You can never have too many fun ways to teach your children the joys of reading. For this reason, I’m sharing my simple and easy to follow guide for creating your own book advent calendar for kids.
This is one of the easiest DIY advent calendars that you can put together, and doesn’t take any crafting ability – but it is still so much fun to make, and adds a touch of magic every day throughout December, with the kids feeling like they have a new present to open every single day.
Advent calendars are a great way to mark the count down to Christmas. In many families, as soon as the advent calendars arrive on the 1st day of December then you really feel like the Christmas season has arrived.
This simple Advent DIY project will inspire you to start (or end) each day with a book and an excuse to read.
Why Choose a Book Advent Calendar?
A book a day advent calendar is an idea that’s easy enough for anyone to make, and educational enough for parents to appreciate.
There is a common misconception that kids hate to read. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Most kids love reading, when they are given access to books that are engaging and appealing – so having access to lots of books in their homes and schools definitely helps.
However, with the advent of digital devices, it is true that kids are spending less time with real books and more time with digital devices.
So, if your kids are looking for ways to get kids more excited about reading again, you could consider giving them a Book Advent Calendar this year.
A book advent calendar is a great way to encourage kids to get into the habit of reading. Kids love to see which book is inside each day of the advent calendar and they look forward to opening it each morning or each evening.
The best part? You don’t have to spend a fortune to make a book advent calendar for kids. You can make use of deals like the 10 books for 10 in The Works or check out other discounted book sites like Books2Door to allow you to get enough books at a reasonable price.
You can also swap with friends and family to introduce books that are new to you, but not necessarily brand new. There are so many ways do this on a budget.
In addition to the books themselves, all you need are a few simple supplies to create a beautiful and appealing book advent calendar.
How to Make Your Book Advent Calendar
Book Advent Calendar Supplies
You will need the following basic supplies, which you are sure to have at home as the festive season approaches.
- 24 Books
- 24 Paper bags or enough rolls of wrapping paper to wrap each one
- Basket to contain
- Round stickers with numbers 1-24 or
- Plain stickers or gift tags, and a marker pen such as a felt tip or sharpie.
If you are missing something don’t worry. This idea is super flexible and you can substitute or adapt to what you have on hand.
If you’re out of wrapping paper, use left over packing paper eg from Amazon parcels and decorate with festive stickers or try our DIY wrapping paper craft to make some gorgeous wrapping paper that looks like Christmas lights.
You could also use our free printable wrapping paper to help you out last minute.
To make the gift bags fun and festive, you could give our reindeer paper bag craft a try.
Method – DIY Book advent calendar step by step
Here’s how to put this simple book advent calendar together
First, decide on the books that you want to include in the advent calendar (see our list below for suggestions)
Then you will need to wrap each one separately. You can use wrapping paper but a sneaky life hack to make this even easier and quicker to put together is to use paper bags or gift bags, like you see pictured.
This makes this DIY Advent Calendar so so simple, and you can have it all put together in less than an hour so you have more time to put your feet up and watch some of the great Christmas movies out on Netflix this year… maybe grab a cheeky glass of wine and a mince pie.
Using a basket to contain all of the books for the advent calendar also makes life so much easier. The last thing you want is for one of the books to go missing – so you really need to keep them contained.
Once you have packaged all of the books up in their gift bags or wrapped, just label each one clearly with the numbers 1 to 24 and you’re ready to go.
Because it’s books, this advent calendar works really well to open in the evenings so you can use each day’s new book as a bedtime story.
Kids Book Advent Calendar Book List
You can also buy ready made Book Advent Calendars from the shops if you love this idea but are short of time to put it together. We have seen some really cool ones like Disney book advent calendar, mr men books advent calendar, or usbourne books advent calendar so whatever your child’s interests you are sure to be able to find something that suits.
The great thing about making your own is that you can tailor the books exactly to your child’s interest.
You do not even have to make all of the books Christmas themed, you can take it in whichever direction works best for your family. And even better, this concept can be adapted for kids of all ages and even for adults.
If you do want to choose Christmas themed books for your advent calendar, here are a few Christmassy picture books that you might want to consider.
(Amazon affilate links included)
Christmas Picture Books
Click through the pictures or the titles to find out more about each book and get some inspiration for titles to include in your Christmas books advent calendar this year.
The Empty Stocking by Richard Curtis and Rebecca Cobb
The Snowman by Raymond Briggs
The Jolly Christmas Postman by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
Stick Man by Julia Donaldson
THE CHRISTMAS PINE by Julia Donaldson
The Snow Queen by Hans Cristian Anderson
Kipper: Kipper’s Christmas Eve by Mick Inkpen
Merry Christmas, Hugless Douglas by David Melling
The Night Before Christmas by Clement C Moore
How to Catch Santa by Jean Reagan
The Nativity Play by Nick Butterworth and Mick Inkpen
Harry and the Dinosaurs Make a Christmas Wish by Ian Whybrow
Father Christmas Needs a Wee by Nicholas Allan
I Love You Father Christmas by Giles Andreae
Santa’s Blue Suit by Stephanie O Connor
Squirrel’s Snowman: A new Tales from Acorn Wood story by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
The Christmasaurus by Tom Fletcher (picture book version)
The Gruffalo’s Child by Julia Donaldson
Ten Little Elves by Mike Brownlow
Christmas Books for Older Kids
For older children, because the books are longer and take longer to read so it’s not always realistic to finish one per day you could even adapt this idea to introduce one new Christmas book per week during the Advent season, depending on your child’s reading pace.
Here are a few great Christmas reads for older kids
The Christmasaurus by Tom Fletcher
The Christmas Pig by JK Rowling
Diary of a Christmas Elf by Ben Miller
We hope you enjoyed this idea and will give it a try making your own book advent Calendar this December!
It is easy, fun and a great way to introduce children to the joys of reading and a simple way to spend time together every day over the Christmas season!
You might also like our 24 Days of Christmas Activities printable advent calendar which gives you a craft or activity to enjoy together with the kids every day throughout December, in the run up to Christmas.
You could combine both of these DIY advent calendars by slipping a printable activity into the front of each book.
If you enjoyed this DIY Book advent calendar tutorial please go ahead and share this link with friends and family or pin to your Pinterest Boards.
Thank you so much!
Have fun. Merry Christmas and Happy Reading!