Try these fun and easy Easter activities at home with your kids this Easter weekend.
My kids love to cook and bake with me. Each year we look forward to baking Resurrection Rolls for Easter! It’s a creative way to tell the story of Jesus’s burial and resurrection. Here’s the recipe and the story to tell while assembling the rolls. Enjoy and have fun celebrating the truth that our Savior is risen!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2 cans of crescent rolls
16 large marshmallows
½ C melted butter
¼ C granulated sugar
2 TBSP cinnamon
The story (Note: you may want to modify for younger children)
Jesus is God’s son who was sent to earth to pay the price for our sin. He never sinned. The white of this marshmallow represents the purity and sin-free nature of Christ.
After Jesus died his body was prepared for burial. After he was buried, his friends prepared him to be buried with oil and spices. Dip the marshmallow in butter, then in sugar and cinnamon.
Jesus was wrapped in linen and placed in a tomb with a large rock rolled in front. Wrap the marshmallow in one triangle of dough covering it completely like a ball (rock).
Complete the process for all 16 triangles and marshmallows.
Place in the oven for 10-12 minutes.
Allow rolls to cool. Say after 3 days, his friends went to visit the tomb but the rock was rolled away and two angels said, “why are you looking for the living among the dead?”
Reveal that when you cut open a roll or take a bite that the marshmallow has disappeared, leaving an empty “tomb.”
Remind children that the rolls are sweet just like the love God has for us.
Follow-up by reading the Easter story together from the Bible so that children know that it is true and that Jesus died for them and wants to be their savior. Pray with children, thanking God for the gift of Jesus.
Jana Magruder serves as the Director of LifeWay Kids. She is a Baylor graduate and offers a wealth of experience and passion for kids ministry, education, and publishing. She is the author of Kids Ministry that Nourishes and Life Verse Creative Journal, which she co-authored with her teenage daughter. She and her husband, Michael, along with their three children reside in Nashville.
Easter may look a little different this year, but we can still engage with kids and families during this important time. This devotional guide is a free eight-day resource taking families through the resurrection week. Parents and kids will interact with stories and pray together throughout the week as they go from the Triumphal Entry to the resurrection.
Click here to download your free 2020 Easter Devotional Guide for Families and distribute it to families in your ministry today.
We hope this devotional is a blessing in uncertain times. May we truly celebrate our Savior’s resurrection this Easter and beyond. Happy Easter!
As COVID-19 has forced churches to forgo meeting on campuses forcing kids ministries to cancel egg hunts, programs, and other critical ministry events, many kids ministry leaders are wondering what to do for Easter. How can we serve our families and communities during such an important time of the year? The Gospel Project wants to help with a free ministry resource.
This time when so many families are home round the clock has made ministry challenging, but perhaps we can find a silver lining in it. What if we saw this as an opportunity for us as kids ministry leaders to serve the family in a unique way and provide a Resurrection experience that we probably could not do otherwise? What if we provided five online gatherings for us to serve our families in the home during Easter week? Not five Sundays of teaching kids. Not a one morning egg hunt event—but five opportunities within eight days to connect with our kids and families, bringing us together with them and them together with one another.
That is what the 2020 Family Easter Event is all about. This Family Easter Event will allow you to walk through the story of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection as it happened during the week. You will begin with the Triumphal Entry the Sunday before Easter. You will celebrate the Lord’s Supper on Thursday, then the crucifixion, resurrection, and appearances of Jesus in the order they occurred.
5 Steps to Getting Started
- Download the free resources. Below you will find everything you need for this event—PDFs and MP4 files that you can imbed in your gathering teaching times. Share the Activity Pages with your families and encourage them to print them in advance.
- Schedule the event. Try to choose the same time for each day’s gathering. Early evening may be the perfect time just before or after family dinner, but with so many families home all week, you could do something mid-day too.
