Reply to "ART Workshop Lessons and Ideas for Baptism of Jesus / John the Baptist"

The Baptism of Jesus

Art Workshop (with some science) – Holy Spirit Activities: Dry Ice and Origami

Summary of Lesson Activities:

The children will talk about the Holy Spirit descending on Jesus when he was baptized, and also that John said Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit. They will see a dry ice demonstration as a way of thinking about being baptized by the Holy Spirit. Younger children will then make origami boats and do experiments with blowing them around on water to think about how the spirit moves us. Older children will make origami doves and look up Bible verses to fill in a crossword puzzle (provided).

Scripture References:

Matthew 3:1-17, Mark 1:1-11, Luke 3:1-18 (John’s sermons about repentance), John 1:6-8,15,19-28 (John talks about Jesus), 29-36 (John recognizes Jesus when the Holy Spirit descends on him and makes him known), 3:22-30 (John says that Jesus is greater than him), 3:22,4:1-2 (Jesus’s disciples baptized people), Acts 2:1-4 (Pentecost)

Memory Verse: “Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  ~ Acts 2:38

Objectives for this Workshop: The children will learn:

  • About Jesus: that God sent the Holy Spirit down onto him when he was baptized. The Holy Spirit led him to do what God wanted.
  • About us: that Jesus baptizes his followers with the Holy Spirit, as John foretold.
  • That we should: ask Jesus to give us the gift of the Holy Spirit, and help us “hear” what the Holy Spirit wants us to do (not hearing with our ears, but with our spirit, our conscience, our love)
  •  To Share: do what the Holy Spirit “tells” us to do.

Materials List:

  • Dry Ice demonstration:
    • wide-mouth plastic picnic thermos or water bottle with a spout that lifts up. OR Plastic bottle with a tight-fitting lid (e.g. 1 or 2L milk jug)
    • Water
    • Gloves to handle dry ice
    • Dry ice (in small pieces)
    • Scoop and funnel to get it into the bottle
    • Small thermos or cooler to keep dry ice in during class.
  • Origami Boats (younger group)
    • Origami paper
    • Pattern for boats
    • Large bowls or dishtubs of water, one for every 3-4 kids
    • Toothpicks to make sails
    • Scissors
  • Origami Doves (older group)
    • Origami paper
    • Dove pattern
    • Bibles
    • Holy Spirit crossword puzzle with Bible references (attached)

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the story and story background.
  • Write memory verse on the blackboard/whiteboard
  • Dry Ice Demonstration:
    • Buy dry ice, preferably in small pellets. Store in freezer. Don't buy it too far in advance, because it will melt slowly even in a regular freezer. Leave it in the freezer until you need it.
    • If using milk jug, cut a hole near the top of the plastic bottle or in the lid.
    • Take water jugs to classroom with enough water for both activities.
  • Origami:
    • Learn how to fold both items: boat(younger) and dove (older)
    • Print Bible verse references


Opening- Welcome and Introduction:

Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Have them introduce themselves if there are new ones or any you don’t know. Take attendance.


Open your Bible to Matthew 3.

  • If this is not the first rotation, ask the children to remind you what story they did last week. Let them tell you the main parts. If this is the first rotation, tell them the story.
  • Make sure they know what happened when Jesus came up out of the water, and who the Voice and Dove are. (Matthew 3:16,17)
  • Tell them that the Trinity is one God in three parts: the Father, the Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit, and this is one place in the Bible where we see all three of them together.
  • Then tell them that this week we are going to talk about the Holy Spirit.


  • What is a spirit? (like a ghost, invisible, someone who lives but you can’t see him/her, what is inside out heads—the part that thinks and feels emotions, the part of us that lives even when our bodies die)
  • What is God’s spirit like? (God, Jesus, because they are all part of God, like a wind, like a fire)
  • Tell the children to listen to Matthew 3:11 to find out what John said about Jesus. (he will baptize us with the Holy Spirit and with fire.) Wow! Let’s read about when Jesus did that.
  • Read Acts 2:1-4. Did you hear what the Holy Spirit was like? (wind, tongues of fire)
  • Jesus baptizes all of his followers with the Holy Spirit, but he doesn’t usually do it in such an exciting way. Usually the baptism takes place quietly in our hearts.

