The holiday season is one of the best times of the year! From finding the perfect gifts for everyone on your list to reading new and classic seasonal stories, there are so many wonderful activities, events, and traditions for families during this time. Here are a few fun ideas that incorporate literacy into the magic and anticipation of the holidays.
1. Create a Book Advent Calendar
An advent calendar is one of the most popular ways to count down the days until Christmas, but this idea is perfect for any festive celebration your readers are eagerly anticipating! This year, instead of opening chocolates each day, switch them out with books! There is nothing better than curling up with a book and creating holiday reading traditions that your family will continue to enjoy and anticipate for years to come.
To create the calendar, choose a collection of classic picture books (such as Where the Wild Things Are), 24 holiday-themed stories, or any mix of titles your child will enjoy. You can wrap up seasonal favorites that you already have, or even add a few new books that would be of high interest to your child. Once you have all 24 books, wrap them up. Then, each night in December, have your child choose one book to open and read it together as a family.
Celebrating Hanukkah? Gift a book for each of the eight nights.
2. Teach Your Child About the Holidays
During this time of the year, there is so much to learn about different holidays that other kids and families celebrate around the world. To get started, select a winter holiday that your family doesn't normally celebrate, or choose to learn about how the holiday your family observes is celebrated in another country.
Check out a variety of nonfiction and fiction titles, prepare traditional food, or make crafts that reflect the symbols and activities associated with the holiday. For instance, The Seven Days of Kwanzaa is an informative and fun read about Kwanzaa, and includes recipes, craft projects, and biographies of individuals who are connected to the history of the holiday. Meanwhile, your child will delight in Peppa Pig: Happy Hanukkah and Peppa Pig: A Magical Christmas. These sweet picture books serve as a great introduction to the holiday season and share fun ways that families celebrate during this time of the year.
You can also play games and listen to music to get your child involved in the research and learning process. Not only do these activities encourage literacy, but they also show your child that learning about something new can be fun and exciting.
3. Remember Books Make the Perfect Gifts
Many families have gift-giving traditions. This year, make an effort to incorporate the giving of books into your holiday tradition — doing so will help your child view reading and receiving books as precious gifts — and foster a love of reading!
Try introducing your child to a favorite book from your childhood. Other ideas include gifting books from your child's favorite genre, author, or series featuring beloved characters, like The Bad Guys #1-12 Collection! Set aside a special day during the season to select a new book to snuggle up as a family to enjoy.
4. Pair Books and Snacks
Take a moment to get cozy with favorite seasonal reads and treats! This year, get creative and make a holiday snack to fuel your family's reading. For instance, bake a gingerbread cookies and read 3 Little Superpigs & the Gingerbread Man, a modern twist to the classic The Gingerbread Man. The excitement of making a holiday treat to enjoy during storytime is a great way to bond as a family during this time of the year.
This holiday season, give your kids the gift of reading! Fill your holiday packages and homes with a wide selection of titles and raise a generation of children who are excited about reading.
Shop seasonal stories and classic holiday books below! You can find all books and activities at The Scholastic Store.
Looking for holiday gifts for kids? Explore trending books, gifts to spark their imagination, and ideas to instill a love of reading and learning in our Holiday Gift Guide.You'll find everything you need for a book-filled holiday, from the best book sets by age to the top reads under $5! Shop our picks and more at The Scholastic Store. Or to give a reader you love the gift of choice, give an egift card.