- Determine how you will gather with your families. Facebook offers a great opportunity to create an event, invite your families to attend, and then either use Facebook Live as you share with families, or show a pre-recorded video. But there are many other options out there such as Zoom and Google Hangouts. Determine your method and let your families know.
- Plan each teaching time. While the leader guide was designed for weekly small group gatherings, you should be able to adapt it easily for this event. Consider starting with the Activity Page, then explain the events leading up to that day’s session. Show the Bible Story video, and then use the prompts from the Leader Guides to explain what families just saw. Show the Key Passage (a memory verse) and use one of the Key Passage activities to help families learn that verse. Wrap up by showing the Questions from Kids video and encourage families to discuss the question posed back to them as a family as they can also use the family discussion starter ideas on the Activity Pages for further conversation. That’s just a starting point. You can consider including other activities and elements as you desire.
- Consider the “icing on the cake”. Consider any other ways you can engage with your families during this time or to help advance family discipleship. Using Zoom or Google Hangouts? Invite interaction from the families. How about having your pastor join in on Thursday to share more about the Lord’s Supper? Maybe provide instructions for making Resurrection Rolls on Friday. Be creative and have fun!
- Sunday, April 5: Jesus’ Triumphal Entry
- Thursday, April 9: The Last Supper
- Friday, April 10: Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection
- Sunday, April 12: The Emmaus Disciples
- Monday, April 13: Jesus Appeared to the Disciples
- Leader Guide
- Preschool Activity Pages
- Younger Kids Activity Pages
- Older Kids Activity Pages
- Bible Story Pictures
- Key Passage Posters
- Gospel Plan Poster
- Countdown Video
- Jesus’ Triumphal Entry [Bible Story] [Questions from Kids]
- The Last Supper [Bible Story] [Questions from Kids]
- Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection [Bible Story] [Questions from Kids]
- The Emmaus Disciples [Bible Story] [Questions from Kids]
- Jesus Appeared to the Disciples [Bible Story] [Questions from Kids]
- Gospel Presentation Video
- Access all videos in Vimeo
ACTIVITIES TO CONSIDER
While not all of the activities in the leader guide will work in the home, here are several to consider using during your online gatherings or suggesting families do together afterward.
- Jesus’ Triumphal Entry: Make Dramatic Entrances, Hunt for Rocks, Play “Follow the Robes”
- The Last Supper: Sing “Head, Heart, Hands, and Feet,” Make Feet Lacing Cards,” Wash Preschoolers Feet
- Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection: Replicate an Earthquake with Blocks, Compare Rocks, Sing a Song, Build an Empty Tomb with Blocks, Make a Cross Painting, Dress Up Like a King
- The Emmaus Disciples: Silly Walks, Play “Who Do You Know?,” Find Jesus’ Name in Bibles, Make Jesus Bookmarks, Play Out Teaching Bible Stories
- Jesus Appeared to the Disciples: Play “I Spy,” Guess What Appeared, Create a Special Handshake, Make Invitations
- Jesus’ Triumphal Entry: Parade Brigade, Storytelling Stations, Rocks Cry Out
- The Last Supper: Hide-and-Seek Dinner, Toe Painting, Hidden Objects
- Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection: In-Out-In, Gospel Practice
- The Emmaus Disciples: Blind Pathway, Everything Points to Jesus
- Jesus Appeared to the Disciples: Which Surprise Is Best?, Reverse Charades
- Jesus’ Triumphal Entry: Moo Baa Hee-Haw
- The Last Supper: Play Dough Meal, Would You?, Supper Symbols
- Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection: Twenty Questions
- The Emmaus Disciples: Blind Toss, Closed-Eye Drawings
- Jesus Appeared to the Disciples: Make Introductions, Collect and Conclude, Invisible Messages
**Note: Not all items referenced in the Leader Guide (such as missions videos and activity printables) are included for this event. These are not provided to keep things as simple as possible for you as a ministry leader as you quickly develop an online event. **
The annual Easter egg hunt is over, leaving in its wake empty plastic egg shells covered in dry grass and stained with melted chocolate. When you and your team were stuffing those 14,000 eggs, you thought this day would never come. You fretted over securing enough candy, and your house looked like the chickens had come home to roost. Now, you’re wondering why you feel blue.
