Introducing… the HOLY WEEK CRAFT KIT!

A creative resource for exploring the Eastern Orthodox Holy Week, at home or in the classroom.

This kit is available for purchase at the Draw Near Designs Marketplace.

ALREADY OWN THE KIT?
PLEASE CLICK HERE
for craft tutorials and additional resources

UPDATE – April 17, 2021

We were extra excited for the warm welcome our craft kit received – in just a few days, we had to rush to make seven times more kits than originally planned! The kit has now sold out for this Pascha season. We extend a huge THANK YOU to all our friends who purchased it, and to Draw Near Designs Marketplace for a great collaboration. Warmest wishes to all until next year!


Spend less time planning, and more time exploring the special days of Holy Week, while working on creative projects together with the children.

The kit contains printed templates and crafting materials for each day of the Holy Week, from Lazarus Saturday to Pascha Sunday. We are also offering additional resources to help organize enriching religious education sessions.


Teach about the Orthodox Holy Week in a HANDS-ON, MULTISENSORY, AESTHETICALLY PLEASING way, that children and adults will remember for years to come!

At home, one craft can be done every day of the Holy Week, while exploring the day’s celebrated theme.

At Sunday School or at a Holy Week retreat, in-person or online, the crafts can be done together as a teaching unit on Holy Week and Pascha.


HOLY WEEK CRAFT KIT
Q&A

What are the crafts about?

The crafts are inspired by the Gospel readings, Orthodox services, icons, and traditions of each day of the Holy Week. They have been planned as teaching tools, to provoke insightful conversations and further exploration. They have also been carefully considered to provide variety, engaging all the senses in a multisensory experience.


How many crafts are there?

The kit contains resources for making ten creative projects, one each day from Lazarus Saturday to Pascha Sunday. Especially for Palm Sunday, when themes from two separate days are celebrated (Palm Sunday in the morning and Holy Monday in the evening), we are offering two crafts.


What does the kit include?

The kit includes:

  • Fourteen original, Orthodox-inspired, beautifully illustrated printed paper templates.
  • The materials required to complete each craft.

Do I need any additional supplies?

We tried to avoid overloading the kit, so to finish three of the crafts you will need to provide the following everyday items:

  • A small bottle or jar.
  • A tin can (such as an empty coffee can).
  • A piece of cardboard (a piece cut out of a cardboard box works fine).

You will also need to have available:

  • Crafting staples such as scissors, glue, tape, a stapler, and a hole puncher.
  • Simple kitchen utensils such as a wooden spoon, a couple of small containers, and a strainer.

Optionally, if you want to light up the Holy Friday lantern, you can also use an LED votive candle; it is nice to have, but not required to complete the project.


Are there any instructions for the crafts?

For every craft, we have created a step-by-step online tutorial.


Where can I find the online tutorials?

On each printed template, we are providing the link to the corresponding tutorial, both as text and as a QR code. You can also access all of the tutorials HERE.


Do I need to be an experienced crafter?

Not really. The crafts are simple to make, they are not messy, and they have been designed with young children in mind. They have been successfully tested with children of various ages.


How long does it take to complete a project?

Most crafts need about half an hour to complete. Completion time can vary depending on the project’s nature and on the desired crafting detail.

How did you choose the theme for each craft?

Each craft coordinates with the main theme celebrated on the corresponding day of the Holy Week.

On Holy Week, many services are performed in anticipation; for example, the Orthros (Matins) of one day usually takes place on the evening of the previous day. We find this too confusing to explain to young children, so our crafts go along with what is actually happening at church on each specific day. For instance, on Holy Monday, we are working on a theme that is mentioned at church in the evening of that day, even though this theme actually belongs to Holy Tuesday.


How can I use the kit to teach?

We are offering background information and a variety of additional resources to help you plan an enriching religious education experience. Please click HERE.

How can I use the kit at a group setting?

Depending on the time and the resources available, you can use one kit for the whole teaching session or one kit for each participant (a more time-consuming and costly option).

If using one kit altogether, the participants can be separated into groups, guided by volunteers. Each group gets to make one craft while using the rest of our material to discuss the theme of the day. The kit activities can also be complemented with our additional Holy Week suggestions. At the end, all groups get together to present their crafts and themes to each other.

If using one kit for each participant, a station can be set up for each craft, manned by a volunteer. The participants rotate from station to station, doing one project at each stop while discussing each theme.

In both cases, an exhibit of the finished crafts and planners/worksheets can be shared with the whole parish at the conclusion of the event. The children can act as hosts, explaining and discussing their creations with the visitors.

Can I use the kit to plan an online teaching session or retreat?

With some planning, and the help of the parents, the kit can be used on an online teaching session. The materials can be provided to the families, and the parents can be instructed to visit the tutorials ahead of time. The group of teacher(s), parents, and children can then meet on a video conference and make the crafts together while discussing the relative themes.

The group can meet either:

  • Once – in which case each child will only make one craft, the crafts divided among the participants. The crafts can be complemented with our additional Holy Week activities. Upon completion, the crafts can be shared and discussed with the group.
  • Every day of the Holy Week – in which case every child will make their own version of every craft.

We are also offering additional digital resources to facilitate an online teaching experience. Please click HERE.

We hope you get to enjoy using our Holy Week teaching resource as much as we enjoyed creating it.

Have a BLESSED GREAT LENT and a JOYOUS PASCHA!

Special thanks to Presbytera Destinie of Ascetic Life of Motherhood for exploring the kit with her sweet little children and sharing wonderful photos with us.