Daily Activity Guide for Celebrating Christmas

These activities were designed with preschoolers and early elementary children in mind, but could easily be adapted to work with older children.  Enjoy!

If you would like these activities in a friendlier, printable format, please consider purchasing Celebrating CHRISTmas - an ebook for sale based off of the work published on this Christmas page - compiled, refined, and reformatted making it easier to use! 
New copywork/coloring sheets and a Luke 2 booklet were added as well!

Need more information? Enjoy a free sample!

Foretelling of the Birth of Christ

  • Set up your Nativity set, but have the Baby Jesus wrapped in a special box. Set aside.

  • Show the Old and New Testament portions of the Bible.

  • Read Isaiah 7:14 and Isaiah 9: 6-7.

  • Explain that in the Old Testament of the Bible, many people were anxiously awaiting the arrival of the King spoken about in the Bible. The Old Testament foretold the birth of God's chosen King and Savior.

  • Have your child unwrap the small gift box.

  • The Old Testament was telling us of Jesus! Explain that the New Testament is the fulfilling of the prophesies and shows Jesus' ministry and love for us.

  • Sing 'Jesus Loves Me.'
    ( printable My Merry Christmas Song Book )


  • Christmas Tree (numerals) - from Early Learning Activities by Shelley Lovett

  • Make a 25 loop Patterned Chain with verses and activities listed for each day, detaching one chain each day leading up to Christmas day. Read and meditate on the verse throughout the day. Read the Scripture passages or story book mentioned and do the activity!


  • OR for a little bit older kids, print off the 25 Days of Christmas cards, insert them in your advent calendar, and then for each day have your kids look up and read the Scriptures! (The readings and activities still coordinate with the activities on this page, but incorporate the memorizing of Luke 2:1-20.)


Angel Tells Zechariah of John's Coming Birth

  • Read Luke 1:5-25

  • Make an angel craft. Here are a few ideas...

Angel Tells Mary of Jesus' Coming Birth

  • Read Luke 1:26-38

  • Make another angel craft

Mary Shares Her Good News and Joy

  • Read Luke 1:39-56

  • Read Mary's First Christmas by Walter Wangerin Jr. - chapter 1

  • Choose one of the following crafts to share the good news and joy of Jesus' coming!


John the Baptist is Born

  • Read Luke 1:57-80

  • John the Baptist was born to prepare the people for who was about to come - Jesus! Matthew 3:3 states..."Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for Him." (In context, read Matthew 3:1-11)

  • Cut and paint a 'Making Straight Paths' booklet. The zig zag line and black dots on the cover represent our sins and us going our own way. John taught the people to repent and turn away from their sins, preparing their hearts for Jesus. The inside shows a straight path with the cross representing Christ and the heart representing God loving us so much that He sent His Son to save us from our sins.

  • Play a 'Prepare the Way' game. Ahead of time, gather all the family members clean socks. Mix them together and then spread them out on the floor. Your kids pretend to prepare the way for Jesus by getting rid of all the socks that are in the way. Children take turns finding a matching pair of socks, picking them up, and clearing the way for Jesus!


Angel Tells Joseph of Jesus' Coming Birth

  • Read Matthew 1:18-24

  • Read Mary's First Christmas - chapter 2

  • Draw a picture to share and/or help write the family Christmas letter.

  • OR make a Wordless Book to share the good news of Jesus with others!

Mary and Joseph Travel to Bethlehem ; 
Anticipation of the Light of the World

  • Read Luke 2:1-5

  • Discuss how Mary and Joseph probably had a 4-6 day journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem (by foot, on a donkey, or by being pulled in a cart) in order to be counted in the census. What might this have been like for Mary since she was so close to giving birth to Jesus?

  • Also read John 1:1-9, and John 8:12

  • Once it is dark outside, turn off all your lights. Have your children gather around you and tell them to go to a certain location, once without the help of a flashlight and once with a flashlight lighting the way. We need the light to find our way in the darkness. Compare this to God sending Jesus to be our Savior and the Light of the World.

