Along with my weekly lesson plans, I will try to post our weekly plans for our advent calendar activities. This is our first year doing it, and Samuel is really little, so we are mostly doing it to give us an opportunity to start tweaking and refining this special family time. I will post our weekly plans for Advent. Keep in mind, that these are very rough as this is our first time through and I’m still trying to find the right materials.
We have just had the month of November and the Thanksgiving holiday to think about and reflect on all of the blessings in our lives. Now, in December, we have the opportunity to be thankful for the greatest gift of all. Here is the progression of ideas we want to strive to reflect upon over this holiday season: Waiting for Christ’s Birth, Jesus Coming, Why He Came, What He Wants for His Birthday, The Second Coming, The Great Commission.
Our advent calendar is going to be based on the alphabet, so we will do 26 days, starting with the last day of November. We will also read a new book each evening. I will be sharing the letter of the alphabet, the book we are reading and any other information about that time with you.
I have a feeling things will be a little off this year as we are just building our book collection and getting everything in place. If you have any excellent Christmas book recommendations, PLEASE share them with me! Would you guys like me to post reviews of some of these books as we go along too? Some of the books are in the mail on the way here, but when I get them, I will post questions that we will discuss that tie into the overview points of the advent calendar (so check back on this post as it will be updated throughout the week). (Like I stated before, the questions now are mostly for us, but there are simple ones for when Samuel is somewhere between 3 and 5.)
- Letter A: Augustus
- If decorations and tree aren’t already up, do it today.
- Read B Is for Bethlehem: A Christmas Alphabet by Isabel Wilner (This will be the basis for our advent alphabet and we will read one letter each night and add an ornament that matches that letter to our tree.) The other book for the night will be The Christmas List by Susan K. Leigh This book is a good introduction to the holiday season to focus our thought, AND it talks about the list Cesar August was making, so it goes right along with our letter too. 🙂
- Usually we will put a special ornament up, but today it will be the Christmas tree (which kind of looks like an A shape, so that would work, right?
- Question(s): What about Christmas makes you most excited? What are some things on your Christmas list? How can we help Jesus get what’s on His list?
- Songs: Favorite Christmas Songs
- Letter B: Bethlahem
- Read O Little Town of Bethlehem (Pageant of Lights Book) (I’m a little skeptical about this book, but it could be really cute too. 🙂 Obviously when our children get older, it will need to be replaced with a different book)
- Tree Ornament: Town of Bethlehem
- Question(s): What are some special things Jesus might want us to do this Holiday season to honor Him?
- Song: O Little Town of Bethlehem
- Letter C: Crowds
- Read The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey (The word in the book is “crowds”, but I couldn’t find a good book that had to do with crowds, so I figure “Christmas” works)
- Ornament: We will set up our nativity set
- Question(s): Mr. Toomy was grumpy, but the widow and her son were not. What do you think made the difference? What happens when we let Jesus’ love in our hearts? How can we share that love with people around us like Mr. Toomy?
- Song: Go, Tell it on the Mountain?
- Letter D: Donkey
- Read The Christmas Donkey
- Ornament: Donkey
- Question(s): Do you ever feel like you aren’t special? Do you ever feel like you can’t do something for Jesus because you aren’t good enough? How can we remember that Jesus loves us SO much and that He can help us to do anything He asks us?
- Song: ??
- Letter E: Evening
- Read : The Animals’ Christmas Eve (Little Golden Book)
- Ornament: ?
- Song: The Friendly Beasts (m 227) or Silent Night
- Letter F: Flock
- Read ‘Twas a Shepherd’s First Christmas (The word if flocks)
- Ornament: Sheep
- Song: While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks
- Letter G: Glory
- Read: Sing Glory, Glory! Jesus is Born! by Gail Pawlitz
- Ornament: Add lights to the tree to make the tree glorious 🙂
- Song: Angels We Have Heard on High