This Last Supper lesson plan can be used to help your students better understand the significance of the consecration at Mass or to help them prayerfully reflect of the events on Holy Thursday.
Last Supper Lesson Objectives
- Students will be able to summarize the story of the Last Supper.
- Students will feel gratitude to Jesus for giving his life on the Cross for them and for his forgiveness of their sins.
Last Supper Lesson Activities
1. Prayer of Thanksgiving
Begin the class with simple prayers of thanksgiving. Before blessing the bread and wine, the gospels tell us that Jesus gave thanks. Eucharist itself is a term that means thanksgiving. So, give your students the chance to thank God in prayer for anything and everything they feel compelled to offer today.
As your lesson hook, pick one of your favorite communion songs to play for the class. Before you play the music, point out the verses that really speak to your heart. Then, ask the students to listen and select a verse or a word or two that stick out to them while listening.
The songs may include “One Bread, One Body,” “I Am the Bread of Life,” or “Gift of Finest Wheat.”
3. Presentation: Read and Watch the Last Supper
First, read one of the version of the Last Supper in the Gospels of Matthew 26, Mark 14, or Luke 22. The Gospel of John does not include the institution of the Eucharist. John does include the story of the washing of the feet, however, which may be a direction you wish to go with this lesson instead.
Then, give the students a visual experience of the Last Supper. There are many different video clips from movies that you could show in class. Among them are the movies Jesus of Nazareth and The Bible TV miniseries. The Passion of Christ is too probably graphic for most age groups.
Here are a few Last Supper videos you might show your students depending on their age:
(This one is great for younger kids.)
(This scene from The Bible miniseries is emotionally intense, which I like, but it was pretty intense for my second graders. What I like best is that it is short and it follows the Gospels very closely.)
(This is the scene from the Jesus of Nazareth movie. Finding a DVD version to show in class is probably better than the quality of this video.)
4. Practice: Last Supper Skit
You can have students perform a skit of the Last Supper in two ways:
1. Have the students create the skit. They can plan and perform the scene or series of scenes from the Last Supper. You can assign these to groups or have them each perform their own version of the skits.
2. Use this Last Supper Skit Script to guide your students through a performance of the events. I wrote this script to include as many student as possible. It might work best with fourteen people: Narrator, Jesus, and the Twelve Apostles (especially Peter, Judas, James, and John).
Download and print the script here including the guided discussion questions to complete the activity.
5. Practice: Body and Blood of Christ Craft
Inside images of the host and the chalice, have students complete prayers of thanksgiving to Jesus Christ for giving his life for them and for forgiving their sins by explaining how they will likewise give and forgive others.
Download and print this handout for your students to use to create the craft:
Or have them create their own host and chalice prayers using these words:
Lord Jesus Christ, thank you for giving up your life for me. I will give my life to others by __________. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, thank you for the forgiveness of my sins. I will forgive others when they __________. Amen.
Have the students offer their prayers out loud as a class or give them some time to privately offer them up to the Lord in silence at their desks or in a visit to the tabernacle.
7. Proof: Chain of Events Graphic Organizer
As a form of assessment, give students a chain of events graphic organizer (sequence of events graphic organizer) or create one that is partially completed with some of the events of the Last Supper. Have them write the most significant events of the story of the Last Supper from memory or using one of the Gospel accounts as a guide.