Lent is a wonderful time for focusing on spiritual growth for the entire family. Toddlers can easily get involved with almsgiving through the use of a family almsgiving box. Decorating the box is a simple, but effective way to help busy toddlers understand that lent is an important and special time for focusing on Jesus and preparing for Easter.An almsgiving box is a great way to get toddlers involved in lent. #CatholicToddler #Lent Click To Tweet
Our almsgiving box is a large, sturdy cardboard box that I pulled out of our recycling bin. I covered the four sides of the box with brown butcher paper. This provided my toddlers with a blank and smooth canvas.
On one side of the box we painted using an apple stamp. I cut an apple in half and carved out a cross.
We dipped the apple stamp into some washable finger paint and decorated one side of the box with crosses. Yes, I realize that one arm of the cross is shorter than the other, but she didn’t mind, so neither did I 😉
For the other side, I made a simple printable of a cross, which I have attached to this post for your use.
We used Dot •A •Dot Art sponge tip applicators to complete this drawing, but small circle stickers, pom poms and glue, or other filler could be used to decorate this cross.
On the third side we used some simple foam crosses that my mother found at Walmart, but these crosses from Amazon look similar. We used Glue dots to attach 3 purple crosses to the box. We plan to use the other foam crosses to make window decorations for Easter Sunday.
One the fourth side of the box we attached a Lenten Calendar. There are several to choose from. My three favorites from searching the web are:
- Printable Lenten Calendar for Kids from Catholic Icing (very child friendly, resembles a game board)
- A Lenten Calendar for Catholic Children from Shower of Roses (a much larger poster board version perfect for little hands)
- 2015 Lent Calendar Printable from Joy Filled Family (picturesque, meant to be professionally printed, includes the saint days)
Each morning of lent, our toddlers place a can of food from our pantry into the family almsgiving box. At the end of lent, we take a family trip to the local food kitchen and donate these non-perishable items for those in need.
Does your family have any toddler friendly lenten activities you can share?
I’m always looking for ideas!
Inspired by “Guiding Your Catholic Preschooler” by Kathy Pierce and Lori Rowland