With the holiday season fast approaching, students are starting to get excited for winter break. One way to keep their attention is with lessons based around holidays. This site is a great resource for lesson plans for every holiday. This website is a great resource for worksheets and other holiday activities.
There are hundreds of books for young readers about the holidays, both religious and secular. Amazon has an excellent selection. Read books aloud as a group or let students read on their own.
A great read for older students is Charles Dicken’s “A Christmas Carol”. Themes like family, transformations and choices are great essay topics for this classic. Your class can even watch one of the many film adaptations of the book as a reward for finishing the unit.
The holiday seasons offers a wide variety of writing topics for students of all ages. Youngers students can write their Christmas lists for Santa. They can also write Christmas poems on colored paper. After they finish writing, decorate the paper and hang them around the classroom.
Older students can put together a poster board detailing their holiday traditions. Ask them to conduct interviews and gather photos to help bring their holiday experiences to life. Finally, have them write about their favorite holiday memory in detail. After they’re finished, each student will share their boards and holiday traditions with the class.
This interactive whiteboard makes it easy to learn about the history and traditions of Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. After the lesson, do something fun like making some crafts or playing games. Split students up and have some make a wreath, a gingerbread house, or a kinara, while others play dreidel.
Learn about how Christmas is celebrated around the world. You can assign groups of students different countries and have them research how it is celebrated in their country. Each group can give a presentation to the class about their country’s Christmas traditions. You could even learn about holiday celebrations through history. Here’s a lesson plan on how Christmas was celebrated in Colonial Williamsburg.
Making crafts is one of the best parts of the holiday season. There are crafts for all skill levels and all budgets. A holiday craft is a nice break from a full day of learning.
- Turn play dough into snow
- A list of 20 DIY ornament ideas
- Decorate the classroom with 3-D snowflakes made out of paper
- Weave a Kwanaa placemat
- Make a dreidel, then play the game!
- Make magic reindeer food to guide Santa’s sleigh
- For the more experienced crafters, make your own snow globe
- Build gingerbread houses out of graham crackers