Christmas Nativity Mini-Theater

Let your grade schooler recreate the first Christmas in a shoe box that makes you feel like you are right there. We used a dollar store Nativity set* and even recycled the lid from the box it came in!


Time to complete: about an hour.
Cost: $1 for Nativity set.


  • shoe box with lid
  • tiny Nativity set (or make your own)
  • paint or construction paper
  • white paint pen or crayon
  • Spanish moss, hay, raffia, pebbles
  • plastic wrap
  • tacky glue


  1. Cut hole in lid to let in light.
  2. Cut round hole in one end of box to view the scene.
  3. Cover inside of box with light brown or gray paint or paper.
  4. Cover outside of box and lid with dark brown paint or paper.
  5. Use white pen or crayon to draw stone shapes on outside of box.
  6. Glue Spanish moss to front part of lid.
  7. Attach plastic wrap to inside of lid to cover hole. (We used the plastic lid the Nativity set came in.)
  8. Add figures, making sure they are beneath the plastic wrap in the lid. Put baby Jesus on top of moss to resemble the manager, add pebbles, etc.
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  10. You may also want to attach a star to the back of the box above the figures.
  11. Now sit back and relax as your child tells you the story!
  12. *You could also use miniature snowmen, Santa and reindeer, or tiny houses. Paint box and add details such as glitter, cotton for snow, etc. as desired.

By Cindy from Waynesburg, PA

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November 30, 20060 found this helpful


Reply Was this helpful? Yes
November 30, 20060 found this helpful

Great idea! It does seem more real and I bet all
children would love this idea.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

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