Learning at Christmas
Can you get ready for Christmas and homeschool at the same time?
Of course you can. You can schedule everything perfectly and have the perfect balance of school, fun, and preparation. OR…
You can combine Christmas adventures and preparations as one big learning experience.
How We Did It
Before the children got to high school, we always scheduled our subjects to take a break during December, except for math. We always worked on math at least 4 days of the week during December except for Christmas week.
What did we do for school those weeks you ask?
Well, we learned about Christmas in other places or read favorite books aloud that led us on learning adventures. We also prepared for Christmas. We signed and addressed Christmas cards, decorated the house for Christmas inside and outside, caroled, attended Christmas events, participated in Christmas dramas, made gifts, shopped, wrapped gifts, mailed gifts, and did lots of baking.
Sometimes we enjoyed Christmas-focused unit studies that included reading, crafts, field trips, as well as Christmas preparations and fun.
How are Christmas preparations learning experiences?
I’m glad you asked.
Let me give you a rundown of a typical family’s Christmas adventures and what subjects they are learning in the process.
- Writing a Family Christmas Letter (Writing/Creative Writing/Letter Writing)
- Christmas Family Devotions or Advent Wreath Devotions (Bible, Worship)
- Addressing Christmas Cards (Handwriting)
- Decorating the House (Life Skill of Interior Decorating/Homemaking)
- Making Our Own Christmas Cards (Creative Writing, Art, Craft, Cardmaking)
- Making Our Own Christmas Gifts (Life Skills of Sewing, Cooking, Baking, Art, Crafts, Homemaking)
- Making & Organizing Gift Lists, Shopping Lists, & Christmas Card List (Life Skill of Household Administration)
- Scheduling to Fit in All Family, Church & Co-op Activities (Life Skill of Household Administration)
- Planning Menus for Dinners & Parties (Life Skill of Household Administration, Homemaking)
- Cleaning for Holidays & Company (Life Skill of Cleaning, Homemaking)
- Hosting Christmas Parties (Life Skill of Hospitality)
- Baking Cookies (Life Skill of Baking, Homemaking)
- Candy Making (Life Skill of Candy Baking, Homemaking)
- Christmas Caroling around the Neighborhood (Music/Singing, Life Skill of Serving)
- Singing in Christmas Choir (Music/Singing/Choir/Music Theory/Performance)
- Wrapping Presents (Life Skill of Gift Wrapping/Art/Creativity/Crafts)
- Participating in a Christmas Drama (Acting/Drama)
Gift making is a great way to learn new skills and sharpen old ones. Woodworking, sewing, crafting, rug hooking, building with all kinds of materials, creative writing, poetry, watercolor, calligraphy, recording music, writing music, and all kinds of cooking and baking can be explored. And the best part: your gifts are being made and kids are learning at the same time!
Christmas Unit Studies
We had a blast with Christmas unit studies learning about Colonial Christmas, Christmas with Anne of Green Gables, Christmas in Israel, and Christmas in Victorian Times. I share what we did over the years in this post: Christmas Unit Studies.
The secret to Christmas unit studies is to keep them simple and to include all your Christmas preparations. When we studied Christmas in Colonial America, we decorated the tree and house in a traditional colonial style. When we studied Christmas in Victorian Times, we pulled out the lace and burgundy
Create Your Own Unit Study
Have I gotten you excited to create your own Christmas unit study? When I create a unit study at Christmas, I make a list of subjects I want to cover like writing, reading, reading aloud, history, etc. and then I make a list of preparations that need to be made, activities that we are participating in, and activities we’d like to do. I weave these lists together and keep it as simple as possible so that everyone can relax and enjoy Christmas. Here are some ideas to create your own unit studies: Celebrate Christmas Unit Study and Christmas Lights Unit Study.
Here are more resources for you to Learn at Christmas:
Christmas Tradition: Shoebox (a way to give to the poor in other nations)
Until next time, Happy Homeschooling,
Meredith Curtis, homeschooling mom, writer, speaker, and publisher, loves to encourage families in their homeschooling adventure. She is the author of Celebrate Christmas with Cookies Unit Study and Celebrate Christmas in Colonial America Unit Study. You can check out her books, curricula, unit studies, and Bible studies at PowerlineProd.com. Free Reading Lists for all ages are available at JSHomeschooling.com. Read her blogs at MeredithCurtis.com (http://www.meredithcurtis.com/blog) and PowerlineProd.com and listen to her at Finish Well Radio