Activities for Any Week

A. Ideas for a church visit

B. Trivia Follow-up

 Fill in Trivia page in interactive notebook. I will bring sheets which include this information to paste into their notebooks.

C. Background and ideas for the Sunday gospel.

March 5, 2017

Start by having each student introduce selves for Annie using one of the balls.

1) Read and discuss Make Room: a Child's Guide to Lent and Easter by Laura Alray.

2) Take a tour of the chapel using guide sheet (Save the Stations of the Cross for next month.)
and hand out Mass Worksheets.

3) Return to classroom and Work with individual students to complete a sheet
and add it to their notebook with their comments on the left side.

4) Play a game if there is time left.

February 5, 2017

Goal: Complete one page in your notebook with an activity sheet, ideas from discussion, your thoughts, etc.

Saint Valentine
Read story and discuss. Work on activity sheet of choice.
Assemble Valentines cards for liturgical ministers.

Sunday's Gospel
(For your background, here is our handout for adults

Read gospel and explain meanings of salt and light.
Discuss ways to be salt and light at faith formation, at school, at home.

December 4, 2016 (items I will bring)


Set up a Nativity scene using this script. Each child reads (or have an older student read) a slip and adds the object.

MARY--This is Mary, Jesus' mother. She was a very good person. She was kind and gentle. She also loved God very much. She was just the right person to be Jesus' mother.

ANGEL--This is a special angel named Gabriel. God often sent Gabriel to deliver messages to people. Gabriel came to Mary one day to tell her that God wanted her to do something very important--to be Jesus' mother. Gabriel told Mary that she would have a baby soon, and the baby's name would be Jesus and the baby would be God's son.

JOSEPH--This is Joseph. He was Mary's husband. He was a very good person. He took very special care of Mary.

DONKEY--This is a donkey. A very long time ago, when Mary, Joseph, and Jesus lived, there were not any cars or buses or trains or airplanes. When people wanted to take a trip, they either walked or rode on donkeys. Mary and Joseph had to take a trip, even though Mary was going to have a baby any day.

OUTLINE OF BETHLEHEM--This is part of the town of Bethlehem. That is where Mary and Joseph were going on their trip. It is the place where Jesus was born. There were a lot of people from out of town in Bethlehem when Joseph and Mary got there. The town was very, very crowded.

INN--Another name for a hotel is an "inn.” When Mary and Joseph got to Bethlehem, they needed to find an inn. Mary and Joseph were very tired, and Mary was ready to have her baby.

INNKEEPERS--The man or woman who runs an inn is called an innkeeper. Every inn, where Mary and Joseph stopped was filled, and the innkeepers told them that there was no room for them.

STABLE--This is a stable. A stable is like a barn. It is a place people keep animals, like COWS and GOATS. Because Mary and Joseph could not find any place to stay in Bethlehem, they had to stay in a stable.

SHEEP--On the hills around the city of Bethlehem, people kept sheep. The sheep grazed or ate the grass on the hills. On the night when Jesus was born, there were many flocks of sheep grazing on the hills around Bethlehem.

SHEPHERDS--A shepherd is a person who cares for sheep. The shepherd makes sure the sheep have enough to eat, cares for them if they get sick, and keeps away other animals that might hurt the sheep. On the night Jesus was born, there were many shepherds on the hills around Bethlehem watching over the flocks of sheep.

GIFT BOX--Add the small wrapped box in the stable with the baby Jesus figure inside. The tag on it says "To: ALL from: GOD." Talk about what that means.



Go to church and search for changes that help us recognize that Advent is here. Spend time at the Advent wreath asking them the meaning of the different parts of the wreath as follows (EX. What does it mean that the Advent wreath is in a circle? )

The Story of the Advent Wreath

 Advent wreaths were originally part of folk traditions of Northern Europe.

Wreaths of evergreens were decorated with candles to symbolize life and light

during the dark months of winter. Legend has it that Saint Boniface first gave

the wreath its Christian meaning in the eighth century, and we have been using

these wreaths as part of our Advent preparation ever since. 

1.   The circle of the wreath, which has no beginning or end, symbolizes the eternity of God.

2.     The evergreens stay green all winter so they signify life.

3.     Each of the four candles represents one of the Sundays of Advent.

4.     The color purple signifies the “royalty” of Jesus Christ.

5.     The rose (pink) candle is lit on the Third Sunday of Advent, which is the Sunday of rejoicing. Our wait is half way complete.

6.     The light of the candles reminds us that Jesus comes into the darkness of our lives to bring newness, life, and hope. We gradually add more light each Sunday until Christ, our Light, comes at Christmas.


Have students take out their interactive notebooks.  On the right side they can write the words that fill in the blanks of the story you read.  They can make any kind of design out of their words.

Read the following sheet and have them fill in the blanks:


For the discussion afterwards have students write the literal meanings of repent and on the left side they can answer 5 and or 6 below:

Preparation for Sunday Scripture Readings 

1. Point out to the young people that persuasive speech is designed to change the beliefs or actions of the audience. Can they give an example?

