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  #1  
Old Nov 20, '06, 11:56 am
Odell Odell is offline
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Default Explain Trinity to second graders

Husband and I have a classs to teach second graders about the Holy Trinity. Any advise where we could get info/activities would be awesome. Thank you.
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  #2  
Old Nov 20, '06, 12:10 pm
Della Della is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

If you are teaching through your parish, shouldn't they have materials for you to use? If not, ask them.

Also, Our Sunday Visitor Publshing has material for teaching children.
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  #3  
Old Nov 20, '06, 12:10 pm
Em_in_FL Em_in_FL is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Quote:
Originally Posted by Odell View Post
Husband and I have a classs to teach second graders about the Holy Trinity. Any advise where we could get info/activities would be awesome. Thank you.
How about the basic example used by St. Patrick... the "lucky Irish clover"...

3 unique leaves, yet part of the same single clover.
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  #4  
Old Nov 20, '06, 1:29 pm
BLB_Oregon BLB_Oregon is offline
 
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

You can also explain it this way. Ask if they have a very good friend, someone who brings out the best in them. Ask if their mom and dad are like that....that is, you can't really know one unless you know both.

Explain that understanding how the three Persons of God can be distinctly three and yet absolutely one is only difficult to us because we do not understand love very well yet. When we love as God intends us to, with God's love instead of with our little human love, we become both more ourselves and more unified with the needs of those around us. We become more distinct, but more unique--more unmistakeably Jake and Maria and Brandon and Jessica--and yet more one with those we love, too.

We can see this in the lives of the saints. Each one is so different. That is because learning to love is how we become our unique selves.

Thus, the mystery of the Trinity isn't just some fact we need to learn. It is a life we must learn to live. It is what Christianity is all about:

"I do not pray for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their word, that all may be one as you, Father, are in me, and I in you; I pray that they may be one in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. I have given them the glory you gave me that they may be one, as we are one--I living in them, you living in me--that their unity may be complete. So shall the world know that you sent me, and that you loved them as you loved me." John 17:20-23

This is also why those who do not know how to love cannot have Heaven, for to be in Heaven is to be absolutely abandoned to love. Eternity is the greatest happiness for those who love, and the greatest torture for those who will not. If you prefer sin instead of love, then that sin is something you hold on to. You hurt to lose it. The thing is, everything that is not love will burn away in eternity. When all that is burned away, the person who cannot love as God does, who cannot find joy in giving of themselves, is left with nothing.

What a great thing, though, if love is the center of all, as it will be in Heaven! No misunderstandings, no worrying about getting enough or who doesn't like you or whether you're good enough. You love everybody, everybody loves you, and nothing you ever experience is ruined by hurt feelings. Every smell, every taste, every sound, every sight can shine brightly and be enjoyed fully. You will be full of joy, praise, and thanksgiving for every good thing that comes from God.

And do you know what? That can start now. Think about it. If you are thankful, doesn't the ice cream taste better? If you are getting along with your friends, when no one is worried about who gets the credit or who is the center of attention, aren't all the games more fun? If you have nothing to feel guilty about, isn't your heart light and carefree?

That is what Jesus meant when he said the Kingdom of God is at hand. Heaven is there, today, waiting for us to love and to join into it. The easiest sin is harder on us and hurts us more in the end than the hardest kind of love....we just have to believe that and let God convert us over to that way of seeing. Even when it is hard to love, we are never lost in love. We are always found. That is what living in the Trinity has to teach us.

I have asked first graders if they are going to be saints some day. A good fraction will say "no." I say, oh, if you're going to heaven, you can be certain that God is going to make you into a saint! I guarantee that you are going to love it! No saint ever looks back and says, "Oh, I would have enjoyed going on sinning awhile longer." No, once they leave, they never want to go back. So since that is where you are going, and since it is better than where you are now, you may as well let God get started....today!

That is, after all, what a mystery is. It is something you only know by living it. The mystery of the Trinity can only be truly known by those who are one with God. To everyone else, it is only a puzzle.
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  #5  
Old Nov 20, '06, 1:43 pm
Maria3m Maria3m is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Quote:
Originally Posted by Em_in_FL View Post
How about the basic example used by St. Patrick... the "lucky Irish clover"...

