When it comes to the holidays, what’s not to love about Christmas? The food, the presents, the time spent with family and friends... And of course, classic Christmas carols. One of the most popular Christmas carols to teach kids is, of course, "The Twelve Days of Christmas," as it has the added benefit of teaching kids to count to twelve.
Singing carols is also a great way for kids to practice music and memory work. Memory work is an important part of kids' early education as they have to take in new information, store it, and recall it later.
We’ve put our own spin on the classic "12 Days of Christmas" song and made it all about that first Christmas night in Bethlehem! Instead of singing about turtledoves and partridges, we are singing about the traditional nativity scene.
All our fun characters from our books are dressed up as characters from Bethlehem. Fan and Sam, Mitt and Meg, Matt the Ram, and more!
If you would like to have more coloring fun, be sure to download the free Merry Christmas coloring page!
The NEW "Twelve Days of Christmas in Bethlehem" song goes like this:
On the first day of Christmas in Bethlehem, we see a star for the newborn baby.
On the second day of Christmas in Bethlehem, we see Joseph and Mary and a star for the newborn baby.
On the third day of Christmas in Bethlehem, we see: three wise men, Joseph, and Mary, and a star for the newborn baby.
On the fourth day of Christmas in Bethlehem, we see—four tired camels, three wise men, Joseph and Mary, and a star for the new born baby.
And so on with characters from the first Christmas, until 12 sheep a-bleating!
Download the advent calendar with full lyrics here.
It’s so fun and reminds us of the reason for the season.
The History of the Twelve Days of Christmas
If you've ever wondered why there are only twelve days of Christmas and not fourteen or more? This time was traditionally the period of time celebrating the birth of Christ and the coming of the Magi. That's right, it actually is a period of time marked by Christmas Day until the sixth of January, or the Epiphany. The Epiphany has also been referred to as the Three Kings’ Day.
The original version of the Twelve Days of Christmas was set to the tune of a folk song written in 1909 by Frederic Austin. However, the original origin is disputed and appears to have been written around the late 1700s.
Wherever the song came from, it definitely gained notoriety after the music was added in 1909 and became one of the most well known Christmas carol classics out there.
How to Use Our Free Advent Calendar
To use the 12 Days of Christmas in Bethlehem Advent coloring page, simply print out the large poster and cut out each of the characters. Each day, the child can color the new characters that are part of the nativity and then place them on the poster while singing the song.
Fill up the entire page with all the characters and sing the entire song on Christmas Eve!
You can also print out just the regular page, already filled with characters, and color them in each day for a fun and easy activity.
My kids just love this new (and improved!😂) 12 Days of Christmas" song and can’t wait to start the countdown with all of the characters in Bethlehem.
Download the Twelve Days of Christmas in Bethlehem Advent Calendar as my gift to you this season.
Add to the fun by learning more great Christmas carols that teach the real reason for the season!
If you have little ones and are looking for some more traditional Christmas carols to add to your repertoire that teach the real reason for the season, then this small list might just be the ticket!
The Little Drummer Boy
Joy to the world
Oh come, all ye faithful
O come, o come! Emmanuel
O Holy Night
Angels We Have Heard on High
What are your favorite Christmas carols? We would love to know more; please share in the comments below!