Activity Advent Calendar Tips & Template

Whether you are looking for an alternative to chocolate Advent calendars (anyone else still working their way through the Hallowe’en candy?), are tired of those pre-filled toy calendars that just add more plastic tat to your house, or are simply in search or something a little bit different, an Activity Advent Calendar is a really fun thing to do. We first did one four years ago, and have been incorporating this in to our Advent every year since, sometimes as a stand alone calendar, sometimes mixed in with another calendar.

So what is an Activity Advent Calendar? You basically choose 24 activities to do, one for each day from 1 December up until Christmas. The beauty of this, besides being fun and a little bit different, is that you can incorporate things you would have been doing in December anyway, which helps to keep the costs down. So, for example, I include things like making and putting up Christmas decorations, baking Christmas cookies, buying and trimming the Christmas tree, writing a letter to Santa, but because it’s in the CALENDAR the kids thinks it’s twice as exciting! And it also requires little preparation, besides checking that you have any necessary supplies for baking or craft activities in the house.

Just write out your activities on pieces of paper or card, and either pop them in numbered envelopes – which you could then decorate – or if you already have one of those reusable calendars with little pockets, you could pop them in that. Optionally you could choose to add a little treat in with the activities each day, or just keep it sweets free.

One tip if you are using envelopes – don’t seal them! That way, if plans change, you can easily swap the activities round. If you want to see some examples of how we put the activities in to practice, feel free to check out my previous post about our Activity Advent Calendar from a couple of years ago.

To make things even easier for you, I’ve remade my original Activity Advent Calendar cards in to a downloadable PDF! It includes 32 pre-printed activities, so you can choose the 24 most relevant to you, as well as some blank illustrated cards for you to add any ideas of your own. Anyone who signs up to my newsletter will receive a free copy of the PDF as a thank you! If you are already subscribed to my newsletter, you will receive an email with a link to download the PDF later this week.

You are welcome to print off these cards for your own personal use, and if you do end up using them, I’d love to see some photos so please feel free to share with me or tag me in on Twitter or Instagram.

Pssst…check back later this week for a new video post on how to make an Advent Book Calendar!

8 Comments on Activity Advent Calendar Tips & Template

  1. Treasure Every Moment
    November 21, 2018 at 11:50 am (3 weeks ago)

    What a fun idea! My children don’t have chocolate, so I’m always on the look out for alternative advent calendars :)

  2. Bethany Matthews
    November 21, 2018 at 8:04 pm (3 weeks ago)

    I love this idea! I don’t know if I could get rid of the chocolate but I could definitely do this along side!

  3. Anosa
    November 22, 2018 at 11:49 am (3 weeks ago)

    We’ve been curating various ‘food’ advent challenges but not done activity ones, love this, such a great idea.
    Anosa recently posted…Silent Disco at Madame Tussauds LondonMy Profile

  4. Melanie williams
    November 22, 2018 at 4:17 pm (2 weeks ago)

    What an amazing idea. Making your own is a fun craft and has an actual purpose too xx

  5. Sonia
    November 22, 2018 at 7:07 pm (2 weeks ago)

    Oh I love this idea, we have a kindness advent calendar that we are doing this year which is similar to this but I might just have to download this one as a bit of a treat too x
    Sonia recently posted…Tips for Travelling with ChildrenMy Profile

  6. Pati
    November 22, 2018 at 9:47 pm (2 weeks ago)

    ohh you have given me a fantastic idea ! we dont really do chocolate calendars as much but i love the idea of a activity calendar it will keep my daughter busy thats for sure x

  7. Caitylis
    November 25, 2018 at 9:48 pm (2 weeks ago)

    Okay I love this idea! This is so brilliant for kids as well for the run up to Christmas! I would love to do this with my boy next year!
    Caitylis

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