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Activity and strategy

Accessible Advent Calendar: Wooden Christmas Trees

These wooden Christmas trees have drawers and can be labelled with braille to make accessible Advent calendars for children who are blind, low vision or deafblind, or with multiple disabilities.

We have done mini-Advent calendars over the years, and this is our latest!  These small wooden trees have drawers, which can be labeled with print or braille numbers.  Small candies or toys can be placed in each drawer, either by the adult or the child, and they can open one drawer for each day of Advent, leading up to Christmas.

This is a motivating way to practice numbers in print or braille!  This inclusive activity can be enjoyed by members of the whole family or classroom.


How to Make Your Own Advent Calendar

  • I got these trees at Michaels, but have seen them at Hobby Lobby in years past. 
  • Write number labels in print or braille.

Making braille labels

  • Place the numbers on the drawers.  (They don’t have to be in order and, in fact, if they’re mixed up, that gives the child additional practice reading numbers correctly!)
  • Set up containers with small candies or toys.  This can be a great sorting or matching activity too!

Container with compartments full of candy

  • Place small candies or toys in each drawer.  (The child can do this as part of the activity, or the adult can do it as a surprise.)

 Putting the drawer back in the tree  Placing candy in the drawers

Two brothers placing items in the drawers

  • Each morning the child finds the next number of the drawer to open that day.

Advent calendar with braille labels  Close up of braille on drawers

I really like these because the boys are at the age where they can write the print or braille numbers on the calendar by themselves. They were also able to put the candy in by themselves. They loved it!! 

Advent calendar and ceramic Christmas tree on a table

Explore other ideas for accessible Advent calendars.

Jessica Hayes
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