3 unique leaves, yet part of the same single clover.

I agree with using St. Patrick & his clover explanation for this age group.
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  #6  
Old Nov 20, '06, 1:49 pm
LynnieLew LynnieLew is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Quote:
Originally Posted by Em_in_FL View Post
How about the basic example used by St. Patrick... the "lucky Irish clover"...

3 unique leaves, yet part of the same single clover.
We also used this along with a little song:

One God
Three Persons
God the Father
God the Son
God the Hooooly Ghost!

Of course, I can't really explain how it sounds on here...
It is just a fun, snappy number for repitition.
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  #7  
Old Nov 20, '06, 2:32 pm
DVIN CKS DVIN CKS is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Along with a three leaf clover, I also used a big three wick candle.

The candle was impressive because it gives off light and heat, and a nice scent (the candle I used was scented). I explained that all three wicks were separate and each gave off its own light and heat, but all three wicks constituted the ONE candle. The kids could see real quick that the three wicks represented the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit while at the same time it was still just one candle. They could also see how each wick contributed to the candle's purpose.... giving off light, heat and scent.

I liked using the candle because so often we teach that Jesus is the "light of the world" and we use candles in liturgy to bring this point home.

P.S. The kids also thought it was cool to sit in the dark and then watch me bring the corner of the room to light by lighting the wicks.

Good luck!
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  #8  
Old Nov 20, '06, 2:40 pm
DVIN CKS DVIN CKS is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

I forgot to mention the other thing that the kids like....we made "Trinity bracelets".

Take three pieces of colored string (three different colors) and ask the kids to have their parents help them braid the strings to make a bracelet. Tell them to wear their Trinity bracelets to class the following week. Ask them what would happen if they took one string away and tried to braid? Answer: You wouldn't have a braid. This exercise points out that the three strings must be intertwined to produce the bracelet. Having three different colors shows how each strand compliments the other two and is part of the whole.
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  #9  
Old Nov 20, '06, 3:46 pm
Rob's Wife Rob's Wife is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

I suggest you purchase the book St. Patrick's Summer: A Children's Adventure Catechism by Marigold Hunt.
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  #10  
Old Nov 20, '06, 3:53 pm
Maria3m Maria3m is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob's Wife View Post
I suggest you purchase the book St. Patrick's Summer: A Children's Adventure Catechism by Marigold Hunt.
We hang out in the same places, Martha.

Gotta love Tomie dePaola's, Patrick, Patron Saint of Ireland.
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  #11  
Old Oct 23, '08, 4:49 pm
ctc ctc is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

I really like this idea of the candel and plan to use this tomorrow when I teach my first graders. Thank you for sharing this!
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  #12  
Old Oct 23, '08, 7:49 pm
geovet geovet is offline
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Smile Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

I have learned a very simple method to understand the trinity. Great for kids. Again very simple, but look at Neopolitan ice cream. Three flavors natures, all needed to make the whole of one.
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  #13  
Old Oct 23, '08, 7:57 pm
OutinChgoburbs OutinChgoburbs is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

I was told this today by my second grader while we reviewed for her religion test tomorrow: "Three persons, one God, no problem. They tell you about shamrocks and triangles, but it's better to just not think about it, and know it's true." Best explanation of apriori I've heard in a long time.
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  #14  
Old Oct 24, '08, 7:51 am
smallcat smallcat is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

Two analogies I like:

An egg: three parts (yolk, white, shell) but one whole

Water: three phases (steam/gas, liquid, ice) but one substance. This may be hard for 2nd graders if they don't know that steam is water in the gaseous phase.
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  #15  
Old Oct 24, '08, 1:20 pm
Rob's Wife Rob's Wife is offline
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Default Re: Explain Trinity to second graders

here's another good book about it.

A Picture of God, 3 in 1

apple peel
apple flesh
apple core

Very good and timely as it's apple season!
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