Valentine’s Day: 2 Crafts
Valentine Cards: For Parents, Grandparents, Relatives
There is a lot of red, white, and pink construction paper, both 9X12 and 18X12, in the resource room. Take as much as you need for your students.
There are also doilies in red and pink, and the following poems printed in hearts, cut out and ready to be glued onto the larger colored hearts. There are examples of the finished products of hearts and cards in the resource room.
If they highlight the capitalized letters down the center, it spells Valentine.
For God so LoVed the World,
That he gAve
Believeth In Him
Should Not Perish.
But have Everlasting Life.
Valentine – Love Your Neighbor
Read the story of the Good Samaritan. Luke 10:25-37.
How did the man show kindness to the hurt man?
How can you show kindness to people around you?
Why does God want us to be kind to our neighbors?
Neighbors are not only the people who live next to us but also everyone we meet. Jesus wants us to love everyone. We should start by being kind to our parents and our siblings. You can start by sharing your snack with your brothers and sisters.
Love to Give
Love Your Neighbors
Give each child a sandwich bag, and let children fill the bags with trail mix. Point out that the candies remind us that people come in many different colors. The raisins remind us that some people are older, with wrinkly skin. Tell children that pretzel sticks show us that some people are tall, while the cereal shows us that some people are shorter.
Distribute red construction paper hearts and pink poem hearts, one per bag per person. Children should glue the pink poem hearts onto the middle of the red construction paper hearts.
Punch a hole in the top center of the hearts, and let children pull the yarn through the holes.
Help children tie the yarn around the bags.
They should take the bags home to share with their parents and siblings. Although it says to share with a neighbor, I wouldn’t recommend they do this. They should instead share with family members.
All colors, all ages, short and tall;
All sizes, both big and small;
Love your neighbors;
Love them all.
Pink poem heart for each student. I have the food
Red construction heart for each student. items in my
An 8inch piece of yarn for each student. office.
One sandwich bag (that doesn’t zip) for each student. Come see me.
M&Ms to be shared by all.
Pretzels sticks to be shared by all.
Cereal to be shared by all. (Kix or Chex)
Pencils to write their names.
Glue sticks to be used on the hearts.
I do not have an example to look at, but I do have the supplies both in the resource room and in my office.
St. Patrick’s Day: 1 Craft
Blessed Trinity Shamrock
Take the 3 small white banners and write one word on each: Father, Son, Holy Spirit.
Write student’s name on the back of the dark green shamrock.
Glue the light green shamrock onto the dark green shamrock.
Glue one banner at the top of each petal of the shamrock.
Place a felt/foam object onto each petal of the shamrock to represent one of the indicated persons in the Blessed Trinity.
Read the Story of St. Patrick
to the students, and discuss how he converted Ireland to Catholicism with the use of the shamrock to explain the Blessed Trinity. All 3 petals are needed to make one leaf. The three persons of the Blessed Trinity work together and comprise God.
I have copies of the story of St. Patrick in my office. Explain how through his obedience to God, he traveled to Ireland, and was able to convert many souls. His followers, those he converted, then traveled throughout Europe converting many other souls.
For those who would like a further expansion of the lesson, we have an excellent book called, 3 in 1 (The Story of God)
, that explains the Blessed Trinity by using the three parts of an apple.
Lent: 4 Crafts
Sometimes a visual aid is very helpful in conveying the realities of our faith. One of our Lenten traditions that we are revisiting this year is our Cross of Mercy. We start with a large cross on the wall, simply made by taping together sheets of brown construction paper onto a piece of white butcher paper.
The idea is to cover the brown cross with colorful flowers representing our works of mercy and sacrifices. Everyone writes their works of mercy performed on the flowers and glues them on the cross. Sometimes blank flowers are added if a person wishes to keep the sacrifice private. We print out lists of the Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy and put them on the wall near the cross. It is easy to keep a little basket containing colored flowers, a pen, and a glue stick handy. You can also add the Scripture verse, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me Matthew 25:40,
either somewhere on or near the cross.
There are many, many daily opportunities within the family to perform works of mercy: comforting the crying (baby), feeding the hungry (toddler), giving drink (tea) to the thirsty (mom), clothe the naked (help younger siblings get dressed), forgive injuries (boisterous brother) - the possibilities are endless.
Our hope is that by the time Easter arrives, there won't be any more brown paper visible. Our cross serves as a constant reminder of our call to mercy, and that our good works and sacrifices can be united to the Cross of Christ.
