Last year after Christmas on a whim (and on major sale) I picked up What God Wants for Christmas. I've been excited to explore it this year with Lauren especially since we have been playing with our Fisher Price Nativity Set and digging deep into the story of Jesus' birth through our experiences with Truth in the Tinsel.
What God Wants for Christmas is set up with a main storybook, a manger scene, and seven boxes, six of which are filled with characters from the story of Jesus' birth. Let me first say that we didn't follow the directions exactly for completing this little interactive nativity set, but the authors give you complete freedom to do it however works best for your family.
We chose to complete the whole book in one evening instead of spending seven days opening one box per day. It turned out to be an awesome review for Lauren and Shawn and I were able to see what she has absorbed about the Christmas story.
Here are our 7 boxes lined up and ready for opening. Lauren loved the boxes and bonus....you can work on number recognition and order as you get everything set up!
As we set up the stable scene I asked Lauren if she knew what it was. It took her a second and then she shouted, "Bethlehem!" I was really looking for the word stable or barn or manger, but she blew me away with her knowledge of the city Jesus was born in!
Lauren opened a box and then I read the correlating story that went with it. The narrator of the book is Gabriel and each story is a poem. This made it super easy to read aloud and since it is poetry, the sections weren't too long or wordy for little ones.
The interactive part of this book set was fabulous for us. Lauren loved rearranging her characters as we read....
...until Easton decided he wanted to play too and Shawn had to step in and save Mary and Joseph!
After every story in the book Gabriel, the narrator, says:
What God wants for Christmas? It's - to you - a surprise.
In box number seven it is disguised.
But - no peeking! Be patient! For this you must wait.
It's what you offer Him, and it's really great.
Then, when Lauren opened the very last box, she looked into a mirror!!! She totally didn't expect it and it was the perfect opportunity to share how much God loves her and desires for her to serve Him with her life. Of course, this was at a three year old level, but I pray that those truths sink deep into the fertile soil of her little heart!
All in all, this was a really great resource and experience for our family. We definitely didn't use it to its full capacity, but that is exciting for the years to come!
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