The Best Nativity Crafts for Kids & Preschoolers

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Move aside Santa, it is time for some gorgeous Nativity Crafts this holiday season. We love Christmas Crafts and love how a DIY Nativity Set helps children connect with and learn about the Christmas Story. This collection will involve some printables or templates, but the majority of projects can be made from scratch, as they use simple supplies and simple shapes.

Nativity crafts

I tried to organise the content a little into Nativity crafts for preschoolers, Nativity Ornaments and Nativity Set DIYs for older kids…. but to be honest, they do all overlap a little. Younger children and join in with projects for older kids with a little bit of help.. and I always find my older kids (12 and 13yrs) often still delight in what I considerd a “younger craft”. So let the sections outline below be a rough guide for you, but please do dip in and out of all them!

Many of these projects are perfect as Christmas nativity crafts at home and in Sunday School class too! Especially the paper based crafts, they will work really well in a group setting. I hope you enjoy the nativity craft ideas we have for you today!

Before we set off on the crafts themselves:

What should a nativity scene contain?

In its simplest form a nativity scence should contain – Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus – often represented in a Manger. But the manger (in the simplest form) isn’t strictly necessary.

Next, you can consider adding a stable and Christmas star. Followed by Angel Gabriel, sheperds and some animals.

Finally, the Three Wisemen are a wonderful addition to any nativity crafting!

What side does Mary go on in the nativity scene? How do you put together a nativity scene?

Yes this a frequently asked question! The most traditional way to set up and put together a nativity scene is as follows:

  1. Place the manger is the centre of the stable (Baby Jesus should only really be place in the manger on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning, but many put him there from the begining)
  2. Next place Mary and Joseph on either side of the manger. It doesn’t really matter which side, but for some reason we always put Mary on the right (when facing the nativity set). The main thing is that Mary is closest to Baby Jesus
  3. Next peopole surround the sheperds around the staple
  4. The wisemen usually go furthest away from everyone as they were the last to arrive – we usually add the three wisemen on Epiphany on the 6th January – be sure to leave space in your nativity set up, so they can go there later!
  5. Next add the animals around the scene – it doesn’t matter too much where
  6. Finally, add an angel to the top of the stable

Nativity Christmas Crafts for Preschoolers

Nativity Advent Calendar Coloring Page

Let’s start things off simply, with a lovely Nativity Advent Coloring Page!

glowing nativity craft

Watch this space: coming SOON (in the next couple of days!!) our very own printable 3d Nativity Coloring Pages. These make a gorgeous little nativity set to display on your shelf or mantle piece, or can also be used combined with an electric tea light, as wonderful atmospheric Nativity Luminary. Such a gorgeous little Christian Christmas Craft to make at home, in the classroom or in Sunday School!

three kings day

Well, let’s begin with our favourite craft material. The toilet paper roll.. and any nativity craft round up worth its salt of course needs a toilet roll nativity set. Have a go at our three kings day Kings and Toilet Paper Roll Camel. We had so much fun making this one!

toilet paper tube angel

Next up we have our Toilet Paper Tubes angel craft! We got a bit carried away and made 8 of these. They make the perfect navitity angel but of course also angel tree topper!

Scroll a little further down for Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus paper roll crafts too!

kings day puppets

Three Wisemen Puppets made from recycled tissue paper and corks!

nativity preschool

Growing Hands On Kids – Here is a super lovely and simple Nativity Sensory Bin for you to set up. I love the paper straw and the simplicity of Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus in the manger. So sweet. And who can resist a toy sheep and other animals! These would be perfect for small world play too!

toilet roll nativity

Happy Hooligans – cutest little toilet roll nativity? I told you we would come back to our toilet paper tubes and have some more cuteness for you!

nativity scence coloring pages

If you don’t have time to “make” you Nativity Scene from scratch, try these fabulous Nativity Coloring Pages!

nativity printables

Similarly, we have a great set of Nativity Paper Puppets to print and color.

craft stick manger

Crafty Moms Share – Craft Stick Manger with cinnamon sticks. I love the textures here of the straw and the additional sensory element of the cinnamon sticks. And of course the darling Baby Jesus in the manger. So sweet!

craft stick nativity

Similarly, Fun Family Crafts has a super cute and easy Craft Stick Nativity scene. How lovely! This popsicle craft would probably work well as a Nativity ornament too!

popsicle nativity

Catholic Sprouts has this super sweet popscicle nativity set. LOVE the children’s drawings that go with them!

footprint manger

Fun Handprint Art Blog – adorable footprint manger! Super sweet keepsake!

nativity story stones

Rainy Day Mum – Nativity Story Stones are of course a fantastic addition to any bible studdies section with children of all ages. Learn to story of Christmas or use them for activities such as story sequencing too! I think nativity story stones would also make lovely gifts too.

paper plate nativity pop up

Pink Stripey Socks shows us how to make this super sweet and easy pop up paper plate manger craft. Paper plates are fantastic for crafting all year around and they really do make fabulous Paper Plate Christmas crafts too!

Also check out this super sweet Paper Plate Manger Craft from the Chaos and the Clutter!

felt nativity puppets

Pink Stripey Socks ALSO has these fab little finger puppets (complete with free template)

Nativity Ornament DIY project ideas

walnut crafts

Our walnut baby ornaments would easily make a lovely baby Jesus in crib ornament too? Simply replace the blankets with white ones and add a little baby halo!

yarn wrapped nativity star

Rainy Day Mum – I rather adore this Yarn Wrapped Nativity Star – well.. yarn wrapped star AND craft stick nativity in one. Follow the simple tutorial to create your own

Another version of the Nativity Star Ornament, combines paper and popsicle stick stars! Adorable.

nativity ornaments coloring

If you after a printable nativity set, here is our favourite one to date. More cuteness from Pink Stripey Socks with these Nativity Coloring Sheet ornaments. Aren’t they cute? Stick two together with a piece of ribbon and hang in the tree!

Light up nativity ornament

I Can Teach My child has this super sweet light up nativity ornament you simply have to check out!

DIY Nativity Set Tutorials for slightly older kids

nativity art project

Learn how to paint this beautiful Nativity Silhouette Art project with That Artist Woman’s step by step tutorial!

paper nativity card

My Joy Filled Life has a lovely paper heart nativity craft – these would make wonderful greating cards too and it comes with a template for those who wish to use one!

stained glass nativity

Meaningful Mama has a lovely stained glass nativity craft! This takes me back to primary school craft. Such a lovely activity for this time of year! Another sweet version is here on Little Wonders Days for you to look at!

simple shapes nativity

My Joy Filled life has another “simple shapes” craft Nativity set. I love how making this nativity picture doesn’t require drawing skills and is accessible to all.

felt nativity puppets

Pink Stripey Socks has these fab little finger puppets (complete with free template), a great wait to react your own nativity story with the children!

craft stick nativity

Fun Family Crafts – a super cute and easy Craft Stick Nativity scene. How lovely!

Also – you may want to check out this free Christmas Nativity Story Lapbook resource. Great for elementary homeschool students!

Looking for more religious crafts? Check out our dedicated Three Wisemen Crafts section here:

Nativity scenes