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In addition to these public lessons and ideas posted below, our Writing Team has been creating some terrific lesson sets for our supporting members that cover Holy Week stories. Here's the Team's link to the John 20 story of Mary Magdalene, Peter, and John meeting Jesus at the Empty Tomb.

Related Lesson Forums:
Road to Emmaus, Jesus eats breakfast, Feed My Sheep, Great Commission, Ascension

The illustration seen here is part of the Annie Vallotton Holy Week Collection at

Video, A-V Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources for the Empty Tomb and Resurrection.

Scroll down for a number of suggestions and lesson plans.

Post your Sunday School video, A-V lessons, ideas, activities, and resources for the Empty Tomb and Resurrection.

This topic Includes: Jesus, Stone rolled away, angels, He is risen, Mary Magdalene, Women at tomb, and related stories. Matthew 28:1-18, Mark 16, John 20:1-18, Luke 24, resurrection, etc. Bible lessons for the Empty Tomb and Resurrection -with video, audio-visual, movie, video, animated Bible, etc.

Misc Video Listings Members Have Posted below

"Life of Christ." The Mormon Church's free, non-denominational online movie covering the life of Jesus. It's a little stiff but pretty good production values. Uses the KJV.  You can see and download the full movie at their site, or see it in scenes on YouTube. Here's Mary Magdalene and Jesus at the Empty Tomb.

Saddleback Kids Animated Short "Story of Easter" on YouTube:   Starts with cross and ends with resurrection. Lasts about 5 minutes

Animated: The Easter Story
This Australian narrated animated short quickly covers Cross to Resurrection. Nicely done, especially for younger children or Worship use. Lasts about four minutes on YouTube:

Read and Share Bible DVD: Resurrection episode. From Tommy Nelson.
See it on YouTube at

Two popular DVDs: Matthew (lesson below) and The Gospel of John (Visual Bible).

Gospel of John on YouTube. The cross and resurrection starts at about 2:25.

Jan FPC Napa

We often turn to one of my favorite movies "King of Kings" for our 4th thru 6th grades. The majority of the dialogue is straight from the Bible. It has a dramatic quality that still appeals but isn't too bloody. Here's a clip from YouTube You can purchase the DVD or find it online for on demand viewing.

Last edited by Luanne Payne
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Jesus' Resurrection

Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities: 

Children will view the DVD Animated Stories from the New Testament: He is Risen (from Nest Entertainment).

Scripture Reference:

Matthew 28.

Memory Verse:
"Go to the people of all nations and make them my disciples. Baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and teach them to do everything I have told you. I will be with you always, even until the end of the world." Matthew 28:19-20 (CEV)


  • God raised Jesus from the dead. 
  • Disciples believe that Jesus was crucified and then raised from the dead. 
  • Even Disciples sometimes doubt. 
  • Jesus Christ is always present with us and with his church. 
  • Jesus tells us to teach others how to be his disciples.

Lesson Objectives:

  • Explore what is it to believe without seeing. 
  • View the video “He is Risen”. 
  • Play mirrors to discover what it means to follow another.
  • Discuss what it means to follow Jesus.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture passages and watch the video ahead of time.
  • Optional: Find some clip art for an eye, a bee and a leaf. Photocopy onto a sheet of paper so the kids can cut and glue them on the journal sheet instead of drawing them. 
  • Check out the room before your first Sunday workshop so that you know where everything is located. 
  • Conspire with a helper to dress in costume and come to the beginning of your workshop.
  • Practice operating the popcorn machine. Be sure you have plenty of popcorn popped BEFORE the children arrive. You will need to have your attention on the children at that point. Ask the shepherds or child volunteers to help distribute it to children who are sitting quietly.
  • Gather the materials.
  • Preview the DVD and have the DVD ready to go.
  • Have the popcorn made.

Materials List:

  • DVD- Animated Stories from the New Testament: He is Risen from Nest Entertainment
  • Costume
  • Journal sheets,
  • Pencils
  • Optional: pictures, scissors, glue
  • Eye, bee, leaf pictures
  • Popcorn

Lesson Plan 

Greet the children and introduce yourself. Wear your nametag.

Explain the purpose of this workshop. This unit is a study of Jesus’ resurrection. What happened after Jesus died on the cross? Do we really believe that Jesus died and was resurrected from the dead? That is a little hard to believe.

“Oh! I forgot something.” (Make an excuse to leave the room. Explain that you will be gone just a few minutes and they are to wait patiently for you to come back. “Don’t anyone touch the popcorn while I am gone.” Then quickly make an exit from the room.)

(You will need a helper. The helper should be dressed in some outrageous costume: monster, flower, animal, clown, super hero, etc. The more outlandish, the better. The disguised and costumed helper will sneak into the room immediately after you leave, go to the popcorn and make a big deal of taking some. The visitor should say nothing except to hold a finger to lips and say “Shhhh”. Then leave the room quickly. This should only take a few seconds so the kids are surprised and don’t have a chance to react.

