Sunday School Teacher's Guide - this is the second lesson in the series of Easter lessons.
The Last Supper is actually a parable. Not the usual kind though, this time Jesus is acting it out for us. By humbly washing the disciples feet during the supper does He show us an example of selfless service. Rather than washing each other's feet, we are to use the act as a symbol to humble ourselves and give generously to others. It can also represent Jesus cleansing us from our sins. Remember this was the King of Kings, Creator of all washing the feet of man who sent Him to be crucified. I've said this before, but it's worth mentioning again. When instructing young children, repetition is a positive thing. Everything is so new at this age that it is helpful to repeat important messages multiple times. The first lesson focused on the Triumphal Entry, this lesson covers the Last Supper, then Jesus praying, Jesus dies on the Cross, Jesus is Alive, and concludes with Jesus loves me.
Preschool thru Grade 1: Jesus washes the disciples feet,
we should also do nice things for others.
Grades 2 and 3: Jesus washes the disciples feet, He shows us how to treat others
better than ourselves.
The message of Jesus dying on the cross to save us, and then raising from the dead is, like Christmas, very important, maybe even more so. The message is a life changing one, and gives us forgiveness and hope for a future with God. This would be a great time to talk to the children about knowing Christ personally, and asking Him to live inside them. Remember there is no 'special' prayer that has to be said but some important acknowledgments: God loves us, we are sinners and need forgiveness from God, and He needs to become central in our life. Sometimes diagrams work to illustrate the point to older children. There are booklets with more detail at any local Christian store, online, or just ask your pastor. Remember this is the most important decision - and prayer goes a long way!
Make sure you repeat the message many times during the lesson. Send the Last Supper Take Home Sheet or the Easter Bible readings chart home with the children to encourage parents to reiterate the message during the week. It includes a poster at the bottom that the children can color and hang on their wall or refrigerator.
Preview of the lesson:
Some people like to do craft time first and story time second and some like to switch it around. I like the first option, myself.
Always consider offering Coloring Pages,or you could look at the Religious Printables Game or Easter Printables for children who aren't interested in participating in the group activity (or if you get done the group activities very quickly and need something to fill in the spare time). Everyone has a need for "alone time" once in awhile. Also, sending home the coloring pages with the Take Home sheet provides parents with much needed help in reinforcing the lessons. You can make a nice little booklet each week with the Take Home Sheet on top -- I promise that most parents will appreciate the effort!
Receive name tags. Have the children use crayons, markers, yarn and whatever other materials (such as sparkle glue) you have available to personalize their name tag.
Sing the Learning our Names song
|10 to 15 minutes||Loaf of bread name tags, scissors (or adults can precut), crayons, markers, yarn, safety pins or tape.|
Preschool thru Grade 1: Make the Last Supper Keychain. This simple keychain craft reinforces the verse from John 6:48. "I am the bread of life." Consider bringing in two or three different types of bread, discuss with the class about how the different bread is made, etc. A little taste of the bread would be a fun idea too.
Grade 2 and 3: Make Bath salts. This will reinforce the lesson of Jesus washing the disciples feet. Jesus teaches us that we need to serve or help others. Encourage the children to give this as a gift to someone, and explain the story behind the craft. An option would be to hole punch a piece of paper with the verse John 13:14 written on it, tied on with a ribbon. Another option would be to make Bubble bath instead (it's a bit easier).
|15 to 30 minutes
depending on your
Preschool thru Grade 1: Last Supper Keychain. self drying clay, keychain loop, fun foam, marker, scissors, hole punch, straw, piece of wool or string.
Grade 2 and 3: Bath salts large bowl, Epsom salts, coarse salt, baking soda, food coloring, jars, spoon, ribbon. OPTIONAL: glycerin, essential oils, perfume.
Bible Story Time:
Preschool thru Grade 1: Read The Story of The Last Supper (or read from your own store bought children's bible).
Grade 3: it's tough to know when it's the right time to start readings from the Bible, but if the children have been read a children's version of the story in the past, I believe this is a good age to introduce the King James (or your preferred) bible reading.
|10 minutes||The Coloring Pages illustrating that Jesus is the bread of life can be distributed to the children so they are able to color at home, or during the story.|
Preschool thru Grade 1: Depending on the time remaining, you could have a Last Supper Snack. You may prefer to do this during the reading, or leave it until the end (little less distracting). You can use whatever you want some sliced fruit, some kind of bread cut into cubes, and some cheese.
Grade 2 and 3: You can do the same as above if you like, and to really reinforce the message you could wash their feet. I realize that this would be too uncomfortable for the kids, instead bring in a small bowl of water and a towel and ask them how they would feel if you did wash their feet. Explain that this is probably how the disciples felt when Jesus washed their feet. Just as Jesus washed their feet, how can we do similar and give of ourselves selflessly? (This may require some time, ask them to think of something for next week.)
Standard ending song: "We Love to Learn Together"
|5 to 15 minutes||Brainstorm Board (chalkboard, whiteboard, poster board,...)
Standard ending song: "We Love to Learn Together"
Printable version of this Teacher's Guide