Sharing the Easter Story with Preschoolers

PHOTO CAPTION: This little guy is really getting into Easter!

Next week is Palm Sunday, but I am telling sharing the story early so that you have it to share with your little ones. I find this story is a fun for preschoolers and older children alike. Most of the kids delight in having their own mini-parade and celebrating Jesus. I also reference Jesus dying in this week’s story, but I do so without going into a lot of details. I simply tell the kids that Jesus died for them because He loves them and He wants to forgive them for their sins or wrong choices. That brings me to Easter. Yes, it is almost Easter!

A topic that seems to come around every year about this time is how much of the Easter story to share with preschoolers. Many people have opinions on what is the right way to share the Easter story with preschoolers. Some people avoid the story all together because they feel that telling about Jesus dying on the cross may be too much for their little ones. They think it’s too violent. Others focus on Palm Sunday and the resurrection, choosing to simply tell preschoolers that Jesus is alive and leave it at that. Still others tell the whole story from start to finish. However you choose to tell the story to your preschooler is up to you. There isn’t a right or wrong way to share the story of Jesus crucifixion and you know your kids best. You know when your child is ready to hear the whole story. With that said, I wanted to give you a couple of hints of things that seemed to have worked for me when sharing the Easter story.

Focus On the Positive. Be sure to emphasize that Jesus didn’t stay dead. He is alive! Yes, He did die on the cross, but He is alive and well and He doesn’t hurt any more. One little girl was afraid that Jesus hands and body still hurt even though He is alive. I reassured her that Jesus is alive and completely well. He doesn’t hurt any more. I would recommend telling only the highlights and not all the graphic details with preschoolers.

Keep It Simple. Whether you choose to tell or not to tell about the crucifixion, keep it simple. I usually state that Jesus died in a matter-of-fact way, as simply something that happened. Jesus died because He loved us, but He didn’t stay dead, He rose from the dead and He is alive. He is with us everyday even though we can’t see Him. He wants to be our forever friend.

Let Kids Know It’s Okay To Be Sad. Yes, it was sad that Jesus died. His friends were sad when He died and we feel sad when we hear about what happened to Jesus or when something sad happens to us, but remember, Jesus didn’t stay dead did he? No way! Jesus is God and He can do anything. He is alive! He’s our forever friend and He can help us feel better when we feel sad.

Listen To Your Child. Watch and listen to your child as you tell the story of Jesus‘ death and resurrection. Do they appear worried? Do they have questions? Reassure, comfort, go over the story again, pray together. Take time to really understand where your child is coming from and ask God to help you tell your little one in such a way that they will be able to understand yet not become overwhelmed. Most of all, ask God to help you tell your child how much God loves and cares for them.

Whatever you decide your child is ready to hear, do let them know that Jesus wants to be their forever friend too. He is alive and He loves you.

Dear Jesus,
I’m so thankful for what you did for me by dying on the cross. You forgave me and you love me so much. I want to help the little ones in my life understand that you loved them enough to die for them too. Help me to tell the story in such a way that they will understand and yet not be afraid. I want them to know that even though you died on the cross, you are now very much alive and that you are okay. I want them to know that you are alive forever. I also want them to know that because you died and rose again, you can be their forever friend. Thank you for opportunities to share your story with kids. Help us all to understand what you did and the magnitude of your great love for us. Help us to simply come to you as a little child. Amen


