Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou

From TheBookbag
Jump to: navigation, search

Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou

Chou Make.jpg
Buy Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou at or

Category: Children's Non-Fiction
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: Twenty press-out models make up a nativity scene and there are other activities in the superb value book.
Buy? Yes Borrow? No
Pages: 30 Date: October 2017
Publisher: Nosy Crow
ISBN: 978-1788000062

Share on: Delicious Digg Facebook Reddit Stumbleupon Follow us on Twitter

I always feel a slight disappointment for children at Christmas when they're presented with a tree to decorate with a box of ornaments and a nativity scene (sometimes quite precious, so it's Not To Be Played With) which is set up Somewhere Safe. Where's the imagination, the creativity, the sense of pride in that? How much better to have a child create their own nativity scene, which they can then play with? That's exactly what they get with Joey Chou's Make and Play Nativity.

You get eight sheets of press-out pieces: unless it's completely obvious how they fit together there are clear instructions. Mary and Joseph are each in three pieces: one main body part and a couple of feet which slot in at right-angles to the body and allow it to stand up. The manger is a little more complicated, but it's not too difficult. There are three kings, a shepherd and a shepherd boy, the angel Gabriel, a couple of sheep, a donkey, a camel and all sorts of other bits and pieces. There are twenty models in all and they lend themselves to plenty of arrangements.

The finished models are sturdy and will stand quite a bit of play. The paper engineering is good (with illustrations on both sides) and I didn't detect a single sharp edge or corner. With care the pieces can be slotted back into the book come Twelfth Night ready for a repeat appearance next year - a couple of rubber band around the book should secure it nicely. The models look as realistic as you could expect and I was delighted that Mary and Joseph had darker skin - I tire of nativity scenes where the people are pearly white and there's snow on the ground. This is the middle east!

In addition to the nativity scene there's a simple retelling of the nativity story, stopping well short of the political shenanigans and slaughter of the innocents. There are a few carols - Away in a Manger, O Little Town of Bethlehem, We Three Kings and Silent Night - all of which fit in well with the nativity scene. Having got into the way of building the nativity scene there are instructions for making a Christmas star, an Advent calendar and a Christmas angel, although you will have to provide the materials for these projects.

This book really is exceptional value with a cover price of £7.99: it's going to engage children for hours at a time and they'll create something of which everybody can be proud. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

This is not specifically for children, but the ideas are good if you'd also like to make your own Christmas tree decorations.

Buy Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou at

Buy Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Make and Play: Nativity by Joey Chou at


Like to comment on this review?

Just send us an email and we'll put the best up on the site.