Last year, for each day of December leading up to Christmas, I had a book for the girls to unwrap, an idea I got from another Montessori mama (Nicole Kavanaugh). A book advent calendar of sorts. Now, with having two little book lovers, I’m so excited to repeat this process, making it a holiday tradition.
Having been asked what we were getting this girls for Christmas, which I shared here, books needed their own post.
I completely used this opportunity to get books that I’ve had my eye on, but just haven’t purchased for some reason.
December 1st: Giving Thanks. Thanks isn’t something we reserve just for the month on November and this book is too dear not to read through the month of December and on. We’ll read a poem or prayer once a day, or so.
December 2nd: Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message. The message and illustrations are beautiful.
December 3rd: Let’s Go to Our Zoo. Real photos, interactive, and so many facts. This will definitely be a hit and I know the girls will love it.
December 5th: Touch and Trace Farm: If you read our post about how we helped the girls treat their books gently (here), you’ll know that interactive books are amazing. There are tracing AND little flip areas. The little cut-out flips are not very thick, unlike their other books, and it will be a great way to practice gentle opening.
December 6th: Pretty Girl…Friends: Apparently this book is not retired. I came across it at TJ Maxx, it was wrapped in plastic and I was a little concerned about the word ‘pretty’. But for a few dollars and the adorable illustrations on the cover and back, I wanted to see what it was about. I’m so glad I did. It’s pretty much a book on manners. “What makes us feel pretty inside today?” I’m tempted to read it with them right them now.
December 7th: Take Heart, My Child: Having children was a difficult journey and I’m not sure I’ll be able to read this too them without crying, as it’s so beautiful and true.
December 8th: Kindness: Little Buddhist stories. I haven’t preview this one yet, but we are all about satires with moral lessons.
December 9th: Together for Kwanzaa: We currently have no books about Kwanzaa and I heard wonderful things about this particular one. The pictures look amazing and I can’t wait to read it with the girls.
December 10th: In the Month of Kislev. I found this little treasure at a thrift store and look forward to introducing it, and Hanukkah, to the girls. While we do not observe, we find it important to teach our children about other religions and their celebrations.
December 11th: Latkes and Applesauce. Another book about Hanukkah. In the back there is a history of Hanukkah, a recipes for latkes, and instructions how to play dreidel.
December 12th: The Backyard Bug Book: As they are noticing and becoming interested in bugs.
December 13th: I Dissent: A book about Ruth Bader Ginsburg and I was won over.
December 15th: Mindfulness for Little Ones: While some of these activities may be more meaningful in a bit, there are plenty that they can enjoy now and we can start incorporating. Learn coping skills early on is so important.
December 16th: Buddhism for Kids: Meditation and stories to help encourage peace and happiness. With a chapter/page (?) titled “Random Act of Kindness” I knew that this would be prefect for our family.
December 17th: Festival of Colors: Their first book on Diwali.
December 18th: Let the Children March: We have borrowed this from the library so many times that it was time to add it to our own. A must have.
December 19th: Alma and How She Got Her Name: This is actually a regift from last year’s advent book calendar. It’s one of my favourites to read with the girls as it’s about a little girl who doesn’t care for her long name, until she is told of the family members she’s named after. The girls have crazy long names and are named after a few family members who are no longer with us. This is a great way to keep their memory alive during the holiday season.
December 20th: I Walk with Vanessa: This book, while wordless, is so powerful and I really can’t recommend it enough. Another find a a local shop that I can’t wait to share with the girls. I read that, for some children, reading can be a little intimidating, so it’s nice to have wordless books on hand. While the girls currently love books and “reading” I want to make sure that we have plenty of wordless ones too. These will be great for when they start to tell their own stories, before reading, as there is a baseline, with the illustrations, but there’s no “wrong” storyline.
December 21th: The Proudest Blue: A sweet story about two sisters, the oldest begins wearing her hijab at school for the first time. Another book we have read before and needed to add to our personal library.
December 22th: Water Walkers: This was a book that we had purchased on a trip to our favourite place. The history of their own ancestors with realists pictures, I just love it.
December 23th: Buddha at Bedtime: Stories with moral teachings. Some may need to be avoided or altered, as we don’t do fantasy.
December 24th: The Nutcracker: One of Hubby and my first dates was to the Nutcracker and I can’t wait to take the girls (albeit not this year, thank you Covid). We don’t do fantasy, but we firmly believe in exposing our little dancers to arts and culture. And that’s why I prefer this particular version, as it’s drawn as if it were a play. It was actually based on George Balanchine’s The Nutcrackers.
December 25th: The Twelve Days of Christmas. This book is simply gorgeous and I look forward to it. A lot of people may decided to celebrate the twelve days of Christmas as a countdown TO Christmas, but it’s actually December 25th though January 5th.
Are you doing an advent calendar?
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