What?! Can it really be only four weeks till Christmas? It’s an unsaid, (actually, make that said, because the kids keep bugging us), family tradition to not bring out our Christmas tree till December… now that’s only days away.
I’m all for keeping Advent simple and over the next few weeks in the lead up to Christmas, I’ll be reading Christmas bible stories with my kids and doing simple playful Christmas crafts, to enjoy the stories together. We kicked off our advent activities with a super fun and easy Christmas craft for kids: DIY angel wings. This week, to keep playing and to further build up our excitement about the coming of Jesus, we created a little town of Bethlehem.
The story for our second playful Advent activity is from Luke 2:1-7. In this story, Jesus was born in a crowded town of Bethlehem, and was laid in a manger.
After reading the story, and before we started creating our Bethlehem Town kids craft, we looked up where Bethlehem was situated on the world map. We talked about its location relative to Africa and Europe, (in particular, Italy as N&M have been learning about Italy at preschool).
This Bethlehem Town kids craft requires the most minimal of craft materials. All we used were TP rolls, markers, scissors and some sticky tape (you don’t really need the tape, it’s just that N&M can’t get enough of the stuff).
They set about drawing windows on their town buildings. They made some doors and experimented with some ‘shade’ structures above the doors (i.e. those cardboard flaps above the doors). M drew the stables where baby Jesus was born. He drew Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus.
As we created the little town of Bethlehem, we talked about how unusual Jesus’ birth was. It was, and is, not normal for a baby to be born in a stable, where animals stay. It was, and is, not normal for a baby to be placed in a manger, where animals feed from.
“It’s so dirty,” M kept saying. N reasoned that Bethlehem was very crowded, and there was no where else to go. I added that this was no ordinary baby. This was the Son of God, who was born in a dirty stable and placed in a dirty manger. He could have been born anywhere really – when you think about it. He certainly had the power to, after all, he was the Son of God. I could see them trying to wrap their minds around all of that. It’s mind blowing really – when you think about it.
We brought out our Christmas fairy lights and added it to our Bethlehem townscape. It’s amazing how much more fun some simple lights can add to a play scene.
What makes Christmas special for you and your kids? It would be fabulous if we could all share our Christmas ideas here. Are there traditions you’ve grown up with? Have you tried something with your kids and it’s been loved to bits? Or have you tried something that hasn’t quite worked? Found or seen something online that just totally knocks your socks off? I’d love to pin ideas to my Pinterest boards, I’d love to share ideas on our Facebook Page. Let’s pool everyone’s wisdom together and get excited about Christmas together.
More Activities for Preschoolers
Three to Five: Playful Preschool is stuffed to the brim with tried, tested and loved playful learning ideas for preschoolers. There are 25+ ideas for preschoolers, ten printable resources and additional links to over 50 more activities. A great resource for parents. Download your copy here.
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