Our Baptism study actually begins with all of the wonderful photos from my students' own Baptisms. I send a note home inviting all families to share photos from the occasion. We collect them on our classroom prayer table throughout the study. I often see my students use their free time to visit the table and study the photos.
If you look carefully, at the above image you will notice that the Bible is open to the story of Jesus' Baptism. I always take some time to share that story. It helps my kinders relate to Jesus on a very personal level and learn a little about John the Baptist as well.
This is my FAVORITE children's Bible. I have many, but I love this one the most. The most common stories from the Old and New Testaments are included in the book, the pictures are so sweet and age-appropriate and the stories are very brief. Some of my higher readers actually look at this book from time-to-time and can read the stories independently. You can purchase My First Read-Aloud Bible from Amazon.
As our study progresses, I explain many of the symbols used at Baptism (such as water, white garments, and candles) along with the words the priest uses during the ceremony and the people you often see at Baptisms. After explaining baptismal elements to the class, we study each of the student photos more carefully to find some of those items. You should see my kids' faces light up as they connect the content learned in class to their OWN Baptisms.
Later in the week, the REALLY fun part happens: we PLAY Baptism in the classroom. I set out a baby doll (preferably with some type of white clothing), a bowl with water in it, a small cup, and a scarf. The children take turns role playing the sacrament of Baptism, rotating the parts of priest, parents, and godparents. (I drape the scarf over the shoulders of the student acting as the priest and we pretend it is a stole.)
As the young priest pours water over the doll's head he says the words of Baptism:
I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit
At the close of our study, I integrate Baptism into my ELA block with a writing response activity. Children write a list of people & things at Baptism. They also draw a picture of Baptism and fill in the blanks to complete the prayer the priest says as he pours water over the child's head.
I am so happy to share this Baptism Response Page with you for FREE! Click the image below to download.
How do you teach your students about the sacrament of Baptism?