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Engaging Holiday Lesson Plans for Middle School

Don't assume middle school students are too old for the holidays. They love celebrating different seasons! Check out these holiday lesson plans for middle school ELA. These lesson plans are engaging and focused on real academic skills that allow you to have fun and get grades at the same time from 2 Peas and a Dog. #holdiaylesons #christmaslessons #middleschoolela

It can be a challenge to find age-appropriate holiday lesson plans for middle school students. Some activities I see online are not rigorous and academic-focused in nature. They are timer fillers at best, that should be reserved for the last day before the winter break.

During the holiday season in December, I work on the following four assignments to celebrate the season, but also to ensure a focused classroom where students are learning and I am collecting grades.

This blog post, Holiday Lesson Plans for Middle School, contains affiliate links that are of no cost to the reader. If you make a purchase through the provided links, this blog will receive a small commission to help with the financial costs of maintaining the site.

Holiday Lesson Plans for Middle SchoolAre you ready to take your middle school students on an exciting journey of cultural discovery? This Global Holiday Celebrations Research Assignment is the perfect resource to expand their horizons and foster a deeper understanding of diverse cultures, celebrations, and faiths.

Global Celebrations Assignment

The first assignment we work on as a class is the Global Holiday Celebrations Research Assignment. In this assignment, students learn about different cultures, celebrations, and faiths with this holiday research assignment. Students will work in pairs to research 1 of the 16 suggested holiday and/or cultural celebrations. Students could also choose to research a local holiday or cultural celebration. This assignment covers several major world religions.

This Global Holiday Celebrations Research Assignment is the perfect resource to expand your students’ horizons and help them develop a deeper understanding of diverse cultures, celebrations, and faiths. This versatile assignment is available in both PDF and digital formats, making it a seamless addition to your teaching toolkit. You can find the Global Holiday Celebrations Research Assignment on Teachers Pay Teachers USD or Shopify CAD.

Immerse your middle school students in the captivating story of the Christmas Truce of 1914 with this engaging and educational media analysis unit. This Christmas Truce of 1914 Media Analysis Unit is designed to transport students back in time to the trenches of the First World War, where British and German troops forged an extraordinary truce during the holiday season.

Christmas Truce of 1914 Media Analysis Unit

The next item we learn about is the Christmas Truce of 1914 through a cross-curricular media analysis unit. If you teach any Social Studies classes, this unit is great to use during the week leading up winter break. I have also used it in my English Language Arts classes.

In this Christmas Truce of 1914 Media Analysis Unit, students learn about the historical World War 1 event called the “Christmas Truce of 1914.” This event took place between the British and German troops along the western front trenches in France. It is explained to students using a variety of media types: readings, videos, and songs.

The Unit Includes:
✅ 5 Lessons
✅ Teacher Instructions
✅ Reader’s Theatre Script
✅ Analysis Tasks
✅ Answer Keys
✅ Assessment Options
✅ Print & Digital Formats

You can find the Christmas Truce of 1914 Media Analysis Unit on Teachers Pay Teachers USD or Shopify CAD.

Remember to Have Some Fun

The holiday lesson plans for middle school discussed above are definitely more serious in nature. After these two serious holiday lesson plans for middle school students, I like to use the fun lessons contained in my Middle School Christmas Unit and Christmas Writing Prompts.

Middle School Christmas Unit

This engaging Middle School Christmas Unit contains 11 different activities (reading comprehension, paragraph writing, class discussions, and listening skills) that will help reinforce your students’ reading and writing skills. It is the perfect addition to your holiday lesson plans for middle school.

Students will learn about the historical background of Christmas traditions and prepare for a holiday-themed discussion about current Christmas customs.

Unit Overview:

Lesson 1: Journey Through History – Christmas Video & Readings
Lesson 2: Real or Fake? Choosing the Perfect Christmas Tree
Lesson 3: Thought-Provoking Christmas Opinion Questions
Lesson 4: Engaging Fishbowl Discussion & Paragraph/Essay Assignment
Lesson 5: Explore Christmas Food Traditions Worldwide with a Video + Graphic Organizer
Lesson 6: Ignite Creativity with a Christmas Creative Writing Assignment
Lesson 7: Classroom Games – Winter Word Detective, Word Search & Crossword Puzzle
Lesson 8: Whole Class Winter Word Call Game

Teacher Note: Please note that this resource is centred on the North American commercial Christmas and is not religious. It’s perfect for sparking meaningful discussions and fostering a multicultural perspective.

You can find the Middle School Christmas Unit on Teachers Pay Teachers USD or Shopify CAD.

Christmas Writing Prompts

Christmas Writing Prompts

No holiday lesson plans for middle school are complete without some Christmas writing. I also like to start my December classes with these Christmas Writing Prompts because they are a  “no prep, just photocopy and go” lesson. When students use these interactive writing prompts, they get to get up and stay moving. Students use the 20 different Christmas-themed story prompts to get thinking creatively about what might happen in each scenario.

Then, students move around the classroom to answer their classmates’ story-writing prompts. Set a very short kitchen timer or online timer and let students move around the room each day adding more to each story. Just before winter break, you can read them out loud as a class.

You can find the Christmas Writing Prompts on Teachers Pay Teachers USD or Shopify CAD.

Save Money & Buy The Bundle!

If you’re looking for holiday lesson plans for middle school in one complete package, all of these lessons and assignments discussed above can be found in this Middle School Christmas Activities Bundle.

This middle school Christmas activities bundle contains 6 different lesson packages (Global Holidays Celebrations, Christmas Truce, Christmas Unit, Christmas Writing Prompts, Christmas Creative Writing, and New Year’s Goal Setting Activity and Reflection Sheets) to complete with your classes during the month of December. Students love the variety of activities offered in this resource.

All resources contain individual PDFs of student pages to assist with online learning (i.e. Google Classroom™) and to save paper. I know that most teachers do not have an unlimited paper budget so I try to make all my lessons available as PDFs that can be used on any LMS platform.

This Bundle Includes:

  • Detailed Unit Plan
  • Teacher Instructions
  • 6 Christmas-Themed Resources
  • Assessment Rubrics (Levels and Points)
  • Answer Keys
  • Google Slides versions
  • Individual PDFs of Student Pages

You can find the Middle School Christmas Activities Bundle on Teachers Pay Teachers USD or Shopify CAD.

Here’s what teachers have said about this bundle:

“This is an excellent resource for the last few weeks leading up to Christmas break. My students found the lessons in this package very engaging, and were able to produce a lot of discussion based around the topics. Very pleased with the content and quality of this package.” (Tomalyn S.)

“So many great activities and topics of discussion to use during the month of December. I also really liked using the New Years goal setting activity with them in January, it helped them to reflect and supported them in identifying and setting personal learning goals.” (Val C.)

“I love this resource! I like the videos that go along with the lessons as it helps my visual learners and adds excitement over just reading an article. The lessons also allow for differentiation which is vital in my classroom! I was also able to extend some of the activities with ideas of my own. All and all, this was a well developed and useful resource, especially for the last few weeks before winter break.” (Melissa G.)

I hope this post has given you some ideas for holiday lesson plans for middle school!

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