Fun Elf on the Shelf Ideas for Kids

fun elf on the shelf ideas for toddlers

The Christmas season has many traditions, one of them being the elf on the shelf. If you’re a fan of this tradition, here are some fun elf on the shelf ideas for toddlers.

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What Is An Elf On The Shelf?

If you are a new parent, you’re probably wondering what this is all about. 

Elves are Santa Claus helpers who live with him in the North Pole. A scout elf is sent to your home in December for the elf on the shelf Christmas tradition.

They watch your kids’ behavior throughout the day. At night, when the kids are asleep, they fly back to the North Pole to report their findings to Santa. That is, whether the kids were naughty or nice.


Elf On The Shelf Rules

Now, there are two rules to the elf on the shelf tradition. First, children are forbidden from touching the elf as it could lose its magic.

If an elf is mistakenly touched, the child should sprinkle some cinnamon beside the elf before going to bed.

The cinnamon gives them enough energy to fly to the North Pole to get treatment from North pole doctors.

The second rule is that the elf of the shelf does not speak or move while the children are awake.

The elf is only allowed to leave his spot at night when giving his report in the North Pole.

Once he comes back, he moves to a new position in the house. This rule is essential for parents to follow as they are the ones who move the elf.

Now that you understand the elf on the shelf concept, here are some ideas to try.

20 Elf-on-a-Shelf Ideas for Toddlers

elf on the shelf in the mountains


    • Most people enjoy baking Christmas cookies with the kids. If you’re one of those people, then your little ones will love making a baking scene with this elf on the shelf printable.



    • On Christmas Eve, some elves come to prepare for Santa’s arrival. And there’s a chance you could trap one of them. As such, making an elf trap is one of the most exciting elf ideas for toddlers.


    • Every new day presents your elf on the shelf with an opportunity for some fun activities. Check this out to learn how he can build some snowmen.



    • It’s always good to find toddler elf on the shelf ideas that incorporate learning activities. These elf on the shelf math sheets do just that.  

Quick Elf On The Shelf Ideas 

elf on the snow

  • If you are looking for a quick and easy elf on a shelf idea, try making this toilet paper snowman.


  • Is your toddler looking to adopt an elf? Get them this adoption certificate granted by the North Pole adoption agency.



  • The elf on the shelf usually leaves on Christmas Eve and comes back the following year on December 1st. Kids always eagerly await his arrival. One of the ways elves announce their arrival is by writing a return letter addressed to the kids. Check this out for a return letter and other elf arrival ideas.


  • The Christmas season is a time to reflect on what we are grateful for. We also have to teach kids to be thankful. This elf on the shelf gratitude printable helps you teach that lesson.

New Elf On The Shelf Ideas 2022


  • If you are looking for some DIY craft elf-on-a-shelf ideas for toddlers, check this out. You can also make the craft yourself to pose as something the elf did.


  • Your elf on the shelf can also decide to teach your kids how to make stuff. Such as this marshmallow catapult.


  • If it’s your first time trying out the elf on the shelf tradition, your toddler may not understand it. Reading this elf on the shelf book with them will help them get it. It comes as a package with a scout elf, so this could be your official elf arrival.

  • With all the sweet things that the elf on the shelf eats, he sure needs a work out. Found out how to make him some workout equipment here. The kids will enjoy helping with this.


  • Kids sure don’t mind sharing a drink with the elf on the shelf. Make them some green milk that they can share.


  • One of the most exciting elf on the shelf ideas for toddlers is writing Santa letters. Since the elf goes to report to Santa every night, he can deliver your child’s letters. These elf on the shelf letters get delivered to Santa and are brought back home as ornaments.

  • While kids may not touch the scout elf, they can play with this touchable elf version. Unlike the elf on the shelf, this elf does not fly to the North Pole to report to Santa. He stays home to play with the kids.

Parting Shot

With these elf on the shelf ideas for toddlers, you are set for the holiday season. Your kids will surely love them.

To ensure that you are not overwhelmed with the daily elf activities, write down your plan weekly. That way, you are not running around in panic at 11.30 pm wondering what to do.

In addition, you can incorporate your child’s toy into the setup. Such as the elf riding in their toy car or reading to their dolls. It’s an easy way out for you, and kids love it.

So get creative and don’t overdo it. Do only what you can handle. Happy holidays!


This article was originally published on August 12, 2021



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