Jelly Bean / Mercy Jar
1. Place a large mason jar on the classroom prayer table.
2. Each week have students tell all of the works of mercy (spiritual and
corporal) that they performed that week.
3. For each Work of Mercy, that student gets to add a jelly bean to the jar.
4. Once the jar is full, the classroom can have a party.
5. Be sure to keep a lid on the jar everyday.
6. The last class before Easter, the students get to share the jelly beans.
Jelly Bean Prayer
Using jelly beans, designate the various colors as follows:
Red for the blood of Christ (making a sacrifice)
Green for the shade of the palm (doing a good deed)
Yellow for God's light (showing kindness to others)
Orange for prayers at twilight (good behavior during bed time prayer)
Black for sweet rest at night (behaving well when time to go to bed)
Purple for days of sorrow (apologizing to someone)
Pink for each new tomorrow (forgiving others).
Starting on Ash Wednesday, begin rewarding the children with a jelly bean of the appropriate color each time they do something that corresponds with one of these acts. On the last class before Easter, allow the children to share all the jelly beans they have earned in the jar as part of their Easter Party.
Paper Chain – Countdown to Easter
40 days of Lent - Works of Mercy
1. Each student gets one banner that states: 40 Days to Easter.
2. Have each student write his/her name on the line.
3. Have each student pick up and tape into a circle 40 strips of paper.
The papers will state a work of mercy that he/she must perform that day.
4. Once all 39 have been taped together in a chain, take the last strip and be sure
to loop threw the slot in the name banner to attach chain to banner.
5. Students should take the paper chains home and hang them up in their
homes for use there.
6. Each day the students should tear off one link of chain, read what it says, and
perform that work of mercy.
7. Be sure to make them aware, that they should only tear off chain links on
Monday-Saturdays. If they wish to count Sundays, they will need 6 more
There are blank chain links for the students to fill in their own ideas for works
of mercy. Be sure to have some of these for the older grades.
All the supplies you need are in the resource room. An example is hanging next to the supplies.
Some examples of the paper slips / links to the chain are:
Today I will:
say something nice to my brother/sister.
Today I will:
serve food at one of our family meals.
wash the dishes.
bring a drink to someone in need.
help fold the laundry.
put away the laundry.
say a prayer for a relative.
say a prayer for a friend.
Bury the Alleluia
During lent, we don’t say the “Alleluia” or “Gloria” during Mass. A good way to symbolize this to the students during lent is the “bury the Alleluias.” All you need to do is create an Alleluia of some kind (like a poster or banner) and then on Shrove Tuesday (Mardi Gras), the day before Ash Wednesday, have the students take it to it’s hiding place (somewhere in the child’s home, this could be a drawer). Then you have the student brings it out on Easter Sunday morning and hangs it!
Easter: 2 Crafts plus one poem for Jelly Beans
He is Risen Paper Plate Tomb Craft
Because of lack of space to dry the painted items, and time constraints, I would skip painting the tomb. Just use the white paper plates.
Thick Paper Plate
Standard and Jumbo Craft Sticks
Printed Figures – students will color these.
from the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis Office of Marriage and Family Life website
Paint the back and front of the paper plate gray. Allow time to dry.
While the paper plate is drying. Print, cut out, and color the angel and Jesus.
Once the paper plate is dry, cut in half and cut out an opening on one paper plate half. Glue the paper plate halves together as shown.
Glue the paper Jesus and angel onto the paper plate tomb.
Glue the craft sticks into cross shapes and glue to the tomb as shown.
Lightly spray the gray cardstock with water on both sides and form into a rock shape. The water makes it easier to crinkle and will hold its form better. Allow time for your craft to dry.
Plastic eggs, a basket, story objects that can fit in the eggs from the list below, a permanent marker, 8-10- carpet squares.
a small cross, nails, a small sponge dipped I vinegar, coins, (Judas or the thief on the cross), black cloth ( the temple curtain or dark day), a small grapevine wreath (crown of thorns), flowers (Easter), a small numeral 3 (three days), a small piece of evergreen (palm branch), a cracker ( Last Supper), a stone, and any other objects you wish to use to tell the Easter story.
Put the story object in the eggs. Be sure to leave one egg empty (the empty tomb). Using the permanent marker, number the eggs in the order of the Easter story. (The number of the eggs you use will depend on the number of objects you choose from the list and also on the attention span of the children in your group.) Place the eggs in the basket.
