March 12, 2011

Lenten craft for children

This is the first Lent in which my children, ages 3.5 and 2, will really be participating, and I wanted to keep it simple and fun for them. I think there's probably only one thing worse than doing nothing to expose your children to the faith, and that is overdoing it! (This is a big fault of mine -- I have a tendency to plan out 12 different things and then feel stressed and guilty when only 2 or 3 of them get done.) After perusing some of my favorite domestic Catholic blogs I decided on two activities: coloring a Lenten calendar and "sacrifice beans."

I modeled our Lenten calendar after the wonderful printable found over at Catholic Icing, with only a few minor artistic changes:

As simple as it is to color in one square per day, my 3.5 daughter absolutely loves it. It is one of the first things she wants to do each day!

The Lenten tradition of having a "sacrifices and good deeds" activity can be found all over the internet in various forms. This is what I decided to try this year:

Every time the children do something thoughtful, kind, or without complaining/whining, I add beans to the jar. (I have been generous with the beans -- my children are very little, after all!) On Easter I plan on replacing all the beans with a very special candy of some sort: a tangible representation of how Jesus takes all our measly efforts, which are literally "worth beans," and with His grace and merits transforms them into something very sweet and lovely indeed!


  1. These are great ideas! I might have to copy you. I like the coloring calendar, because they can't read yet, so it'll be a nice way to count down.

  2. Hi I am new here and love your blog. I am following from Catholic Mothers Online. We also are using the Lent Calendar printable and the bean jar in our home. The kids are loving it! The calendar is great because the kids are able to keep track of where we are in Lent, and also can see the days we are not to have meat. Your blog is full of great resources. I love that! I am always looking for new books/media to add to our home. Thanks for sharing and I will be back often.