December is a month that seems to have some event, appointment, or class scheduled every day up until Christmas. School parties, work parties, church events, neighborhood parties—it all begins to seem overwhelming. Add on to those scheduled events family traditions, holiday shopping, and crafts or projects you hope to complete and you can quickly become overwhelmed. With all the craziness how do you bring joy to your preschooler’s Christmas season? Here are some quick, easy ideas that you can do with your preschooler to celebrate Christmas.
Community Service Project: Christmas time is a great time to show your child how wonderful it is to help and serve others. There are many age appropriate activities you could do.
1. If you have a nursing home or retirement home you could make Christmas cards and decorations and deliver them. Or, gather a group of parents and children and sing Christmas carols to the folks at the nursing/retirement home.
2. Donate gently used toys or clothing. Have your child help you decide on some toys or coats, hats, and gloves that could be donated to a local shelter.
3. Write cards for our troops overseas.
4. Operation Christmas Child
Holiday Baking: Let your child help you bake a tasty treat in the kitchen. Whether it’s a decadent batch of Christmas cookies or a more simple loaf of banana bread your child will love helping you bake. After you are done you can share some of the goodies with a neighbor or friend.
Make tree ornaments: You probably have the materials on hand to whip up some festive ornaments.
1. Candy Cane Ornament: Use a pipe cleaner to bend into the shape of a candy cane, and then add beads. Seal off both ends by bending them around a bead and your ornament is ready to be hung.
2. Salt Dough Ornament: Find a salt dough recipe on google or Pinterest. These make great gifts for grandparents!
Make a Christmas countdown: Cut green and red construction paper intro 25 2” by 6” strips. Take a green strip and connect the two ends with glue stick to make a loop. Put a red strip through the green loop and glue the two red ends together creating a chain. Repeat with the other 23 strips to make a chain with 25 loops. Tear off one loop each day as you countdown to Christmas.
Read Christmas themed books.
Write a letter to Santa Claus: Let your child dictate a letter to Santa while you write it. Or, if they can write letters you can help them spell out the words.
Make peppermint play dough: Homemade play dough is a blast to make and really quite simple. Make it “Christmasy” by adding green food coloring and peppermint scent. Let your child use Christmas cookie cutters while playing with the play dough.
Listen to Christmas music in the car.
Christmas Lights: Make some hot cocoa and go on a drive as a family to look at the houses in your neighborhood. Don’t forget to play Christmas music while you drive!
Christmas can be a very tough time for families for financial or emotional reasons or simply because of how busy this time of the year is. When the season starts to stress you out, take a break and try and see Christmas through a preschooler’s eyes. It is the little simple things that make kids happy.