Immediately, the workshop leader returns and makes as though nothing has happened. The kids might try and explain what happened. If they don’t say anything, encourage them to spill the beans by noticing that someone took some popcorn. Either way, when the kids start to tell what happened, you refuse to believe them. “Outrageous! No way! Don’t make up stories! I don’t believe you! I didn’t see anything!” The more they try to convince you, the more you protest. Don’t believe the adult shepherds either. Stand firm.

After about 2 minutes of this, the costumed helper comes back into the room. Amid all the “see! I told you so’s” you finally admit that it was true. There really was a crazy character in the room while you were gone. Thank your helper and ask him/her to leave.

Discuss what happened. You didn’t believe what they told you because you didn’t see it with your own eyes. Yet it was true. How is this like our faith in Jesus’ resurrection? Is it hard to believe that Jesus arose from the dead? Even the disciples had doubts that Jesus was resurrected. One disciple, Thomas, had to see Jesus with his own eyes before he would believe. We believe in Jesus’ resurrection too. Why? Because we can read about it in the Bible. We have faith. Faith is what we can’t see, but know is true anyway. 


Bible Story:
1. Introduce the video. It starts with the resurrection of Jesus. All the disciples are sad. They are together in the room, talking about Jesus dying. They don’t believe it when they learn that Jesus is risen. Watch the video. Listen to what Jesus tells the disciples to do. When the video is over we will talk about what disciples of Jesus are to do.

2. Start the video. It’s about 30 minutes long if cued to just after the credits. Distribute the popcorn with help from the Shepherds or volunteer children. 

1. What does Jesus tell the disciples to do at the end of the video? (see memory verse: "Go to the people of all nations and make them my disciples. Baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and teach them to do everything I have told you. I will be with you always, even until the end of the world.")
2. Ask the children to turn in their seats so they are each sitting, facing a partner. You are going to practice being the mirror image of your partner. First, one of you will be the model and lead the motions, and then your partner will lead. Follow the motions slowly and closely. Try to be so together that we can’t tell who is leading and who is following.
3. After a few minutes, ask for some pairs to demonstrate. The rest of the class can guess who is the model and who is following.
4. Discuss: 

  • How does it feel to be a model? What helps you to be a good follower of your partner? (watch closely, pay attention, be focused, concentrate) 
  • Let’s pretend that you are a mirror image of Jesus. What kind of actions do you think Jesus would make? (be kind, generous, help others, be good) So if we are to mirror Jesus, we do what Jesus would do, right? Is that what disciples do? (yes) 
  • Jesus told his disciples and followers to (refer to memory verse) “teach them to do everything I have told you.” 
  • And who is our model to follow? (Jesus) Do we need help following Jesus? (you bet!)Refer to memory verse “I will be with you always, even until the end of the world."

Reflection Time:
1. Being a disciple for Jesus is like the mirror activity. Watching closely, concentrating on being faithful, we follow Jesus’ actions.

2. Younger kids: distribute the journal sheets. Ask the kids to think about the words “I believe.” Discuss how it breaks down into “eye bee leave (or leaf)”. Have the kids draw their picture code for “I believe”. Then write on the white board so kids can copy: “Jesus lives.”

Encourage the kids to take the journal sheet home to parents and see if they can break the code. The child can explain to parents what it is they believe: Jesus lives.

3. Older kids. Get discussion going on some of the pressures kids have to follow someone or something other than Jesus. We can choose to follow Jesus OR we can choose to mirror others. What other influences are there in our society that want us to follow them instead? (advertisers, pop artists, peer pressure, etc.)

Why is it hard to resist these pressures? What can you do to make it easier to resist? (hang with the right kids, turn off TV, be part of positive activities, go to church, walk away from what is wrong)

Remember that Jesus IS real. If we believe in Jesus we are compelled to follow his actions.

On the journal sheet, draw a line down the middle. This is a mirror. On one side of the mirror, list things that Jesus would not do, but are found in our society. On the other side of the line, list things that Jesus would want us to do to mirror him. Then draw an arrow to the side of the mirror that you want to follow.

Note: You may need to make some decisions about what to cut should you run out of time. My suggestion is that the discussion about peer pressure is more important than writing the journal sheets.


Prayer: I confess that Jesus is Lord. I believe in my heart that God raised him from the dead. Jesus, I want to reflect you in my mirror. Help me resist the temptations and pressures to do otherwise. Let your goodness and love shine through me. Amen.

A lesson written by Catherine from: 
Kirk of Kildaire Presbyterian Church, 
Cary, NC 

Last edited by Neil MacQueen

Jesus' Resurrection

A/V-Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Children will create illustrations on transparencies, for the story from Luke 24. These will be shown to the class using an overhead projector.

