Easter is just a few short weeks away and while many Christian parents have good intentions around making Easter meaningful for their kids, actually doing it is harder. Easter can be BOTH fun and focused on the resurrection of Jesus Christ without feeling overwhelming.
The number of Easter community activities, family obligations and Pinterest-perfect crafts can add stress during an already busy spring season. Along with 40 super-fun Christian Easter activities, I want Jesus-loving parents to find freedom through my decision-making matrix to help you decide what traditions, activities and resources will be most beneficial to your unique families.
Your Easter Decision Making Matrix
There are so many amazing Easter activities out there to do at church, in your community and with your family. But if your kids wake up Easter morning and aren’t sure what the true meaning of Easter is–all that activity and doing is for absolutely nothing.
So I would encourage you, before you buy all the craft supplies, order all the books, and mark up the family calendar with near and far egg hunts– to take a minute and decide from the plethora of Easter options what will best serve your kids and your family in your current season of life.
Then make a list.
- What is an easy yes?
- What is a distraction?
- What is a no way.
Then pick 2-3 faith building activities you can easily and joyfully do during Lent and leading up to Holy Week.
So for my family that may look like…
- Attending an Easter kids activity at our church on Saturday and church on Easter Sunday.
- Open up our Resurrection eggs each night during circle time before bed.
- Make resurrection rolls as a snack
- Do a family Easter egg hunt in the backyard.
- Put Easter books in a special basket in the living room for easy access.
As you can see there are 35 activities that did not make my list. And honestly I wouldn’t be sad if we didn’t make the resurrection rolls. We could always do them a different week (that isn’t as busy for this pastor’s family) and still talk about the resurrection!
40 Favorite Christian Easter Activities for Families
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Resurrection eggs – These are a great way to talk through the story of Holy Week from Palm Sunday all the way to Jesus’ empty tomb. Opening the eggs adds excitement and helps kids rehearse the narrative in their own words. Plus it’s very tactile and easy for kids of all ages to participate in together!
Resurrection rolls – Follow a recipe to use crescent rolls to wrap up a big marshmallow. Talk about how Jesus body was wrapped in cloth and placed in a tomb. When the rolls bake, the body-marshmallow disappears, and the tomb is empty! Just like how Jesus rose from the dead!
Stations of the cross — This traditional series of remembrances of the Easter story, focusing on Jesus’ suffering. Many Catholic churches offer outdoor or indoor stations events you can participate in with your family. You can find resources for kids and families here (including a Bible verse for each station) and ideas for setting up your own outdoor station at home or church.
Reenact the Easter story — It’s a great idea to encourage your kids to act out parts of the Easter story. Let them reenact palm Sunday together while mom or dad is the donkey. Let them take turns being Jesus, Peter, Pontius Pilate, the women at the tomb and the angel!
Reflect and enjoy a treat together — I love Tara’s idea for sharing an ice cream sundae bar with our kids focused on sharing what God has done in our lives (both the lows and the highs)! This is also an insightful post into why doing a Christian seder is hurtful and considered cultural appropriation to many Jews.
Do a family foot washing — At the last supper jesus washed the feet of his disciples and told his disciples to wash each others feet. Spend an evening washing each others feet! This can be done outside with a lot of laughter and silliness (especially if you have messy toddlers and younger kids) or indoors in a more serious and solemn way for older kids. You could also begin or end by taking communion together as a family, just like Jesus did on Maundy Thursday.
Coloring easter eggs — This is a fun and simple way to create a piece of art together. You can get the dye kits at most major stores. As you make the eggs talk about the beauty and care we create with and how that reflects God’s heart as the Creator of everything, including you!
Watch The Chosen series together — Okay, this isn’t so hands-on, but it makes a great low key option to connect and learn together as a family. Leading up to Easter watching The Chosen is a great way to experience “real life” Jesus as a family. Seeing the story told through such a human and realistic portrayal will help kids and teens (and adults!) connect more with the Easter story.
Act out the Easter story with stuffed animals — This is another easy and creative way to play through the Easter story with your kids!
Chalk Drawing — Ask your kids to work together to create a timeline of Easter with chalk! Draw Palm Sunday, the last supper, the betrayal of Jesus, the crucifixion, the burial and then finally the empty tomb! For smaller kids draw simpler pictures (A cross, a rock, a donkey) and ask them what it reminds them of in the Easter story.
Plant flowers together — As you plant talk about how Jesus died and went into the ground, like the seed. But his death wasn’t the end! Just like we know our seeds will grow in time. In just 3 days, Jesus rose again to give us new life! (Marigolds are an easy kind to plant together and set in a sunny spot indoors. Plant in cups and replant in 6-8 weeks outside (after the last frost!).
Easy Easter Object Lessons
The Doughnut Object Lesson — This is a great object lesson that can be read or practiced in your family together. You’ll need a box of doughnuts for each person and someone to do push-ups!
Jelly bean prayer – This is a beautiful prayer and activity for young kids to learn the story of Easter and be able to recite it back as well featuring the beloved Easter treat–jelly beans! This would be perfect for a Sunday School lesson! (Includes free printable!)
Resurrection cookies – This is a beautiful way to create lasting memories while telling the truth of the Easter story! Follow the simple steps in this recipe and read along with the Bible verses. Your cookies will rest overnight and in the morning have a surprise! You need a warm oven to make them, but they don’t require baking.
The Easter Story Snack Mix — This is another great way to rehearse the real reason for Easter with elementary age students or younger! Using simple ingredients like pretzel sticks, marshmallows, goldfish, crackers and popcorn! This would make a great snack for Easter or Palm Sunday for your children’s class at church!
