This is our son, then age 4, making his resurrection cross last year for Lent. We made a big batch of white playdough, then colored a few balls of dough for decoration. I let him fashion the cross, cut the hearts with a cookie cutter, and recreate the scene as he saw fit.
There is a candle for each week, but it's done in reverse of the Advent wreath, extinguishing a candle for each week leading to Good Friday. I think we lit the whole cross each week, then blew out the appropriate number of candles until Good Friday, when all the candles were extinguished. Jesus died on the cross, and the world was plunged into darkness. On Easter Sunday, all the candles were lit again, representing Christ's resurrection and the Light of the World.
The colorful lumps around the bottom of the cross were the people who shouted mean things to Jesus, according to our son. His four-year-old interpretation of the crucifixion scene brought tears to my eyes. The crown of thorns at the top was his idea, as well as the red (pink) hearts where Jesus' hands were nailed to the cross.
We'll definitely be repeating this tradition this Lenten season. For older kids, perhaps they could give something up for each candle they extinguish, one per week, lending lots of opportunities to talk about Christ's ultimate sacrifice. His love was so great, He gave up His life for us.
How do you learn about or celebrate this religious season with your kids?