“The world was about to change forever. And it almost went by unnoticed…”
These two sentences begin Song of the Stars by Sally Lloyd-Jones (the same author of The Jesus Storybook Bible, which we love). This beautiful Christmas picture book takes many of the sometimes “unnoticed” things in our world and in nature and shows how they praise the birth of our Savior.
Packed with numerous action words, this book follows some of God’s creatures as they move and sound off in their own unique ways, sharing excitement and gladness of Christ’s birth. Even with each creature’s different way of moving, they all come together to sing the same song: “It’s time! It’s time!” and “Be glad! Be glad!” Full of vibrant colors, a variety of animals, and flowing text, this book leads the reader into praising the Christmas birth story along with all the animals.
An Active Reading Activity for Song of the Stars
We can praise God even in how we move – just like the animals do with their unique movements in Song of the Stars.
You can use the following ideas to guide your kids in an active listening/reading game. Read below for a few variations:
- For a young preschooler – With each new animal introduced, have your child act out how that animal moves. (Examples: the “otters clapped,” the red fox “darted.”)
- For older preschooler or early elementary ages – Give your children two or three letter sounds to focus on while you read the story. Every time they hear one of those sounds at the beginning of a word, they complete three repetitions (or three seconds) of a specified activity/exercise. You can make up your own exercises, or you can use this free printable to give you ideas. (Example: Each time you read the “s” sound at the start of a word, your child does three squats. Each time you read the “b” sound, your child does 3 bounces.) For older children, add more sounds as they’re able to keep track of multiple exercises.
Click here to download your free alphabet activity guide. (Bonus: You can use this alphabet activity guide for any book you read!)
- For older elementary ages – Have your child begin by jogging in place while you read the story. Ask your child to listen for each time they hear alliteration in one sentence. (Example: “And tiny sandpipers danced it on shining sands…”) Each time they hear alliteration, they switch to a different movement until they hear alliteration again. (For example: Begin jogging. When alliteration is heard, switch to doing push-ups until the next time alliteration is heard, then switch to jumping jacks, etc.) Keep moving throughout the whole story!
Play for 5 minutes or 20 minutes—however long your kids love moving and reading and praising!
Would your kids like active reading like this? How does your family praise God through movement like the animals in Song of the Stars do?
If you enjoyed this post, be sure you check out our FREE ebook compilation of the entire Christmas Book tour!