As you build this candy nativity scene representation of the stable where Christ was born, use the italicized conversation starter questions to create teachable moments with your children. Reflect on God’s love for us and all the awesome ways He cares for us daily. Challenge your children to share God’s love with others!
What You’ll Need for Your Candy Nativity Scene:
– graham crackers
– chocolate frosting
– mini chocolate candy bars
– mini Tootsie Roll® candies
– mini candy canes
– large marshmallows
– small marshmallows (or cut one large)
– gumdrops (various colors)
– fruit wedge gummy candies
– black licorice (small pieces)
– fruit leather
– flaked coconut
– yellow food coloring
– resealable plastic bag
– frosting decorator tips
– wax paper or parchment paper
How to Create Your Candy Nativity Scene:
Step 1: Stable
First, lay parchment paper to create a display base. Lay one and a half graham crackers next to each other and frost the outer edges. Place another graham cracker along the back and lean two more graham crackers against the corners of the back for added support. Next, frost the tops of the left and right sides and place another whole graham cracker piece across the top to create the roof. You’ve created the stable!
What is a stable? Do you think this was a good place for the Son of God to be born? Jesus came to earth as a humble King unlike any other.
Step 2: Hay
Tint the coconut flakes by putting three drops of yellow food coloring in a small plastic resealable bag along with half a teaspoon of water and one cup of flaked coconut. Seal the bag and shake until the coconut is evenly dyed yellow. Now, put the hay on the floor of the manger.
Do you think the hay felt soft or scratchy for baby Jesus to lie upon? Remember, Luke tells us he was wrapped in large strips of cloth first, so the hay made a nice cushion in the manger.
Step 3: Manger
To create a manger, use half of a graham cracker for the base and a fourth of a cracker for each side. Squeeze a generous amount of frosting down the center of the base square and stick the two smaller crackers into the frosting in a “V” shape. Next, sprinkle the manger with hay.
Mangers are typically used for feeding the animals in a stable. What might be some reasons that Mary and Joseph put baby Jesus in a manger?
Step 4: Baby Jesus
To make the baby, cut off the tip of a small orange gumdrop and attach it to the top of a small marshmallow. Place baby Jesus in the manger.
Jesus’ birth fulfilled everything that God had been promising. Jesus was the gift, the promised Savior. How does it make you feel to know God loved you so much that He sent His Son for you?
Step 5: Animals
To make a sheep, you’ll use one large marshmallow for the body and five small pieces of black licorice for the legs and head. (Use a butter knife to create openings in the marshmallow for the legs and head.) To make a kneeling donkey, you’ll first lay four Tootsie Rolls® in a diamond formation and spread frosting on the top. Then attach a candy bar to form the body, and attach a bent Tootsie Roll® for the neck and head (using a toothpick if desired). Squeeze a line of frosting on the donkey’s head to create a mane.
What kinds of animals usually live in barns or stables? Do you think the animals in Jesus’ stable were noisy? Do you think the animals smelled?
Step 6: Mary, Joseph, and Shepherds
Slide a toothpick through a gumdrop, fruit slice, and another gumdrop to create a body. Make head coverings with a piece of fruit leather, or make hair with frosting. Finally, give each shepherd a staff by attaching a candy cane to the shepherd’s body (using frosting).
How did the shepherds know to come to the stable? How do you think Mary and Joseph felt about the visitors coming to see Jesus?