With Christmas on the horizon I thought it would be nice to share a little round up of advent and nativity activities for toddlers and preschoolers. Advent activities are those which are about waiting and preparing for the nativity and as these are activities for toddlers and preschoolers they’re all suitable for one, two, three and four year olds to learn about the story behind the celebrations.
Of course you’ll find that some of these activities are suitable for older kids too but I’ve tried to find those that are suitable for little hands so that everyone can enjoy this special time of year no matter how old they are!
When is Advent?
Advent starts the fourth Sunday before Christmas which means that the date changes slightly each year. In 2019 it will start on 1st December and in 2020 it will start on 29th November.
What is Advent?
Advent is all about getting ready for Christmas. Newsround (which I love as a way of explaining things to kids) describes advent as “Christmas celebrates Jesus’ birth so the Advent period reminds Christians to remember and prepare for those celebrations.”
Nativity and Advent Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers
There are so many lovely ways for toddlers to enjoy the nativity in the countdown to Christmas, my kids used to play with the Fisher Price nativity set at Sunday School and nativity stickers were always a great way to keep them busy in the lead up too – perfect for making cards or creating nativity scenes of their own.
There’s lots of nativity and activities in this round up today with paper plate crafts, free nativity printables and nativity candles amongst others – if you want to make sure you don’t forget any of these ideas then be sure to bookmark this page or pin an image for later so you’ll have all these ideas to hand when you need them.
If you’re looking for advent calendar activities then make sure you check out our round up with over 40 fun ideas for kids or keep reading for more Christmas crafts for toddlers as well as some ideas for nativity books for toddlers.
These nativity story stones are great for older preschoolers to try their hand at and they’re also a great way to discus the telling of the story with younger kids as they can help put them in the correct order.
Save some paper rolls to make this three kings craft from Red Ted Art.
This Christmas lantern craft for toddlers is perfect if your kids like the idea of a ‘lit’ candle but without any real flames.
This beautiful baby Jesus card from Kids Craft Room has a free printable to help you make it.
Make some toilet roll angels like this one from Red Ted Art for a homemade nativity scene or pop one on top of a Christmas tree!
I love these Christmas candles made by kids in their preschool group.
I adore this nativity sensory bin from Happy Hooligans which would be perfect for toddlers to play with.
Paint splat crafts are always fun with toddlers and preschoolers and this paint splat angel craft is a great way to change it into a nativity activity.
This popsicle stick manger craft from Housing A Forest is so cute and will make brilliant ornaments.
Wouldn’t these nativity cards be fantastic to send to family members? They have a free template too to help you make them.
This footprint manger was made with a class of three year olds and would make a lovely keepsake.
This paper plate manger would be great for toddlers as even younger ones would be able to paint the manger itself.
Make this sweet handprint angel craft using our free angel template.
Learn about shapes while making this sweet nativity suncatcher from No Time for Flashcards which looks like a simple stained glass nativity craft.
Don’t forget the animals that were there for the birth of Jesus – this sheep craft is really easy for toddlers to make (and fun to print).
While this donkey craft looks great too.
We share a lot of printables and this free angel template would be perfect for some nativity activities, there are two different designs so you can create the angel’s wings if you like or you can use them as coloring pages too.
More one for you to make for your toddlers than for them to make themselves, but I couldn’t leave out these DIY nativity blocks because they are gorgeous and would be perfect for toddlers to recreate and tell the nativity story with.
I Can Teach My Child has some free printable Lego nativity puzzles that look gorgeous and are perfect for younger children.
This textured nativity art on Rainy Day Mum is perfect for little hands.
This nativity wreath makes a great toddler made Christmas decoration too.
This Reading Mama has some nativity pattern block mats with six different designs.
This handprint nativity would make a lovely keepsake.
One Creative Mommy shares a free printable nativity bingo game.
Meaningful Mama shares how you can make a nativity scene for your kids to make a simple drawing in.
Use geometric shapes to talk through the nativity scene – this activity from Mama Smiles would be good to make on a Christmas card too!
Let your child explore the story of the nativity by making a nativity tree from Sun Hats and Wellie Boots.
Nativity Books for Toddlers
My daughter was given a nativity story as a toddler and it’s one that we still read now a few years later, they really are lovely stories to share together in the run up to Christmas! Why not check out these stories to share with your toddler too.
Christmas Crafts for Toddlers and Preschoolers
For a super simple Christmas activity that’s low prep too you could always print our gingerbread house colouring page.