After a major event—even one filled with blissful mirth—feeling melancholy is normal. One way to escape the doldrums is to get some physical nourishment and rest. Next, take some time to evaluate the Easter egg hunt. I suggest doing this alone first, and then with your team. Ask yourself (and your team) questions such as these:
- What was our goal or purpose for the event? (If you held the Easter egg hunt because, “We always have one,” then you may need to redefine your goal before planning the next one.)
- Did we accomplish that goal or purpose? In what specific ways?
- Did we plan the event with enough lead time to be successful?
- Did the entire church participate, or just a select few? How can we involve more people in the next big event?
- Who came to the egg hunt? Regular attenders of our church? Unchurched people in our community?
- How did the Easter egg hunt further the mission of our church?
- What can we do next year during the Easter season to reach families with the gospel?
We ask ourselves these tough questions to ensure that egg hunts and other events are vehicles that help accomplish the mission of the Church as set forth in Matthew 28:18-20, to “make disciples.” All those mismatched plastic eggs you find under your couch and in the church flower bed six months from now, just might be worth it.
Landry Holmes is the Manager of LifeWay Kids Ministry Publishing, Nashville, TN. A graduate of Howard Payne University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Landry served on church staffs before coming to LifeWay. He is a church leader, writer, workshop facilitator, and publisher. Landry also teaches children at his church in Middle Tennessee. He and his wife Janetta are the grandparents of two adorable grandbabies.
Each year in the weeks leading up to Easter we hear from churches, parents, and leaders who are looking for intentional ways to keep their children focused on the resurrection amidst all the celebration. We are so encouraged by families’ commitments to celebrate the Easter story together and have created an Easter Devotional Guide to help you do just that. We hope our resources help you lead family discipleship throughout your entire church.
Post the link on your kids ministry social media page or print out copies of the guide to hand out next Sunday. May we truly celebrate our Savior’s resurrection this Easter and beyond. Happy Easter!
- Lots of colorful plastic Easter eggs
- A couple Easter baskets
- Fine-point permanent markers
THE GREAT EASTER EGG DIVIDE:
PLAY: Allow kids to divide prepared eggs into Old Testament and New Testament baskets.
OPTIONS: 1) Hide the eggs around the room and instruct kids to find the eggs and return them to the correct basket. 2) Prepare two sets of eggs and baskets for team relays. 3) Simplify the game by allowing kids to use a “Books of the Bible” poster or the listing from the front of the Bible to determine if the books is an Old or New Testament book.
BOOKS and DIVISIONS:
PREPARATION: On one side of a plastic Easter egg print the name of a book. On the other side of that same egg print the division from which that book belongs. Place the book halves in one basket and the division halves in another.
PLAY: Kids will match books and divisions to create “whole” eggs.
OPTIONS: 1) Create two sets of eggs and allow individuals or teams to see who can match all their books/divisions eggs first. 2) Use different colored eggs for the top (book) and bottom (division) so it’s not as obvious when looking for matches.
BEFORE and AFTER:
PREPARATION: On a slip of paper small enough to be placed inside a plastic Easter egg print any book of the Bible. On the “top half” of an egg print the book that is before the book that was chosen for the inside. Then on the “bottom half” print the book that follows. (Example: “Genesis” is printed on the top half of an egg, “Exodus” is printed on the slip of paper that will go inside the egg, and “Leviticus” is printed on the bottom half of the egg). Place the “top halves” in one Easter basket labeled “BEFORE” and the “bottom halves” in the other basket labeled “AFTER.” Lay the “middle” book (books you’ve printed on slips of paper) between the two baskets.
PLAY: On “go” encourage kids to select a book from the small slips of paper between the baskets and then find the book that’s before the book selected from within the “Before” basket, the book that’s after the book selected from within the “AFTER” basket and place the selected book inside the egg and close the egg. Continue until all eggs have been correctly assembled.
