A very simple Easter story with sensory props. I use this for very young children and children with additional needs.
The pictures are of the felt-board pictures I make with the children’s help. You can use them individually (see bottom of post) or I have them in a power-point presentation [Click -> 3 Special Days]
Give out to children
- Palm leaves (real, plastic or cut from card)
- Palm crosses
- Small drawstring bags full of herbs (eg lavender, rosemary)
- Pictures / Power Point / toys / puppets or some other visual of the story
- Large empty egg
Three Special Days
Who knows what celebration is coming soon? [answers] That’s right, Easter!
What special things do we eat at Easter? [answers] That’s right. Easter eggs!
But I wonder, why eggs? Here is what the Bible says happened on the very first Easter.
There were three special days, and one big surprise. You have three things, and we will use them in the story.
- For the first special day, some of you have a big leaf from a palm tree.
When it comes in the story, you can wave your palm leaf, and wave it near the children next to you as well. But for now, put your palm leaf down.
- For the second special day, some of you have a small cross.
When it comes in the story, you can feel your cross, and let the children next to you feel the cross as well. But for now, put your cross down.
- For the third special day, some of you have a bag of herbs. These are dried plants that smell nice.
When it comes in the story, you can crumple it and smell it. Let the children next to you smell it as well. But for now, put your bag down.
Finally, for the big surprise, I have a big golden egg. So let’s find out about the very first Easter
Scene 1 – Palm Sunday
The first special day is called Palm Sunday.
There were crowds of people waiting to see someone very special. I wonder who it is?
There were old people and young people. There were crowds and crowds and crowds.
And then he arrived! Coming around the corner, was Jesus, riding on a donkey.
All the people shouted and cheered! Some of them put their coats on the floor to make a carpet.They waved palm leaves and cheered and sang, “Hooray, Hooray for Jesus!” What a noise!
You have palm leaves. Let’s be the crowd, cheering and waving our palm leaves. “Hooray, Hooray for Jesus!”
How do you feel, waving your palm leaves? [answers] Happy!
The people were very happy because Jesus did amazing things with the power of God.
Some people said that Jesus was God! But all this was about to change on the second special day!
Scene 2 – Gethsemane
The second special day is called Good Friday.
Jesus went to a garden. Jesus went there to pray.
Jesus’ friends were sad. Then one shouted, “Look out! Here comes a Roman soldier!”
The soldiers had come to capture Jesus.
The soldiers put Jesus on a big cross and left him to die.
A friend called Mary sat and waited with Jesus. She felt sad.
You have a small cross. Feel the edges of your cross. What do they feel like? Smooth or rough? Soft or hard? [answers] Rough and hard.
Jesus’ friends were sad and frightened, because they did not know about the third special day.
Scene 3 – The Empty Tomb
The third special day is called Easter Day.
After Jesus died, his friends buried him in a cave. They put a big stone across the entrance, like a door. The cave was in a garden.
The garden was beautiful, but everyone was sad because Jesus was dead.
On Sunday morning, Jesus’ friend, Mary, went to the cave to put some sweet-smelling herbs on Jesus’ body.
You have bags of herbs. Crumple them now and smell them. What is the smell? [answers] Sweet, nice.
Now comes the big surprise.
When Mary got to the cave, she found the big stone had been rolled away!
She looked inside and guess what was in the cave. [open egg] Nothing!
The cave was empty! Jesus was not there!
Mary looked around and then she saw … Guess who … Jesus!
Christians believe that Jesus came back to life on Easter day, and that he is alive for ever and ever.
On Easter Day the cave was empty, just like an Easter egg.
So that’s why we eat Easter eggs, and that is what the Bible tells us about the Three Special Days and One Big Surprise!