Put the carpet squares on the floor in the shape of a cross. Have the children sit in a circle around the cross. Take egg number one out of the basket, open it, and tell the first part of the story. Pass the object around the circle so that all the children get a change to hold it. When it gets to the last child, have him or her place it on the carpet square cross. Continue until the basket is empty. Join hands in the circle and close with prayer. When your devotion time is over, place the objects in your worship area. ( In groups, older children can take turns choosing an egg and explaining the role of the object it contains to each other.)
Jelly Bean Prayer
Red is for the blood He gave,
Green is for the grass he made.
Yellow is for the sun so bright,
Orange is for the edge of night.
Black is for the sins we made,
White is for the grace he gave.
Purple is for his hour of sorrow,
Pink is for our new tomorrow.
A bag full of jelly beans is yummy to eat,
It’s a picture, a promise, a special treat,
To help us remember Jesus’ work complete,
Gives us hope beyond any earthly sweet.
Works of Mercy
Corporal Works of Mercy
Feed the Hungry – Collect food for the poor. Cook dinner for your family. Serve a snack to your classmates. Share your treat with your sister or brother. Buy or make a birthday cake for a friend. Set the table for a meal. Wash the dishes or table after the meal. Help do the grocery shopping. Bring the groceries from the car into the house and put them away. Work in a cafeteria at school or work. Help serve food at a soup kitchen. Take some of your allowance and give it to the poor for food.
Give Drink to the Thirsty – Pour a drink for a child. Boost a child up to a fountain. Bring a drink to someone working in the yard. Hand a cup of water to someone running a race. Buy a drink for a friend. Mix up the drinks for dinner time. Serve drinks at a party. Feed a bottle to a baby. Bring a drink to mom or dad when they are thirsty. Don’t take a long shower, help conserve on water. Give water to your pet or animals that you are raising. Drink all that is your bottle or soda can, don’t waste the drink.
Clothe the Naked – Help fold the laundry. Help put away the laundry. Do the ironing. Help sew / mend some clothing. Collect clothing for the poor. Share your clothes with a brother or sister. Help your little brother or sister get dressed. Empty the diaper pail. Wash your bed sheets. Make your brother or sister bed. Put a blanket on your sleeping sibling to keep them warm. Tie your little brother or sister’s shoes.
Shelter the Homeless – Clean your bedroom. Vacuum the carpets. Help fix the shingles on your roof. Clean out the gutters on your roof. Mow your lawn, or someone else’s for free. Give money to the poor. Help build a house for the poor. Give up your bed for a visiting relative. Help plant bulbs, flowers, or trees in the yard. Clean out the fish tank. Pick up the dog poop from the yard. Pick up the trash from the yard.
Visit the Imprisoned (injured) – Take communion to someone in jail (only adults can do this). Visit an elderly relative who doesn’t get out of the house much. Visit an elderly relative in a nursing home. Walk your injured neighbor’s dog. Take a friend shopping with you (that doesn’t get out much). Baby-sit your neighbor’s children while the parents are injured. Feed your neighbor’s pets while they are in the hospital. Help your injured neighbor clean their garage. Help your injured neighbor wash their car. Bake cookies for a military person overseas / in the war. Do the dusting in your grandparents’ or a relatives’ home. Wash the dishes for your injured friend. Sweep off your elderly neighbor’s porch.
Visit the Sick – Send a card to a sick relative. Play cards with someone in the hospital. Read a book to a child in the hospital. Cut the food and feed someone who needs help. Take soup to grandparent or an ailing relative. Mow the lawn for a neighbor who is injured. Visit a friend who is sick or injured. Lend a hand to someone getting in or out of a car after surgery, or hold open a door. Spend time talking on the phone to a friend who is hurt. Carry the books of someone on crutches. Bandage a brother or sister’s cut / scrape. Give a blanket or a pillow to a sick parent.
Spiritual Works of Mercy
Bury the Dead – attend a funeral, place flowers on a grave, visit a cemetery with a friend who lost someone, bring food to a grieving family, send a card to the family of someone who died, etc. Attend a funeral at the cemetery. Go to a funeral Mass. Help carry the casket at a funeral. Attend a wake with a grieving friend. Visit a cemetery / columbarium and say a prayer for someone there. Pick up trash in the cemetery area. Help clean a gravesite. Place flags on the graves of veterans on special days. Place flowers on a grave. Visit a cemetery with a friend who lost someone they loved. Bring food to a family grieving the loss of a loved one. Send a card to the family of someone who died.
