|photo taken from counselormom.com|
Children learn best through play. So we decided to use the nativity set to help explain, and then act out, the story of Jesus' birth. When reading a text, we felt like the kids didn't get a good grasp on what was actually happening, so this really has helped them to re-create the story again and again, making it their own.
When reading through the Christmas story, we would read a little, and then pause to use the characters to act out what we had just read. This allows for the children to ask questions and it helps us as parents to see which points they are grasping onto. Of course, depending on the child's age, it's not vital that they understand everything....but it is fun to see what sticks out to them, and talk about why that's important.
I LOVE that the set is durable, friendly for little mouths that are teething, and musical (it plays "Away in a Manger"). And I loved the price- we got ours through Family Christian Stores for only $25. What I don't like about it is that it is missing the shepherds (who can tell the story without the shepherds?!). Those are sold separately. As it relates to telling the story, we just used Little People from Noah's Ark to sit in as shepherds since we had those around the house already.
Despite the lack of shepherds, we are SO glad we made this purchase. It's a fun way to share the Christmas story in an age-appropriate, hands-on way.