Here’s a simple explanation of Advent for children plus a range of Advent activities and crafts you can enjoy with your family, in class, or at Sunday School and in children’s ministries.
What is Advent? for children
This simple guide introduces children to the Christian festival of Advent. It explains what Advent is, how it is celebrated, and how to make an Advent wreath.
For more resources you can see all our Advent activities here.
In this lesson, your children can:
:: read and learn about the Christian festival of Advent
:: learn how Advent is celebrated
:: learn about an Advent wreath, what it symbolises and what each Advent candle means
:: find more links to Advent crafts and activities
What is Advent?
Advent time is celebrated by Christians during the four Sundays leading up to the festival of Christmas on December 25th.
It is a time for them to prepare for Christmas and the remembrance of the birth of Jesus, the son of God.
How do you celebrate Advent?
During Advent, Christians attend special meetings at their churches each Sunday.
They may also devote special time during the four weeks to read their holy book, the Bible, to say prayers, and do acts of charity and kindness.
They may also decorate their house or church with an Advent wreath.
What is an Advent wreath?
Each Sunday of Advent has a special focus and can be symbolised by the lighting of candles in an Advent wreath.
Many churches and families use the Advent wreath as a focus of their prayer and devotion to God.
The Advent wreath is a circular wreath, often made from fir, holly and other seasonal foliage. It has places for four candles around the circle, and often with a place for a fifth candle in the centre.
Traditionally the circular wreath is put in place at the beginning of Advent and set it in the centre of a table. One of the candles is added each week as Christians count through Advent until Christmas Day on December 25th.
The first Sunday of Advent represents hope and the message in the Bible book of Isaiah, that Jesus, the son of God will be born. A purple candle of hope will be lit.
The second Sunday of Advent represents love and a second purple candle is lit. This Sunday remembers how Mary and Joseph came to the town of Bethlehem, expecting the birth of Jesus.
The third Sunday of Advent represents joy. A pink candle is lit in remembrance of the delight of the shepherds who, guided by an angel, came to Bethlehem to visit Jesus.
The fourth Sunday of Advent represents peace and again a purple candle is lit.
Advent ends on Christmas Eve, on December 24th, when a white candle of purity is lit in the centre of the Advent wreath, representing the birth of Jesus, the son of God.
More Advent crafts and activities
See all our Advent crafts and activities here, including how to make an Advent calendar, printable colour-in Advent wreath and our Nativity teaching resources.