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Thursday, March 23, 2017

“I promise not to eat apples!”

In one Catholic school, each class was asked to decorate a cross with written pledges or Lent promises, so I decided to use a video on Lent as an introduction in a grade 2/3 classroom. Prior to showing the video, I asked what the children knew about Lent. One child talked about Jesus who fasted and prayed for 40 days, Aha! At least one child had an idea while the rest of the class started giving each other quizzical looks. That must have been the strangest thing they’d heard in their life...

When the children learned about the same on the video, their jaws dropped and they started a quiet conversation about the possibility of living without food that long. After the viewing, we talked about what the children learned and what something dear they can give up during Lent. They could do chores and help their parents at home, pray every day, or replace meat with fish or fruit and vegetables. I thought that maybe they could also promise giving up chocolates, junk foods or computer games. The last suggestion was naturally met with a lot of no’s and shaking heads, especially among the boys, as if they would die without electronics!

After the period, the children finished decorating their cross, coming up with really neat ideas like helping at home, not fighting with brothers/sisters and walking away, forgiving a friend who let them down, not having chocolates or chips, etc. One note, however, showed red apples and the promise to give up apples. I reminded the girl that apples were healthy and that an apple a day would keep the doctor away, but she said that because she loved apples a lot, she was willing to sacrifice and go without them for forty days! Makes a lot of sense, but, oh, dear! I wonder what the parents would say? Did I get myself in trouble this Lent? 5 March 2017

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