Scripture Reference:

Luke 24.

Memory Verse:
If you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9


  • Jesus was raised from the dead to give us new life.
  • Jesus helps us understand the Bible.
  • Jesus wants us to teach others about God.
  • Jesus promises to help us teach others about God.

Lesson Objectives:

  • The children will learn of the events following Jesus crucifixion.
  • The children will rejoice in the good news of Jesus resurrection.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture passages
  • Prepare transparencies. Using permanent black marker, write each caption on a blank transparency, leaving room for each illustration.
  • Cut the story into verse strips with each caption.
  • Practice the Hallelujah Hand Jive (optional activity)
  • Make sure the bulb is working on the foil projector (also called an "overhead projector")!
  • Practice operating the popcorn machine. Be sure you have plenty of popcorn popped BEFORE the children arrive. You will need to have your attention on the children at that point. Ask the shepherds or child volunteers to help distribute it to children who are sitting quietly.
  • Gather the materials.

Materials List:

  • 20 - Transparencies with captions
  • Transparencies with the words of The Litany and The Luke Story (see end of lesson.)
  • Foil Projector (also called an "overhead projector")
  • Permanent black marker (for writing captions)
  • Non-permanent colored markers (for creative illustrating)
  • Copies of the litany for journal sheets
  • Copies of the story cut into verses
  • Glue sticks
  • Stickers: He Lives (
  • Clipboards or a hard surface on which to draw

Lesson Plan


Greet the children and introduce yourself.

Explain the purpose of this workshop: This unit is a study of Jesus resurrection. What happened after Jesus died on the cross?

We are going to read the story and then create our own illustrations of the story on transparencies. Well then eat popcorn, listen and watch our story on the foil projector.


Bible Story:
Read the Luke story to the children (a version is provided in this lesson, see end of lesson). Use the foil projector and a transparency of the story so that the children can read along with you. Tell the children to listen carefully and think about the images and people in the story. They are going to create illustrations.

Stop at times throughout the story to talk about the reactions of the people: scared, frightened, amazed, eyes were opened, seeing Jesus.

What did Jesus keep telling people when he appeared? That this was the fulfillment of the Scriptures. He explained the Scriptures to them. He knew that he had to die on the cross in order to save our sins. Jesus paid the price for our sins every one of us -- so that we are forgiven. Now nothing can separate us from God. What did Jesus tell the disciples to do? To go tell others and teach about Jesus. What should we do? Teach other people about Jesus too. What did Jesus say would come to help them (and us)? The Holy Spirit.


  1. Give each child a piece of the story, a transparency and markers. They are to create a picture for the part of the story that is in boldfaced type. Depending on how many children you have, you may give each child a couple of pictures to illustrate, tell them they can get another when they are finished, or remove some of the illustrations. There is potential for 20 illustrations.
  2. Allow about 10 minutes for this creative time.
  3. Distribute the popcorn with help from the Shepherds or volunteer children.
  4. Read the story again, showing the illustrations on the overhead projector.
  5. Remind the children that Jesus told the disciples to spread the good news and so must we. What did Jesus tell the disciples would be sent to help them? (the Holy Spirit)
  6. Say the memory verse together: If you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9
  7. Extra Activity if time allows: The good news is that Jesus is alive! We are to share this good news with others. Let us show our joy with the Hallelujah Hand Jive. Ask for a volunteer to help you demonstrate the Hand Jive.

Hallelujah Hand Jive

Stand facing your partner:

Hit right hands together

Hit left hands together

Hit right elbows together

Hit left elbows together

Person 1 holds palms up and person 2 hits them

Person 2 holds palms up and person 1 hits them

Cross arms and shake both your partners hands

Throw your arms up and say Hallelujah!!

Practice with a partner several times. We are going to use it at the end of our reflections time.

Reflection Time:

  1. Pass out copies of the litany. Paste it on the journal sheet. Write down the name of one person with whom you will share the good news story of Jesus this week.
  2. Give each child a He Lives sticker to wear.
  3. Project the litany on the screen so that everyone can follow along. Say the litany together with the children. End with the Hallelujah Hand Jive.

Prayer: We confess that Jesus is Lord. We believe in our hearts that God raised him from the dead. We believe that we are saved. Amen.

Clean the transparencies. A damp cloth will wipe off the illustrations (but not the captions) so that they may be used again.

Luke 24 The Story (edited from the CEV)

1-4Very early on Sunday morning the women went to the tomb, carrying the spices that they had prepared. When they found the stone rolled away from the entrance, they went in. But they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus, and they did not know what to think.

4-6 Suddenly two men in shining white clothes stood beside them. The women were afraid and bowed to the ground. But the men said, Why are you looking in the place of the dead for someone who is alive? Jesus isnt here! He has been raised from death.