OPTION: Create a relay race for two teams: Player one from each team will select a book on one end of the room, run to the other end to find the “before and after” matches, place the selected book inside the egg and then return to their team to “tag” player 2 to continue the relay. The team that has all players correctly assembling a “before/after” match, wins.
Bill Emeott serves as Lead Ministry Specialist for LifeWay Kids. He is a graduate of Mercer University and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Bill has served as a Kid’s Minister and currently teaches 2nd Grade Bible study.
Have you ever played, “Which One is Not Like the Others”? The title of this post may remind you of that game. Some of you may be thinking that “the Easter bunny” doesn’t belong in the list. Others may say that “the cross” shouldn’t be in the lineup.
Regardless of your perspective, churches are confronted this time of year with the question, “What do we do about preschoolers, the Easter bunny, and the cross?” The answer depends in part on your church’s context.
Preschoolers and the Easter Bunny—Reaching Families of Preschoolers
If hosting a community Easter egg hunt will help advance your church’s mission to make disciples, then maybe you should consider having one.
- Use an Easter egg hunt to introduce your church to the community and invite families to visit your church on Easter.
- Separate the Easter Bunny from the cross.
- Host the Easter egg hunt on any day other than Easter.
- Allow preschoolers to have fun hunting eggs, and avoid trying to spiritualize the eggs. Preschoolers are literal thinkers and don’t really grasp symbolism.
- If you choose to tell preschoolers (and parents) the story of Jesus’s resurrection be sure to do so from the Bible, as you would tell a Bible story at church on any other occasion.
- Tell the Bible story in a different location from where the eggs were hidden, such as in a park pavilion. If a “live” Easter bunny is present, make sure he’s out of the preschoolers’ line of sight during Bible story time.
Preschoolers and the Cross—Teaching Preschoolers the Gospel
Some preschoolers learn about Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection at home. Others have never really heard how Jesus showed His love toward us by dying on the cross and being raised from the dead.
- Teach preschoolers that God loves us and that God sent Jesus because He loves us.
- Refrain from using symbolic language, such as, “Jesus is the Lamb of God.”
- When stating that Jesus died on the cross, avoid the R-rated details of Jesus’s terrible death.
- Focus on the resurrection and assure preschoolers that Jesus is alive!
Easter can be a fun, celebratory, and memorable time at church and at home. Encourage parents to keep the cross and the bunny separate, and remind them that building spiritual foundations in their preschoolers’ lives takes time and needs to happen everyday, not just on Easter.
Landry Holmes is the Manager of LifeWay Kids Ministry Publishing, Nashville, TN. A graduate of Howard Payne University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Landry served on church staffs before coming to LifeWay. He is a church leader, writer, workshop facilitator, and publisher. Landry also teaches children at his church in Middle Tennessee. He and his wife Janetta are the parents of two adult sons and two daughters-in-law.
Last year, we shared a free downloadable Easter devotional guide for kids ministers to pass out to families in their ministry. As parents and kids ministers tagged LifeWay Kids in Instagram pictures, Facebook posts, and Tweets, we were so encouraged by families’ commitments to celebrate the Easter story together. We hope our resources help you lead family discipleship throughout your entire church.
Click the image below to download the 2017 version of the LifeWay Kids Easter Devotional Guide. Post the link on your kids ministry social media page or print out copies of the guide to hand out next Sunday. May we truly celebrate our Savior’s resurrection this Easter and beyond. Happy Easter!
The Easter season is one of the most important seasons in a church. We, as kids ministry leaders, have an opportunity to share with boys, girls and their families about Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. LifeWay Kids has developed resources to help you this Easter Season as you minister to families.
Brian Dembowczyk, Team Leader of The Gospel Project for Kids, and Jeff Land, Team Leader for Bible Studies for Life Kids, stop by the podcast today to share some new resources that you can use to enhance your Easter season at your church.