Advent is the four week period before Christmas. Advent calendars make a great way to countdown the days until Christmas. You can purchase an advent calendar, print of of the many free Advent calendars or make your own using this easy pattern. Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas, so the length of time Advent lasts will change each year. To make your Advent calendar reusable from year to year, you can simply number the windows from 1-30. That will ensure that you always have enough windows to countdown for each day before Christmas. On the years with shorter Advent seasons, simply continue on after Christmas.
You will need:
– Four sheets of plain white copy paper, tagboard, construction paper or cardstock. You can use 8 1/2 x 11, but you will need to be able to write very small. I recommend using 11X 17 construction paper. You can also make an 11 x 17 poster size pages by taping two 8.5 x 11 pages together.
– Christmas images, illustrated Christmas wrapping paper or free printable Christmas coloring pages (click here to find some). If you are using coloring pages, you’ll need to print two images or set your printer properties to enlarge the photo to 11 x 17. You image will print in two pages.
– Sharp scissors, X-acto Knife, Widget or scoring tool
– Invisible tape or double sided tape, glue, Elmer’s Spray Adhesive, glue dots or Rubber Cement (Glue dots are somewhat expensive but very user-friendly and much less messy. Rubber Cement works well also because you can easily peel off any spills. My preference for this type of work is double stick tape.)
– Tracing paper or plain copy paper
– Fine point black pen
– Markers or crayons
– Color your Christmas images if you have chosen that option.
– Tape your printed or colored Christmas images to form one 11 x 17 poster.
– Attach your 11 x 17 image to one piece of tagboard by painting back with glue or Rubber Cement or spraying with Spray Adhesive. If you have chosen to use Christmas wrapping paper, cover one piece of tagboard with wrapping paper.
– With fine point pen, draw 30 1.5″ x 1″ rectangles on plain tagboard. Write one Christmas Bible verses or Advent countdown activity inside each rectangle. (visit The Advent Season for activities and Bible verses; in search bar type “Advent Bible Verses” or “Advent Activities” to pull up list).
– Lay tracing paper over rectangles and trace outlines.
– Place decorated tagboard over rectangles tracing. Turn over so that tracing paper is on top. Using scoring tool, sharp knife, sharp scissors, X-Acto knife or Widget, cut three edges of rectangle into tagboard. Label front of decorated tagboard with number 1-30. Tape two pieces of cardboard together along the edges. Top open windows of Advent calendar, press window to release and pull open. Bible verses and activities will show through window.