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Discussion Questions

Jazmin's Notebook
At Jerusalem's Gate
by Nikki Grimes
with woodcuts by David Frampton
William B. Eerdman's, 2005
ISBN: 0-8028-5183-5

Why is Jesus called “the true Lamb of God?” To what Jewish holy day does this allude?


Why were the Pharisees and Sadducees threatened by Jesus?


How do we, as Jesus commands, “Serve one another?” What can this mean in our everyday lives?


What is a sacrament? What are other examples in the Christian faith? Why are they important?


If Jesus could question God’s will in the Garden of Gethsemane then can we? Is faith lessened or strengthened by questioning? Why?


What do you think of the author’s question: Was it Judas’ destiny to betray Jesus or simply a choice?


Have you ever been haunted by a dream as Pilot’s wife was? Did you change your behavior based on a dream?


Why was the beating of Jesus not enough to satisfy?


Could you pray “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do” in the face of your own suffering?


Had you heard of Simon, Father of Rufus before? What did you learn?


Why did most of the disciples scatter once Jesus was arrested? Who stayed with him? Could you have stayed?


What can we learn from the story of the Highwayman?


Do you think Malchus was forever changed by Jesus’ act of mercy?


Do you think Mary’s faith was tested watching her son suffer?


Why do you think Mary Magdalene did not at first recognize Jesus?


What would you have said to Jesus had he appeared to you?



Make a timeline of the events from Jerusalem’s Gate to the Resurrection. Make illustrations to go with the timeline, and then display it in the hallway for others to see.


Get extra Styrofoam meat trays from the grocery store and then use a very sharp pencil to scribe a scene from the text. Then press the tray onto an ink pad or wash it with paint, then press to white paper. These can be used to illustrate the timeline, or as a project itself.


Create a cross out of masonry nails (blunt edged) and tie together with thin gauge wire also found at many hardware stores. Make a loop at the top to string black thread through and wear as a necklace (or red ribbon, to signify Jesus’ suffering) or mount on a piece of hearth shaped wood that has been painted and with black marker carefully letter: Because of Him, I Am Forgiven.


Discover new hymns based on Easter at this site. Read the lyrics and discuss or write a short journal about them. Try your hand at your own narrative poetry or hymn based on Jesus’ life.

Teacher's Guide provided by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer. Visit her website by clicking here.

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