In need of ideas to celebrate the true meaning of Easter with the children in your life? Here are a few possibilities:
- RESURRECTION ROCKS
This is a simple activity that children and adults can enjoy alike. For this activity, you will need the following supplies:
- Smooth, medium-sized rocks
- Different colored paints of choice
- Paintbrushes (optional)
- Small cups or bowls of water
- Newspaper or a plastic tablecloth to keep the mess contained (optional)
Begin this activity by explaining to your children that we celebrate Easter to remember that Jesus rose from the dead, then read the following passage.
When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him.”Mark 16:1-6 ESV
Next, explain that the rocks are a way of remembering that the stone was rolled away and that Jesus rose from the dead. Encourage older children to paint spiritual themes or spring time scenes to represent the new life that we find in Jesus. When the projects are finished, paint the words “He is risen!” on top of each rock, then find a place to display each masterpiece, whether that be near the front door, in the garden, or even at a local park where others can be reminded that Jesus rose again.
2. GOSPEL-FOCUSED EASTER BASKETS
If you give your kids an Easter basket each year, why not make it a gospel-focused experience this year?
This idea was posted on social media by a woman named Anita Cason in 2018. In her post, she stated that it was not her original idea but rather bits and pieces of several ideas that she found online. I love how she adapted these ideas to turn them into a weekend activity, and I’m thrilled to share that activity with you all!
For this activity, you will need the following supplies for each child:
- A basket
- Rocks (these will be collected at the beginning of the activity)
- A red cloth (or a red napkin)
- Small toys, treats, or whatever you typically put in your children’s Easter baskets
Step One: On Good Friday, go on a rock collecting adventure with your kids! Take the baskets outdoors and let them retrieve whatever rocks they find (if you plan to do the first activity listed, now would be a great time to look for those rocks). As your children begin to collect different rocks, ask them what they can observe about the weight of their baskets. Point out that, like those rocks, sin is burdensome and weighs us down. It also separates us from God. Reflect on the gravity of sin on the walk home.
Step Two: Once home, grab the baskets and place them in a prominent place to be seen over the weekend. Next, take a red cloth and place it over the basket, pointing out that it represents the blood that Jesus shed when He died on the cross to save us from our sins. Leave the cloth over the baskets the remainder of the day and all of Saturday as a visible reminder of Jesus’ sacrifice.
Step Three: Once your children go to bed on Saturday night, change out the rocks for toys, treats, or whatever else you generally place in their baskets for Easter, then place the red cloth back over them.
Step Four: Let your children pull back the red cloth over their Easter baskets on Sunday morning to discover the treasures insides! Explain how, when we come to faith in Jesus, He cleanses us from all our sin and fills our heart with beautiful things. He indwells us with His Spirit and also gives us the fruit of the Spirit. We are truly made rich in Him!
If any of your children have not placed their faith in Jesus yet, I want to especially encourage you to ask if they have understood the gospel message and if they would like to make a decision for Christ. How beautiful it would be for God to use this simple activity to bring their little hearts to Him this year!
3. RESURRECTION ROLLS
My sister makes these dinner rolls with her children every year, and they are always a huge success. Her daughter is quite the baker, so she especially enjoys this activity, and the whole family enjoys the finished product! It’s a tangible reminder to all that the tomb was empty. Jesus rose from the dead!
For this activity, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 (10 ounce) can refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
- 8 large marshmallows
- ¼ cup melted butter
- 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons white sugar
To make these simple rolls, you can follow the instructions at the following website: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/84289/resurrection-rolls/.
The marshmallow placed in the middle of the roll melts as it bakes and seeps into the crescent roll, leaving a hollow, sweet treat. This recipe is so simple that even young children can help to make it. It will be sure to impress them when they find that the marshmallow is gone once baked. I can’t think of a better (or tastier) food option to represent the empty tomb.
So, there you have it! If you celebrate with your kids this year using any of these ideas, please let me know! I’d love to hear how they go for you and your children. And if you have any other ideas that you could add to this list, please share them in the comments as well! God has given us such a special task in entrusting these children in our care, so let’s plant seeds in their hearts during these formative years and pray that they will have a deeper understanding of the gospel and of God’s love as a result.
Lastly, may God bless you richly this Easter season, my friends. He is risen, and that is always worth celebrating!