Drama, Lego and Puppets Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources... for multiple parts of Holy Week
Post your Sunday School drama and puppets lessons, ideas, activities, and resources for Holy Week here.
- Please include a scripture reference, supply lists, sources, suggested age range. age modification, etc.
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- Please be careful not to post copyrighted materials. Excerpting and paraphrasing is okay, but please include attribution of the original source.
Including the Cross, Jesus, Caiaphas, Pilate, Scourging, Nails, Centurion, Golgotha, Place of the Skull, Calvary, Empty Tomb, Resurrection, Women, Mary Magdalene,, Gardner, Peter, and related stories. Matthew 26, Mark 14, Mark 16, Luke 22, John 18, Matthew 28, Mark 16, John 20:1-18, Luke 24, resurrection, etc.
Bible lessons for Holy Week—with Drama, puppets, scripts, skits, acting, newsroom, etc.
A Holy Week Drama idea (not including the Resurrection story)
Summary of Lesson Activities:
All children will actively participate—with plenty of parts—in a number of scenes that retell the story of Holy Week from Palm Sunday up through the trial, crucifixion, and burial. (Only narration for these last parts of the story—no acting!)
- Read the scripture for this lesson.
- Read and reflect on the overview material provided.
- Gather the following materials:
- Palm Branches
- Donkey ears or a mask
- Cardboard boxes to act as tables, sheets to cover them, play money, merchandise (fake fruit, etc.)
- A Bell
- Last Supper table + foods (refer to lesson below)
- Communion chalice, juice + bread for distribution
- Garden scene (trees), campfire, Shields for guards
- Audio Equipment
- Music for Hosanna singing
- Garden scene crickets, frogs, etc.
- Microphone with an amplifier, to create the voice of Jesus
Lesson Plan: Opening
Instruct your students to form two lines facing each other. Ask them to sit down while you explain what is about to happen. Tell the kids that they are about to witness the events leading up to Jesus death, by re-enacting some of these events. Everyone will have a roll to play. We are all a part of the story of Jesus.
Say: This story is filled with both happiness and sadness. Remember that everything that happened was according to Gods great plan.
Ask them to name some of the events that they recall from our story (Palm Sunday, the Last Supper, etc.) You may wish to write their replies on a whiteboard in whatever order they are offered. If desired, spend time reviewing the order of these events.
Have them find some of these stories in the Bible—by looking for headings. Are there are events that the children have left out?
Point out how different gospels include some of the same events. [Depending on your time and the age of your students, you can dig deeper into the Bible. For example, use a Concordance to discover which gospel does not include the story of Jesus clearing the Temple.]
Say: At the end of each event, I will ring a bell. [Ring the bell now.] This bell will signify a change to the next scene or event. When you hear the bell, raise your hands up and shout "Praise God," and then, if you are standing, sit down.
Do: Practice this with the kids for a warm-up.
Say: We will all be participating in our drama. Some of us will need to play the role of certain key characters in our story.
Ask: Who do you suppose are some of the characters in our story?
Do: Assign roles:
- The Voice of Jesus
- Donkey (to wear a headpiece with ears)
- Disciples Peter, James, John
Start the drama!
Scene 1: Palm Parade
Narrator: [Stand at the head of the lines.] Come everyone! We are entering the gates of Jerusalem [wide gesture to indicate imaginary gates]. We are here to celebrate the Passover feast, and look, [Point off in the distance.] Jesus is coming too! Look there he is, riding on a donkey.
[Jesus pauses at the beginning of the lines until the narration stops and the music starts.]
Narrator: Jesus is the one who comes to save us - the one who speaks the word of God - the one who heals the sick, and the one who has performed amazing miracles. Let's welcome Jesus with loud Hosannas and sing praises to God.
[Music tape begins. The kids wave branches, sing, and parade with Jesus about the room.]
[At the end of the music, the bell is rung. Kids raise arms with Praise God, then sit down. Jesus freezes, then sits down too.]
Scene 2: Temple Jesus overturns the Tables
[Cardboard box tables are set up with a white sheet covering. Appropriate props can be placed on table to represent buying and selling. Actors: merchant(s) and Jesus.]
Narrator: Jesus has come to worship in the great Temple of Jerusalem. But what does he find happening outside the temple doors? Its a noisy marketplace! Merchants, salespeople, and money-changers are using Gods temple to sell things, and Gods people are being cheated.
Jesus: This is a place of prayer, not a den of thieves!! [Jesus overturns the tables.]
