An idea for teaching the Easter story to KS2.
I used the DVD of Jesus Christ Superstar as a stimulus for writing in RE. I showed the film over 4 lessons:
- Up to Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem (Palm Sunday)
- Up to the Last supper
- Up to when Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane and Peter’s denial
- The Crucifixion
Before each showing, I read the appropriate section of a children’s bible. Then after we had watched it (and I had answered numerous questions!), the children were asked to write a diary entry as if they had been witnesses to the events. Leading questions were on the board for support, with a focus being on the feelings and emotions of Jesus, the disciples, and themselves as spectators.
We used this with all of KS2, and it was incredibly effective in stimulating the children’s writing, enthusiasm and empathy. They thoroughly enjoyed the 60’s aspect of the musical and were able to distinguish between the theatrical element and the factual. They went on to write entries in their diaries such as…
“I had a very exciting day today. I went to Jerusalem. I could hardly see a thing on Palm Sunday as there were so many people there. It was dusty and loud, and people were cheering a lot, so I climbed a Palm tree and pulled off a branch to wave. Jesus looked a bit confused but happy” (Year 3).
I believe they will remember this film (and the Easter story!) for a very long time!
(The only thing that I missed off the DVD was Herod’s song as I deemed it a bit far-fetched….)