Monday, November 30, 2009

Christmas School

We took the month of December off from school to focus on Christmas. We still did some math (only because it's D-Man's favorite subject) and reading practice, but we abandoned all of our other school activities in favor of learning about Jesus' birth and the traditions surrounding it.
Our favorite resource was this book that I bought from Costco last year. It contains several short stories about how Christmas is celebrated in other countries as well as classic Christmas stories.

Reading about other countries inspired us to celebrate St. Nicholas Day and talk about other holidays related to Christmas like St. Lucia's Day. It was interesting and I can't wait to dive deeper into next year.

We also read some classics such as The Night Before Christmas which was such a big hit that we ended up reading it several times before Christmas Eve. Grandma and Grandpa D also bought the boys the children's version of The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck. It is a sweet story about Christmas presents and Shawn got a little choked up while reading it.

A feature of Christmas school this year was learning about the real St. Nicholas. D-Man asked us point-blank this year if Santa was real. We've never really focused on Santa at Christmas, so he didn't even have a real clear concept of who he is. We told him the truth about Santa and told him that Santa is based off of a man who was real called St. Nicholas. We checked out a few books about St. Nicholas plus a really good one was included in our own Christmas storybook. It was fun to talk with D-Man about how St. Nicholas' kindness showed Jesus to people. He is really someone we should try to emulate all of the time. Being the black-and-white thinker he is, D-Man just doesn't understand why people choose to believe that St. Nicholas is still alive. It was hard, but we convinced him that he could not enlighten his friends with this knowledge.

Of course, our Christmas school included plenty of Christmas movie classics. Our favorites are: A Muppets' Christmas Carol, Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Frosty the Snowman, and the Christmas portion of Jesus of Nazareth. I tried to have the boys watch A Miracle on 34th Street, but they were too young to enjoy it. Oh well, we'll get to all of those more mature Christmas classics later.

No comments: