File:Caravaggio - Taking of Christ - Odessa.jpg

The Taking of Christ by Caravaggio. Study the artists’ paintings of the Passion as part of your Lenten activities.

 

Ready to celebrate the rest of Lent as a family? Here are several activities you can do together, whether or not you homeschool.
p=suitable for grades 1-3
m=suitable for grades 4-6
j=suitable for grades 7-9
s=suitable for grades 10-12

 Books

Besides reading the Gospel accounts of Holy Week, try reading and discussing the following books that deal with sacrifice, martyrdom, or resurrection:

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams (p).

The Tale of Three Trees by Angela Elwell Hunt (p+).

The Queen and the Cross: The Story of St. Helen by Cornelia Mary Bilinsky (p, m)

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis (p+ for reading aloud; m+ for independent reading).

Movies

We always watch Jesus of Nazareth this time of year. Here are some other movie choices you may not have thought of. All can provide interesting fodder for comparisons and contrasts with the events of Holy Week:

Disney’s Sleeping Beuaty (p+).

The Prince of Egypt (p+).

Joseph: King of Dreams (p+; see Typology section for more on Joseph).

Ben Hur –animated version by CCC (p+).

Alfred Hitchcock’s I Confess (m+; some adult situations, tastefully done, that will go over youngsters’ heads).

A Man for All Seasons (m+; about half a dozen instances of profanity, implied adultery, and divorce).

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (j+).

Typology and Prophecy

Read my post on Teaching typology with Joseph and his brothers for an explanation of typology and an entire unit of homeschool activities (p+).

For those who are well-versed in the Old Testament, brainstorm as many stories as you can that foreshadow Jesus’ Passion, Death, and Resurrection. Then choose one to discuss in detail orally or write a report on (m+).

Using a study Bible, look up the Old Testament references found in the accounts of Jesus’ Passion. Read the passages in context (j+).

Works of Mercy

Use your spring cleaning as an opportunity to donate excess toys, books, clothes, and household goods to the poor (p+).

Every year for Easter, we buy chicks for a poor family through Food for the Poor’s gift catalog. We also buy a stable animal such as a goat for Christmas (p+).

Science

Learn about the Shroud of Turin and scientific studies performed on it at The Shroud of Turin for Children. (p+)

Research the controversy surrounding brain death and hold a debate. (j+)

Food

Did you know pretzels are a traditional food for Lent?  Bake some together before Lent is over (p+ with parental supervision).

Make and eat a Seder meal in accordance with Catholic liturgical norms (p+ with parental supervision).

Music

Read and discuss the lyrics to At the Lamb’s High Feast. This is a beautiful example of typology regarding the Eucharist, the Passover, and Christ’s Death and Resurrection (m+).

Practice the words of the Tantum Ergo in Latin in preparation for Holy Thursday (m+).

Listen to St. Matthew’s Passion by Bach (p+).

Miscellaneous

Do a picture study with Caravaggio’s paintings of the Passion, found on Wikimedia. Here are some ideas for studying Caravaggio from Fischer Academy (m+).

Cover the religious statues and paintings in your home with purple cloth during Holy Week (p+).

Follow the old Jewish custom of covering mirrors when grieving, from Good Friday at noon until Easter morning (p+).

Wear black on Good Friday (p+).

 

Connie Rossini

Share with us: Can you add to our list of ideas for finishing Lent with our eyes fixed on Jesus?

Written by Connie Rossini
Hi, I'm a Catholic writer and homeschool mother of four boys. I practice Carmelite spirituality. Check out my Books page for publications to help your whole family grow in holiness.

    4 Comments

  1. Michelle April 2, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    Wow, thanks. This is a great resource for us. You are a blessing to me.

    • Connie Rossini April 2, 2014 at 12:53 pm

      Thanks, Michelle. I’m glad this helps.

  2. Theresa November 8, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Amazing. The insights you have on this blog have solidified my homeschool philosophy. My youngest of four is 7 years old – thank you for helping us on our journey! 🙂

    • Connie Rossini November 8, 2014 at 6:22 pm

      Thanks for the encouragement, Theresa. I’d love to know more about what you do in your homeschool.