9-11When the women returned, they told the eleven apostles and the others what had happened. The apostles thought it was all nonsense, and they would not believe.

12 But Peter ran to the tomb. And when he stooped down and looked in, he saw only burial clothes. Then he returned, wondering what had happened.

13 That same day, two of Jesus disciples were going to the village of Emmaus, which was about seven miles from Jerusalem.

14-17As they were talking and thinking about what had happened, Jesus came near and started walking along beside them. But they did not know who he was. Jesus asked them, What were you talking about as you walked along? The two of them stood there looking sad and gloomy.

18 Then the one named Cleopas asked Jesus, Are you the only person from Jerusalem who doesnt know what was happening there these past few days?

19-24 What do you mean? Jesus asked. The two men answered by telling what had happened to Jesus and about the women who found the tomb empty and had a vision of angels who told them that Jesus was alive.

25-27 Then Jesus asked the two disciples, Why cant you understand? How can you be so slow to believe all that the prophets said? Didnt you know that the Messiah would have to suffer before he was given his glory? Jesus then explained everything written about himself in the Scriptures.

28-29 When the two of them came near the village where they were going, Jesus seemed to be going further. They begged him, Stay with us! Its already late, and the sun is going down. So Jesus went into the house to stay with them.

30-33 After Jesus sat down to eat, he took some bread. He blessed it and broke it. Then he gave it to them. At once they knew who he was, but he disappeared. They said to each other. When he talked with us along the road and explained the Scriptures to us, didnt it warm our hearts? So they got right up and returned to Jerusalem.

33-35The two disciples found the eleven apostles and the others gathered together. And they learned from the group that the Lord was really alive and had appeared to Peter. Then the disciples from Emmaus told what happened on the road and how they knew he was the Lord when he broke the bread.

36-37 While Jesus disciples were talking about what had happened, Jesus appeared and greeted them. They were frightened and terrified because they thought they were seeing a ghost.

38-39 But Jesus said. Why are you so frightened? Why do you doubt? Look at my hands and my feet and see who I am! Touch me and find out for yourselves. Ghosts dont have flesh and bones as you see I have.

40 Jesus showed them his hands and his feet. The disciples were so glad and amazed that they could not believe it.

41-43 Jesus then asked them, Do you have something to eat? They gave him a piece of baked fish. He took it and ate it as they watched.

44-49 Jesus said to them, While I was still with you, I told you that everything written about me in the scriptures had to happen. Then he helped them understand the Scriptures. All people of every nation must be told in my name to turn to God, in order to be forgiven. So you must tell everything that has happened and I will send you the Holy Spirit as my Father has promised. Stay in the city until you are given power from heaven.

50 Jesus led his disciples out to Bethany, where he raised his hands and blessed them.

51 As he was doing this, he left and was taken up to heaven.

52-53 After his disciples had worshiped him, they returned to Jerusalem and were very happy. They spent their time in the temple praising God.

Litany: He is Risen
Speak very softly at the beginning. Gradually speak louder increasing the excitement in your voice.

Leader: Very early on Sunday morning the women went to the tomb, carrying the spices that they had prepared.

Children: He is not here He has risen.

Leader: When they found the stone rolled away from the entrance, they went in. But they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus and they did not know what to think.

Children: He is not here He has risen.

Leader: Suddenly two men in shining white clothes stood beside them. The women were afraid and bowed to the ground.

Children: He is not here He has risen.

Leader: The men said, why are you looking in the place of the dead for someone who is alive? Jesus isnt here! He has been raised from death.

Children: He is not here He has risen.

Leader: Then the women hurried away to tell the apostles and the others what had happened.

Children: He is not here He has risen. Christ the Lord is risen today.

Hallelujah, Amen!!

A lesson written by Catherine from: Kirk of Kildaire Presbyterian Church
Cary, NC

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability

Last edited by Luanne Payne


Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

View the video:  "He is Risen" (from Nest Entertainment)

Here's a clip of it from Youtube:

Scripture Reference:

Matthew 28: 1-20
(for the full story, see Matthew 21:1-17, Matthew 26-28; Mark 11:1-19, Mark 14-16; Luke 19:28-48, Luke 22-24; John 12:12-19, John 13, John 18-21)

Memory Verse:
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16 (NIV)

Objectives for Rotation:
At the end of the rotation, the students will be able to

  • identify Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John as the first four books of the New Testament and identify them as the Gospels containing the Good News of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection.
  • retell the events of Holy Week in order.
  • understand the importance of the events of Holy Week, specifically that it is through Jesus' death and resurrection that our sins are forgiven.
  • repeat the memory verse (John 3:16).
  • understand that we are called to spread the Good News of Jesus' resurrection.
  • have decided with whom they can share that Good News.

Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture passages and lesson plan.
  • Prepare a closing prayer.
  • Make sure you have all the supplies you need. The video, video setup, popcorn, and handouts will be provided. If you would like anything purchased, let ___ know by ___.
  • Preview the video. Be familiar with the places where the video should be stopped for discussion. (Neil MacQueen's "Two Most Important SHOWING TIPS: 1.) Use the PAUSE button. It's your most powerful "video" teaching tool. 2.) Don't be afraid to view an important scene a second time. Kids (and adults) watch movies over and over all the time.")

Room set-up:
Students will sit in seats facing the video/projection screen.

Supply List

  • Popcorn
  • wet wipes
  • DVDTicket 'He is Risen Admit one'
  • Bibles
  • copies of the ticket form for everyone (see the attachment at the end of this lesson)
  • crayons or marker
  • tables or writing boards
  • Video: He Is Risen, Animated Stories from the New Testament, 1988, (About 25 minutes long).

Lesson Plan

Greet the children and introduce yourself. Wear your name-tag. Make sure the children are wearing name-tags.

We had an opening prayer during the gathering time, but you may open with prayer if you feel led to do so.

Explain the purpose of this workshop. Use kid friendly words to give a brief overview of what the children are going to learn and do.


Scripture/Bible Story:
Read the scripture: Matthew 28: 1-20
(Everyone should use their Bibles to look up verses and read along. While they are opening their Bibles, review the names of the first four books of the New Testament and that they are the Gospel — the Good News about Jesus. Be prepared to help the younger children find the passage; consider pairing them up with older students. Ask for volunteers to read a paragraph at a time.)

After reading the scripture say, "The scripture we read is just a small part of the story of the events of a week we often refer to as Holy Week. Can anyone tell me anything else that happened that week?" [Possible answers: Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem (Palm Sunday), the clearing of the Temple, the Last Supper, Jesus' trial, Peter's denial of Jesus, Judas' betrayal of Jesus, Jesus praying in the Garden, the Crucifixion. Remind the children of any key events they forgot.]
"We are beginning a study of the events of Holy Week today by watching a video. This video starts with the scripture we just read, but does refer to some of the other events we just talked about."


Before beginning the video, make sure everyone knows who each of these people in the story are:

  • Pilate [Roman official in charge of Judea, including Jerusalem; he knew Jesus was innocent, but he bowed to public demand for Jesus' execution] - shown as a blond — point him out when he appears on the screen without stopping the video
  • Caiaphas [ruling high priest during Jesus' time, a Jew skilled at working with the Roman government] - shown on video wearing a red hat — point him out when he appears on the screen without stopping the video
  • Joseph of Arimathea [a Jewish leader who had been a secret follower of Jesus, but who came forward when everyone else was afraid and fled; Arimathea is a town in Judea]
  • Mary and the other women [there were several women who went to the tomb; it is not real clear in the video who they all were, but they were close friends and followers of Jesus, just like the Disciples/Apostles]

Tell the children: While you're watching the video,

  • notice that at the time of Jesus' death, there is much earth shaking and thunder shown in the video. You will see a curtain tearing. This is the curtain in the Temple that separates the Holy Place from the Most Holy of Holies Place. The tearing of the curtain shows that by Christ's death, all can approach God directly because of Christ's sacrifice for our sins. "At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split." Matthew 27:51 (NIV)
  • watch for how the disciples reacted to Jesus' trial and crucifixion with fear — by going into hiding.
  • Notice that the disciple Matthew, the writer of the Gospel from which we just read, sits down to write what he remembers: "His words must never be forgotten."

Pass out popcorn. Start the video; if time permits, include the opening credits as the music helps set the mood for the events that follow. (Don't dim the lights too much as you will be stopping frequently for brief discussion.)

STOP after the Roman soldier says, "Truly this man was the son of God." (Matthew 27:24b)
Q I wonder why the soldier said that?

STOP after Pilate says, "He died for peace."
Q Pilate said, "Joseph of Arimathea, I would have saved him if I could." I wonder why Pilate did not stop the crucifixion?
Q Do you believe that Pilate is feeling sorry about his part in Jesus' death? Or is he feeling something else?
Q Do you think Jesus died for peace?

STOP after one of the disciples says, "Wherever he [Jesus] is, he's watching. We should try to make him proud of us."
Q Repeat this statement (or rewind the video a teeny bit and replay it). I wonder what this means?
Q Think about the attitude of the women who followed Jesus compared to the attitude of the men at this point.

COMMENT: "Notice Matthew writing down what happened. Which gave us the book of Matthew that we read at the beginning of the session!"

STOP after the women return and a disciple says, "With all my heart I wish I could believe."
Q I wonder why the disciples can't believe the women?

