Palm branches: The most obvious object for Palm Sunday is the palm branch. (If you don’t have real palm branches -be creative! ) Talk about the significance of the palm branch in the biblical story of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Then, have each child make their own palm branch out of green construction paper and wave them in the air, imagining themselves as part of the crowd welcoming Jesus.
Donkey figurines: Another object you could use for Palm Sunday is a toy donkey or figurine. (Of course you could be really radical and arrange to have someone bring a real donkey to the church parking lot!) Talk about how Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, fulfilling the prophecy in Zechariah 9:9. Then, have the children act out the story, taking turns playing the part of Jesus and riding the donkey while the other children wave their palm branches and shout "Hosanna!"
Hosanna signs: You could have your kids make signs with the word "Hosanna" written on them. Talk about what the word means (it's a Hebrew expression of adoration and praise) and how the people of Jerusalem shouted it as Jesus rode into the city. Have the children decorate their own Hosanna signs with glitter, markers, and stickers, and then wave them as they reenact the story of Palm Sunday. It could be a lot of fun.
Cloaks: (Note: You may neeed to explain what a “cloak” is.)Talk about how the people of Jerusalem spread their cloaks on the ground for Jesus to ride over. Have your kids bring in a spare cloak or jacket from home and spread them on the ground to make a "carpet" for someone to walk over. Talk about how this is a way to show honor and respect for someone.
Stones: In Luke 19:40, Jesus said that even if the people stop praising him, the stones will cry out. Collect some small stones and have the children paint them with Hosanna or other praise phrases. Discuss some ways about how they might join with creationn to praise God.
Bread: Talk about the Last Supper that Jesus had with his disciples before his crucifixion. Pass around some bread and have the children break it apart and share it with each other, just as Jesus broke bread with his disciples. You could use a loaf of bread or find some unleavened pita bread. Note: Different denominations have unique approaches to the Lord’s Supper. (Do check with your pastor if you plan on reenacting the Lord's Supper!)
Crosses: Make small crosses out of twigs, craft sticks or palm branches. Talk about how the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem eventually led to his crucifixion on the cross. Have the children make their own crosses and decorate them with symbols of faith, such as a heart or a cross.
Flags: Provide some fabrics and craft sticks to make flags. Talk about how flags can be used to show loyalty or unity, such as when people wave flags at a parade. Have your kids create their own flags with symbols of their faith (Bible, Bread, Wine, Holy Spirit fire, living water etc.) or the word "Hosanna" on them, and wave them as they act out the story of Palm Sunday and the Triumphal entry
Here are some Sunday School object lesson ideas for Maundy Thursday. (Maundy comes from the Latin word “Mandatum” which mean Commandment.) It’s the occasion that Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another..” This is simple list of ideas that you might use. My sense is that this day in Holy Week is not normally taught given that it falls mid week.
Maundy Thursday, also known as Holy Thursday, is the day before Good Friday that commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with His disciples. Here are some Sunday School object lesson ideas for Maundy Thursday:
The Bread: You might try bringing in a loaf of bread or some crackers to represent the bread that Jesus broke at the Last Supper. Discuss how Jesus said that the bread was His body, which would be broken for us. You can also have the children take turns breaking the bread and passing it around, just as Jesus did with His disciples.
The Cup: Use a cup or a chalice to represent the cup of wine that Jesus shared with His disciples at the Last Supper. Discuss how Jesus said that the wine was His blood, which would be shed for us. Depending on your denominational sensitivities, you can also have the children take turns pouring a small amount of grape juice into the cup and passing it around, just as Jesus did with His disciples.
The Footwashing: Use a basin of water and a towel to reenact the footwashing that Jesus did with His disciples at the Last Supper. Have the children / youth take turns washing each other's feet, and discuss how this was a symbol of humility and service. Explain how Jesus taught His disciples to serve one another in love, just as He had served them.
The Commandment: You could try using a large piece of paper or a whiteboard to write out the wonderful commandment thatt Jesus gave His disciples at the Last Supper: "Love one another as I have loved you." Discuss how this commandment is at the heart of the Christian faith, and how we are called to love others in the same way that Jesus loved us.
The Betrayal - coins: Use a small bag of coins to represent the thirty pieces of silver that Judas received for betraying Jesus. Discuss how Judas' betrayal led to Jesus' arrest and crucifixion, and how this event reminds us of the importance of honesty, loyalty, and trust. It also reminds us of various way that we are tempted to betray Jesus.
These are just a few Sunday School object lesson ideas for Maundy Thursday. Even if you don’t use them during Holy Week you could use them at some other time in the year. Remember to keep the lessons age-appropriate and interactive to engage the children's attention and help them better understand the significance of this important day in the Christian faith. Blessings - A.H.