Holy Week Activities

As we start the holiest week of the year, I wanted to share some of the activities we have planned.  All of them are quick and easy to put together (because that’s kind of where we are at in life right now) so even if you’ve waited until the last minute to try to do something for Holy Week, have no fear.  Just click the pictures for links to the directions and activities.

Holy Week Wreath

Wee Little Miracles created this beautiful wreath to tell the Easter story.  I had seen the same Oriental Trading activity she mentions and wished to do something similar but the author Erin did such a fabulous job, why reinvent the wheel?  Click the picture to visit her site for all the directions, downloads, and more great ideas.

 

Cross and Crucifix paintings

Last year we painted cross paintings that were beautiful and easy to make.  We simply made a cross on the paper using painter’s tape and then painted water colors over the cross.  We did this with another family.  Some of the kids chose to add words with crayons ahead of time; others simply painted around the cross.

So of course I can’t find any pictures of our beautiful crosses.  I’ll keep looking and update when I find them but in the meantime, imagine a white cross on a page of beautiful watercolors….

 

Similar to our cross painting, Do Small Things With Love has done a watercolor crucifix painting.  This week the kids get to choose which one they would like to make.  Just click the image to visit her page.

Easter Egg Printable

We created this printable a few years ago when our girls were little.  Now we have our son who has gotten old enough to make the Easter Eggs so they are back in the rotation again.  You can find all the directions here.

Hot Cross Buns

This Good Friday we will be enjoying traditional Hot Cross Buns.  On Friday we will simply score the buns with a cross as we will be fasting, but any buns leftover will be getting yummy icing cross for Easter.  Catholic Cuisine has a great recipe along with historical info about this Lenten treat.

 

Stations of the Cross

This is one of my favorite parts of our Catholic faith.  I love the Stations of the Cross.  Really, I love Good Friday.  Maybe that’s not quite the right emotion or not the right way to say it.  But I just love so many people coming together as a group to mediate on the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus, walking in his steps on the road to Calvary, venerating the cross.

It does get hard to keep the little ones quiet and focused during the Stations, however.  My go-to is coloring books of the Stations so that they can follow along while also staying occupied.  Here are a few different ones–just click the image to visit the different sites.

From Catholic Playground:

From St. Anne’s Helper (a great site for Catholic printables):

From Catholic Mom: Stations of the Cross coloring pages

 

And if you need help getting your kids into the Stations of the Cross, check out the Lego version here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bs5Z8TAVoGg

 

Happy Holy Week everyone!!

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Religious Easter Eggs

P1020337I saw these religious printed plastic eggs on Oriental Trading but I didn’t want to pay for them.  I wouldn’t say they were expensive but once you factor in shipping, they are a lot more than the dollar packs of plastic eggs you can get.  So I made my own.  On some I used paint pens and on others stickers.  All told it took me less than an hour and cost less than half what the others would have been.  Like I said before, I want this Easter to keep the focus on Jesus and this was just one more cute, quick way to do that.

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Easter Egg Printable

Easter Egg colors1With the Easter holiday approaching, I’ve really wanted to keep the focus on the true spirit of the holiday, Christ’s resurrection, but I certainly don’t want to toss out our family traditions of Easter egg hunts and baskets.

So, here is one attempt to make our traditions support our faith more.  I had my husband make this printable for us to accompany dying Easter eggs.  The girls colored each section and then we cut the pieces and turned it into a puzzle. (My girls had a very hard time leaving the white section blank).  I laminated the sections to help it last.

Download Easter Egg Colors Printable here

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Egg-stra Easy Egg-tivities

I know it’s a silly title, but I just couldn’t resist.  With Easter fast approaching we had some fun with eggs and the letter E.  And these are really easy activities that you can do with things around the house.  Also, while it’s not listed on here, there is no reason why you need to wait until Easter to hunt for eggs around the house. Have mini-egg hunts without the candy.

Skills: letter recognition, math, visual discrimination, music, arts’n’crafts,
Prep: low

Chick & Egg Craft

The chick popping out of the egg is an oldie but a goodie.  We decorated the eggs with fun foamies–since I wanted it to just be designs and not little animals or pictures this time, I used the Art Deco fun foam pack I found at Walmart. For the chick I actually used a coloring page picture that I printed on cardstock and cut out.  To make it even easier, you could print out the chick on yellow paper.

We were just going to color the chick with marker but then I remembered I had some yellow feathers.  The girls got carried away with gluing on the feathers so then I added googly eyes and a beak.  The beak is made out of an orange pipe cleaner about 2 inches long.  I folded it like a figure eight and then folded it in half.  The girls have loved playing peek-a-boo with them!

Egg template from desmond.imageshack.us
Chick template from activity-sheets.com

The girls also enjoyed this basket of eggs gluing activity you can find here.

Letter E

My plan is to make one of these for every letter.  Today we did Ee and decorated them with eggs, well, Easter eggs to be exact.  We used stickers from Michaels (one of their $1 packs) but you could even cut out your own eggs to glue on.  We also did some other E printables–coloring them, tracing the Es with our fingers, and practicing the sounds it made.

