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 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.
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.
Christmas Truce of 1914
Then we learn about 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.
Have Some Fun
After these two serious holiday lesson plans for middle school students, I like to use the fun lessons contained in my Middle Schol Christmas Unit and Christmas Writing Prompts.
This engaging Christmas Unit contains 6 different activities (reading comprehension, paragraph writing, class discussions, and listening skills) that will help reinforce your students’ reading and writing skills. Students will learn about the historical background of Christmas traditions and prepare for a holiday-themed discussion about current Christmas customs. *This resource is focused on the North American commercial Christmas – this is not a religious unit.
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 8 different Christmas-themed story prompts to get thinking creatively about what might happen in each scenario. 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.
Buy These Lessons
All of these lessons and assignments can be found in this Middle School Christmas Activities Bundle.
This middle school Christmas activities bundle contains 4 different lesson packages (Global Holidays Celebrations, Christmas Truce, Christmas Unit and Christmas Writing Prompts) 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.
- Individual PDFs of student pages for uploading to Google Classroom or other LMS systems
- Detailed unit plan and teacher instructions
- Lessons divided up with title pages for easy access
- Assessment rubrics (Levels and Points)
- Answer keys for lessons
Other Holiday Resources
- Teacher Gift Guide
- Help Students Think About Giving Instead of Getting
- December Lesson Plans for Middle School ELA
- Holiday Season Survival Guide