Narrator: What Jesus did at the Temple made the priests and leaders very angry. They became enemies of Jesus and plotted to get rid of him. They didn't understand what Jesus was all about. They worried that he was a threat to their religion and their way of life. They worried that he was becoming a powerful leader who would cause the people to rise up against the government.
Scene 3: The Last Supper
Narrator: Come let us gather together to celebrate the Passover Feast.
[Instruct everyone to make a big circle around the Passover table. Jesus takes his place in the centre. ]
Narrator: Passover is one of the most important celebrations of the Jewish religion. Does anyone remember what historic event is celebrated at Passover? The Jewish slaves in Egypt were freed when the angel of death passed over their homes, and the Egyptian firstborn sons were killed. Then, after this tragedy, Pharaoh finally released the slaves to let them go with Moses.
As part of the Passover meal, some special foods are served.
[Point out each of the following foods and explain its significance.]
Parsley a sign of spring. It is dipped in salt water as a reminder of the tears shed in slavery in Egypt.
Haroset - a mixture of apple, walnuts, lemon juice, cinnamon and honey - represents the mortar used to make the bricks that were laid by the slaves.
Matzoh - unleavened bread - a symbol of the haste in which the slaves left.
Lamb - A lamb was sacrificed to pay for sin. God instructed the slaves to sprinkle the blood of a lamb on their door posts and the angel of death would pass by their homes.
Jesus gathered with his twelve disciples to celebrate this meal together. He knew it would be his last supper with them before he would be arrested and put to death. He spoke to his disciples about many things, and tried to prepare them for what was about to happen.
Jesus: Don't be troubled or afraid. Remember what I told you I am going away, but I will come back to you again. If you really love me, you will be very happy for me, for now. I can go to the Father, who is greater than I am. I have told you these things before they happen so that when they do, you will believe.
Narrator: Jesus gave his disciples a special sign to remember him by. Today, we call this the sacrament of Holy Communion. Let's celebrate with Jesus. We are all disciples of Jesus.
Jesus: [Breaks the bread] This is my body, broken for you. Take, eat do this in remembrance of me. [Hold up the wine] This is my blood, poured out for you, sealing the new agreement between God and man.
[Pass the bread and chalice to everyone, partaking by dipping the bread into the juice.]
Scene 4: Garden of Gethsemane
[Tape with sounds of crickets, frogs, etc. Dim the lights and set up the campfire scene.]
Narrator: It is evening. Jesus and his disciples gather in a quiet olive grove called the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus is filled with sorrow and asks Peter, James, and John to stay with him while he prays.
Jesus: My soul is crushed with horror and sadness to the point of death; stay here, awake with me. Sit here, while I go to pray.
[Jesus moves away from the three and kneels in prayer.]
My Father! If it is possible, let this cup be taken away from me. But I want your will, not mine. [Jesus remains in prayer.]
Narrator: Although Jesus asked his friends to stay awake, their eyes became heavy. When Jesus returned to his disciples, he found them asleep.
[Ask the class to pretend they are sleeping; let's hear some snoring too.]
Scene 5: Arrest/Trial/the Cross
Jesus: The time has come. I am betrayed into the hands of evil men.
[Judas approaches Jesus and greets him by taking Jesus two hands and saying Hello Master. Then two men grab Jesus, arrest him and leave the room. While this is happening, the three disciples run away.]
Narrator: Judas had betrayed Jesus into the hands of those that wanted him killed. Jesus was taken to the High Priest, and then to Pilate, who was the Roman governor. He was ordered crucified. Jesus carried a heavy portion of the cross to the place called Golgotha, the place where he suffered, and where he died. In the last moments of his life, Jesus prayed to God:
Jesus: [voice from microphone] Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
Narrator: When Jesus died, the whole earth was covered with darkness for three hours, from noon to three o'clock. The curtain covering the Holiest Place in the Temple was split apart, the earth shook, and rocks broke.
[Ask the class to stand up and stomp their feet and shake their bodies.]
Scene 6: The Tomb
[The stone is rolled to close the tomb. Two guards stand by the entrance.]
Narrator: Jesus body was covered in cloth and laid to rest in a cave that was cut out of a large rock. A large stone was rolled in front of the entrance, and soldiers were commanded to guard the tomb. It was late on Friday afternoon when this was done.
Can you imagine how Jesus friends and disciples were feeling? Everyone was filled with sorrow.
The disciples gathered together to talk about their sadness and to comfort each other. Someone remembered that Jesus had said, In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me. But they didn't understand what it meant.
Everything happened just as Jesus said it would. But Gods plan was not finished yet; the good news was yet to come.
Close with Prayer
Originally posted by member Ardith Knechtel, March 2002.
Updated and enhanced in February 2019 by Carol Hulbert