Admonish the Sinner – Gently correct a friend who is committing a sin. Encourage your friend not to bully by calling names or spreading gossip. Speak up and defend your faith when you hear someone slander God, a Saint, or the Church. Speak out when you see someone abuse a pet. Speak out when you see someone abuse a child. Tell your friend to stop stealing because you don’t want to see them in jail. Don’t listen to a friend brag about the crimes they committed; instead tell them that they will have a lot of punishment to work off. Don’t encourage someone to gossip; instead change the subject. Advise your friend to wish someone well rather than to say “good luck.” Explain to your friend that we should not read or believe in horoscopes. This is sinful. Tell your friend not to take God’s name in vain or to use swear words. Ask your friend or sister / brother not to talk to you during the Mass. You don’t want to miss any part of the Mass, and it is sinful to play around at Mass.
Instruct the Ignorant – Tell your brother that lying is a sin. Instruct your brother or sister about our religion. Invite someone to Mass with you. Teach someone about the sacraments. Help your friend with their homework. Explain to someone that God is watching our every action. Try to convince a friend to walk away from an argument before it becomes a fight. Teach someone to be kind to others. Visit the grotto and tell someone about Mary and St. Bernadette. Advise a friend to turn to the catechism for answers to questions about our faith. Gently correct a non-Catholic who believes something about Catholics that is not true. Remind your friend which days are Holy Days of Obligation so that they don’t miss Mass and commit a sin. Turn the channel when something immoral appears on the T.V. Tell your sister / brother / friend that watching nudity or listening to dirty jokes is sinful.
Counsel the Doubtful – Encourage your friend not to give up hope. Answer questions people have about your faith. Give advice to a friend about faith and morals. Listen to and advise a confused friend. Encourage someone to seek help from professionals when needed. Encourage someone to read the bible. Be a consoling shoulder to a friend who is doubting their faith. Give a prayer book or a bible to someone who doesn’t have one. Advise your friend to pray when they want an answer to a confusing situation. Help your friend find an answer to a question. Lead by example…show someone the way to live a Christian life. Remind your friend that God loves everyone and will forgive anything, no matter what they did, so long as they say sorry.
Comfort the Sorrowful – Give someone a hug or a tissue when they cry. Accompany a friend to a funeral service. Visit a friend who is felling sad and staying home. Take a baked good to the new neighbor who is feeling lonely. Share the love of God and tell the sad person that God loves him or her. Smile at someone to brighten their day. Talk to someone your age who looks lonely. Make a new friend. Play with a new classmate. Help make he or she feel welcome in the new school. Make a card to cheer up a friend. Draw and send a picture to a grieving relative. Share a nice story about the dead person with their family and friends.
Bear Wrongs Patiently – Don’t get mad when your little brother breaks your toy. Don’t hate your parents when they break promises to you. Don’t try to get even with someone who has hurt or insulted you. Smile when someone is mean to you. Don’t insist on always being right. Don’t blame God when something goes wrong. Turn to God with your problems. Pray and ask for His help and guidance. Don’t get upset when someone is seated before you at a restaurant. Don’t be upset when someone is chosen for the game before you. Don’t be upset when someone gets a better grade than you when you feel that you should have been given a better one. When your brother or sister injures you, talk to them instead of hitting back. Show patience when your brother or sister takes something of yours. Don’t be quick to tell your parents; wait it out.
Forgive all Injuries – Forgive your friend when they lie about you. Continue to be their friend by giving them another chance. Turn the other cheek. When someone bumps you in the hall – don’t scream ouch, just shrug it off and move on. When someone insults you, don’t insult them. If someone steals from you, don’t insist on repayment. If someone hurts one of your family members, don’t hold a grudge. If your friend blames you for something you didn’t do, don’t try to get even, just forgive and forget. If someone cheated in the game, don’t insist that you won, just let it go. If someone borrowed something and broke it, forgive them and don’t insist on a replacement. When a non-Catholic says something evil about you and your faith, don’t get mad. Forgive their ignorance. Don’t condemn anyone or try to find fault. Forgive those who insult you for what you look like or wear.
Pray for the Living and the Dead – Attend a funeral. Pray for those who need something (food, money, job, etc.) at Mass. Say daily prayers for family and friends. Attend extra Masses. Say your rosary daily. Attend a healing service to pray for the sick. Have a Mass said for a parent or grandparent that died. Pray for those who were killed in a tragic event or storm. Pray for the families who lost a loved one to a tragic event or storm. Pray for our nation and all world leaders to be honest and lead well. Pray for the Pope, clergy, and all of our church leaders. Pray for the Souls in Purgatory.