2. Explain that when John the Baptist began his ministry, he called people to repent, which literally means, “to turn around” or “to change one's mind.”

3. Invite volunteers to read aloud Matthew 3:1-12. That's today's gospel: http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/120416.cfm

4. Point out that John the Baptist used persuasive speech to challenge people to change their minds about sin.

5. Say: During this Advent season, we listen to the words of John the Baptist as a reminder that we are called to repentance as we prepare for Jesus' coming into our lives.

6. What are some of the persuasive things you could say to people in the world today to change their mind about the environment, about the way they treat others, about how they spend their time.

7. Pray together that we will reform our lives and prepare the way of the Lord in our world by praying the Lord's Prayer.

November 6, 2016

1) The readings at the end of the liturgical year and the beginning of Advent deal with the end of time and death.  Today’s reading is difficult until you understand the Pharisees were trying to trick Jesus. 
Read this for a quick background for yourself (or with the kids): 

I have sheets from 2 of the magazines for you to use.

Good News https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6DnQzdpNlAzdmZtSjA/view?usp=sharing

Visions https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6Dnd091TVZNNm1FWTg/view?usp=sharing

From here you can talk about what the church prays in the Creed each Sunday. “I believe …  in the resurrection of the dead and life everlasting.” I will bring a one sheet explanation for the older ones to read.



2) Mother Teresa is a great example of how we should live as life-giving people.  There is a good 7 minute video you can show at the computer and some worksheets for follow up.


Crossword: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6DneUUzVEM3eEgxRm8/view?usp=sharing

Second page of this one: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6DnY0VRWkNSVVYyN2M/view?usp=sharing

And a coloring page: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6DnODVaN0ZPT0tZZ0E/view?usp=sharing

3) Thanksgiving is coming. I have included a crossword for the students to do in pairs—the older with the younger, and the middlers together. This might be a good warm-up activity. Or a time-filler at the end.


October 2, 2016

The weather should be good on Sunday so plan some outside time if possible.
The scavenger hunt under 4 below looks great!

Use Trivia Follow-up if you would like.  See B at the bottom of this page

We will use interactive notebooks (see the link to the left) and leave them here in the green bin.

I will bring along this sheet https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_PeaRPN6DnbkpTOW5nUDJUbXM/view?usp=sharing
it is a good one to read with the older kids. and use with the graphic organizer under 3 below.

October 4 is the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi.
Francis is called the poor man of Assisi for the way he lived poverty. 
Francis loved all of creation. Francis worked for peace.  

At all levels talk about St. Francis.  
Every story or legend about him is worth discussing with the students. Some examples:

"Preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary use words." – Francis of Assisi
Francis and the First Christmas Creche
Francis misunderstood and then understood, "Rebuild my church."
Canticle of the Sun - prayer attributed to Francis


1. Here is some background for you.







2. Some on line activities

Paint and print


3. some of the worksheets I will bring

finish the story (gr 3-2)

who am I gr 2-3


Crossword puzzle sheets

Graphic organizer for older kids—use for any type of activity.
Would be good to use with the article by Kate Dooley listed at the top of this page in green.


4. Activities

This is a scavenger-hunt type of activity. I will bring the sheets.

St. Francis and the Wolf Tag: After sharing a version of St. Francis and the Wolf (from the books listed below or from American Catholic), play a game of tag.  One child is the Wolf. One is St. Francis.  The rest are the villagers of Gubbio.  On “go”, the Wolf tries to tag the villagers.  If he does, they must freeze or lay down.  Meanwhile Francis tries to catch the Wolf.  If he does, he says, “In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, let there be peace between you and the people.”  That round of tag ends.


5. Books I will bring along

Francis: Poor Man of Assisi by Tomie DePaola

The Circle of Days (an illustrated version of Canticle of the Sun) by Reeve Lindberg

The Living Nativity: The story of St Francis and the Christmas Manger by David and Helen Haidle

Activities for Any Week

A. Ideas for a church visit


B. Trivia Follow-up

1)  Fill in Trivia page in interactive notebook. I will bring sheets which include this information to paste into their notebooks.

Today’s trivia game:
This is the question I asked and the answer
Here’s what I learned, relearned, noticed, remembered, etc.
This is something else I want to know
WWK Words Worth Knowing--Add the meaning later if necessary.

C. Background and ideas for the Sunday gospel.

Sadler at https://religion.sadlierconnect.com/anonymous/product.html?productId=813&alias=twl&eventId=bD8xhih97jPnXHvA&eventValidation=485f4f6c828e180ae77bbbdec2cfac07._.I3Z7e1ea_QI6U-6clmR9dvJ1EYR_X6XwW6jyx7U4aygmeMJd2mpp0-vAUQxEP4-0Mm6bbzkP8uVXOwa-NPZ31g~~

 Loyola at http://www.loyolapress.com/sunday-connection.htm