Updated: Nov 18, 2019
Let me tell you a story of an English teacher who had an idea a couple years ago 😜
I've wanted to create some sort of Christmas countdown calendar for years now. I wanted it to have tasks for each school day in December leading up to our Christmas party. But I've never had time or ideas for the tasks. I spent hours on the Internet searching for something that I had in mind but I never found it.
As usual, the idea came back to me at the beginning of November: "I'm gonna make it this year!!". I went through many stages: first, I was motivated and I had loads of time .... then I had less time but I still wanted to make it ... then I started frantically digging thorough the Internet with the same result as all the previous years .... then I gave up thinking "why am I putting myself through it?! It's too much pressure" ....
And then, when I was already happy with the thought of not making a Christmas countdown, an idea for one task came to me. So I wrote it down. And then another one came 5 minutes later ... so I wrote it down. 60 minutes later I had 14 ideas for Christmas tasks on my list 🎉
The next day I sat down with my computer to maybe try and prepare one of the tasks. I left my computer 7 hours later with the whole thing ready to be printed 😅 Take a look:
Starting on December 3rd there are 15 school days left before Christmas so I've prepared 14 different tasks. The card for the last day says "Today is the day! Claim your prize". What prize you ask? Well, the whole idea is:
1) I will display once task each day in the morning; it will stay there till the very end of our countdown
2) the kids can complete the task whenever they like, but preferably on that day
3) for completing each task they get a Christmas themed sticker
4) on December 21st (last day of school) they'll be able to exchange their stickers for some sort of a prize
One thing that came to my mind as a possible prize is hot chocolate. This is how I'd work it out:
1-5 stickers = hot chocolate
6-10 stickers = hot chocolate with a marshmallow in
11-15 stickers = hot chocolate with a marshmallow in + whipped cream on top
15 stickers = hot chocolate with a marshmallow in + whipped cream on top with sprinkles
Oh, and the trick is that I will not tell my kids what the prizes are or how they will be distributed. If I tell them that the whipped cream starts at 11 points I don't think many will be interested in stickers 12-15 😅
Also, seeing as there is no task 15 (it's "claim your prize" day), sticker number 15 will be given to those students who will have all the other 14 stickers.
Here are the stickers:
I used graphics from pl.freepic.com to create those. I printed them on sticker paper.
And this is the album:
The background on the cover comes from Digital Curio.
Name all of Santa’s reindeer + additional irregular plurals task
Sing the chorus of Jingle Bells with all the correct lyrics, no mumbling! (QR code)
Make a poster with 10 Christmas related words
Learn a poem by heart (QR code)
Solve the riddles and say what the words mean in Polish (might require a magnifying glass because the letters are very small, but that will be additional fun for the kids)
Watch the video and name 5 British Christmas traditions (QR code)
Make a Christmas card, write the wishes in English (2 QR codes with card ideas and various Christmas wishes)
Listen to the Christmas song and fill in the missing lyrics (QR code with "Santa Claus is Coming to Town")
Match the words and their definitions (iSLCollective handout)
Make a multilingual picture dictionary with Christmas words: minimum 5 words in 5 languages
Pick your favourite John Lewis ad and say why: we will be casting votes (QR code with all the ads)
Describe the Christmas traditions you celebrate in your home
Make a poster/booklet about Polish Christmas traditions - pictures + full sentences
Learn to say „Wesołych Świąt” in different languages (bunting on the task card comes from Clever Classroom)
*If a task has "watch" or "listen" in it, the card I've prepared for it has a QR code. Most of the codes are YouTube links but one of them is yours truly reading a poem 😅
*The task which involves voting has one more material: voting ballots. They are placed in an envelope on the card for the kids to take one and cast their vote.
The frame on all the cards comes from pinkcatstudio.com
The beauty of this whole material is that you can do whatever you like with it: choose the order that you will introduce the tasks in; use or not use the stickers; use the stickers with or without the album; use it during lessons or as homework; have a prize at the end or not. It's all up to you 😊
So there you go! This is my idea for Christmas this year. I'm really happy with it and kind of proud of myself that I've finally made it 🎉🎉 I am going to use it with my grade 5 but I think that the tasks could be used with older kids as well. I'm not sure about grade 4 and the Present Simple tasks, those might be too difficult for kids that age. But again - it all depends on you 😊
If you decide to use it, it would be great if you could let me known in a comments section here or on my FB fanpage or tag Montenglish in a FB post (@montenglishblog).
To download the material you have to join the members section. Don’t worry, it’s completely free 😊