Friday, August 24, 2007

Faith Boxes

I have been pondering ways of introducing a toddler to religion (or should that be religion to a toddler?). Inspired partly by the liturgical year books I have been making for Little Cherub, and partly by these Feast Day boxes at the Onion Dome - yes, I know I keep getting inspired by Katherine. She is very inspirational! - I have decided I am going to make Faith Boxes. Initially I was thinking of basing them on the liturgical year, then realised the idea could be extended to cover many aspects of religion.

I am going to start with an Advent Box - I always find I do better starting things in Advent. My head does Advent for new beginnings. I even attended my first ever Mass on the first Sunday of Advent. This is what I have planned for the contents:

  • Nativity figures - I have a set of squishy plastic figures for toddlers bought from the Early Learning Centre when Angel was tiny.
  • A wooden St.Nicholas figure. I have a Santa figure that looks fairly St.Nicholas-ish.
  • Various small books telling the Christmas story. I still have a set of little board books covering different aspects which should be just right for Little Cherub this year.
  • Pictures of the Five Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary
  • Pictures of St.Nicholas, St.Lucy, the journey to Bethlehem and the Immaculate Conception
  • Pictures of St.Lucy's Day celebrations
  • A tiny Advent wreath, if I can make or buy one
  • A little Advent calendar, with spaces for stickers (and something to stick on it).
  • A CD with seasonal music
  • A square of purple felt or cloth to use to set things out on

As Little Cherub grows, the contents can be updated with Playmobil figures instead of the toddler ones, a map of the Holy Land, three part cards for the Rosary pictures, O Antiphon symbols and cards, and so on.

On Christmas Day I can swap the box for a Christmas one. Then I have lots of ideas for other boxes ... Lent, Easter, Mary, Saints, Bible Stories (New Testament and Old Testament), the Mass, Church, Sacraments, Prayer. I think a few of these could make a great addition to Montessori shelves.


Katherine in TX said...

I am so glad to hear your ideas on this, Kathryn. I need inspiration on filling my boxes. I like the idea of including the CD. Someone left that suggestion on my post as well.

On my monumental To Do List, I have added the task of making various sets of liturgical 3-part cards. I think I'll offer them for free download on the blog when they're completed, and the icons of the 12 Great Feasts would be something you could add to your sets, as they're held in common between our traditions. Hopefully I'll get to that project soon.

By the way, I have an extra O Antiphon house/cubes from last Advent. If you didn't make one last year I could send it across the pond to you. Email me if you're interested.

Faith said...

This is very cool! I bet it could work on my 6 year old. Maybe wrap it all up in a box and present it all on the first day of Advent?

Thanks, Kathryn, you are inspiring me!