10 Ways to get the most out of your Nativity Set

I love a Nativity Set that kids can freely explore for themselves. But have you thought about what else your Nativity Set could offer? Here are 10 Ways to get the most out of your Nativity Set & invite your kids to interact with the Christmas Story in a new way.

1. Have a selection of Nativity books alongside your Nativity Scene & retell the story using the figures. Great for encouraging so many skills including imagination, literacy, & recall.

2. Take your Nativity Set on a journey around the house to remind you of Mary & Joseph's journey to Bethlehem. Pack a case/bag for them & think about what they would need to take. What would you take if you were going on a journey?

3. Hold a tea party, breakfast or lunch for Mary & Joseph & invite them to sit with you as special guests. 

4. Take the animals from your Nativity for a walk around your neighbourhood & feed them with some straw or grass. Or take them to a local farm or animal stable to meet real animals. What do the stables of the real animals smell like? What do you think the Inn in Bethlehem was like?

5. One evening light a battery-operated tealight by your Nativity set & sing a carol to the figures. Can you find carols that include the different Nativity Characters? How about 'While Shepherds Watched', We 'Three Kings' or 'Away in a Manger'.

6. Gift wrap each character from the set & place them in the stable. Can you tell which character is which before you unwrap them? Wrap them up again & see if you can remember. A great way to explore the real gift of Christmas.

7. Create your own mini Nativity movie using your Nativity characters & other small world play figures. If you're looking for inspiration check out this fabulous video from singer/songwriter Malcolm Gordon.

8. Dress up as a Nativity Character & play alongside your Nativity Scene.
Which character will you be? I wonder how that character sounds or moves? Where did they travel from?

9. Draw a picture of your Nativity Scene or make a Happy Birthday card for Jesus. Older children might like to write a poem or short story about one of the Nativity characters. What words come to your mind when you think of the Nativity?

10. Create a simple backdrop or scenery for your Nativity Set like this one made from recycled items. What would the countryside have been like in Bethlehem? 

I hope your children enjoy exploring their Nativity Sets & all they have to offer. It doesn't matter how many times you look the Christmas Story, there is always something new to discover.