A few years ago my husband and I created this 16 page digital download to use with our family for Advent. Purchase them here. These are great to use with your family or to give as gifts. This is a reposting from last year with updated links below:
Over the years, we've tried various ways to engage our children during this season. Involving toddlers can be challenging. Through trial and much error, we've learned it's best to keep it simple. Having some who are more mature and engaged plus toddlers that we'd like to involve, presents different challenges.
We created something that is working quite well for us. When we set out to create these, originally, we were just going to make play-dough mats. I mean, no matter your age, who doesn't love to fiddle with play-dough?
It occurred to us that, our older kids, who really love to draw, may like the option to doodle with dry-erase markers. (You know, incase 'play-dough' was too 'baby-ish'.) Thankfully, they're not too cool for play-dough yet; they've enjoyed using both with these mats and have often used a combination while working on them.
As they've listened along to the Christmas story (this pack comes with a script, if you aren't the kind that likes to wing it) from the accounts of Matthew and Luke, they've been busy working, really listening, thinking about the story and dialoguing with us.
To be honest, Charlie and I have been surprised at how much we've enjoyed these, too. Whether it's a collaborative effort with our kids.. (I won't admit which wise-man's face I drew above, and which my five year old did!) Or whether we've wanted our 'own' mat.
These can be used in multiple ways with the little people in your life:
- gradually re-tell the coming of Jesus in several days or one mat/day on twelve different days.
- given as a gift paired with play-dough and/or dry-erase markers.
- in your Sunday School or Preschool classroom.
- as you gather together with loved ones on Christmas, share these with young and old alike, for a complete re-telling of the Christmas story that will allow the whole family to take part in an activity together.
Purchase the pdf file for $1 now through the end of Monday, Dec. 1. (After that, they'll go backup to $6!) Here's what's included in the 16 page pdf download:
- 4 scripted pages telling the Christmas story from the gospel accounts of Matthew and Luke that coordinate with each activity mat.
- 12 Colorful activity mats: to be used with play-dough and/or dry-erase markers
All images are high quality. They are ready to print, re-tell and play!
How to Use:
- Print each page in color.
- Laminate for strength and durability. (Or put into page protectors.)
- Decorate the mats with play-dough, dry-erase markers or both as you re-tell the Christmas story! Then, re-use over and over.