Updated: Feb 2
Reliving Christmas memories gone by are a delight for me. I find that having students write something holiday themed is generally easy. There are several ways I like to write about Christmas with students.
I like to tell the students my own personal stories of childhood Christmas’s using the following examples. Then I ask the students to write down a list of their favorite Christmas memories.
~My siblings and I enjoyed acting out our own nativity scenes. We dressed up using towels for our turbans as shepherds. We “scheduled” a time when mom and dad could watch us. One of my favorite nativity scenes is one where my youngest siblings were the sheep, baaing loudly. My one sister was the angel who heartily enjoyed shouting out, “Fear not, for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people!” with a flashlight illuminating her face. I remember the sheep sat up and stared. 😊 We had hooked up flashing string lights up to our cd player and played the “Hallelujah Chorus”. The sheep continued to stare at the lights that flashed in tune to the music. It was a lovely time.
~Besides nativity scenes, our family had a tradition of a candlelight supper on Christmas eve. It could be the simplest of menus but made perfectly beautiful with the candlelight. Mom made the perfect peanut brittle and sugar cookies and party mix. Christmas was a long looked for event!
~All Christmas’s have been meaningful, joyous, and full of tradition. But I remember a special Christmas a long time ago when our family was out of money. Mom and dad told us we would not be able to have Christmas presents like normal. Mom acted full of excitement though and surprisingly, on Christmas eve, there was a pile of Christmas presents beside dad’s chair! Here mom had went to the dollar store and bought each of us girls something pretty and useful. I remember the picture frame and diary I received. It was something so simple, but so meaningful.
Another way I like to introduce the subject of Christmas is using children’s books. I like to read the story and show the pictures before having the students write what Christmas means to them. The themes of giving, sharing, God’s care, and looking out for the destitute are such beautiful morals to have the students think about. My favorite children’s book/Christmas story this year is The Trees of the Dancing Goats by Patricia Polacco.
Looking at pieces of art having to do with the nativity of Jesus are a good way to discuss “how it could’ve been” for Joseph & Mary. Having students write from a different point of view is always an intriguing idea for them. Perhaps they could interview a “stable boy” and write down his possible responses. Maybe you could have them write an article on how the town of Bethlehem was affected by the large numbers of people that came over the time of Jesus’ birth.
Last year, Andrew had his students write a Christmas poem and set it to the music of the familiar hymn "Praise to Our God, Immortal Praise". We surprised them by having the congregation sing it at the Christmas program. The students stole horrified looks at each other and the parents were impressed. :-) Your students are capable of much with a little help. Feel free to download and make copies of the song. Maybe it will help your ideas start flowing.
And of course, our creative writing books include Christmas lessons. Lesson 27 in book 1 is a simple Christmas lesson, and book 2 has a reading response with an excerpt from A Christmas Carol in lesson 44. If you haven’t reached them yet, skip ahead to do them yet this season!
We have a free download lesson for you on the home page of this website. Print as many copies as you would like. I am also attaching another Christmas Writing Prompt page below
that you can download and use for your own personal enjoyment as you wish. Writing down meaningful phrases from Christmas carols is one of my favorite ways to celebrate the season.
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Have a merry Christmas!