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Advent Calendar For Kids

Materials needed

- Paper bags

- Ribbon

- Clothes pins

- Colored paper

- Nails (used for hanging)

What I love about this Advent calendar is that you can make it however you want. It can be simple, plain, and inexpensive or you can add all the decoration you desire. I started this as a countdown from the beginning of December which made more sense for my kids' ages, although I know traditionally Advent starts four Sundays before Christmas. Our advent devotional and activities are geared toward the preschool age but you can adjust however you would like. Mostly everything I bought was from the dollar store. I got the red and gold colored paper from Michael's where you can buy individual sheets of thick "fancy" paper for less than $1 each.

What I included each day

- Short reading for each day which is also the ornament to hang up

- Paper slip with activity/craft for the day

- Little chocolate/treat (optional)

For the devotional, we are doing readings from the Jesus Storybook Bible. (If you don't already have this I highly suggest it!) I found a wonderful resource that the author has made available to everyone. She provides a FREE advent collection with ornaments you can print out yourself and put together. On one side of the ornament is a reading from the Storybook Bible and on the other side is a picture relating to the story. You can simply print them out on card stock, punch a hole, and tie a ribbon through them to make your ornaments. If you don't feel like making them yourself you can order these nice ones already made here on Etsy.

I absolutely love the Jesus Storybook Bible! It is great for the preschool age and it is so beautifully illustrated and well-written for young children to understand.


Ideas for things to do each day

If this is overwhelming to you, then you can do the devotional/reading every day and do the activities on the weekend or every other day. Do what works best for your family! Also, if you open one up and on that day realize you don't have time to make a gingerbread house, then that's okay! Make something else up or save it for another day (especially great to do now when your kids can't read yet). I found it very helpful to have all the materials on hand at the beginning of the month so you can easily switch an activity up if needed.

- Make Christmas cards for family members

- Read a new Christmas book

- Make a Christmas wreath with handprints

- Take muffins to the local fire/police department

- Watch a Christmas movie (The Star is a cute one!)

- Spend all day in Christmas pajamas

- Bake a treat for a neighbor

- Make ornaments (see this post and this one for DIY ornament ideas)

- Learn how other countries celebrate Christmas (cute book here to get started)

- Bring food to a local food pantry

- Christmas dance party (the kids love this colored dance light while dancing around)

- Candy cane hunt around the house

- Bring a friend coffee/donuts

- Make a teacher a gift or card

- Go out for a special Christmas treat

- Christmas coloring pages

- Drive around and look at Christmas lights

- Make hot chocolate

- Buy socks and hats for a homeless shelter

- Have a picnic by the Christmas Tree

- Gingerbread houses

- Outdoor winter scavenger hunt (walk outside with a checklist to find a pinecone, reindeer decoration, snowman, etc.)

- Family photo in front of the Christmas tree (make a tradition each year even if it's a selfie)

- Breakfast for dinner (green and red pancakes!)

- Choose some toys to donate

- Play a family board game (check out this post for our favorites)

- Random act of kindness for a family member

- Bake Christmas cookies

- Decorate with Christmas window clings/stickers (find these at Dollar Tree or Target)

- Make a birthday cake for Jesus

This was our display the first year. I do not advise hanging with tape! It was not strong enough and did not look very nice. I would suggest tying it around nails so the ribbon doesn't constantly sag or fall down. You can also put small pretty bows on the ends of the ribbon to dress it up and cover the nails in the wall. Whatever you end up doing, remember it doesn't have to be perfect, your little kids will not think less of you if your ribbon is not straight. Just have fun this Christmas season and keep your main focus on the celebration of Jesus coming into the world!

1 Comment

Nov 29, 2021

I love this idea! I can't wait to try next year when my kids are a tad bit older :-) Perfect to keep in my back pocket!

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