Here’s a nice Lenten idea shared by a catechist named Anna Marie. Thanks, Anna Marie!
Here’s a Lenten idea that I have done in 7th-10th graders. The last day before we depart for Spring/Easter Break or during Holy Week, I create the classroom as a Retreat/Desert experience. Shades are pulled down, lights are dimmed if possible, and the window of the classroom door is covered. There is a sign placed outside the door: Do Not Disturb, Retreat in progress. There is quiet music playing in the background. On a table are books for reflection, Bibles marked with the Passion of Christ, Stations of the Cross booklets, and students have their Prayer Journals to respond to reflection questions or just talk with Jesus. There is also a sheet that is given as each student walks into the room that has steps to follow and suggestions on how to make the class time meaningful. They can sit or lay anywhere provided they are not touching anyone nor disturb anyone. Students have found this quiet time a wonderful experience and ask to do it again.
Some have said, mostly on the high school level, this is first time they have ever had quiet time to themselves. We all know that some students don’t look at it as a Reflection Time, but you would be amazed at how many do the readings and pray quietly. Our classes are 45 minutes. When done on the high school level, we had a Chapel in the school, so we went there and our classes were 80 minutes. It was a shock when I told them it was time to go that they didn’t want to leave. They couldn’t believe how fast the time went.
Caveat from Joe: keeping in mind guideliness for safe environment, you might want to reconsider covering the windows on the doors or if you do so, being sure that more than one adult is present in the room.