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Advent Calendar Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers

As we count down to Christmas with your toddler and preschooler, why not create special moments with Advent Calendar Activities for Toddlers that go beyond the typical chocolate or gifts? Spend a little time each day on simple and meaningful activities that will have you all laughing and creating memories to cherish. We’ve woven these activities into our daily routine with our little ones and are excited to share our 24 days of Advent Calendar fun for toddlers and preschoolers.

a sweet toddler girl opening day 1 of an advent calendar with her mum.

Advent Calendar Ideas for Toddlers and Preschoolers

From using a DIY Advent Calendar filled with unique fillers to incorporating sweet treats like hot chocolate after sledding, we’ve infused every day with a sprinkle of Christmas magic.

Why not involve everyone in the fun, or spread joy in the neighborhood with random acts of kindness? These Advent calendar ideas are tailored for the joyous energy of toddlers and preschoolers.

Watch our Advent Calendar Activities Video Below

Here’s just a taste of some of the fun advent calendar activities to do with your toddlers and preschoolers this year.

cover of count down to Christmas make memories together in 2020 ebook for parents

Make Memories every day as you countdown to Christmas

24 Simple and easy activities to do at home with your kids this Christmas.

child baking cookies one of the fun advent activities for toddlers suggested on rainy day mum
Child Bakes Cookies in Advent via Shutter Stock

24 Simple and Fun Advent Calendar Ideas for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Enjoy the festive spirit with our Advent Calendar Activities for Toddlers! Say goodbye to the usual chocolates and hello to creating heartwarming memories with your little ones this Christmas season. From crafting DIY decorations to enjoying cozy movie nights, we’ve got 24 days packed with simple, joy-filled activities to make every day leading up to Christmas a special one.

#1 Christmas Tree Fun

family picking a Christmas Tree from the farm

Turning on the Christmas lights on your tree while enjoying some Christmas cookies and singing along to festive tunes can be a magical moment. Add a bonus activity by making reindeer food – here’s an animal friendly reindeer food recipe for you to make. together to sprinkle on the lawn on Christmas Eve.

#2 Make a Nature Christmas Tree

making suet balls with toddlers a great way to countdown to christmas and one of the advent activities for kids.

Decorate an outdoor tree with treats for the birds. This can be a delightful way for children to connect with nature, and it’s as simple as stringing cranberries or crafting suet balls or hanging apple slice bird feeders —a perfect snack for your feathered friends.

#3 Decorate a Plate for Santa

Christmas craft for kids

Crafting a plate for Santa’s cookies is a keepsake activity. Let your little ones get messy and creative – it’s a wonderful activity that becomes a much cherished keepsake to bring out year after year with your little ones..

#4 Make Mince Pies

Christmas recipe for mince pies

With our no-roll pastry recipe, even toddlers can join in to bake mince pies! Pack them up and deliver them to friends as heartwarming gifts and share them together. Don’t like mince pies why not bake cookies instead?

#5 Go on A Christmas Light Scavenger Hunt

Transform an evening walk around the neighborhood into an adventure by searching for dazzling displays check out this fantastic Christmas Light and Decoration Scavenger Hunt that you and your little ones can do together.

If it’s cold and wet outside why not print your own Christmas Indoor Scavenger Hunt ideal to play any day throughout December.

#6 Go Late Night Shopping

In the UK at least, in the lead up to Christmas the towns and malls have Late Night Shopping evenings. There are fun fair rides, carol singers, amazing light displays and chestnuts roasting to try as well.

#7 Set up your own Nativity

child playing with nativity story stones.

Creating a homemade nativity scene can become a cherished tradition, and pulling it out each year is like finding hidden pockets of memories. You can set it up all at once or why not bring out the figures one by one over the days leading up the Christmas and the birth of Baby Jesus. You could even use the remaining ones as a little extra advent calendar filler for a few days.

#8 Attend a Nativity Play

watch a nativity show

Whether you attend the one play that your toddler or preschooler is in or one at the church it’s a nice way for you to help teach your little ones about the Christian Christmas Story.

If you do have a toddler or preschooler in the show then check out our Nativity Costume Ideas to DIY or buy.

#9 Make Salt Dough Ornaments

cinnamon scented salt dough stars

Our favourite Christmas craft is to make Salt Dough Ornaments for the Christmas Tree. We use our quickest ever salt dough recipe and in less than 30 minutes we have decorations drying that the kids have made.

#10 Bake Gingerbread Snowflakes

preschooler making gingerbread snowflakes for christmas treats

Although we love making gingerbread men you can change it up a bit and make some delicious and easy gingerbread snowflakes. They taste even better than they look. And if you don’t like gingerbread then no worries – they will harden and you can use them for decorations as well (just leave off the icing.)

#11 Decorate a Gingerbread House

Father and Daughter building a Gingerbread House Together

Whether you decide to make your own or buy a kit decorating a gingerbread house is one of our favourite activities to do at Christmas Time. We get the grandparents involved and they help too. If you don’t want an edible one why not try some of our gingerbread house boxes to decorate and hang on the Christmas tree.

