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So I’ve seen a few pictures of Advent Books recently. Beautiful wrapped piles of books, one for each day of Advent. They can be new books or forgotten books, and as a way of encouraging reading I think it’s a lovely idea.

An alternative – especially for people not organised enough to wrap 24 books before 1 December (me) – is this. Since my son was born, I’ve always put all our Christmas (and sometimes snow) related books under the tree. It started with just a few but we always buy a few new Christmas books and so the pile has grown. Most of these books we keep on the bookshelf all year round but a few I keep in our decoration box, so that it is a year since they’ve seen them.

This is some of our selection.

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It’s lovely to have something under the tree before Christmas Day and having them there does focus the children’s attention. And because they are all seasonally linked, it gives focus to all aspects of this time of year – friendship, Nativity plays, love, the Christmas story itself, as well as Father Christmas and presents.

So if you haven’t been organised, take a selection (Christmas, or ones neglected) and put them under the tree. It won’t take long for the kids to notice them – and so the demand for reading will begin.

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