Experience Christmas 2021

Some of you might have already taken part in this lovely learning experience aimed at primary school children in Years 3 & 4.

We are exploring the possibility of hosting this for some of our local schools from Monday 6th – Friday 10th December in St Thomas’s Church but all this depends on having enough volunteers from both churches.

There are 2 sessions per day (except Wednesday as there is a service at 10.30 am) and during the session the children visit 5 “stations” in various parts of the church. With the adults they explore:

  • Advent: Advent wreath and getting ready,
  • Mary’s House at Nazareth
  • The Road to Bethlehem - a big map
  • The Shepherds on the hillside
  • The Palace of the three wise men.
  • All come together to discuss what we have learnt – and have a sing!

To be successful (and safe) at least 3 volunteers are needed for each station on the various days. If you are interested, feel you would like to be involved or you would like to know more; please speak to Nick, Cath or Richard.

PS If it goes well perhaps we might explore the possibility of “Experience Easter 2022” at St Paul’s.

List of Props

  1. ADVENT: Preparation & getting ready.
    Giant Advent Crown made with evergreen swags into which are placed 5 large church candles: three purple/ 1 pink / 1 white. For display For the children to handle an Advent calendar (s), ingredients to make an Advent Crown:
    • 5 candles as above,
    • open pine cones,
    • short strips of red lametta (foil strands)
  2. MARY’S HOUSE: The Announcement.
    As the children gather around the station they look for clues which point to who might live here. Simple rustic table,
    • broom,
    • mat,
    • wooden chair,
    • hessian sacks,
    • crock of flour,
    • pot of salt,
    • earthenware jugs
    • etc
  3. THE ROAD TO BETHLEHEM: The Journey
    • A floor map of the route from Nazareth to Bethlehem,
    • Figures of Mary, Joseph & donkey from a Crib set.
    • A scroll on which is printed the story (see Richard)
  4. THE HILLSIDE: The Message
    As the children sit around the abandoned log fire, ask them to look for clues to help them guess who might have been in this place:
    • pile of logs (partially burnt),
    • sheep’s wool,
    • plants, blankets,
    • leather sandals,
    • shepherd’s crook,
    • a half-eaten platter of pitta bread,
    • cheese and figs.
    • Animal skin rugs,
    • small Christmas cards.
  5. THE PALACE: The Promises.
    • Black cloth with gold stars attached,
    • treasure box (containing chocolate coins),
    • jar of myrrh (perfumed ointment)
    • thurible (frankincense)
    • feather quill pens,
    • ancient maps,
    • collection of coloured gift boxes,
    • promise box containing scrolls (on which are written promises about Jesus found in the Bible),
    • telescope.
  6. THE PLENARY “The Gift”
    • Crib with Baby Jesus wrapped in swaddling clothes, surrounded by a circle of lit night lights, the outer circle has the words “THE GIFT” in capital letters repeated all the way around. Play an instrumental version of “In the Bleak mid-winter” quietly whilst the children gather around and sit at this station.