Last week, I shared How to Pray & What to Say, but that doesn’t really apply to praying with littles very well. When it comes to praying with your children, praying seems even more daunting. So, we think, how am I qualified to teach another person how to pray? How will I teach my toddler how to pray?
What do we say when we are teaching our toddler how to pray? How can we easily teach them how to pray by themselves, in a way they will remember?
We have welcomed my daughter, who is now four, to pray out loud at meals, before bed and at random times. She now gets mad if someone else prays out loud and doesn’t leave time for her to pray. It makes me laugh, because it is dreaded by so many.
So, I wanted to address these concerns of how to teach them to pray and what to say, and also give a simple way of praying that you will remember and they will love!
why pray with your kids
As mentioned, praying out loud can be really daunting. Last week, I shared my experience with praying in public. You are suddenly in fight or flight mode, assessing realistic exit strategies.
This is why it is important to pray with our kids out loud now, so they know how to, later in life. Toddlers learn by example.
In our current culture, learning to pray out loud isn’t seen as an “essential”. Unfortunately, learning to ride their bike is seen as more crucial than learning to pray. However, prayer is their lifeline to Jesus!
If we teach our kiddos how to talk with Jesus now and that they can, all day every day, they will only get better with time!
How to teach your toddler to pray
Learning how to pray with your kids in all situations is a really great lesson that will benefit them forever.
When I am mad/angry, I need to pray. And so do they!
When I am worried about not getting my way, I need to pray for God’s will to be done. My kids need to see me do that, so they learn from my example that they won’t always get their way, but that God’s will is more important. This also shows them that I trust God with my desires.
Prayer is a wonderful time to show them that you revere God. You set aside time in your day to seek Him, thank Him and pause because your plans aren’t more important than time with Him.
Showing my kiddos that I can pause, before a meal, in public, and thank God for my meal, my family, His daily provisions is something that will impact their lives, forever. I might feel awkward doing this at first, but it will get easier over time and their salvation is more important to me than ridicule.
Parents are ridiculed all the time for their parenting. It might as well be for something bold for Christ!
what to say during praying with your kids
So what to say, what to say…
Maybe you know what to say for yourself, in prayer, but you’re thinking, “I don’t want to scare my kids and talk about death, sin, and Jesus hanging on the cross.”
I get it and I have been there. However, reading the Bible to them regularly will bring up those conversations and you can let the Holy Spirit lead you in navigating those conversations.
We might not know what to say but He does.
So for our kiddos, I wanted to think of a fun, simple way to pray with your kids that sticks with you and sticks with them. Thus, I made a coloring sheet to use each time or use as a way to remember each prayer point to discuss!
I learn best with structure; so, here is a printable that maps out how to pray with your kids and what to say!
Teach your toddler to pray coloring sheet
Our fingers are an easy way to remember the bullet points of what to touch on during prayer.
Name something you are thankful for, something that went well today, something that makes you happy?
You can teach your child the importance of praising God for the blessings He has placed in their life! This activity is a great one for when things aren’t going their way, because God is constantly blessing us even in the hard times or bad days.
Also, feel free to share your praise to God for your child and their beautiful attributes!
Who is someone we can point to Christ? Is there someone in my life who may not know about Jesus? (They might say you or their grandparents, don’t be surprised, haha!)
Teach your kiddo how to be a fisher of men early… God calls us to share about Him with others, who can we bring to Christ today? We can pray for the right opportunity.
In addition, don’t hesitate to give examples of people you are thinking of, too!
What is something that is awesome about God? Name a great quality of God (loving, caring, powerful, protective, good friend, good listener)
You can find more attributes of God here. Teaching your child the attributes of God is a good way to remind them of all He can do!
At first, this might be hard for your little to come up with attributes, but the more they hear about God and how He has helped others, they will learn them.
Bring… Ring… Bring our worries to God. What is something that I am worried about? Something that I know God can take care of? Am I worried about preschool, heights, swimming lessons, other kids, getting sick, etc.?
Help them to cast all their cares upon Him.
Again, freely share your worries out loud too.
My weakest, smallest finger. What is something that I am weak at but God can make me better at? Is there a sin I feel ready to apologize for? Can I work on being a better listener? Do I need help learning to tie my shoes? Remembering to go on the potty?
It may feel uncomfortable to share with your child your sins, but it is really empowering for you to admit them and ask for forgiveness. Meanwhile, teaching them how to repent and humble themselves, too!
For instance, Dear God, today I was angry with little Janie and yelled. I am sorry that I let my anger control my actions and that I hurt Janie’s feelings. Please forgive me and strengthen me so that next time I do not give in to that temptation. Amen.
Something God has taught me this year is that when I ask Him for help before trying to conquer a project, I am way more successful and efficient. I can teach my toddler how to pray and to seek Him before they try something new, too!
Get your my hand prayer now
Download Your Free Printable
Already a subscriber? Click here to download your printable now!
Praying the Scriptures for Your Children: Discover How to Pray God’s Purpose for Their Lives
Teach Your Toddler to Pray
You can see that going through just 5 simple ways to teach your toddler to pray really simplifies the process. It is easy to remember for you and them. Yesterday alone, my daughter wanted to do it 6 times!
Firstly, praying with your toddler doesn’t have to be complicated or intimidating!
Lastly, it can be really simple with these 5 basic elements of prayer!