STOP after Jesus says to Thomas, "Blessed are those who have not seen me and yet believe."
Q I wonder what Jesus means?
Q Who is Jesus talking about?

STOP after the third time Jesus asks Peter to "feed my sheep."
Q How many times did Jesus ask the same question to Peter? [three]
Q Does anyone know why? [refer to the three times Peter denied Jesus]

Restart video and watch to the end.

"Any additional questions or comments about the video?"


Pulling it all together (closing discussion):

  • Early in the video, one disciple asks, "Why didn't he save himself?" Could Jesus have saved himself? Why didn't he?
  • Did the disciples understand why Jesus died? At the beginning of the video? By the end?
  • I wonder why Jesus showed himself to Mary at the tomb, but not Peter?
  • At the very end of the video, the boy says, "Come quickly, Lord Jesus. I'll always be watching for you." I wonder what he meant?
  • Have you ever had a chance to share the Good News about Jesus, and denied him? Or maybe just didn't mention him? Is it hard sometimes to stand up for what we believe in?

Review the memory verse.
Make a movie ticket for this movie using the following form (or use the attachment). If you are making a ticket, encourage children to illustrate or list highlights of the video that illustrate the key verse.

Talk about, "To whom should you give this movie ticket?"

If time permits:
Children may complete one of the puzzle/activity sheets for the story or you may wish to continue discussion of the video or watch part of it again.

Close with a prayer.
[Offer a prayer asking for Jesus to go with each child this week and be with them as they carry the good news tickets to family and friends.]

Additional Suggestions:
Older children:
They can be helpers (finding Bible passages, passing out popcorn and crayons).

Younger Children:
Be prepared to help them write on their tickets.


  • Eaton, Heather. "Holy Week - Complete Elementary Rotation."
  • MacQueen, Neil. A MANUAL for the "VIDEO ~ A-V" WORKSHOP.
  • Life Application Study Bible notes, Tyndale House Publishers, 1986.
  • Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.

This lesson was written by Amy Crane for River Community Church in Prairieville, Louisiana.
Copyright 2003 Amy Crane. Permission granted to freely distribute and use, provided the copyright message is included.

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.


Images (1)
  • Ticket form
Files (1)
Last edited by Luanne Payne


Video Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Watch a clip from “The Visual Bible—Matthew”.  Create scenes from felt figures and/or objects cut out of cardstock and project them using an overhead projector.

Scripture Reference:

Begins at Matthew 27:57.

Leader Preparation:

  • Review Bible Background notes.
  • Preview the video so that you are familiar with it
  • Pray for the children and for your teaching of the lesson.
  • Gather the materials.
  • Refer to schedule and decide how you will make adjustments for the different ages.
  • If you are using a Bible storybook, check to see if it is there.
  • If you are going to use felt figures for the Overhead Projector section, you will need to look for those beforehand.  PLEASE RETURN THEM TO THEIR CORRECT SPOTS IN THE BOX WHEN YOU ARE DONE.  Ideas for figures to use:  Soldier, Woman figures, various man figures.  If you do not have or want to use felt figures, you could precut some objects out before class.
  • Set the DVD to the correct spot before class starts.  You will be using Disc 2.  At the disc menu, choose “Search by Event”.  Then choose “73-99” and then choose “91-96).  Then you will select “Burial of Jesus”.  Pause the video here until you are ready to view it in class.
  • Set up whiteboard and overhead projector

Materials List:

  • Bibles
  • DVD:  “The Visual Bible:  Matthew"
  • DVD player
  • TV or projector
  • Overhead Projector
  • Felt Figures (optional)
  • Cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Pencils
  • Transparency sheets – one for each scene
  • Markers that will write on transparencies (wipe off markers will allow you to reuse the sheets
  • Screen or whiteboard to shine the transparencies on to
  • A simple shape cut out of cardstock (to use for demonstration)
  • Camera (optional)

Lesson Plan

Greet the children and Introduce yourself and any helpers that you have.

Important Note for Video Station Teachers:

With video, we are tapping into the brain's love of media to teach God's Word and improve the brain's ability to recall it and embrace it.  It should not just be passive “sitting and watching”—we are engaging the kids with the video.  The “Pause” feature on the video player is a great tool for stopping and asking questions in a way that will definitely get their attention (instead of trying to talk 'over' the video). Say thinkgs like did you notice such and such—what would you do—what do you think will happen next, etc.  Don't be afraid to view an important scene a second time (if time permits).

Before the video begins, assign them things to look for.  You might want to hand out paper and pencil to help out in this.  After the video, debrief and process the story:  What did you see?  What happened?  Did anyone notice ___?  What was the reaction of ___ to ___?  What would have been your response?

Familiarize yourself with the video before the day of class.  Before class starts, make sure that you understand how the equipment operates.  Load your video and get it to the starting point mentioned in the lesson. Some videos may take some liberties with the story-you may need to point out these discrepancies.

