Beacon Lesson Plan Library

The Whole World Celebrated Christmas! Right?

Shirley Godbold
Walton County Schools


This lesson is for use during the weeks before the Christmas break. This will be great for middle school students. It is a comparison of the other religious holidays that are celebrated around this same time of year.


The student understands ways in which cultural characteristics have been transmitted from one society to another (e.g., through art, architecture, language, other artifacts, traditions, beliefs, values, and behaviors).


-Colored Dots for each student
-Pages in the associated file which include Gallery Poll Questions, Teacher's page for questions, Assessment and Holiday Recipes.
-Agree/Disagree charts
-Gallery Poll Handout Study Sheet (see attachments) Same as the questions.
-A copy of the Poem -Twas the Night before Christmas- by Dr. Clement C. Moore.
-VCR tape entitled -Williamsburg Christmas- (Optional) (to order the video -$19.95)


-Duplicate copies of the Gallery Poll handout statements for each student.
-Cut dots into sets of 6 for each students
-Write Gallery Poll statements on poster board and post around the room
-Write AGREE and DISAGREE at the top of a piece of copy paper, drawing a vertical line between the two words and post this under the poster paper statements.


1-Write the Gallery Poll statements on poster paper and put them up on the wall around the room.

2-Below each statement place a sheet of copy paper with Agree written on the top left and Disagree written on the top right.

3-Draw a line vertical between each title.

4-Give each student a set of 6 colored dots (I like to give each student a set of the same colored dots, but distribute about 5 different colors among the students.) That way they can remember their color so as to remember whether they agreed or disagreed with the statements before the discussion and during the discussion.

5- Explain to the class that they will have to decided if they agree or disagree with each statement. They cannot be on the line. They are to go to each statement, without talking with each other, and decide if they agree or disagree with each statement, placing the dot on the side of the line that is appropriate.

6-While students are deciding whether they agree or disagree with the statement you can give each a handout with all 6 statements printed on it. Be sure you leave room between the statements for students to take notes. (See associated file.)

7. Allow time for discussion as you share the facts on the Teacher's page (in the associated file.) Help students to understand that our holiday celebrations in December come from many cultures and people. If you have the video listed in the Materials section, now would be a good time to show it.


Students write a short response to statements to demonstrate their understanding of the orgin of Christmas and other December holidays. (See the associated file.) Formatively assess these responses for understanding of the variety of holidays and their origins and traditions celebrated in December.


This lesson can lead to a discussion of the many different holidays that are celebrated around Christmas time, throughout the world (ie. Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and Ramadan) and allow the students to understand other cultures' religions.

SLD students will enjoy this and they will have an opportunity to express their own knowledge, as well as feelings. ESOL students can share with other students what is done in their own countries or cultures and gifted students can do further study of other holiday traditions that they might want to learn about.

Web Links

Visit the site to investigate four major holidays that occur during the month of December.





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