I came up with this countdown calendar for my students to make during Art After School...
Large white plastic or heavy paper plates
Starlight mint candies
Orange, Green and Black cardstock
An orange or gold brad
Hot glue gun
Sharpie permanent markers
Begin by cutting out a carrot shaped nose (kids can use templates or draw their own) that fits inside the paper plate so that it can be turned to each number until Christmas.
Punch a hole in the plate right in the center - I just use a small nail to do this. Punch a hole in the carrot nose. Fasten a brad through the nose and the plate.
Now put your buttons on for the eyes and the mouth, play around if you want to get the expression you like.
Glue the mouth and eyes.
Cut out the holly leaves out of green cardstock and the hat out of black - again using patterns or letting them do it themselves. These will be hot glued onto the plate - it needs to be strong to hang it up later.
Give each student 26 mints and a marker. Have them write the numbers 1 through 25 on each mint.
Older students can glue their own mints on with the glue gun - being careful to begin below the eyes and finish below the eyes. Younger students can bring them to you to be glued.
The last step is to punch holes in the hat for a string hanger.
They can eat a mint each day until Christmas - or leave them on for decoration and just move the nose. Either way it's a fun way to see how many days until the big day!