Advent is the Catholic Christian season leading up to Christmas. For four weeks, prior to Christmas, Catholics practice Advent values prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Each week focuses on hope, expectation and joy. Here are free printable advent calendars for kids to make, to guide advent to Christmas devotions.
Many involve candy or treats and while there's nothing wrong with a little treat, materialism defeats the Advent purpose: to focus on God. Constantly receiving teaches children (and adults) to be even more aquisitory than they already are at Christmas. If they're getting all season long, where's the magic of Christmas morning? Advent is about preparing for the coming of Christ with acts of charity.
Advent observances should be spiritual. Here are templates from Loyola for free printable Bible Advent calendars. Children read Bible stories and practice the gospel values of prayer, fasting and charity.
Have children make their own Advent calendar. Here's a printable calendar with Catholic feast days listed. Print Bible clipart from Clipart Pal or free Christian Christmas images from Web Weaver. Write Bible verses and gospel passages on the back of clipart. Have children list daily acts of kindness: visit the elderly, pass out cocoa at Christmas parade, wrap Giving Tree gift.
Mr. Printable has free printable Advents calendar crafts. They're not religious. but they could be made that way adding Bible gospel readings and works of mercy.
Here's are free printable Jesse Tree ornaments patterns for kids to color. The Jesse Tree is a visual aid that tells the genealogy of Jesus. It takes children through major Bible stories. Each night, children color a symbol to add to the tree, taking them to the O Antiphons (and ancient Advent prayers said before Christmas).
Sign up for ZonderKidz from Bible Gateway and get a free Jesus Storybook and Bible verses Advent calendar to print. Spiritual Advent calendars teach children that the best gift doesn't come in a wrapped box. The very best Christmas present, the reason for the season, was born in a rough manger.
ESRS creatives has a printable Advent calendar that looks like Christmas ornaments hanging from a tree. There's a printable contemporary Advent calendar. Check this site for a free printable whimsical styled Advent calendar. For a modern Advent calendar click here. Here's an advent calendar that looks like a 3D town. Here is another town shaped Advent calendar printout.
Yellow Bliss Road has an Advent calendar styled like treat bags hanging from a line. O Happy Day has a similar printable Advent calendar. And Petit Lapin has yet another printable bag-style calendar.
This site has printable advent calendars in different styles. For printable child-themed advent calendars, check this site for a Santa Claus Advent calendar. Here's a stocking Advent calendar. Or here's an advent calendar with tags that look like ornaments.
Here are some printable window advent calendars. Here's a cute geometric one. Here's a vintage calendar. Here's a religious advent calendars from Loyola. All Crafts has advent calendar printables. And here are more Advent calendar to print. Here's a site with links to more printable Advent calendars.