THE CHRISTMAS LESSON
101 SANTA QUESTIONS:
- Does Santa Claus really exist?
- What does Christmas mean to Santa?
- What colour skin does Santa have?
- Was Santa a good student at school?
- What kind of child was Santa?
- Who are Santa’s neighbors?
- How does he remember who wants what for Xmas?
- How does he write so many Xmas cards?
- Has Santa ever come close to hitting or being hit by an airplane while on his sleigh?
- What are Santa’s thoughts on child labor?
- Where does Santa go shopping?
- Does Santa shop around to get the best deals on toys? Does he get a discount?
- Is Santa an optimist or a pessimist?
- If Santa died and was reincarnated, what would he want to come back as?
- Does Santa like Christmas turkey and Christmas pudding?
- What kind of house does Santa live in?
- Does Santa prefer children or adults?
- What’s Santa’s advice for any would-be Santas?
- Why is Santa a saint?
- What does Santa do between December 26 and Dec 23?
- Are there any special rules Santa has to follow?
- Is Santa into Harry Potter?
- What does Santa think about spoiled kids?
- Does Santa’s sleigh have air-bags, navigation or in-sleigh stereo?
- What does Santa Claus / Christmas look like in your country?
- Does there need to be snow for Santa Claus to exist?
- How does Santa have so much energy?
- How does he stay awake so long?
- How does he get into houses that have no chimneys?
- Does he earn any money?
- Who was Santa when he was a child?
- Does he really like children?
- Does Santa have any bad habits?
- Which country does he like visiting best?
- What does he do on December 26 (Boxing Day)?
- How many languages can he speak?
- Can children from the Muslim, Buddhist, Jewish, or other faiths be visited by Santa?
- Why does he wear red and white?
- What does Santa think about the commercialization of Christmas?
- What does he do in the week before Xmas?
- What’s his favourite sport?
- If Santa could choose a present, what would he choose?
- Why does he live in the North Pole, where it is so cold?
- Does he ever shave?
- Is he married?
- Does he have children of his own?
- Has Santa ever done anything bad?
- What does he do about children who don’t believe in Santa?
- Will he retire one day? What will he do if he does?
- Does he have a garden?
- What does Santa think about today's world leaders?
- How did Santa get the job of being Santa?
- Should he be worried about his weight, or go on a diet?
- What’s Santa’s favourite Xmas song?
- Where does Santa go on vacation?
- What’s Santa’s native language?
- What websites does Santa visit?
- Is Santa always on time when he delivers his presents?
- What happens if he delivers a present and it doesn’t work?
- Why does he give American kids expensive big presents, but nothing to African kids?
- If Santa could change career, what would he choose to do?
- What are Santa’s hobbies?
- Did Santa ever meet Jesus?
- What kind of personality does Santa have at a party with adults?
- What does Santa wear when he gets out of his red and white Santa suit?
- What does Santa do if a child really hates a present?
- Does Santa prefer a white Xmas, or one without snow?
- What happens if a child he has presents for has been really, really naughty?
- From what age does Santa stop giving presents to Children?
- I’m 42 years old and I believe in Santa. Can I get a present?
- What is Santa’s advice for parents raising children?
- What one thing would Santa like to change about Christmas?
- Does Santa like the new computer toys or the traditional wooden ones best?
- What does Santa think when he comes down the chimney and there are already loads of presents under the tree?
- What does Santa do if a child’s parents haven’t bought any presents, or have no money?
- What does Santa think of all the guys who pretend to be Santa and sit in department store toy departments?
- How does Santa deal with the change in climate from Northern winters to Southern summers?
- Is Santa happy about competing with Jesus for attentions at Christmas?
- Wouldn’t he prefer a name change to Santamas?
- If Santa had one wish for the world, what would it be?
- Has Santa thought about starting a Santa training school?
- Is Santa worried about having to relocate because of global warming?
- Is Santa any good at sport?
- Will Santa ever retire?
- What does Santa think of technology?
- Why do British people call Santa ‘Father Christmas’?
- Is Santa good at building snowmen, or having snowball fights?
- Does Santa belong just to this world, or does he visit other planets?
- What are Santa’s bad habits?
- What’s Santa’s dream?
- Does Santa send Christmas cards?
- Who buys presents for Santa?
- What’s Santa’s favourite toy?
- Does Santa prefer to give toys, clothes or books?
