One of the items on our Christmas Bucket List is the Advent Picture Book Tree. There are different ways of doing this fun holiday activity. The goal is to gather 25 Christmas/winter themed books, stack them to form a tree shape, and read one book each day as you count down to Christmas.
Start by gathering your books!
- First off, take a trip to the public library and load up! Don’t limit yourself to just Christmas books. Expand your stack with some winter books too. Also consider adding books about other holidays that are celebrated this time of year.
- Also, go through your children’s bookshelves at home to see how many holiday favorites you already have. Add them to your stack.
- Count how many books you are lacking to complete your 25 day book countdown. Take a trip to the bookstore (or search online), and purchase the remaining number of books you need to complete your advent book tree. Need help with book suggestions? See my lists of favorite Christmas and Winter picture books.
Next decide how you will display them.
- Are you going to wrap them or not? Wrapping them adds an extra element of fun for the kids. They also look more festive this way.
- The drawback to wrapping them, aside from the time it takes, is that you can’t tell which book is which unless you also label them all. But that may not really matter.
- What will you use as a topper? I’ve used a star and a bow. I’ve also decorated it with our kid-made pom-pom garland. Feel free to use whatever you have handy.
Now determine how you will use the advent tree in your countdown to Christmas.
- Will you read the new book from your book tree each morning? or evening?
- Will you pull the book of the day from the top or bottom of the stack? or just let a child pick from anywhere in the stack?
- What will you do with the book once you’ve read it? (Put it back in the stack? start a new stack of finished books?)
- Will you reread any of the books during the countdown?
- Decide on your plan ahead of time so there isn’t any confusion.
Have fun reading and spending time with family as you countdown to Christmas!
- Set up your advent picture book tree a few days (or more) ahead of time to build anticipation.
- Start reading from your advent tree on December 1 (or whenever is best for your family).
These are just general guidelines for doing an advent picture book tree. There is no right or wrong way to do it. The point is to have fun and read some of the many great picture books out there.
If you make an advent picture book tree, I would love to see and hear about it. Feel free to post a picture of it or leave a comment on my Facebook page, Spark and Pook.