April 6, 2022 | Kristen Jordan
We have now been in the season of Lent for several weeks.
Each day during worship throughout Lent, children have been hearing stories about the life of Jesus; who he met, the people he healed and who he drew close to.
After hearing the story, children are invited to engage in the story through drawing: “Let’s draw our prayers”. Through artwork, drawing with the special medium of oil pastels, they are invited to participate in and reflect upon the story in a different way than during typical worship seasons.
It is a quiet time during which the children may draw what they have heard or what they see. Or they may think about how to include themselves in the story. Who might they be or how might they feel if they were there when the story happened? This quiet drawing time is a form of prayer, as children reflect on the story while they draw. Each child is thinking about and producing their own individual images, while they are in community with everyone around them.
Children draw beautiful and unique representations of what they hear and think.
Children are also offered a time later in our morning to share their drawings with their peers and hear what others have decided to include in their drawings.
“This is the temple.”
“This is the storm.”
“This is Jesus.”
“These are the people.”
“This is me. I am telling Jesus not to worry.”
These times of reflection require children to relay details of their own work, and require attention by their peers. Hearing others’ perspectives provides us with an opportunity to reflect and think and converse more deeply about the story or consider something we haven’t thought of before.
Children are invited to add more to their drawings later in the morning if they wish. After listening to their peers and talking about the story through their drawings, children often want to add elements to their own drawings as they reflect on the story a bit more.
Children also often have time to work with the worship basket to retell the story (or a version of it) on their own. Each of these experiences help children to enter into consideration of the story in different ways and we hope that one or more of them resonates with the children.
As children participate in the stories of Jesus’ life in multiple ways–hearing and seeing the story told, drawing and reflecting, sharing and listening, revisiting their drawing, retelling it themselves–they have an opportunity to deepen their understanding and experiences with these stories.
We are nearing the end of Lent, when we will celebrate and remember Jesus death and resurrection through the children helping to act out small and manageable parts of the story. This experience will offer yet another way for the children to engage in understanding of the events of Jesus’ life.
Then the children will bring all of the stories home in the form of a book. We hope you will enjoy sharing it together!