Lent Play and Prayer Stations for Under 5s

These play and prayer stations for pre-school children were inspired by "Shed for Lent", a Lenten prayer journey for primary school children, written by Rachel Nicholls and set up in a local church.

Pre-school children can be taken around the different stations using a simple script to tell the story of Jesus in the desert.

They are then free to play with the materials.

1 Baptism


Water or material to represent water, fish, shells, doves, blue material for underlay


Jesus' journey began with water. He asked his cousin John to baptise him in the River Jordan.

When Jesus came up out of the water, the Holy Spirit came down like a dove and hovered over Jesus.

People heard a voice which said "This is my beloved son, I am really pleased with him."

Then Jesus crossed over the river and the Holy Spirit led him into the desert.

2 Shelter


Play tent (or make a shelter with blankets and chairs); octons, stickle bricks or other building materials


Jesus went into the desert. The desert is a dangerous place. In the day it is very hot, but at night it can get really cold. The wind blows in the desert and you need to find shelter. Look this is our shelter. You can go inside for a rest, and to read some of the stories of Jesus.

I wonder where Jesus found shelter in the desert?

3 Bread and Stones


Stones, play bread, other play food - pizza, cake, vegetables


Jesus was in the desert for a long time. He didn't have anything to eat. He was very, very hungry.

He heard a voice say, "Why don't you turn these stones into bread?"

Jesus thought for a bit. Then he said, "No."

4 High up on the temple


Jesus figure; model of Jerusalem/temple or something to represent the temple; angel figure; duplo blocks, building bricks


Jesus felt as if he was on top of the great temple in Jerusalem. He was very high up. He heard a voice say, "Why don't you leap off the temple? God will send his angels to catch you."

Jesus thought for a bit. Then he said, "No."

5 All the countries of the world


Jesus figure; box covered with cloth to represent the mountain; small globes; crown and jewels; play mat; play buildings; play people


Jesus felt as if he was on top of a really high mountain. He could see all the countries of the world and all the people of the world. He heard a voice say, "If you worship me, I will make you king over all these countries and all these people."

Jesus thought for a bit and then he said, "No. I don't want to be that kind of a king. I want to worship God."

6 Alone in the desert


Jesus figure; brown cloths (or sand box if possible); wild animals; angel figures


After Jesus had made his choices he found himself alone in the desert with the wild animals.

The angels came to be with him.

Jesus stayed in the desert for a long time, thinking and praying.

Then he went back across the river to be with people, help them and teach them.

You can download a PDF of the script: here