
Please comment with your own stories or suggestions for activities to engage young kids during Easter!