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We’ve had a busy year, so for the Advent season, I wanted to take things a bit easier. I’ve read that some homeschool moms take the entire month of December off, but I didn’t want to do that. My kids need structure, and we took off three weeks to get ready and go to Michigan. I decided to look through SchoolhouseTeachers.com, and I found so many Christmas activities and lessons for elementary homeschool students!!
What We Plan to Use This Year
This year, I was looking for more in-depth activities that we’ve used in previous years. The first placed I turned was SchoolhouseTeachers.com, and that site had all the resources I needed!
Learning about Hannukah
The girls are currently interested in the American Girl doll Rebecca, who is from New York City and is Jewish. They wanted to know more about Hannukah, and I don’t know much. I found The History of Hannukah, so we’ll be going through this over a couple days. I’m excited I’ll be learning, too!
Learning about Christmas Traditions throughout the World
Using the web page Christmas Traditions Around the World, we plan to learn how other countries celebrate Christmas. We’ll also be learning geography by learning a bit more about where these countries are located.
Making Advent Special
Karen Whiting, author of Christmas is Coming! But Waiting Is Hard: Family Activities and Devotions for Advent, has created a special Advent four week activity guide specifically for SchoolhouseTeachers.com users. I plan to use some of these activities. (If my girls were younger, say 1st – 3rd grade, I’d use the entire activity guide.)
Learning about Twelth Night & Reading Shakespeare
I looked into the Renaissance Christmas lessons and found a lesson on Twelfth Night. I plan to use that to teach the girls about Twelfth Night.
Then we’re going to use our Tales from Shakespeare book by Charles and Mary Lamb (designed especially for kids) to read aloud Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night. We’ll cover the lessons in Simply Shakespeare – Twelfth Night to discuss the play, put on a performance (maybe using Barbie dolls since we don’t have enough kids), and learn some proverbs relevant to the play.
Reading Christmas Books
SchoolhouseTeachers.com has not one, not two, not three, but four Christmas book reading lists! Many are for younger kids (in grades 1 to 4), but there are plenty of suggestions for older kids, too. I plan to pick a few books and find which ones are available at our local library. Then, we’ll read aloud two or three Christmas books.
There are over 10 Christmas movies for family and kids on SchoolhouseTeachers.com, so we plan to watch at least one a week.
Doing Charitable Works
My kids already know about St. Nicholas, but the Saint Nicholas unit study includes this wonderful idea of making care packages for the homeless. When we drive to ABA, there is always a homeless person or two on the off ramp of our exit, so we’ll carry these care packages in the car and give them out as we see people in need.
Likewise, SchoolhouseTeachers.com has a page called Ditch the Desk where kids learn through doing. We will use their suggestion to make treat bags for the elderly and shut ins. The kids and I plan to call our church to see if there are any church members who are homebound and deliver the goodie bags to them.
Interested in SchoolhouseTeachers.com?
If you’re interested in accessing the Christmas resources in SchoolhouseTeachers.com, they currently have four fabulous sales running through December 2nd! (I just want to say that I keep coming back to SchoolhouseTeachers.com over and over again! The site has grown so much, and there is something for everyone there.)
Sale One: Using the code SHARK get a yearly subscription Buy One Get One Free for $169
Sale Two: Using the code NEWYEAR19 get a yearly subscription for $90
Sale Three: Using the code LASTCHANCE get a quarterly subscription for $29.95
Sale Four: Using the code UNDERTEN get a monthly subscription for $9.95
Keep in mind, the Christmas activities and lessons for elementary homeschool I shared here are just what we plan to use for the Advent/Christmas season. There are plenty more resources that SchoolhouseTeachers.com has put together in a special Christmas Corner. (And they have put together pages like this for ALL of the major holidays!)
What We’ve Used in the Past
For the last several years, we’ve used different programs for our Advent and Christmas study.
Arnold Ytreeide’s Advent Series
For the last four years, we’ve read the Advent books by Arnold Ytreeide.
We started with Jotham’s Journey.
Then we moved to Bartholomew’s Passage.
Next, we went on to Ishtar’s Odyssey.
Then we finished with Tabitha’s Travels.
There are three things I love about these books!
First, the stories are exciting and compelling. You want to keep reading, and your kids will, too.
Second, the story is broken down into daily reading, so you start the first day of Advent and finish on Christmas Eve.
Third, each story is about the same story–finding Jesus in the manager, but each story is told from a different child’s perspective. It’s so fun each year to see a character you read about in an early book, such as Bartholomew making an appearance in Jotham’s book. Then, when you read Bartholomew’s book, you see that same interaction with Jotham making a cameo in Bartholomew’s book, etc. My kids loved the way that this enriched the story.
I hope you have found some Christmas activities and lessons for elementary homeschool to do with your kids this holiday season. I’ll continue to post this year as we complete our Advent activities.
What Christmas traditions do you have with your kids?