A versatile tool to help children learn about the Stations of the Cross.
By Sara Jonckheere
The Stations of the Cross help us to meditate on Christ’s last day on Earth as a man. While these are tough events to recall, it is important for students to know what happened and what Jesus went through on that day for us.
These printable Stations of the Cross cards can be used in a variety of ways to get students more familiar with the events of Good Friday. They may be used as games, flash cards, or a reference tool as students visit the stations in your church or school.
–Stations of the Cross Cards (printable)
-Hole punch (optional)
-Metal book ring (optional)
There are two versions included in the free download – color and black-and-white. Choose the set that works best for you. The colored set would be perfect for a ready-to-go center activity that could be used every year. The black-and-white version would be perfect to have students color and make their own sets of cards.
Print the Stations of the Cross cards on cardstock for durability. Laminate if you plan to reuse these. Cut the cards apart.
The easiest way to play this game is to simply match the picture and the words that describe each station. There are fourteen stations, so twenty-eight cards to match total. For younger students, you could just focus on a few stations at a time if they are overwhelmed by that many cards.
Sequence the Events – Another important activity to do with these matching cards is to put them in order. This could be done before or after you’ve matched the picture to the words. You could also simply sequence the picture cards or, for more of a challenge, try sequencing only the word cards. The picture cards include the Roman numerals, but the word cards have no numbers on them to help with figuring out the correct sequence of events.
If you want to use these cards as more of a game you could try these ideas.
Memory – Shuffle the cards and set them all face down in neat rows and columns. One at a time, students will pick two cards up. If the words and the picture match, they keep the cards and go again. If they do not match, they return the cards to the same position and it is the next player’s turn. Continue this until all of the cards are gone.
Go Fish – To play this, shuffle the cards and have each player draw four cards. If they have any Stations of the Cross pictures and words that match, they can set them down in front of them and grab more cards to replace those. Then students will take turns asking another player for the match to one of the cards in his/her hand. If the other player has the words or the picture, they give it to the player who asked. The student that has the match sets it in front of them and goes again. If the other person does not have a match they say Go Fish, and the student who asked will draw a card from the pile. Continue playing until all cards are drawn and all matches are made.
Win, Lose, or Draw – Using just the word cards, students will choose a card and draw the picture that matches it. Other students will try to guess the correct station based on the picture. You could divide the class up into two teams to play this way.
Reference Tool – Cut the cards horizontally so that the picture and the word cards are still attached. Fold the cards in half. You could laminate them like this so that they make more of a flash card. Punch a hole in the corner and put a metal book ring through the hole to keep them all together. Students can use these as a reference when they are praying the Stations of the Cross as a class, with the whole school, or with their families.
Living Stations of the Cross – Have groups of students draw one card at a time and perform a living Stations of the Cross by acting out the station shown on their card.
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.
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