Topics: Family Life, Education

When I was a child, my mother had a fantastic trick to motivate me and my brother to get ready for school when we didn’t really want to go as we were too excited for Christmas! Our mum created us enough advent calendars to get us ready and out the door to get to school.

This year with my own daughter I decided to focus on the fact that Christmas is not just all about TV, food and presents, but also about spending quality time together as a family and teaching her about kindness and friendship.

I have been searching for inspirations online and the Act of Kindness Advent Calendars really stood out to me. So, I have put together quick step & step guide if you want to embrace the true spirit of Christmas.

How to make

  • Choose a festive image and paste it in to a word document.
  • ‘Draw’ 24 boxes.
  • Print out and ask child to help you to cut windows (if appropriate).
  • Alternatively you can ask your child to draw or paint their own image
  • Print various images for your different acts of kindness. For inspiration see the list below, but feel free to make up your own that are suitable for your family.
  • Make sure the size will fit your calendar windows.
  • Stick them on the sheet and glue both papers together
  • Enjoy opening each window each day and encouraging your children to share random acts of kindness in the run up to Christmas!

Ideas of acts of kindness:

Skype or call grandparents (if they live far away)

Bake gingerbread men for a friend

Help mum a dad around the house

Smile at stranger

Make a box with donations for a local homeless charity

Write a card for your friends

Draw a picture for a local care home

Donate some toys to Women’s Aid or Refuge

Take some food to a local Food Bank

Share a hug with someone

Make somebody laugh

Take supplies to an animal shelter

Pick up litter

Let someone go ahead of you in a queue

Sing Christmas carols for your neighbours

Hold the door open for someone

Tell someone in your family that you love them

Leave a treat for your postmen or dustmen