Introduction & Bible Story:
Please make sure that the students hear and “get” the Bible story as well as the application of that story to their lives.  The Bible story is the MOST important part of the lesson—it is much more important than the activity associated with this station!

Briefly review the events of Holy Week (see Bible Background).  The students studied the Last Supper in the previous rotation, and are reviewing the events of Holy Week in another station.

Say:  In this rotation, we are going to focus on what happened after Jesus died for our sins on the cross.  We will be watching a video called “The Visual Bible”.  The Bible is acted out word for word.  There is one section where Matthew (the author of this Gospel) is shown telling part of the story to 2 other people.  I want you to open your Bibles to Matthew 27: 57.  This is where the video will be starting.

Questions:  Ask a few questions about the Bible story. You can ask

  • Factual questions (Who, What, When, Where, etc)
  • Why questions (Why did they do this, why did this happen, etc)
  • What do you think or feel about what happened?
  • Application questions—some examples (How were their lives different because….. and how would your life be different; Was……..different or harder in Bible times than it would be now;  what would this look like today; how could you……….)



See Advance Preparation for where you should have the DVD cued.  You will be showing the video and pausing it to ask questions (see lesson below for those prompts).  The video clip—without pausing—is about 6 minutes.

Say:  We are starting the story at the point where Jesus has just died, and His friends are taking His body down from the cross.  There is more than one cross, because Jesus was crucified along with two thieves.  As we start watching, take note of a few things:  Who was there?  Who was not there?  What kind of a man was Joseph of Arimathea?

Start the video at Matthew 27:57 (timestamp of 2:07:33).  Pause at time stamp 2:08:35 (Pilate is coming down the stairs).

Ask:  Who was there? (Joseph of Arimathea, the two Marys)  Who was not there? (Jesus’ disciples—John was the only disciple there at the crucifixion; the others were afraid and in hiding.  Isn’t it amazing how they went from being so afraid to being so bold in preaching about Jesus once they had been filled with the Holy Spirit at Pentecost!)  What kind of a man was Joseph? (rich man)

I am going to read you a verse from the book of the prophet Isaiah—he was talking about very specific things about the death of the Savior hundreds of years before it happened.  Read Isaiah 53:9—“He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence nor was any deceit in his mouth”.  So, he died with the wicked (two thieves were crucified with him) and was with the rich in his death (Joseph of Arimathea, a wealthy man, provided Jesus with his own tomb) and he was put to death even though he had done no violence or deceit (Jesus was innocent but died for OUR sins).

Resume the video.  Pause at timestamp 2:09:14 (after the quote “last deception will be worse than the first)

Ask:  What are the chief priests and Pharisees worried about? (disciples will steal the body of Jesus)  They remembered hearing Jesus talk about rising again after 3 days.  Jesus had been talking about the Old Testament prophet Jonah—what do you remember about him? (swallowed by a big fish).  In Matthew 12: 40, Jesus says “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”

Resume the video.  Pause at timestamp 2:09:45 (after the quote “posting the guard” and right before you see the women on the road).

Ask:  So Pilate said that they could post a guard.  Do you think that they checked to make sure that the body of Jesus was IN the tomb before they sealed it up? (Yes)  How are the priests and Pharisees feeling at this point?  (pleased that the disciples won’t be able to play any tricks)

Resume the video.  Pause at timestamp 2:11:13 (ends with Matthew saying “Now I have told you)

Say:  The angel said “He is not here; he has risen, just as he said.”  In Matthew 16:21, Jesus tells his disciples that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.  And now it has happened!  The angel tells the women to “see the place where he lay”.  What did they see—or not see—when they looked? (Jesus was not there).

Resume the video.  Pause at timestamp 2:11:45 (Jesus is walking away)

Ask:  Is says that the women clasped—or grabbed onto—Jesus’ feet.  What does that tell you about Jesus’ body?  (he was real, not a ghost)  What was the reaction of the women—what do you think they were feeling?  What was the reaction of Jesus—what do you think He was feeling?

Resume the video.  Pause at timestamp 2:13:46 (after the quote: “to this very day)

Ask:  The guards come to report that the body of Jesus is missing.  The chief priests KNOW that Jesus’ body is gone—they just don’t want to admit that He actually rose from the dead.  So, the chief priests gave the guards a large sum of money.  They were bribing the guards.  What did they want the guards to say? (the disciples stole the body while we were asleep)  The disciples would have to walk around the guards in the dark and then move a big heavy stone.  Would they have been able to do that without waking the guards? (no)  If the disciples HAD come in the middle of the night, what would the guards have done? (fought them off, arrested them)  So, would the guards be telling the truth? (no)  So, why wasn’t Jesus’ body in the tomb? (He has risen from the dead!)

