Our other picture is an attempt to capture our new method (new for us)of teaching the history of our faith to the children. It's the montessori method. It's called "Godly play". Instead of traditional teaching of just transferring information from my head to their heads with lots of motion to 'keep them interested', you leave space for God to speak. By simply using our little props we share the story but leave space for the children to wonder, to listen, to be present. You don't have to fill every moment with speech. And it teaches the children to just sit and listen, meditate. Alot of times it's more about entertaining the kids, and eventually you have to be more entertaining then the last time. And even the 'craft time' is really time for them to express what they feel the Holy Spirit is saying to them through the story. I don't need to create the 'craft', they simply are offered the medium in which to express themselves. Hard at times because this requires them to be self-directed. But getting 'out of control' is a good thing. God can speak to them directly. I receive alot of joy just using my own imagination (and some input from others ideas) to create the individual props for each story. Our Resurrection story had all the disciples, Jesus, Mary and her friends, the Roman soldier, Judas and his money bag, the bread and wine, the crosses, the thieves...all made from old-fashioned clothespins. And let me tell you trying to dress all of them was a challenge! But I love it, absolutely love it. To see the children sit practically in silence as we place all the figures during the story is priceless to me. They just watch with intensity and then at the end we ask what is called "wondering question", open ended not asking them the questions expecting them to answer like a parrot whose been trained to know what to say. I'm already onto my next set of props.
This is our first Easter here and we look forward to celebrating with our friends and neighbors. Tomorrow we are off to Antigua to witness one or more of their processions through the streets. We hope to find parking! Then on Saturday we are taking our children to the neighborhood waterfront for a picnic and fun. For some it will be there first time there and it's just 7 miles away. I'm grateful for this time of remembrance for all the joy and grace that has been given, not only to us, but to the world!