Beyond meal time prayer, families often look to have prayer before bedtime or even first thing in the morning. Below are a few ways that you might find work best for your family.
Bedtime prayers: this is probably one of the most common times to prayer with your child because it tends to be a more quiet time of the day. You can share a recited prayer together or have a prayer ritual that involves more reflection. One suggestion might be to have your child offer “roses (positives), buds (hopes), and thorns (negatives). Another more simple version is to offer “God Blesses” for each person by name that the child wants to pray for.
Tangibles: 5 parts of Prayer
A fun project for kids (and a good reminder) is to make a handprint prayer guide. Have a child either trace around their hand or dip their full palm in paint and then flatten it onto a piece of paper. Either let the handprint dry or if still wet, draw a line to each finger. Write the following words to remind kids of the 5 parts they can add to their prayers, and/or have them draw pictures representing the ideas:
- Praise God
- Tell God when you made a wrong choice
- Thank God
- Pray for others
- Prayer for yourself
Resources for Kids:
- “God’s Dream” by Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
- “The Lord’s Prayer” by Tim Ladwig
- “Call on Me: a Prayer Book for Young People” (ideal for older children and teenagers)
- “Prayers fro Children” by Christopher Herbert
Resources for Adults:
- “Celebrating at Home” by Deborah Alberswerth Payden and Laura Loving.
- “Daily Prayer for All Seasons,” a book that has short prayer services for different times of the day, changing throughout the year