Helping our kids understand the true meaning of Christmas may be a challenging task. However, teaching and instilling the values they can learn from this will truly make for a more meaningful Christmas for them, and for you.
Christmas is about the Baby Jesus!
· Kids love celebrating their own birthdays! So, the first thing to make Christmas meaningful for our little ones is to tell them that…Christmas is the birthday of the Baby Jesus! We can talk to them about when their own birthdays are and how they celebrate it once a year. Then, it becomes very easy to explain, “Christmas is the birthday of Baby Jesus!” Discuss with your kids how celebrating Jesus’ birthday is different from celebrating our own birthdays. As you explain the differences, you can talk and show your kids the different Christmas symbols (i.e. tree, Advent wreath, etc.). There are storybooks about these various symbols as well.
· Read the original Christmas story with your kids. They learn fast when picture books are read to them, and the story comes to life. You may also look for a video of the Christmas Story that you can watch with your children.
· Once the kids understand that Christmas is the birthday of Jesus, you can then talk to your kids about how you can celebrate the birthday of Jesus. Setting up a belenat home is a perfect way to make the Christmas story a concrete one. There are actually belen characters that are stuffed dolls and not breakable. Hence, it will be very fun for the kids to help out in fixing the belen.
Christmas is about Giving
· Kids get so many presents during Christmas time…they understand Christmas as being all about them and receiving gifts! During one family discussion, talk to your kids about how Christmas as really about giving to others! Let’s talk to our kids about being other-centered, from their earliest years.
· Get your kids involved in preparing gifts for other relatives. Visit this link: http://happyhooligans.ca/40-useful-gifts-kids-can-make/ to get ideas about kid-made gifts that grown-ups can really use! The kids can become productive during Christmas break and prepare their own gifts for their grandparents, uncles and aunts!
· Give your kids criteria when spending money on buying gifts. This Christmas season would be a good time to teach your kids about using money wisely and picking inexpensive but useful gifts.
· Another thing we can teach our kids to give is service! We can show our love for others in more ways than just giving material gifts. When we help others with small deeds, we give a part of ourselves!Sample acts of service include setting the table, packing away their toys, fixing their beds, making breakfast for Mom and Dad, etc.
May this year’s Christmas season be different and more meaningful! And enjoy everything that Christmas has to offer you, your family, and your children!
Truly Celebrating Christmas with our Kids: Part 1