This year, in addition to our usual advent calendar, J is doing an advent prayer chain.
The simple paper chain has enough links for each day until Christmas. Inside each is a small act of grace he is to perform that day. They are all appropriate for his age (11). They include things like "I will make room in my heart for others. I will try to show special love for someone who seems unhappy or lonely." or "I will not complain today even if I must do things I don't want to do."
Another way to do this would be to have a scripture reading inside each link.