As we prepare to bundle our kids back off to school, thoughts of Christmas follow fast on it’s heels. In a matter of weeks parents and grandparents and anyone else who loves a little person, will be courted by social media adverts, supermarket shelves and even the children themselves. They will agonise over the Christmas list (which seems to grow ever longer and more expensive each year), scour high and low to find the elusive and probably sold-out ‘must have’ toy of the year, and wonder where on earth to get the funds to pay for it all. And more likely than not thoughts will turn to the best Christmas story for kids
A Christmas story for kids that leaves a lasting impression.
Whilst I appreciate the appeal of ‘Sherbert the flamingo’, who poops, or indeed the ‘Poopsie Dancing Unicorn’, who strangely seems to feature much the same, I feel a certain responsibility as a teacher to apply some brakes in this materialistic driven world and think of a present that may impart some lasting value. And that’s why my favourite gift has always been -BOOKS! Not just any old book with a smattering of snowflakes and the obligatory Christmas tree but a Christmas story for kids that leaves a lasting impression.
Short Christmas stories for children
Please, please, please tell me you will be buying your little (or maybe rather larger, spotty and belligerent) person at least one book for Christmas. Why? Because they are brilliant. Not only are books one of the greatest ways of stimulating your child’s imagination, curiosity and cognitive development, but we can use them to teach valuable lessons and introduce social responsibility. Youngsters who read do better in school as books have a modelling effect on the reader. We can’t help but soak up what we are reading-from spelling and grammar, to how to express our own thoughts both in person and on paper; and as a teacher let me tell you that this is where many of our young ones are falling down! Christmas story for kids doesn’t have to be a long one. In fact given all the distractions around Short christmas stories for children are often the better choice, Especially the illustrated ones!
Christmas kindness in pages of a Christmas story book
There is one other very important way in which kids Christmas books have great value-in teaching life lessons. You may try to instil values into your child until you are blue in the face but read them a story which teaches a lesson in kindness, sharing, decency, and it acts like an illustration; one that your child can mirror in their own life. And what better time to do this than at Christmas? With the religious significance of Christmas dropping for most people as the years go on, greed is taking it’s place. Most children would be aghast is they woke up on Christmas morning to a homemade doll, some nuts and an orange, yet years ago a child would have been delighted. Don’t buy into the idea that you need to buy more and more presents. By all means treat your child, but why not set appropriate expectations right from when your children are really young? Along with this build appreciation, their own responsibility of giving as well as taking, and care and kindness for others.
Why not buy your child a book which teaches a lesson or a life skill, such as empathy? Which encompasses the warmth of generosity. A book that wraps them up in that cosy Christmas cuddle we remember from our own childhood. You never know, your very own favourite part of Christmas may be reading to them snuggled up with you as you share a magical imaginary Christmas journey with them.
As the years go by many of us find a Christmas story that resonates with us and as an English teacher I am often ask what my favourite Christmas story for kids is. A few spring to mind but the one I return to year after year is The Colour Red by Stephan J Myers. It may not have been turned into a movie but in terms of a classic Christmas story for kids it is wholly magical. And if you’re tempted then do find a paperback copy of The Colour Red plotters edition. Your kids will love it!
A child’s imagination is a wonderful thing. The suspension of disbelief comes easy to them. As we get older we think in terms of our willingness to suspend our critical faculties and believe something surreal whilst sacrificing realism and logic for the sake of enjoyment.
The best you can bring to the reading adventure is your imagination, sense of humor, and your love of reading. Playing with a child with ASD can be enjoyable and enlightening. That playtime is also fertile ground for planting the seeds of reading.
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