To explain that Advent is a time of waiting
The children will be able to identify the season of Advent as a time of waiting.
- Poster paper
- Markers, crayons, pencils
- Colored paper
- Provide the children with markers, crayons, pencils, and paper.
- Remind the children of the wait that Mary and Joseph endured as they prepared for the birth of Jesus.
- Say to the children: We all like to celebrate our birthdays. How do you feel when it gets close to your birthday? Imagine how Joseph and Mary must have felt during the days before Jesus' birth.
- Invite the children to share ways in which they might prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus.
- Write their ideas on a large poster paper. Suggest the following if the children are having trouble with ideas: decorating a birthday cake, making an Advent calendar, designing birthday cards, writing prayers to Jesus, and so on.
- Next, have the children agree on one or two ways that they as an entire group will prepare for Jesus' birth.
- Help the children plan a party for Jesus' birth. Tell them their preparations will be an exciting wait, like the wait that Mary and Joseph felt before Jesus' birth.
- However the children choose to celebrate Jesus' birth, ask them to prepare one thing in particular to show Jesus that he is welcome in their hearts: a prayerful card, a group banner, an illustration of Joseph and Mary in the manger, and so on.
- Give the children time to create their special gifts and offer suggestions if they need help.
- Before the days of Jesus' birth, have the children decorate the room with their special gifts. Also, help the children with their party preparations.
- Say: Advent is a time of waiting. Let us ask God to help us as we wait patiently and prepare to celebrate Jesus' birthday.
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This is an ongoing activity to help the children recognize Advent as a time of waiting. If time does not permit you to do this, have the children create special gifts for a celebration that they can plan at home with their families. Follow the activity as if the children will be planning ways in which they will prepare a party at home.