How to Keep Children's Attention While They Have...
Grandparents or parents will be amazed at how easy it is to hold the attention of even the most active child as the children interact with the reading of the Christmas Story. Even if this activity is done just before the opening of the Christmas gifts, children seem to enjoy taking the time for this interactive story of Jesus' birth.
Things You’ll Need:
One adult says something like, "before we open our gifts we will have a short and wonderful story to tell, but first I would like the children to get down on the floor with grandma/grandpa/mama/daddy."(Or with whoever is leading the story.)
Step2As the child/children go to the cleared area on the floor, the pieces of the Nativity Set are placed on the floor as the chosen adult joins the children with either a Children's Bible or a children's story book, containing the Biblical Christmas story, in hand.
Step3Each of the children are given a piece of the Nativity to hold...or several pieces depending on how many children are present. It is explained that as the story is being read, when the child hears the name of the figure they are holding in their hand mentioned, they should then place their piece in its proper place and wait until each piece has been placed and the story has been finished. Once the story is finished, it is a good time to mention that we celebrate Jesus' birthday by giving gifts as an act of love to each other.
WORDS OF ADVISE: 1) Respect the older children who might feel they are "too old" to participate, but consider inviting them to help out with the little ones. 2) Be sure to keep the story short. A children's story book with the Christmas Story already condensed would work well, however if you choose to read from the Bible, you might consider only reading Luke 2:4-20, and if you want to add the wise men, you could add in Matthew 2:10-11.
CAUTION: Never "make" any child feel bad if they choose not to participate in this or single this child out in anyway!