Last night, we kicked off our Easter celebrations with our Easter carnation experiment.
First, we sang, "Did Jesus Really Live Again?" from the Primary Songbook.
Then, we read "In the Garden" by Caralyn Beuhner.
This book opens with Christ instituting the Sacrament at the Passover meal.
This opened up a discussion with my children about what Easter celebrates, what the Passover commemorated (and why the use of the firstborn of the flock symbolized Christ, the firstborn, unblemished one, who would come to save us all), what Resurrection entails, and what it means for each one of us.
As we read about Christ suffering for all of the sins, pains, sorrows, and weaknesses of mankind while in the Garden of Gethsemane, we discussed how difficult this would be to accomplish...and that Jesus Christ was the only one capable of doing it. And because he did, we don't have to suffer, if we come to him and ask for his help in our lives. If we "apply the Atonement."
Since we did this carnation experience last year to illustrate how Christ took our sins upon him, I didn't have to explain too much to the children. The pure, white, unblemished flower takes on the color of the water, showing in a tangible way, how the Savior experienced and carried our pain and sins while he suffered for us in the Garden.
You start with a bunch of plain white carnations. We picked ours up at the grocery store.
We trimmed the stems to about seven or eight inches, much shorter than last year.
Then let the children add red food coloring to the water.
The shortened stems made a huge difference in the time it took to see results.
This is what the flowers look like this morning at breakfast!
Pretty instant gratification!
The idea that someone can take your pain upon himself can be difficult to grasp as a child (and as an adult), but this little "experiment" helps to bring this key concept behind the Atonement of Jesus Christ to life for young children...and it's a lot of fun too!
PS - You can see more ideas for teaching children about Jesus Christ this Easter here.
And be sure to check out That Good Part's FHE here.