Over the past few years the tradition of wrapping books under the tree as a form of an Advent calendar has been a popular tradition! While I LOVE this idea, I wanted to make it more of an experience for my kiddos and I! So a few years ago I started a Christmas book + craft pairing countdown! You can see previous years here. Here are another 10 books + crafts that we did last year! *This is a great tradition for home or the classroom! At the end of this post is a freebie you can grab to use with these books!
*This post contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase the books or other products through the link, I get a few cents back at no cost to you. I appreciate your support SO much! 🙂 *
For this book, we did two activities! After reading the book the boys had to use picture cards to sequence events from the story in order (the items the old lady swallowed.) Then, we made reindeer bells to call Santa’s reindeer on Christmas Eve! we used these dowel rods and these bells! The boys painted then with a color of their choice, then threaded a pipe cleaner through 5-6 bells. Lastly, I hot glued the pipe cleaner to the rod to secure it! 🙂 *If you don’t have a wireless glue gun, I HIGHLY recommend purchasing one! They are a game changer for at home or at school crafts! Mine is sold out, but here is a mini version of it! It is the brand, Sure Bonder.
This is such a beautiful story of the legend behind the candy cane. I love that I can use this engaging story to teach about elements of a legend in the classroom! (See the freebie at the end to grab an activity for this book!)
We made these fun, traditional candy cane ornaments after reading this book and talked about the symbolism of each part of the candy cane that we learned about in the book! You can grab the supplies for these here. This would be a great holiday activity in the classroom and make a perfect parent/family member gift!
This is the hilarious story of the Christmas Crocodile who doesn’t mean to be bad, not really, but soon he is eating up Christmas.
The boys had so much fun making crocodile clothes pins to go with this book! I gave them blank clothes pins, Mr. Sketch green markers, googly eyes, white cardstock to make little teeth, and a pipe cleaner! The only part I helped with was hot gluing the pipe cleaner. They make great, festive bag clips!
I love this story about a boy who loves his nature, and loves his great spruce tree. Then, a few curious men from the nearby city take notice of Alec’s glistening great spruce, and ask to take it away for their Christmas celebration. Though it’s a huge honor, Alec’s heartbroken at the idea of losing his friend. What happens to The Great Spruce?
The boys got this fun felt Christmas tree to go with this book! Then, we did this Christmas tree brownie graphing game that’s free from Abby Mullins!
Since these are favorite movies in our house, I knew I HAD to grab the book. And it didn’t disappoint!
For this book, we made our traditional Christmas tree cones! The boys each got a sugar cone, a tube of frosting, pull n’ peel licorice, and other candy to deck out their tree! Just like Kevin, they piled up the sugar when they could!
Who doesn’t love Pig the Pug? This book was a HUGE hit with my boys!
Next, we made a little “elf yourself” project with moving arms! You can grab that template for free here.
A well-written, beautiful story of a family and their tree, and how they learn and grow from it!
Santa’s Story is a beautifully illustrated book about a tradition Santa has with his reindeer: reading them stories before their big Christmas Eve adventure! With this book, I got a small platter + coffee mug from a local pottery place. We painted it and sent it back to be fired, so we could use it for our cookies, carrots, and milk for Santa and his reindeer!
The story of a Little Red Sleigh that has one big dream―to one day become Santa’s big red sleigh! But all her life, she’s been told she’s too small, she’s too young, she can’t fly, and she certainly can’t meet Santa. I love the message of this book and it is such a great read aloud!
After reading, we used popsicle sticks (I love this pack because there are so many colors for all our projects and it’s cheap!) and candy canes to make a fun little red sleigh of our own! I hot glued the sides of the popsicle sticks together to make them sturdier, but you could also have students or kiddos tape them! Then, hot glue the candy canes on the bottom for the sleigh runners. You can even add a loop at the top to make it an ornament!
This book is HILARIOUS and will have you and your kiddos cracking up! Sneezy the Snowman is cold, cold, cold. To warm up, he drinks cocoa, sits in a hot tub, stands near a warm fire–and melts! But the children know just what to do to build him up again–and make him feel “just right”.
I hope you have fun reading these books, creating the crafts, and making memories with your kiddos during this joyful time! If you want to check out everything I used all in one place you can click here. Don’t forget to sign up below for some freebies to go with the books!