  • Make a candle, stressing that Jesus is the Light of the World! Here are some ideas...
    - Make an edible candlestick.
    (Mix white frosting with yellow food coloring (flame). Dip the tip of a pretzel rod (candlestick) into the food coloring. Place the pretzel rod in a no bake cookie (candle holder) or just hold the end of the pretzel as you sing 'This Little Light of Mine'.)
    - Make a toilet paper roll candle.
    - Decorate a baby food jar with tissue paper and place a real votive candle inside.


Jesus is Born!

  • Read Luke 2:6-7

  • Read Mary's First Christmas - chapter 3

  • Make a nativity. Here are a few possible ways....

Angels Tell the Shepherds of Jesus' Birth

  • Read Luke 2:8-20

  • Read The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado

  • Do a Lamb Craft. Some suggestions...


Shepherds Visit Jesus

  • Read The Legend of the Candy Cane by Lori Walburg or The Candy Cane Story by Joy Nell.

  • Make a Candy Cane Craft. Some ideas...


Jesus is Named and Presented in the Temple

  • Read Luke 2:21-38 and Luke 1:31-32

  • Decorate Jesus' name and hang (use confetti, glitter, small stickers, jewels, etc.)

Printable Name 'JESUS' - with verse from DLTK
Printable Name 'JESUS' - larger, but without verse


The Wise Men Follow the Star to Find Jesus

  • Read Matthew 2:1-12

  • Read Mary's First Christmas - chapter 4, 1st half only

  • Go on a treasure hunt - Write a series of clues on some star cutouts. Each clue will lead them to the next star (and the next clue). Have the last clue state "The greatest treasure of all!" which will lead them to the baby Jesus in your nativity! Discuss how Jesus truly is the greatest treasure and gift from our loving God.

  • Make a Star Craft. Ideas....

    • Paint a star printable with water colors

    • Glue cut pieces of foil onto a star cutout

    • Tissue Paper Star

    • Snowflake Star

    • Sewn Felt Star Ornament

    • Woven Star Ornament (from The Crafty Crow)

    • Patterned Star Ornament

    • Glitter Star


Giving With Joy

  • Read Little Drummer Boy by Ezra Jack Keats

  • Make a Gift.
    These are just a few, simple ideas for gifts even the younger kids can

    • Decorate a frame using sticker Foamies

    • Help with afleece scarf or pillow

    • Help prepare Christmas Gospel Cookies (Gift Jar Cookies)

    • Decorate a flower pot

    • Hand Paint an ornament

    • Make a votive holder using tissue paper, watered down glue and a small glass baby food jar

    • Decorate a plastic food container and place special treats inside

    • Paint and stamp handprints onto hot pads, dish towels, a decorative pillow, etc.

    • Prepare chocolate covered pretzel rods

    • Make yummy Oreo Cookie Suckers (from howdoesshe.com)

    • Make a decorative bookmark


Giving With Joy

  • Read Three Presents for Baby Jesus by Joanne Bader or The Best Thing About Christmas by Christine Tangvald

  • Make Wrapping Paper and Bow

  • Create simple Gift Bags (idea from Family Fun)


Herod Becomes Angry; Jesus' Family Flees; Jesus Grows

  • Read Matthew 2:13-23; Luke 2:39-40

  • Read Mary's First Christmas - chapter 4, 2nd half

  • Sing Christmas Carols

  • Wrap gift (refer to how the paper protects the gift and how God sovereignly protected Jesus)


Why Did Jesus Come?

  • Read 1 John 4:9 and John 3:16

  • Read The Tale of the Three Trees

  • Make Christmas Cards or Gift Tags

Eternal Life in Christ

  • Read The Legend of the Christmas Tree by Rick Osborne (Discuss how the evergreen reminds us of eternal life in Christ!)

  • Make a Christmas Tree. Here are some various ideas...

Eternal Life in Christ

  • Read The Pine Tree Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs

  • Make Ornaments. Ideas...

