Ave Maria Press editorial assistant Barbara Brutt reminds teachers of some traditional Advent ideas appropriate for classroom additions and students of all ages.

There are a few simple Advent traditions that can aid you as you seek to center yourself in remembrance of Christ’s coming.

1. An Advent Calendar

A quick internet search shows many potential calendars and the ability to find one that will perfectly fit your classroom or family. An Advent Calendar functions as a daily reminder of Christ’s coming and each wisdom shared can be carried with you throughout the day.

2. An Advent Wreath (incorporating the Christ candle and the Mary candle)

The candles of this wreath are traditionally lit on the Sundays of December leading up to Christmas day. This can easily be shared with your family, but for a classroom, the students might be encouraged to really delve into the meaning and history of this tradition.

3. A Christmas Tree

Rather than filling the tree with decorations immediately, consider leaving it empty and focus on the expectation and waiting of Christ’s coming. In the days leading up to Christmas slowly add ornaments to the tree. Meditate on St. Boniface’s words: “The fir tree is the wood of peace, the sign of an endless life with its evergreen branches. It points to heaven. It will never shelter deeds of blood, but rather be filled with loving gifts and rites of kindness.”

Many tools are available for walking into the Christmas season with Christ-focus and serenity. Don’t be afraid to brainstorm new ideas yourself for drawing those around you deeper into relationship with God and the sacredness of the season.

In addition, Ave Maria Press colleague and religious educator Jared Dees offers links to several more Advent activities at The Religion Teacher website.

We wish you and your students the blessings of the season as they celebrate the coming of our Savior in the midst of their busy academic schedules.