  • Use appropriate illustrations – nothing too graphic. I like the Bible Ap For Kids stories that you can download on your phone. They are very preschool appropriate. Resurrection Eggs are also fun to use. They are colorful plastic eggs with various objects inside that help tell the Easter story. For preschoolers, I like using just a few of the eggs instead of the whole dozen or making up my own with just a few objects or pictures inside.
  • Use a simple Children’s Bible or Bible Storybook .I like “Easter Bible for Me” by Andy Holmes, Illustrated by Ralph Voltz
    • Online resources – “The Jelly Bean Prayer” and “Resurrection Rolls”
    • Don’t Create Fear. Let your child know that Jesus did what He did because He loves us. He didn’t have to die for us, He chose to because He loves us so much and wants to be our forever friend.
      • Don’t Stop With the Cross. BUT it didn’t end there. Young children need to know that Jesus is alive. He didn’t stay dead, He is alive and He is totally okay. Never stop with the cross, but always end with the resurrection. Jesus is and forever will be alive and well! That is good news for any age.
        • A Simplified Version of the“Resurrection Eggs” is using three colored plastic eggs with these items.
          Pink Egg – Heart inside because God loves me and sent Jesus.
          Yellow Egg – Cross inside. Jesus died on a cross because He loves me.
          Blue Egg – Empty – Just like the tomb or the cave that Jesus was buried in, this egg is empty. Jesus didn’t stay in the tomb, He is alive and He wants to be your friend forever!

Kid’s Section

STORY: Praise Parade – Matthew 21, John 19
Clip, clop, clip clop went the donkey, – (Pat knees with hands.)
That Jesus rode on that day.
Eagerly the children watched, – (Hands by eyes looking for someone.)
As Jesus rode their way.

They knew that Jesus loved them. – (Give self a hug.)
He was their special friend. – (Hook index fingers together for friend.)
He said, “Let the children come to me.” – (Beckon come with hands.)
And He welcomed and blessed them.

A BIG crowd had gathered, – (Stand up.)
On both sides of the road, – (look one way and then the other.)
Spreading their coats and palm branches, – (Wave paper palm branches)
They praised Jesus as He rode. – (Wave arms above head.)

It was a special day,Just like a big parade. – (March in place.)
The people shouted, “Hosanna!” – (Shout, “Hosanna!”)
What a happy sound they made! – (Clap hands and say, “Yeah Jesus!”)
Even the children shouted, – (Say Yeah, Jesus!)
“Hosanna!” to Jesus their friend. – (Say, “Hosanna!”)

Joining the happy celebration,
They shouted their praise to Him. -(Wave arms again, say “Yeah, Jesus!”)
Jesus wants us to praise Him. You can praise Him too.
Praise Him by saying, “Thank you, Yeah, Jesus! I really love you.”

A few days after all the people praised Jesus, He died for you and me. He died for us because He loved us and wanted to forgive us. He didn’t stay dead though. He rose from the dead. He is alive again. That’s why we celebrate Easter because Jesus is alive! He loves you so much and wants to be your forever friend. You can ask Him to be your friend by asking Him to forgive your sins (anything wrong that you have done) and help you to live for Him.

MEMORIZE: Proverbs 3:5 – (Hands like holding a book.)
Trust – (Make a fist & pull in.)
In the Lord – (Point upwards.)
With all – (Extend arms outward.)
Your heart – (Hands on heart.

Dear Jesus,
Thank you that you love me and died to forgive me. I want you to be my forever friend. Please forgive me for anything wrong I have done, like not listening to mom and dad or wanting my own way instead of loving you. Help me to live in the way you want me too. I praise you because you are good, you love me and you help me everyday. I know you are alive and you will always love me. Amen

KNOW: Jesus loves me I can praise Him.
TALK ABOUT: Jesus is my friend. Jesus is alive!
ASK: Who wants to be your forever friend? Jesus wants to be my forever friend.
AND DO… I can trust because Jesus loves me and I can love and praise Jesus too.


  • Put on some praise music and dance around the room with your preschooler. It’s fun to praise God with exuberance!
    • Fill a few plastic Easter eggs with rice or beans to make a shaker. Shake the eggs as you say   the verse together or dance together.
  • Remember to say, “Thank you!” to Jesus for loving us enough to die for us and remember to tell   your preschooler that Jesus didn’t stay dead, He is alive! .EX: God, Thank you for ….

Author: faithstepsandmore

I am a mom of three, grandmother of eight and have worked with young children for over thirty years. I currently write curriculum, speak for women's groups, do chapel for a daycare center and help with teacher/volunteer training at churches. I love what I do. There is nothing better than helping kids take those first steps of faith in a God who loves them more than they can imagine.

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