The Story of Buddha
Craft: Pipe Cleaner Lotus Flowers
Symbolism of Craft: The lotus flower is a well-known symbol of Buddhism. Its growth from the mud to above the water’s surface represents the journey from darkness to light. To explain this concept to a child you could make this simple lotus flower using pipe cleaners. It makes a pretty decoration, or could be given away to family and friends. You could also add beads to the pipe cleaners, which is a great fine motor activity for little hands.
Materials: 5 pipe cleaners of any color
Instructions: make circles out of 4 pipe cleaners then twist to make figure eights. Use 5th pipe cleaner to attach the four figure eights together. Bend half circles upward to create flower.
See Build Pictures
The Farmer's Luck
Craft: Origami Fortune Teller
Symbolism of Craft:
Japanese origami began sometime after Buddhist monks carried paper to Japan during the 6th century. Paper disintegrates easily so no early origami forms are left for historians to study. Paper is very important to Buddhists because it is how they delivered the message of their scripture. Also, the Japanese use paper, and origami – most notably cranes – in many sacred ceremonies.
The Origami Fortune Teller should be developed to share spiritual truths with the children. After it is created, the child may write short words of inspiration under the folds, i.e. You are Love, You are Joy, You are Peace, etc. Or, for older children, they may write longer Buddhist sayings.
It is also a great way for kids to connect with one another and have fun!
Material: 1 sheet of colored paper, cut into 8x8” square.
The Heavy Load
Craft: Paracord Prayer Beads
Symbolism of Craft: Beads become prayer beads when making and using them is part of a meditation practice. If you string beads as prayer beads, then each time you touch them you’ll remember their purpose. In that moment, you will feel your feet on the floor and your grounding on the earth. If you continually bring small moments of silence into your life, you will stay in the present moment, and your opportunities to notice spiritual connections will grow.
Prayer is a way of being silent and knowing that God is within, and God is taking care of our every need.
Prayer beads can be made with beads on pipe cleaners or cord or wire or Paracord.
Make sure the children attached a good or kind thought to each knot/bead.
The Greatest Thing
Craft: Generosity Worksheet
Symbolism of Craft: Every karmic ‘debt’ or ‘seed’ from the past brings with it an opportunity to grow in love and understanding. As the proverb says ‘every cloud has a silver lining’. Usually we learn most, and grow most, through difficulties and suffering. But instead of grumbling and being unhappy when we have to face difficulties, we can learn to make the best of them and thank God for every opportunity. When we suffer, we can learn important lessons. Everything that happens in our life is an opportunity to help us grow closer to God and more loving to others.
Instructions: Use the worksheet to write down what you can do for others with each of your senses
See Full Worksheet
Buddha was a man who embarked on the search for truth and experienced enlightenment. Buddhism is a faith with an emphasis on each individual looking at and thinking about our own lives. Buddhism shows us how to understand ourselves and how to cope with our daily problems. Buddha believed that all the sorrow of the world was caused by selfishness. He believed the secret to life is love. This month, we share delightful Zen stories and focus on the basics of the teachings of Buddha. See Entire Lesson Here
Jesus used stories to teach life lessons. This month, we explore some of Jesus’s parables, those with a natural theme. We are not necessarily instructed by Jesus, but instead invited to explore life through his eyes and stand with him to understand what the simple stories reveal. Parables to teach life lessons are found in every religion focus on the joy found in life. See Entire Lesson Here
This month’s lessons focus on the joy found in life. October’s theme explores how imagination and creative play are an important part of many of the world’s religions. Laughing, dancing and song are an important part of Buddhist, Muslim, Jewish and Christian celebration. Children in creative play! We end the month of October by partnering with Unicef(™).
See Entire Lesson Here
Download Trick or Treat for Unicef
The focus of this workbook is to share these timeless truths that support a life of peace, happiness and creativity. This month’s lessons come from the Torah, the Jewish sacred text. The Torah is the foundation of a child’s Jewish education. It is read publicly every year. In Judaism, it is common to share the story of Jonah and the Whale during the afternoon of Yom Kipper since the story shares of God’s willingness to forgive those who repent. Jonah is also mentioned in the Christian New Testament, the Qur’an and by Mohammad. See Entire Lesson Here
Relish the Journey... Being present in each moment of our lives leads to more happiness. When your mind is thinking of the future or worrying about the past, you cannot be fully present to the people, places and situations now. We will use passages from “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle as we celebrate the moment of now. Practice the power for enjoying each moment. See Entire Lesson Here
We have the freedom to create anything we desire for our lives. But to create freely means to create without resistance. Nature shows us the blueprint daily on how to create without resistance … without putting any obstacles in the path. If we choose resistance such as fear, worry or doubt, we choose to block our own good. The only thing holding us back from realizing our desires it our resistance to it. See Entire Lesson Here
This month we will study our Unity and Oneness with our world and each other through the traditions of Native Americans. Native American teach the Great Spirit created our world and everything in it. We will explore this Wisdom and what it means for us as an integral part of our planet. We consider the Harmony of the world and our place in it. We teach Respect for all we see. Wisdom to make the best choices we can to support our world. And Compassion for the challenges we see for our world and others. See Entire Lesson Here
This month we are studying Philosophers from different religions, countries and faiths who have all had an impact on humanity’s thinking. Even though they lived many years apart, in different parts of the world, they each shared the knowledge of the importance of love and wisdom. Confucius’s focus on self-improvement was radical for his day. Aristotle was revered by Muslim intellectuals and profoundly influenced Judeo-Islamic philosophical and theological thought during the Middle Ages and continues to influence Christian theology, especially the scholastic tradition of the Catholic Church. al-Farabi was a leader in the Islamic Golden Age and taught how we all must work together. King Solomon taught that the best decisions are made with our heart, not our head. See Entire Lesson Here
Hinduism is ripe with stories that have been told through the generations to teach the basic truth of our oneness with God and the search for God within each of us. This month, we use the stories of the celestial entities, or gods, from the ancient texts to teach these truths. Note: The term “gods” do not indicate that there are several gods that are worshipped by Hindus. They call the Supreme Being, Brahman, which is that all reality and truth which we discover within ourselves. See Entire Lesson Here
Springtime is a time of renewal - of making old things new again. Many religious traditions celebrate holidays about renewal at this time of year. One of the biggest spring celebrations is Easter. Easter comes from the Christian religion, and celebrates the renewal Jesus experienced himself and taught about. Jesus was a wise teacher who shows us that all of us can renew our lives all the time, which lets us grow more and more magnificent (or awesome!). See Entire Lesson Here
Select by Month
Select by Category