Jesus Taking Away Sin Object Lesson — A fascinating object lesson to help children understand Jesus taking our sin (atonement) by His death. You may want to practice this at least once beforehand!
Christian Easter Crafts for Kids
Easter Cards with Handprints – Make these cute chicks to send to family or friends who are far away! Love the use of the handprint too!
Jesus Storybook Bible coloring pages — We love the Jesus Storybook Bible and these coloring pages go great with the Lent reading guide so kids can color along as you read the stories or just enjoy coloring through the Holy week pictures.
Decorate a Cross — These hanging cross ornaments are an easy homeschool, Sunday school craft activity without a lot of mess! Kids can glue on the accompanying stickers, pom poms and jewels to create a personalized and beautiful take home craft that doubles as an Easter decoration. Did I mention this is a non-messy craft?!
Painted Wooden Easter Eggs — I’m not a fan of traditional dyed eggs, but these wooden ones would make a great craft activity and can be used year after year!
Last Supper Craft — This is a cute and creative idea that also incorporates The Last Supper painting by Davinci! Perfect for a homeschool art lesson or for the art enthusiasts to learn more about the painting and art that surrounds Easter for Christians.
Enjoyable Easter games for the whole family
Easter egg hunt — An Easter egg hunt is a fun time for the whole family, you can fill plastic eggs with candy, money or hide your resurrection eggs or hide your dyed Easter eggs. While we don’t tell our kids the Easter bunny hides the eggs, we can talk about we were lost in our sins and far from God and He sent Jesus to find and rescue us, kind of like we are doing with the eggs. Simply speaking the truth about the real focus of Easter in little ways can help our kids refocus and remember too!
Easter bingo — This is a fun way to celebrate He Is Risen and keep kids engaged in the Easter story! Let them use these fun bingo cards to mark off as you read the Good Friday and Easter stories!
Easter Egg toss – This fun Easter game will help even the squirmiest kids remember the Easter story!
Easter Family Feud — Do your older kids and teens love competition? Use this family feud style game to challenge each other to remember parts of the Easter story. Great for middle school, high school or adults to test their knowledge of Scripture!
Easter Jeopardy — Another great way to test knowledge of old and young alike! This would make a great game to play at an extended family gathering or Sunday school class or youth group game for Easter!
Easter books That Celebrate the True Meaning of Easter
While you may feel pulled to the adventure and fun of so many of the ideas above–what your family may need right now is just to connect with some quiet time reading the story of Easter together.
And I love books and reading books with my kids so this couldn’t be a short list! Don’t feel pressured to get these all at once–just add 1-2 every year and your collection will expand quickly!
- The Easter Story— Covers all the important Christian events leading up to Easter in simple language and is not scary, but well explains Jesus death and resurrection.
- Good News! It’s Easter — Perfect for toddlers who are busy! With recognizable animals and rhymes, emphasizing the celebration of Easter.
- Easter Is Coming — We love this padded board book for telling the traditional Easter story. The artwork and repeating words will stick with even the youngest of kids.
- The Jesus Storybook Bible — I cannot recommend enough. It is beautifully written, great pictures, age-appropriate, yet spiritually RICH. It may be a bit long for little-littles, but older kids will love it and appreciate this for years!
- The Garden, the Curtain, and the Cross: The True Story of Why Jesus Died and Rose Again — Love this beautiful way of telling the Easter story in a beautiful and theologically rich way!
- The Friend Who Forgives: A True Story About How Peter Failed and Jesus Forgave — This is my kids favorite from the Tales That Tell the Truth Story and I love how it shares about the night Jesus was betrayed AND the rest of the story of how he loved, forgave and restored Peter!
- The Donkey Who Carried the King — “The Donkey Who Carried a King offers a unique perspective on the events of Jesus’ Passion Week and calls all believers, both young and old, to follow in the footsteps of the Suffering Servant for the glory of God”. This is one I haven’t read yet, but I’m eager to add it to our bookshelf!
- The Wonder of Easter — This is a Lenten devotional for the whole family to go through together. It includes questions for kids of various ages so you can help them apply and understand what you are reading together!
- A Jesus Easter — An interactive Bible study leading through the Old Testament, to Jesus’ death, and the resurrection on Easter morning. This has space for kids to respond with drawings or their own writings. Great to use as a family, for a church resource or for a personal study time for older kids.
- The Tale of Three Trees — This book was one we read every Easter in my own childhood and it never fails to bring tears to my eyes!
- The Action Bible Easter: 25 Stories About Jesus’ Resurrection — “Stories told from the viewpoints of 25 unique “eyewitnesses,” such as the colt Jesus rode during the triumphal entry, the olive tree in Gethsemane, the criminal on the cross next to Jesus, and Mary Magdalene at the empty tomb.” These have great illustrations done in the comic book style!
- The Easter Storybook — 40 Days of stories about the life of Jesus–from his birth, his ministry, to his death, resurrection and ascension. This would make a great family read over Lent and during the week of Easter.
- The Legend of the Easter Egg — This sweet story will help your kids bridge the gap between Easter eggs and Jesus! It is best suited for older kids–it’s a little long for wiggly little ones.
- Goodbye to Goodbyes: A True Story About Jesus, Lazarus, and an Empty Tomb – This is another hit from the Tales That Tell the Truth series! Children connect the story of Lazarus, Jesus death, and suffering here on earth. Beautifully illustrated and I love the parenting section in the back that can give you talking points with your kids.
Easter is too important to leave your children’s full understanding of it to chance! Culture is working hard to tell them it’s just a fun, silly holiday that is all about them! But it couldn’t be further from the truth!
Use this season to point your child to Jesus and the powerful and complete work His death and resurrection did to save us!