Triumphal Entry

Primary Pals for Teachers
Unit 31 - Jesus' Last Days

TEXT: Mark 11:1-11


The students will be able to tell of the praise and honor Jesus received when He rode into Jerusalem and ways we, too, can praise and honor Him.


Introduction: Bring a large piece of paper and a broad tip marker pen to class. Begin your teaching by writing in large letters the word HOSANNA. Ask your students if any of them know what the word means. Explain that this is a Hebrew exclamation of praise, and they will hear it used often when your Bible story for today is told.

  1. A colt was brought to Jesus to ride as He went into Jerusalem.
  2. A multitude of people honored Jesus by spreading their garments and palm branches in the way.
  3. The crowd that went before and behind Jesus praised Him saying, "Hosanna: Blessed is he." "Hosanna in the highest.”

Climax: Jesus was honored and praised by the great multitude as He rode triumphantly into Jerusalem. They rejoiced greatly, shouting Hosanna and cast garments and branches in the way.

Conclusion: We, too, must praise the Lord with all our heart.

Response: The class will be able to tell of the praise and honor Jesus received and they should tell of ways we can praise and honor Him.


Jesus knew that the time was at hand for Him to fulfill the mission for which He came to earth. He took His disciples aside and told them that He must go to Jerusalem; there He would be betrayed to the chief priests, condemned to death, mocked, scourged, and crucified, but would rise again the third day. They left the area on the east of Jordan, came to Jericho where Jesus healed blind Bartimaeus and dined with Zacchaeus and then went to Bethany. Six days before the Passover, Jesus arrived at the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. Many Jews came there to see Him and also to see Lazarus whom Jesus had raised from the dead.

On the next morning when Jesus started for Jerusalem, He sent two of His disciples to get a colt for Him to ride on in fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9. The people took palm branches in their hands and went to meet Him. The multitude praised the Lord and scattered their garments and the palm branches on the road before Him and shouted "Hosanna: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."

Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem bore some resemblance to the entry of a king. The people would have scattered their clothing, palm branches, and no doubt have cried, "Long live the King." But a king would have had a royal chariot with a herald going before him and accompanying dignitaries and soldiers. The King of kings came just as the prophet had foretold, "lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass." Jesus presented Himself to the nation as their promised Messiah, but a few days later they chose to reject Him when He failed to meet their expectations of an earthly king.


  • Make simple sugar cookies in the shape of palm branches (see Patterns). Sprinkle them with green sugar and use them as your snack for this Sunday.
  • Have a large grid drawn on a posterboard or chalkboard before class time begins. Give your children a list of words that have to do with this lesson. Some samples: sing, praise, hallelujah, thank, worship, King, adore, love. Have them use these words and the grid to make their own Palm Sunday acrostic.
  • Make a list of words which have to do with this Sunday's lesson. Write each word in the center of a flower shape. On a bulletin board place a large basket. Let your students take turns selecting a flower, explaining what the word means relative to the day's lesson, and then putting the flower into the basket. As well as being a Bible-learning activity, this could make a bulletin board to be left up throughout the Easter season.
  • Use the donkey stick puppets that show the donkey's part in the triumphal entry (see Patterns). Copy the pictures onto construction paper. Then use a spray adhesive to put the pictures back to back with a Popsicle stick in between. One picture is of the donkey alone when the disciples went to find it. The other is of Jesus riding into Jerusalem.

Special Instructions for Unit 31:  Refer to Lesson 7b and 20a for additional ideas.


  1. What happened when Jesus went into Jerusalem?
  2. What do we call the special Sunday when we celebrate Jesus' going into Jerusalem? Why?
  3. How did the people feel about Jesus?
  4. How can we show our love and praise for Jesus every day?
  5. Why do you think Jesus' disciples obeyed Jesus without question when He told them to go and find the colt?
  6. Why did people lay their clothes down so that Jesus could ride the colt over them?
  7. What do you think Hosanna means?
  8. What are some words we say when we praise Jesus?
  9. If Jesus rode down the street today, what do you think people would do?
  10. Jesus didn't have a throne or a palace here on earth. Was Jesus really a king?
  11. Is He a king now?


  • Cut out large green leaves to look like palm branches and distribute to class. As you tell the story, have them lay the branches on the table before a stick puppet or doll representing Jesus.
  • Have the children paste people (cut from magazines) on an outline-drawing of a city street. Let them pretend these were the people who came to worship Jesus.
  • Use a dress box for a miniature town. Make little cardboard houses. They can be as plain or fancy as you like. Small plastic trees and flowers can be used. Make an opening in one end of the box to represent the gate to bring Jesus and the donkey through. Give students coats cut from catalogs, and green leaves to put into the "street" as you take Jesus through.


Have volunteers prepared to come to the front and illustrate ways we can praise God in our day; for example, through a song, testimony, giving out an invitation to church, reading a Bible psalm.

If you have access to a small helium tank this would be a fun review. Purchase enough colorful balloons for the whole department. Fill them with helium and tie a short string around the bottom (24 inches is about right). Secure them to a chair or something so they don't go to the ceiling! Have a permanent marker for each teacher. Use the balloons at first as a colorful backdrop for your review. Talk about how good they make you feel. Each color reminds you of something special God has given you (i.e., yellow: sunshine and happiness; pink: flowers and rosy-cheeked children; blue: sky and blueberries). Tell the children a super way to say thank you would be to write a praise to Jesus. Have each teacher take as many balloons as he has students. They should gather their students around them and write a short praise of the students' choice. Give the children a few examples to start with: Praise Jesus, Hallelujah, Jesus Is Lord, I Love Jesus. Then have all gather outside the nearest exit and at the count of three release their praise balloon and shout their chosen praise at the same time.

A favorite review for this lesson is the acting out of the Triumphal Entry. Set up some kind of props for a gate and make palm branches for all the children (patterns have been given in previous' Easter lessons). The children will enjoy the "parade," waving their palm branches and praising Jesus.


  • Jesus Rides Into Jerusalem — Arch Book
  • The Most Wonderful King — Arch Book
  • Jesus the King, No. 46 — The Lion Story Book, A Lion Book