Dig-Main Content and Reflection:

Dry Ice Demonstration:

Get the dry ice from the freezer and take out the bottle/thermos. Tell the children you are going to show them what being baptized with the Holy Spirit might look like if we could see the Holy Spirit.

  • Show them the dry ice and warn them not to touch it because it will burn them with cold (feels a lot like being burned with fire).
  • Put on the gloves and put the dry ice into the bottle. Add water. Put the lid on tightly and watch the steam pour out of the hole. We can imagine that this steam is the Holy Spirit.
  • “Pour” the steam onto the children, one by one. If they are nervous, pour it on yourself or a helper first. Reassure them that it doesn’t hurt and the steam won’t burn them. (It is carbon dioxide from the dry ice, which is frozen carbon dioxide, along with water vapour. There is carbon dioxide in the air and in our bodies all the time.)
  • Point out how the steam engulfs them and then disappears. This is like when we get baptized in water, because the water dries off. We remember that we were baptized, but we don’t stay wet. We trust God to be with us even after we are dry.
  • It’s the same if we have a feeling that God is very close to us. The feeling doesn’t stay with us forever, but we remember it. Then we have to trust God that he is still near, because he says he will never leave us.

Tell the children that they are now going to do an activity to help us learn more about the Holy Spirit.

Craft Activity:

Younger children:

  • Show them how to make the paper boats and help them each make one.
  • Get out the bowls/tubs and fill them with water.
  • Have the children put the boats on the water (spread out the bottoms so they don’t tip over), and tell them to pretend that they are in the boats and that God’s Holy Spirit is the wind that is guiding them. They should blow on their boats to try to make them move. They may need to take turns so they don’t blow each others’ boats.
  • Have them try to blow their boats to a particular place. Does it work? (it will probably be difficult)
  • Remove the boats from the water. Have them make a sail by cutting a piece of paper into a square, putting a toothpick through it in two places, and sticking the bottom of the toothpick through the top of the little sail on their boat.
  • Try again to blow the boat in a certain direction. Does it help if you move the sail so it is flat against the wind? This shows that we must pay attention to the Holy Spirit so we will know what he wants us to do. We pay attention by reading the Bible and praying for guidance.
  • They should keep doing this. If their boats get waterlogged or while they are waiting for another turn, they can make more boats and sails.

Older Children:

  • Let them follow the pattern to make an origami dove.
  • Give them the crossword puzzle and Bibles. Tell them to look up the Bible references and fill in the crossword puzzle.  
  • If they finish with time left over, they can make another dove.

All Together:

When both groups are done, or when enough time has passed, give the children a two-minute warning to stop their activities. Bring them together. Have one or two younger children demonstrate what they did with their boats and what it teaches about the Holy Spirit. Then have the older children show their doves and tell the younger children some things that God’s word says about the Holy Spirit.


  • Thank God for sending us first Jesus, and also the Holy Spirit. Ask him to help us hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and do what he says.
  • Have the children help you clean up.

Origami: There are lots of origami patterns on the internet, many with printable patterns. Others are not easily printable, but could be brought to class on a mobile device or laptop. Search for “origami traditional boat” for the boat. Use the one that starts out looking like a hat, because it is fairly simple and floats on water. Search for “dove” or “peace dove” for the dove. You might want to choose a couple of patterns, one easier and one harder, for children with different folding abilities.  

The dry ice idea was adapted from Neil MacQueen’s post in 


A lesson written by Sharon Hamilton from: Argyle Road Baptist Church
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, 

 A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.


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Crossword Puzzle whose clues are Bible verses about the Holy Spirit. For grades 4-6. Inc. is a volunteer-run, 100% member supported, 501(c)3 non-profit Sunday School lesson ministry. All content here is the copyrighted property of its listed author. You are welcome to borrow and adapt content here for non-commercial teaching purposes --as long as both the site and author is referenced. Posting here implies permission for others to use your content for non-commercial purposes. Inc reserves the right to manage, move, condense, delete, and otherwise improve all content posted to the site. Read our Terms of Service. Google Ad Note: Serving the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, S. Africa, and more! is rated 5 stars on Google based on 55 reviews.