#12 Give toys to Charity

With Christmas coming you will likely have some more toys arriving and your toddlers will have some spare toys. We spend some time before Christmas Day sorting out the toys and setting aside some that we then take to a Children’s Charity so that others can enjoy it.

Why Not Get our Printable Advent Calendar Activity Ideas Cards for Toddlers and Preschoolers for FREE?

Simply click here to get your set of activity cards and then print and use them with your toddlers and preschoolers this year!

Pinterest image for Simple and Fun Advent Activity Ideas for Toddlers and Preschoolers.

#13 Christmas Nature Hunt

christmas nature hunt

Go and hunt for Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe. It’s a great time to get out and these 3 Christmas plants are easy to find. See our guide of a Christmas Nature Hunt with Kids.

#14 Make a Chocolate Yule Log

Chocolate Yule Log

This is a family tradition that we have an easy to make chocolate Yule log. With storebought chocolate swiss rolls, mini rolls and some dairy milk chocolate to melt it’s so simple and then you can use icing sugar to cover it in snow.

#15 Sing Christmas Carols

We love to sing Christmas Carols and songs every day as we lead up to Christmas. In fact, I think they start sometime in November. But we make a special time out of it and sing them by candlelight. A couple of years we’ve also gone to the Christmas Carol Church Service and sung them there.

#16 Visit Santa

Visit Santa

Not to be missed off the list, plan in a visit to Santa and capture the moment to look back on when they are teens.

#17 Make an Angel for the Christmas Tree

Wooden peg angel to make with toddlers and preschoolers

Nothing beats homemade decorations on the Christmas Tree. Of the trees we have in the house, our one in the lounge where we spend a lot of the time is decorated with homemade decorations including this wooden clothes peg angel decoration.

#18 Make Handmade Christmas Gifts

DIY Hand and Foot print First Christmas Ornaments

It doesn’t matter how little your kids are they can still help make some gifts for family and friends. We loved our Handmade First Christmas ornament we made and gave it to grandparents to have. But with toddlers and preschoolers, there are lots more possibilities. Check out these ideas for kid-made homemade gifts from Red Ted Art.

#19 Make Paper Chains to Decorate the House

scrapbook paper chain

We love making paper chains and each holiday we have a new set we make. They are so easy to do the kids love to decorate their bedrooms with them as well.

#20 Make Christmas Cards

making toddler hand and footprint christmas cards

Handmade hand and footprint Christmas cards will always be a favourite with grandma, granddad and aunts and uncles and they are so simple to make. You could make Footprint Reindeer and Handprint Tree Cards. Or how about using some shapes and pompoms and create some really simple handmade Christmas Tree Christmas Cards.

#21 Deliver your Christmas Cards

envelope ready for a toddler to deliver as you play postman

Wrap up warm and head out to deliver your handmade Christmas Cards to your neighbours. If you can’t do that why not play pretend and deliver some Christmas Cheer to each other.

#22 Write a Letter to Santa

a toddler letter to santa

Although you’ve probably already got everything for Christmas sorted we do like to write a letter to Santa. A toy magazine, some glue and you and your tots can make a letter and then leave it out for the elves to find and take to the North Pole.

#23 Have a moment and sit down to watch some Christmas Movies

Selection of the best bits on Netflix this Christmas for families to download, watch and enjoy plus a favourite for the Mums as well.

You really can’t beat sitting and watching Christmas movies with the kids. Whether it’s Polar Express or Mickey Mouses Christmas Carol these are family favourites, we started to watch these when the kids were toddlers and even now as teens they ask to watch them before Christmas.

Whether you are looking to add to your DVD collection with our Best Christmas Movies for Toddlers and Preschoolers or hunting for something to watch this Christmas on Netflix we have you covered.

We make some popcorn like this Grinch Popcorn from Ruffles and Rainboots and pick our favourite to enjoy.

#24 Read the Night Before Christmas

Simple Christmas Story Basket to make and use with young children based on the classic Christmas Storybook Twas the Night Before Christmas

Make a special time and sit down together and read The Night Before Christmas. It’s our favourite story and we love to get the duvets down, cosy up on the sofa and read together.

Fun Advent Calendars for your Toddlers and Preschoolers

We have included affiliate links to some of the products and resources as an associate we may earn from qualifying purchases.

Are your toddlers and preschoolers fans of Paw Patrol then this Paw Patrol Advent calendar will be a hit this year with them.

A lot less commercialised this Melissa and Doug Wooden Advent calendar lets you and your child count down to Christmas adding the ornaments to the wooden magnetic tree.

If you are looking for something to share with the children this Christmas then the Fischer Price Nativity Set is great as you can add the characters to the scene as you countdown to Christmas.

Download your Printable Advent Activities for Toddlers

Don’t forget here’s your printable advent ideas for toddlers to use this Christmas.

24 simple advent activities for toddlers

One Comment

  1. What a fantastic list! We make Christmas cards, from leaves that we’ve foraged – at the end of November, there are still plenty about. Lots more ideas of fun things to do in your list…

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