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Magical Ornament Holder Christmas Project for Preschool- 1 Day Make

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they involve Christmas tree STEM activities. Preschoolers will love this Christmas project for preschool designing their own ornament holder that isn’t a Christmas tree! It’s a fun way to introduce the concepts of out-of-the-box design and engineering to preschoolers.

Follow along with these directions to learn how to do your own Christmas project for preschool that will introduce 3-5 year olds to engineering for the first time.

Bring STEM into the holiday season! Teach preschoolers how to make an ornament holder in this engineering Christmas project for preschool!

Keep reading to learn more about engineering with preschoolers and the background info necessary to teach a whole preschool Christmas project lesson plan on Engineering and building basics.

Why Do Engineering Activities with Preschoolers?

Building challenges can offer preschoolers a wide range of educational benefits, fostering their cognitive, physical, and social development.

Here are some of the valuable lessons and skills preschoolers can learn through building challenges:

Building challenges often involve handling small pieces, placing them precisely, and manipulating various materials. These activities enhance a child’s hand-eye coordination and dexterity.

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they are engineering themed! Preschoolers will love making a holder for Christmas ornaments.

Preschoolers are encouraged to think critically and find solutions to challenges. They learn to overcome obstacles and make adjustments when their initial ideas don’t work as planned.

Building activities help children understand concepts like shape, size, and spatial relationships. They develop an understanding of how pieces fit together and create structures.

Through building, preschoolers can explore basic math concepts such as counting, patterns, and symmetry.

Building often involves experimenting with materials and observing cause-and-effect relationships. Preschoolers can learn about stability, balance, gravity, and simple physics concepts when constructing an ornament holder.

christmas stem challenge cards

When making an ornament holder, preschoolers develop critical thinking skills by evaluating the effectiveness of their designs and making adjustments based on their observations.

Building challenges like this christmas project for preschool building ornament holders are not only fun and engaging but also provide a rich learning environment that supports various aspects of preschoolers’ development.

They offer a hands-on approach to learning that aligns with the natural curiosity and creativity of young children.

How to Set Up the Christmas Project for Preschool

I created this christmas project for preschoolers and challenged them to create a stable holder for a Christmas ornament using drinking straws and a few other craft supplies.

Follow along with the directions to learn how to set up your own ornament holder STEM activity in your preschool classroom and get the complete lesson plan below!

Related: Christmas STEM Challenge Ideas

What you’ll need to make a Christmas ornament holder:

Here is what you will need to do this activity and make the ornament holder Christmas project for preschool a reality!

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they are engineering themed! Preschoolers will love making a holder for Christmas ornaments.

Hands-On STEM Resources about Trees

Here are some hands-on STEM resources about trees that can be used alongside this Christmas tree STEM activity.

Doing the Ornament Holder Challenge

The goal of this STEM challenge is for preschoolers to design their own structures to support a Christmas ornament.

You should let preschoolers make their own designs and only offer suggestions if they ask for help.

There isn’t much to this activity at all. You can provide just drinking straws for kids to use or offer a variety of materials for the kids to work with.

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they are engineering themed! Preschoolers will love making a holder for Christmas ornaments.

Discuss the principles of design and what a structure needs to be stable and how it won’t be able to hold the weight of an ornament if it doesn’t have the right amount of support on the top and bottom of the ornament.

We used an ultra low-temp glue gun to prevent burned fingers but still allow for a fast drying time.

In a large group, kids will come up with a variety of different designs for holding their ornaments.

More Engineering Projects for Preschool

Engaging preschoolers in Christmas engineering projects can be both educational and festive.

Books about Christmas Trees

These science books about evergreen trees will be a good addition to any Christmas tree STEM project!

Here are six more holiday-themed preschool engineering activities to try.

Gingerbread House Construction

Provide graham crackers, frosting, and assorted candies. Show preschoolers how to design and build their own gingerbread houses using frosting as “glue.” Discuss basic engineering concepts like stability and balance.

Christmas STEM Challenge Sleigh Design

Challenge preschoolers to design and build a sleigh for Santa Claus using a variety of craft supplies. Test the sleigh’s ability to carry miniature presents (e.g., small candies or toys).

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they are engineering themed! Preschoolers will love making a holder for Christmas ornaments.

Ornament Drop Challenge

Challenge preschoolers to engineer a protective package to prevent a holiday ornament from breaking when dropped. Test the designs by dropping the ornaments from a low height.

Snowflake Building

Instruct preschoolers to engineer their own snowflakes using craft sticks and paper as the building materials.Discuss symmetry and patterns as they create their snowflakes.

Marshmallow Snowman Tower

Give preschoolers marshmallows and toothpicks. Encourage them to build a tall snowman tower using the marshmallows as connectors. Discuss stability and balance as they construct their towers.

These holiday-themed engineering activities for preschoolers foster creativity, problem-solving skills, and a basic understanding of engineering principles while celebrating the holiday spirit.

If those ideas aren’t enough, try these other hands-on holiday engineering activities for preschoolers!

Preschool Christmas Ornament Holder Engineering Challenge Lesson Plan

christmas stem challenge cards

Grab the free lesson plan for this preschool holiday engineering activity below!

Preschool Christmas activities are a blast, especially when they are engineering themed! Preschoolers will love making a holder for Christmas ornaments.

Preschool Ornament Holder Engineering Lesson Plan

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: easy
Estimated Cost: $5

Use this lesson plan as a Christmas preschool project to build preschool engineering skills and create a fun and festive holiday lesson plan for December designing and engineering an ornament holder with your preschool classroom.


  • Drinking straws (plastic or paper)
  • Assorted decorations (stickers, glitter, markers, etc.)
  • Ornament holders
  • Mini plastic ornaments
  • Holiday-themed stickers or foam shapes (optional)


  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors


Here is a lesson plan that you can use with your ornament holder Christmas project for preschool.

Learning Objectives:

  • Develop fine motor skills by handling small objects and applying glue.
  • Foster creativity and self-expression through ornament holder design.
  • Introduce basic engineering concepts, such as stability and balance.

Introduction (5 minutes):

Gather the preschoolers in a circle and introduce the activity by explaining that they will be building their own ornament holders.

Activity (15 minutes)

Distribute a selection of drinking straw segments to each preschooler.

Explain that the preschoolers can use hot glue to connect the straw segments together and create their ornament holders. Encourage them to be careful and remind them not to touch the hot glue.

Assist preschoolers in applying hot glue at the ends of the straw segments and attaching them to form a triangular or square base for the ornament holder.

Once the base is complete, show preschoolers how to attach a longer straw segment vertically in the center of the base to hold the ornament.

Allow preschoolers to decorate their ornament holders and ornaments with stickers, glitter, markers, or holiday-themed foam shapes.

Attach an ornament holder to the ornaments and hang from the ornament holders to test their designs.

Discussion (10 minutes):

Have a brief discussion about their ornament holders. Ask questions like:

  • What did you use to build your ornament holder?
  • How tall was your ornament holder?
  • Did it support your ornament and keep it off the ground?
  • How could you change the design to make it better next time?

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