I've been posting Sunday school ideas each week in case there are other teachers out there in need of ideas. Check out others here.
I won't be teaching this lesson on Ash Wednesday, but on the Sunday afterward, but I thought I'd post it early in case anyone was scrounging for Wednesday night ideas. Not all of my kids will have even heard of Lent, but I think getting them thinking about Easter and its importance can only be a good thing.
First, I'll give the kids four different colored papers with Easter verses on them. While I teach the lesson, they'll be cutting the papers into strips and taping them in order to make a scripture chain. Each link of the chain has a verse about Jesus' last days on earth, death, or resurrection. They'll remove and read one a day. There are 43 links, which will get them from the Sunday after Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday. The links are numbered, but I split them among four pages and printed them on different colored paper, so the chain will have a cute pattern. I've attached the pdf version of the scripture chain.
While they cut and tape their little hearts out, I'll introduce the kids to Lent with a quick Prezi I made. Embedded in it are three short video clips about Jesus in the desert. I've posted two of them here in case the Prezi doesn't work. The third one was a Lego stop-motion animation narrated by a kid, but I couldn't get it to embed here for some reason.
Then, I'll tell them the story of the pretzel. Basically, some monks had given up milk and eggs for the Lenten season. They made a special bread with water, flour, and salt. Then, one monk took the dough and shaped it into the traditional pretzel shape to represent arms folded in prayer, the way people prayed in those days (hands crossed over chest) After learning the history of pretzels, we eat them!