Christmas Activity Ideas

Looking for some activity ideas during the festive period?

Christmas is an exciting time of year in early years with many young children amazed by the magic and wonder created around Christmas time. Many settings use this festive period in December to focus on Christmas based activities. This is a good way to build parent partnerships, share what has been going on in the setting and also create some keepsakes.

Here are some fun and simple activity ideas to plan with the children in your Early Years setting.

Hand Print Reindeer Ornament

A hand print reindeer makes a perfect Christmas ornament!  This could be a gift for parents or a keepsake by serving as a memory each year when they decorate their tree.

What you will need:

  • White paper
  • Brown paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Marker pens
  • Red pom pom
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Paper for background
  • Single hole punch
  • Ribbon


  1. Paint a layer of brown paint on the child’s hand using a paintbrush.
  2. Ensure your child has his/ her hands spread apart to make a handprint on to white paper.
  3. Let the hand print dry out completely.
  4. Ask the child to add reindeer details on to the handprint. For example eyes, hooves, tail, antlers.
  5. Glue a red pom pom to the reindeer for the nose. Alternatively, use a red marker pen.
  6. Cut out the shape and hole punch a small hole in the top.
  7. Tie a ribbon so that the reindeer can be hung on a Christmas Tree.

Paper Plate Christmas Tree

This Christmas tree is great for children’s fine motor skills and creativity by allowing children to practise their folding, cutting and sticking skills as well as painting and decorating their tree. Transforming a paper plate into a Christmas tree will also teach children how we can reuse materials to create something new.

What you will need:

  • A paper plate
  • Green paint
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Crafty bits and pieces for decorations


  1. Ask the child to paint the paper plate green and let it dry completely
  2. Cut the plate in to thirds. Ensure you make one section a little bit smaller than the rest.
  3. Layer the triangles on top of each other with the smallest one on top.
  4. Glue the triangles together.
  5. Allow the child to decorate the tree using marker pens and craft pieces such as pom poms and pipe cleaners.
  6. Add a star on top!

Cotton Wool Santa Beard

This activity will encourage children to use their senses and explore the texture of different materials such as cotton wool. It also incorporates Maths by allowing children to understand basic fractions as well as Expressive Arts and Design through role play.

What you will need:

  • Paper plate
  • Cotton wool
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Lolly pop stick


  1. Cut the paper plate in half and cut a small hole in the middle to represent a mouth.
  2. Encourage the children to glue the cotton wool to the paper plate.
  3. Glue the lolly pop stick to the bottom to create a handle.
  4. Pretend to be Santa!