Overhead Projector Storytelling

Now we are going to create some scenes from the Bible story, using the overhead projector.  Turn on the projector, put the shape on the screen, and show the students how a black and white silhouette appears.  First, we will come up with some different scenes.  Then I will assign a few students to each scene.  You will cut shapes out of the paper and use them to create a scene.  You don’t need to color on the paper—that won’t show up.  You can use the markers to write words on the clear plastic sheets if you need to (or the teacher can write the words for the younger students).

Brainstorm some different ideas for scenes with the students (the number of scenes that you pick might be dictated by how many student teams that you will have).  Some ideas for scenes are:

  • Jesus Dies
  • Jesus is Buried
  • Pharisees Meet with Pilate
  • Guards at the Tomb
  • Angel and Women at the Tomb
  • Jesus and the Women
  • Guards and the Priests

Divide the children up into groups—assigning a scene to each group.  Give them about 5 minutes to come up with their scene and cut out the shapes.  If you are using the felt figures, let them see the selection.  More than one group may want to use figures in their scene, so they will need to share.

Have each group come up to the overhead projector to create their scene using the cutouts, felt figures, markers.  They should move quickly—each scene should take a minute or less (so they won’t be able to do A LOT of drawing/writing).

Discuss each scene:  What is happening? What are the characters feeling? How can that be shown on the screen?  Repeat with each scene.  If you have a camera—take a picture of each scene.


If someone asks why you believe that Jesus is truly risen from the dead, what can you say to them?

Close with a prayer.

Age Adaptations:
Younger students:  You may want to have more preformed shapes for them to use in the overhead projector section.  You may need to do any writing for them.


Derden, Jaymie. Overhead Projector Storytelling, Parable of the Lost Sheep.

A lesson written by Cathy Walz

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.

Last edited by CathyWalz

Easter Sunday (includes Empty Tomb)

6:25 min. Video on VimeoBible Paper Toys - empty tomb

Trinity Cheltenham Church in the UK used the figures and scenery from "Bible Paper Toys: The Easter Story" created by Didier Martin, to create a really fun short video for Easter Sunday.

The intro starts with four paper egg puppets talking about Eggs & Easter Sunday - very funny! View the video here:

You will find more information on how others have used a Diorama Workshop here which includes a post with info on Didier Martin's - "Bible Paper Toys."


Images (1)
  • Bible Paper Toys - empty tomb
Last edited by Luanne Payne

DVD - “He Is Risen: The Resurrection of Jesus” (New Superbook Series)

Chris is arguing with his mom, Phoebe. SUPERBOOK intervenes and takes Chris, Joy, Gizmo AND Phoebe back in time, for an encounter with Jesus’ mother Mary during the time of her son's crucifixion. When Superbook returns the family home, a wiser Chris apologizes for their argument and their relationship is restored.  Lesson:  Jesus’ life is about the restoration of relationships.  (Animated - approx. 22 mins)

The DVD does not have chapter selections.  But, using your remote Next Chapter button you can move through the remote chapters.  I've given those chapters names relating to general theme of each section.

Review: They try to cover a lot in 22 minutes, so story events are touched on, but not in full detail.  It is dark (dim), pretty tense, and shows a demon flapping its wings(!) What a dumb choice in an otherwise good series. Demon is seen in scenes 1 & 9 and Jesus is very cut up and bloody after being whipped (whipping not shown).

1 - Garden of Gethsemane & Arrest
2 - Theme Song
3 - Chris' Home - The Decision
4 - Superbook sweeps them back in time
5 - Jerusalem (Gang meets Mary - Jesus' Mother)
6 - Trial Before Pilate
7 - Crowd wants Jesus' Death
8 - Mary's House
9 - Crucifixion
10 - The Empty Tomb
11 - Home - What's really important.
12 - Credits

(See reviews of the "New Superbook" DVD Series for more details on this series link)

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Short videos from Crossroad Kids' Club for Easter:


God's Story: Easter:

This brief (4 1/2 minute) video covers the entire story and also talks about how Jesus dies for our sins. 

"Easter is a major part of God’s big rescue plan. It shows us how much Jesus loves us and is one of the most exciting parts of God’s story. In fact, you can find it a few times in the Bible. Here are two places to read the story: Mark 14 – 16 and John 13 – 21."

(Also available in Spanish and Chinese)


Jesus is Alive - a song for younger kids



Easter Story for young kids




Here is a short (about four minute) video from Pursue God Kids that talks about the resurrection story in a creative way. This might be a fun format to use for a drama/video workshop: the children on screen act out the story (give them lots of costumes and fun props and use lots of closeup shots) and have someone offscreen narrate (and if you have time, insert Bible verse titles into the finished video -- or maybe do that after class and share with the congregation in worship or through Facebook).

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Last edited by Neil MacQueen

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