Making Christmas Meaningful for Kids

Holidays, especially Christmas, are wonderful reasons to do crafts and other theme-related activities with your children. Since children learn better by doing, crafts and activities help to make the significance of Christmas and the story of Jesus’ birth much more real and meaningful, and they can strengthen age-appropriate skills. Crafts do not need to be elaborate or cost a lot of money to be meaningful and they make inexpensive gifts for friends, neighbors and family.

First I would encourage you to invest in a nativity set that’s safe for your children to play with, one that will not break or be a choking hazard. In addition to the heirloom fancy nativity set, we also have a few sets made from plastic and wood which we allow our girls to explore. Especially our 4-year-old understands the Christmas story and usually she acts out the story with her nativity set. It’s beautiful to see her working out the story of Christmas in her own way, through feeling the pieces in her hands and having the figurines “talk” with each other. Just yesterday she held the two Mary’s (one from each set) and pretended they were friends and rode on the donkey to Bethlehem! Barbara Curtis’ blog, MommyLife, has listed here some suitable children’s nativity sets:

Here are some craft suggestions and websites with more ideas to help your kids celebrate the season:

  • Make a paper chain, either to countdown to Christmas Day or just for decoration. This can help encourage patterning (green, red, green, red).
  • This website has some good ideas; I particularly like the handprint wreath and brown paper stocking.
  • This website also has some good ideas; I especially like the apple cinnamon ornaments to give as gifts or the Christmas hanger wreath for a door decoration.
  • Danielle’s Place has a wealth of ideas for crafts for the whole year. Here is the Christmas page:
  • Secular crafts involving Santa, stars, reindeer, and Christmas trees can be redeemed by discussing with your children the real stories behind them. An example being teaching them about the historical St. Nicholas and how he loved Jesus and served others by giving gifts or why a star or angel is placed on the top of Christmas trees, to signify those parts of the nativity story.
  • Lastly, sites such as Oriental Trading Company carry crafting kits and supplies which make for fun projects, or may give you ideas and inspiration for things to do with your kids. Here is their Christmas page:

What are some projects you’ve done with your kids? Please share so we may all enjoy your ideas!

(Post by: Addie)


3 Responses to “Making Christmas Meaningful for Kids”

  1. 1 Kelly December 13, 2009 at 1:34 pm

    We have advent envelopes strung by clothes pins hanging on the wall. Each day we open one and it tells us a family activity to do together (have a picnic dinner under the Christmas Tree, do something kind for someone else, have a Christmas music dance party, make a gingerbread house, etc).

    We are also doing a Jesse Tree this year we light a candle, read the corresponding Bible story, hang the ornament, and pray. You can find out more by doing a simple search for Jesse Tree devotions and ornaments.

    You can check out my blog for more info.

  2. 2 Ashley L. December 14, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    What a great idea to have a “play” nativity set! I definitely would like to get one, but they are impossible to find here! I think I’ll just hop online and order a set and have it sent to my parents in the US and somehow get it by next year at very least. I love how you always emphasize learning through play and learning through life. Thank you for the good tips, Addie. Also, that wreath is too cute!

  3. 3 Ana December 16, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    I always find your posts very helpful, I love this idea, it will be very easy to find those here 🙂 Thank you so much for the tips!

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