Have you ever pondered the idea of how to teach the true meaning of Easter to your children at a young age? I remember a close friend confiding in me that her 5-year-old son asked why his Sunday School teacher never talked about the Easter Bunny! Of course, it becomes increasingly challenging when other parents’ views on the meaning of Easter may not align with your own. Honestly, the answer to how to teach a young child about Easter will look differently for each family. Well, after reading on, you will be well-equipped to not only share the story of Easter with your children but also enjoy quality time while doing it!
How to Teach a Young Child about Easter
How to Teach a Young Child about Easter
Teaching young children about the true meaning of Easter can seem like a daunting task as you reflect on the brutality of the incidents leading up to and during the crucifixion. However, there is a way to tell this story for a G-rated audience. LeeAnn G. Taylor compiled a list “10 Ways to Teach Kids About Easter: Hands-On Activities & Books”
- Resurrection Rolls
- A Sense of the Resurrection: An Easter Experience for Families
- Read a Children’s Book about Easter
- Wash Each Others’ Feet
- Resurrection Eggs
- Read the Easter Story from a Children’s Bible
- The Legend of the Sand Dollar
- Easter Scavenger Hunt
- All Wrapped Up Like Jesus
- Easter Jesus Tree
If you love cooking with your little ones, be sure to try Leigh Anne Wilkes’ Resurrection Cookies. Also, try her other activities, Easter Egg Scriptures, Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs, and How to Grow Easter Grass. Will relatives and friends join you for Easter fare? Well, Leigh Anne has all the recipes you need to celebrate Easter Sunday!
What is Easter?
When teaching kids the Easter story, you can explain Easter is the Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus when he arose from the tomb, just as he’d promised his disciples. Easter is a critical holiday for Christians because the prophecy of his returning from the dead gave the gift of eternal life to those who believe in his death and resurrection. Easter explained simply is the Christian celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
When is Easter Celebrated?
Easter is determined by the first full moon occurring after the spring equinox which is why the date changes from year to year. The spring equinox is an ancient celebration of fertility observed in Paganism, which is where Easter has its historical roots. It is also known as Ostara, which is where “Easter” was derived. Before Christ, Easter began as a spring festival in the Northern Hemisphere and was not connected to the resurrection of Christ until Christianity actually began.
What are the Historical Roots of Easter?
Easter is a collaboration of several ancient traditions that have grown and adapted over time. As mentioned previously, there are significant roots in Paganism from the Spring Equinox celebration called “Ostara”. This is the celebration of the return of the Sun, new life and fertility. However, Easter also obtains traditions from Judaism through symbolism and meaning in connection to Passover, the celebration of the deliverance of Jews from Egyptian rule. By celebrating Christ’s resurrection, we are celebrating the new life we gain as he delivers us from sin.
How Do You Celebrate Easter?
Many Christian believers around the world celebrate Easter with a special church service in honor of the day Jesus emerged from the tomb. Some additional ways families celebrate Easter are:
- Celebratory meals – Many families gather to share a meal together that includes dishes such as lamb. Personally, I love this recipe for Roasted Rack of Lamb with Potatoes which can easily be scaled to feed 8.
- Dyeing hard-boiled eggs – This tradition started in the early days of Christianity, with a story recorded in history in 1290 that King Edward I purchased 450 eggs that were to be decorated with colors or gold leaf for members of his household. If you want a mess-free egg coloring: try this creative alternative by “Thrifty Mom”.
Easter baskets for children – what goodies should I put in the basket?
- Small toys or stuffed animals
- Slime or finger paints
- Easter-themed snacks
- Play-Doh Eggs
- Prefilled plastic eggs
Non Candy Treats for Easter Baskets
If you’re a family who prefers non-candy treats, I recently found this list of ideas for non-candy Easter basket items for ages 0-teen:
- Easter egg hunts – Whether in your own front yard or hosted by a local church, these activities are always a blast! If you are interested in trying different ways to have an Easter egg hunt, try some of these: 35 Best Easter Egg Hunt Ideas for Kids – Unique Easter Egg Hunt Ideas
- Worksheets with Easter facts and activities – kids will enjoy learning about Easter by completing fun and engaging activities:
- Kid-friendly Easter stories online free – many different kid-friendly Easter stories with follow-up activities kids will love can be found on the Internet. if your children love jellybeans, they will definitely consider this activity particularly tasty!
