Lighted Stable Christmas STEM Project

Your kids are going to love this lighted stable STEM project for kids in December using parallel circuits. Perfect educational activity for the whole family to add to your advent calendar.
Lighted Stable STEM project for kids in December using parallel circuits (homeschool, kids activities, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, 6th grade)

A young woman clutched her squirming infant and relaxed into the sweet smelling straw. Nothing about her circumstance was comfortable, but today nations revel in the wonder of it.


This do-it-yourself lighted stable would be a great addition to your manger scene this Christmas as you remember the Light of the world. Using batteries and worn out Christmas lights to design your own circuits will present a great beginning engineering challenge for your young engineer.


Christmas STEM Project

This do-it-yourself lighted stable would be a great addition to your manger scene this Christmas as you remember the Light of the world. Using batteries and worn out Christmas lights to design your own circuits will present a great beginning engineering challenge for your young engineer.

Materials


  • A broken string of Christmas lights
  • Batteries
  • Cereal box
  • Paint
  • Electrical tape

STEM Christmas project using cereal box, paint, batteries, electrical tape, and broken string of Christmas lights

Prepare your stable

Begin by drawing a line that approximately divides the cereal box in half. This is the roof of your stable. Draw a rectangle underneath that serves as the opening to the stable. Cut out a rectangle so that your stable has an opening.

Carefully poke a hole in the top of the box for the star that marked the birth of the Christ child, and another in the back of the box to provide a back light for the nativity characters.

Finally, paint the box. The top of the box should be black to represent the night sky. The bottom can be brown or grey to represent the stable.

Christmas Manger craft for kids in December

Add electricity

Warning: This electric set up is for learning purposes only. Because of the low resistance, fire is a possibly. Do not leave this structure unattended at any time, and always completely disconnect the circuit. Always supervise children when working with electricity.

Cut several lights from the broken string. Strip the plastic insulation to reveal the copper wires. Test the light by connecting each end to one terminal of a battery.

Decide how many lights you want to represent the start and how many to serve as back lights for your manger scene. Do you want to connect the lights in circuit or parallel? If you connect the lights in circuit the electricity will flow from the battery to the first light, then the second light before returning to the battery. If the lights are connected in parallel, they will be stacked, and the electricity will flow through the first, and through the second equally. Which one produces brighter light?

test broken christmas lights with battery

Use the electrical tape to secure your secure. Then push the lights through the holes you punched and use tape to secure.

Add finishing touches like adding some nativity figures and some yarn or cotton to represent straw. Click here for a method for dyeing cotton

If you are looking for some more fun Christmas STEM? Try Lovely pine cone multiplication or
Festive subtraction shapes


Have a Merry Christmas!


Christmas Printables

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Christy McGuire is a former AP physics teacher, and current mother of 4. She and her children enjoy exploring science and math together. Head over to Thriving STEM to find more science, technology, engineering and math ideas to use with your kids.  Follow along on FacebookInstagramPinterest, and Twitter.



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Beth Gorden
Beth Gorden

Beth Gorden is a homeschooling mother of six who strives to enjoy every moment with her kids through hands-on learning, crafts, new experiences, and lots of playing together. Beth is also the creator and author of 123 Homeschool 4 Me where she shares 1000+ free printables, creative homeschool lessons, crafts, and other fun ideas to help preschool and homeschooling families have fun while learning and exploring together.