God's Unending Love and His Great Gift to Us - Jesus!

  • Reread favorite Christmas books and sing carols

  • Make a wreath, a symbol of God's unending love. Some ideas...

    • Tissue Paper Wreath

    • Simple Button Wreath Ornament

    • Handprint Wreath

    • Edible Wreath

    • Painted Wreaths

  • Focus on God's unending love and His great gift to us - Jesus! Thank God for sending Jesus.


Praying and Giving to Those in Need

  • Read The Legend of St. Nicholas: A Christmas Story of Giving byDandi Daley Mackall, Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend by Julie Stiegemeyer, or Santa, Are You For Real? by Harold Myra.

  • Discuss who he was, how he relates to Christmas and Jesus, and why we see Santas everywhere this time of year.

  • Consider more ways to give and pray for those who are in need.

  • Make a Christmas stocking craft.


  • Read My Merry Christmas and the Real Reason for Christmas Joyby Sally Lloyd-Jones

  • Make Christmas Cookies to Share (Angel, Trees, Stars, Candy Canes, Baby Jesus, etc)


  • Read Baby Jesus Is Born by Gloris Truitt

  • Deliver cookies and sing carols.

Retell HIS Story

  • Read B is For Bethlehem by Isabel Wilner

  • Use the nativity characters to retell the Christmas story

Christmas Eve

  • Make a Birthday Cake for Jesus

  • Sing Christmas Carols

  • Read The Real Night Before Christmas by Isabel Anders or 'Twas the Night: The Nativity Story by Melody Carson

Christmas Day - Happy Birthday, Jesus!

  • Read the Christmas Story in Luke and Matthew

  • Open Presents- You may want to wrap a special present for everyone to open first. Place a baby Jesus figurine and a small cross in a small box. Wrap it and then place a second wrapped box around it, and then a third, etc. - one box for each member of your family to unwrap!

Other Ideas

  • Read the story of the first Christmas from Luke 2 and Matthew.

  • Set up the tree on the first Sunday after Thanksgiving. Talk about the meaning of the star, angels, etc. and meanings behind special ornaments.

  • Memorize related Bible verses, such as Luke 2:11, Acts 9:20b, and John 3:16

  • Memorize a larger section of the Christmas story - Luke 2:1-20! These are some resources (charts and fill in the blank review sheets) to help you and your children.
    * 5 Ways to Remember Luke 2

  • At dinner, read Christmas Cards that are received each day. Pray for those that sent the card.

  • Start a new tradition in which you have family members write a note to someone every day and place it in their stocking.

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Additional Resources Inside Hubbard's Cupboard

Scripture Booklets

Christmas Color By Number

Christmas Color By Number

Christmas Caroling Booklet

Christmas Caroling Booklet


Countdown To Christmas Math Puzzles
(for Purchase at our Joyful Heart Learning Teachers Pay Teachers Store)

Countdown to Christmas Math Puzzles: Seasonal Jokes
Countdown to Christmas Math Puzzles: Name of Jesus


Names of Jesus
Resources to Study His Great Name!

His Great Name - Jesus
(for Purchase at our Joyful Heart Learning Teachers Pay Teachers Shop)

His Great Name: Jesus (Volume 2)
A 15 day advent study of more names!

His Great Name: Jesus (Volume 1)
A 13 day advent study
of fifteen names and titles of Jesus!

Names of Jesus Banners

Names of Jesus Banner Tutorial


Names of Jesus Banners  - Printable Resources

Names of Jesus Paper Ornaments

Names of Jesus Paper Ornaments - Instructions


Names of Jesus Paper Ornaments - Printables

Names of Jesus Countdown Chart

Names of Jesus Countdown Chart

Choose one of the names or titles of Jesus, look up the related Scripture reference, and then add a star! Such a simple way to focus on Christ this Christmas and let your children countdown the days to the celebration of our Savior’s birth. Perfect for use on the evenings of December 1-24th!


Light of the World Jar Candle Craft

Jesus, the Light of the World Craft Instructions