Letter E template
Large sized Ee printable
Tracing Ee’s printable

Edible Nest

I’m not really crafty in the kitchen so I was pretty proud of myself for coming up with this one.  It’s super simple but Mia and Zoe thought it was cute.  I grated carrot for the nest and used grape tomatoes for the eggs (but any round veggie would work).  I included a dollop of Ranch dressing in the center for dipping sauce.  I’m not sure if it was the novelty of it or the thinner pieces, but the girls ate far more carrots today than usual. 🙂

Egg Race

I was trying to get lunch made and the girls were getting cranky.  Then I saw the hard boiled eggs and remembered egg races from picnics–you know when you would race with an egg on a spoon (or maybe just I did that).  Because the girls are little, I used utensils I had for serving pasta that have more of a spoon part to them and of course hard-boiled eggs.  I got the girls all set up and then the went around the house balancing the eggs.  It turned out to be a great exercise for focus and balance–and I got to make lunch in peace.  They even moved on to smaller spoons, although the eggs did end up being  very cracked.  We will definitely be doing this again in the future.  I love it when activities just appear!

File Folder Games

We also played some egg file folder games.  One was cracked eggs where you matched the upper case letter with the lower case letter.  The game is in black and white so I colored the eggs myself to make it prettier and easier for the girls to distinguish the letters so that it was a little less overwhelming.  Older kids could certainly color the eggs themselves.

The other game is practicing visual discrimination.  They match the egg to the corresponding basket.  I liked it because it was a little more complicated.  The girls know their colors but this one had more than one color on each egg/basket.  They really had to look at the whole thing as opposed to just one color.  I used an exacto knife to slice the top of the basket so that the egg could slide into it.

Egg Letters Game
Egg & Baskets Game

Easter Egg Felt Board

This has to be the easiest felt board story to make!  It’s just five eggs.  Of course, you could decorate the eggs more instead of just cutting five eggs out of felt like I did (I had big plans for decorating them and making them look a lot cuter but those seemed to fall by the wayside).  I actually found two felt board stories–one adding the eggs and one taking them away.  I changed the colors just a bit on one so that you could use both together.  On the second one, we actually change the names of the family members to be our names, including the dog.

Hunting For Eggs from workofheart.bravehost.com
Hunting for eggs Under my bed,
I found one in a slipper, And the egg was colored RED!

Hunting for eggs, Now I have two,
I found one in the closet, And the egg was colored BLUE!

Hunting for eggs, What a lucky fellow,
I found one in a bucket, And the egg was colored YELLOW!

Hunting for eggs, Where none could be seen,
I found one in a shoe box, And the egg was colored GREEN!

Hunting for eggs, Quick as a wink,
I found one in the garden, And the egg was colored PINK!

Red and yellow, Green, pink, and blue.
I found five eggs -How about you?

Five Little Easter Eggs from mrsjonesroom.com
FIVE little Easter eggs, Lovely colors wore;
Mother ate the blue one, Then there were FOUR.

FOUR little Easter eggs, Two and two, you see;
Daddy ate the red one, Then there were THREE.

THREE little Easter eggs, Before I knew,
Sister ate the yellow one, Then there were TWO.

TWO little Easter eggs, Oh, what fun!
Brother ate the green one, Then there was ONE.

ONE little Easter egg, See me run!
I ate the last one, And then there was NONE.

Books we read…

We also read books that had an egg in it or featured the letter E a lot (that way the girls could find all the E’s on the title page–not the entire book or we would never finish).

The Odd Egg
by Emily Gravett

 

Celebrating the Easter Story

Here are some of the activities we’ve been doing to celebrate the Easter story.  I have more Easter activities that I will be posting shortly, but I tried to group like activities together.

Painted Crosses

I actually had a different cross craft planned but the Zoe found these when we were at Michaels so we switched gears and painted crosses.  They are only $1 but you could certainly make your own out of wood or cardboard.  And while I know that Jesus did not die on a shimmery pink cross, I think it’s important for the girls to connect with the cross and the sacrifice and salvation it represents.

We used the shimmer paint to give it a little sparkle and while I let the girls pick their colors, I also limited them to just a few choices that wouldn’t look too bad if they were all mixed together.  We also sprayed them with sealant afterwards and will be hanging them on the wall in their bedroom.

Easter Garden

My super awesome sister actually shared this idea with me!  We bought the terra cota base, some soil, grass seeds, and decorative stones at Walmart and used a 2 1/4 inch terra cota pot I bought at Walmart.  Next to the pot lying on its side, I put a rock to build up the hill.  Then we found the twigs to make the crosses.  I tied them together with thread but I’m warning you that was a bit of a pain.  Our’s looked a lot better before the dog got ahold of it and we had to pick the soil off of the grass.  And of course, our grass hasn’t grown yet.  You can actually find a picture of a prettier one here.

The Berenstain Bears and the Easter Story

This is actually my favorite Easter book to read with the girls.  They are really into the Berenstain Bears right now, but, I mean, who doesn’t love the Berenstain Bears?  Jesus dying on the cross can be scary to some children, but what I really like about this one is that it tells the Easter story with all the important parts in a way that the kids can really understand it.  Some of the other stories are too graphic, or leave out important details (we have a book of Bible stories that leaves out the whole ascension into heaven), or they are just a little hokey.

 

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