The Jelly Bean Prayer can easily be used for teaching the resurrection to preschoolers and even begin to develop Easter talk for toddlers.
Creating Kid-Friendly Activities for Easter
DIY Easter crafts can not only be enjoyable for everyone but also strengthen the family bond through learning and fun. There are a variety of kid-friendly Easter stories with questions and answers, or even kid-friendly Easter printables that you can print at home and complete with your kids on your own schedule! Some ideas for Easter activities for kids are available on these awesome sites:
- 12 Faith-Based Easter Crafts
- 30+ Christ-Centered Easter Activities and Crafts
- 20+ Easter Crafts for Preschoolers
- 42 of the Simplest Easter Crafts for Toddlers
I also have a super fun Easter activity book printable available in my Etsy shop!
Best Videos To Teach Easter to a Young Child
If you are looking for kid-friendly Easter stories on Youtube, there are a few that are really great to watch! I found these two that I think you and your children will really enjoy.
What tools do you recommend to teach Easter to a Young Child?
There is an exhaustive list of tools to teach the message of the Easter story to kids. Here are a few to get you started:
- What Is Easter?: Adams, Michelle Medlock: 9780824918781 (ages 2-5)
- The Story of Easter (Little Golden Book): Miller, Jean, Smath, Jerry: 9780399555145 (ages 2-5)
- ‘Twas the Morning of Easter: Nellist, Glenys, Selivanova, Elena: Books (ages 4-8)
- An Easter Egg Hunt for Jesus (Forest of Faith Books) (ages 4-6)
- Benjamin’s Box: The Story of the Resurrection Eggs (ages 4-8)
- Family Life Resurrection Eggs – 12-Piece Easter Egg Set with Booklet and Religious Figurines Inside – Tells The Full Story of Easter
- God Gave Us Easter (God Gave Us Series) (9780307730725): Bergren, Lisa Tawn, Bryant, Laura J.: Books (ages 3-7)
Should I Teach My Child About the Easter Bunny?
There is no right or wrong answer, but only personal preference. Surprisingly, this can be an opportunity to change a perceived negative into a positive. What if Christian families could choose to see the Easter Bunny through a different lens? What if the Easter Bunny was no longer thought of as a pagan symbol? Kim Wier, a writer for Focus on the Family, wrote Finding Easter in Bunnies and Baskets in which she described changing the meaning of the perceived pagan symbols to match the true meaning of Easter. She suggested using any kind of rabbit and assigning a characteristic of Jesus to those of the rabbit, adding an applicable scripture, and the end product would be a “true Easter Bunny”. The following is Kim Wier’s clever and creative depiction of a true Easter Bunny:
Real Easter Bunnies
- are white as snow because Jesus takes all sin away (Isaiah 1:18b).
- are gentle, kind-hearted, and forgiving (Ephesians 4:32).
- big ears that are quick to listen (James 1:19).
- have big eyes to look carefully and choose what is good (1 Thessalonians 5:21).
- no voice for complaining or arguing (Philippians 2:13).
- are quiet in prayer, but hop with thanksgiving and rejoicing (Philippians 4:4-6).
- have big feet to go tell others about Jesus so they can be like Easter bunnies, too (Matthew 28: 19-20).
- eat what is healthy by filling up on God’s word every day (Psalm 119:11).
In transforming the Easter Bunny and giving it new meaning, you can show your children how to look at things differently and help them realize with a little creativity and effort, Jesus can be seen in many different things.
Now You Know All About Teaching Easter To Your Young Child!
Easter is such a fun and exciting time for families. Whether you are making crafts, reading stories or cooking delicious meals, there’s always something fun right around the corner. What activity are you going to do first? Let us know in the comments below!
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