- What’s his address
- What’s Santa’s favorite movie?
- Does Santa watch television?
- Does Santa have any brothers and sisters?
- What does ‘ho-ho-ho’ mean?
- How much is Santa’s salary?
- Does he get any bonuses?
OTHER CHRISTMAS ACTIVITIES
- WHITE XMAS: Talk about which is better a white Xmas or a golden Xmas (on the beach in a hot country).
- BAH HUMBUG: Briefly explain the character of Scrooge. Brainstorm all the possible reasons why Christmas should be cancelled this year. Write them on the board. Students then talk in pairs about whether they agree with any of the reasons.
- IT’S MINE: Either write the names of some popular presents on the board (iPod, Burberry scarf, latest video game…) or bring in some pictures of the latest offerings from magazines. Students have to convince one another why they should get the particular present. Attach the pictures around the classroom so students can walk around.
- CHAT: Talk about the North Pole, Santa Claus, Xmas presents, Xmas movies, Xmas songs…
- SANTA’S KNEE: Students take turns at being Santa and ask their partner what they would like for Xmas and why?
- AN iPOD AND AN MD: Sing the famous Xmas song ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ with the revised lyrics below:
1st day an iPod and a PlayStation 3
2nd day two Chanel gloves
3rd day three soccer balls
4th day - four teddy bears
5th day five gold rings
6th day six Barbie dolls
7th day seven cans of Cola
8th day eight Burberry bags
9th day nine mobile phones
10th day ten boxes of Lego
11th day eleven electric guitars
12th day twelve pairs of Levi’s
- SPECIAL RELATIONSHIPS: Talk about the special relationship between Santa and the children of the world, as well as other special relationships, like parent and child, teacher and pupil, soccer club and fans, hometown and me … Brainstorm other special relationships.
- THE REAL MEANING: Students retell the real story of Xmas in groups. Mix religions for better effect. Put the following on board as prompts
Angel Gabriel star three wise men stable Mary donkey carpenter gold, frankincense and myrrh Bethlehem no room at the inn King Herod
- OTHER CULTURES: If you have a multi-cultural, multi-faith class. brainstorm what Xmas means to different students.
- XMAS ROLE PLAY: Assign each student a different Xmas character. Tell them to mill around introducing themselves and comparing notes on what it’s like being who they are. Roles might include: Santa, a snowman, Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer, a North Pole penguin, the Xmas tree fairy, the Christmas turkey, any other characters related to your students’ cultures …
- SANTATHON: If you really did want to ask all of the questions, form the students into teams. Ask quick-fire questions to each team in turn. They have 3 seconds to answer a question and get 3 points. If they answer the question within 3 seconds, they stay center stage for the next question, and the next… until they falter. If they do not answer within 3 seconds the same question passes to the next team.
- SANTABATES: Choose questions you think might allow for interesting fun debates. Students brainstorm ideas in pairs/groups in preparation for a debate.
- SANTA SURVEYS: Students choose 5 or 6 questions they like. These form the basis of their Santa Survey. They ask other class members, and find as much extra information as they can to supplement the answers. Students then report their findings to their partner / groups / class.
- SANTA PROFILE: The same set of questions are given to students (individually, pairs, groups…). Each student, pair, group answers the questions to form their profile of Santa. They change partners / groups and share the images of Santa they have created. This could form the basis of an argument over which image is the real Santa, or a compromise to find some middle ground.
- ‘BAH HUMBUG’ ROLE PLAY: The Xmas role play to end all Xmas role plays. An argument between Santa and Scrooge (he who hates Xmas). Santa students get together and brainstorm ideas as to why Xmas is so wonderful; Scrooges think of all the possible reasons why Xmas is a waste of time and a generally bad idea. Role play in pairs or groups. If in groups have the group speaker at the front and tag him/her to change places with other team members when they are flagging.
- THE MAGIC OF XMAS: What makes Xmas magical for you? Here are some categories. Talk about them with your partner and rank which in order of importance food / presents / family / lights / shopping / alcohol / church / no work / no school / other.
- THE NIGHTMARE OF XMAS: What makes Xmas a nightmare for you? Here are some categories. Talk about them with your partner and rank which in order of ‘nightmare ness’ food / bad presents / family / shopping / alcohol / hangover / small children / Frosty the Snowman songs / cold weather / other.