Advent calendars have come along way since I was a child. We used the same card-stock, open the door and see a picture calendar every year. Now there are advent calendars that you open to discover chocolates or toys (we’re trying out this Lego Harry Potter one this year) and others that have you moving markers from day-to-day. In our family, book based advent calendars are one of my favorite holiday traditions. This year we are trying out two more book based advent calendars.
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This is our traditional way of incorporating books into our holiday season. Every year, I pull out all of our holiday books, wrap up 24 of them and put them out near our Christmas tree. You can do this even if you don’t have 24 holiday-themed books just by making a quick run to the library. There are a few classics that HAVE to be included and I try to add at least one or two new titles to keep things interesting. Sterling loves trying to figure out which book is which before unwrapping them.
Every night before bedtime he opens up one new book and that becomes our bedtime story. It’s a great, easy way to add a little holiday spirit to each day. After Christmas, all of the books go back to the library or get boxed up until next year. Find our list of holiday books from last year here.
2. Everyday Reading’s Rad Reader Christmas Reading Advent Calendar
This year Everyday Reading joined up with Rad & Happy and came out with the AMAZING Rad Reader Christmas Reading Advent Calendar. For each book/day you read you find that number on the coloring sheet and get coloring. This is great as a standalone (she even includes fun daily ideas) or together with our Christmas Book Countdown. It is FREE to download and you can print it out at home. You can also get it printed out as a large engineering print for some jumbo-sized fun!
3. Reading How Winston Delivered Christmas by Alex T. Smith
This book just came out this year and is quickly becoming one of my holiday favorites. How Winston Delivered Christmas is a 24 & 1/2 chapter storybook that follows a little mouse named Winston as he tries to deliver a lost letter to Santa. Read one chapter a night in December, and then finish up with the last half chapter on Christmas Day. It’s a wonderful and beautifully illustrated story but there is even more to it than that. Along with your daily chapter comes an idea for a holiday activity. You don’t have to do them all, or at all, and can switch around the order, but I love having a bunch of fun holiday ideas for Sterling.
No matter how you end up counting down the days to Christmas I hope books become a part of it! Let us know if you try out one of these book based advent calendars or if you have a different idea to share.
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