Here’s an easy way to involve your students in praying the rosary.
By Sara Jonckheere
The month of May is a time that the Catholic Church celebrates our Blessed Mother and hopefully, for most of us, we are celebrating springtime and warmer weather.
A perfect way to combine the two is to use a walkable rosary with your students.
Note: this activity does not have to take place outside. I have some ideas for you to use it year round both indoors and outdoors.
How to use the walkable rosary outside.
Imagine your students’ excitement as they head outside and see a giant rosary in the grass. Now you’ve got them engaged and in a different environment to spend time praying the Rosary and honoring Mary in a special way.
There are a few different ways to make this rosary. First, download the template that has the pieces you will need.
I would suggest printing these or tracing them onto card stock or a sturdy material. Make sure you have enough pieces (1 cross, 6 Our Fathers, 6 Glory Be’s, 153 Hail Mary’s, etc.).
You could stop right there and use those pieces to create a rosary outside. You could also laminate for a little more durability.
Set these pieces in a circle with enough space between them so students can stand on them. If it is a windy day, you will want to secure them by taping the pieces down. You could also use sidewalk chalk (or spray chalk for the grass) and trace around the pieces.
Have students take turns stepping on the correct piece and then having the class pray the correct prayer. You could have older students that know how to pray the Rosary work at their own pace around the beads. For younger students, maybe just focus on one decade at a time. If you don’t want students to stand on the pieces, they could stand near the piece or move a rock around to show what bead they are on.
Don’t have a big open area outside for this? Try making it in a straight line along the sidewalk. You could even just create one decade in a straight line for students to practice.
If you want to try something more permanent and you have your church/school’s permission, you could use the templates to paint a rosary onto the blacktop or playground area so students can always have it as a prayer tool.
How to use the walkable rosary inside.
Once the pieces are cut out on card stock (or a material of your choice), you could stick them to the floor and cover them with clear contact paper. Then you could easily remove them, but it would be more durable for children to stand on.
If you don’t have a large area in your classroom, you could make the beads in a straight line down the hallway. Cover with contact paper so that they stay secure and you are ready to go, and then, as a bonus, the whole school can use it.
Make the walkable rosary portable.
I created an even more portable version of the walkable rosary. I bought a cheap white shower curtain and laid out all the pieces from the template. I had to do some maneuvering to get all of the pieces to fit but at the size they are on the template, you should be able to fit an entire rosary on there.
Then, trace around the template pieces with permanent marker and then color or paint the beads. This way, when you aren’t using the rosary you can fold it up. You could also take this outside, into a gym or large gathering space or keep it in your classroom.
This is a great activity to do with a small group of students. I would have 2-3 students work on a decade at a time. They would stand on a different part of the rosary but all pray the prayers at the same time and then move to the next bead.
Getting your students up and moving will help keep them engaged while at the same time learning or practicing the Rosary and honoring our Blessed Mother.
Sara Jonckheere is an elementary school teacher turned stay-at-home mom. She now creates digital curriculum and resources and shares teaching ideas on her blog, Sara J Creations.