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Lesson Plans for ESL Kids teachers

Lesson Plans for ESL Kids Teachers

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Christmas Lesson Plan

Santa & RudolfWe've put together two lesson plans below, which are meant to be taught in sequence, one after the other. However, if you only plan to do one Christmas lesson, then just Lesson 1 will be fine for this.

In the lessons, the students are introduced to some common Christmas vocabulary, learn a Christmas carol, read a story about Santa, make decorations and play lots of fun games.

Christmas (Lesson 1)

This is the first lesson in a set of 2.

Details:

  • Time: 40 mins - 1 hour
  • Objectives: Recognize and identify 8 Christmas words and sing a Christmas carol.
  • Structures: "Merry Christmas", "What color is it?", "Who is this?"
  • New Vocab: Santa, Rudolph, sleigh, presents, Christmas tree, decorations, roast turkey, Christmas pudding
  • Review Vocab: colors
  • Songs: "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" or "Jingle Bells" (download here).

Lesson Procedure:

PDF version (print)

Warm Up and Maintenance:

1. Start the lesson as you usually would (E.g. Hello song, "What's your name?", "How are you?", homework check, etc.).

2. Show a flashcard picture of Santa. Elicit who it is ("Who is this?"). Explain that today and next class we are going to have a Christmas Lesson. Put on some Christmas carol background music to create a Christmas atmosphere.

* For older / higher level kids, here you can discuss what they want for Christmas.  Teacher start by modeling "For Christmas I would like (a bike)".

New Learning and Practice:

1. Teach new vocab: Santa (G.B. Father Christmas), Rudolph, sleigh, presents, Christmas tree, decorations, roast turkey, Christmas pudding:
Use flashcards or pictures. Hold up each picture and chorus x3.

2. Play "Flashcard Touch" and "Missing Flashcard":
Flashcard Touch: Lay the flashcards out on the floor. Tell the students to put their hands in the air. Then Teacher calls out a flashcard (e.g. "Christmas Tree!"). Ss have to touch the card as quickly as they can. Play for a few rounds until you have done all of the flashcards.

Missing Flashcard: Tell the Ss to close their eyes. Take away a flashcard and tell the Ss to open their eyes again. Ask "Which picture is missing?". Ss have to shout out the missing flashcard. Play a few rounds.

Note: For larger groups, divide your Ss into groups of 6-8 and play the games in their groups.

3. Teach song "We Wish You A Merry Christmas":
Most Christmas carols use a lot of difficult vocab or vocab which isn't used in modern English anymore. This doesn't make it easy for teaching lower-level English learners! However, we can adapt songs to fit the vocab you are teaching. In this case, we have adapted the carol "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" (download at the end of this page).

The following adapted lyrics are used with the song:

"We Wish You A Merry Christmas"

Chorus:
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
And a Happy New Year.

Verse 1:
Santa and Rudolf,
Will fly in their sleigh,
We'll open our presents,
And have a great day!

Chorus

Verse 2:
Our Christmas tree's up,
With decorations,
We'll eat a roast turkey,
And Christmas pudding.

Chorus

Verse 1 again

Chorus

Verse 2 again

Before playing the song, line up the flashcards on the floor or the board. Then, play the song and Teacher sings and touches each flashcard as the vocab word is sung, to show everyone how the song goes.  Encourage the students to join in.  It may be worthwhile slowly running through the song without the music first.

Then everyone sings the song together.

NOTE: We also have an adapted version of the carol "Jingle Bells" which you may want to use instead of or as well as "We Wish You A Merry Christmas". You can download this at the end of this page.

4. Read classroom reader "Santa Gets Stuck"
This classroom readers ties in perfectly with the We Wish You A Merry Christmas song above as it uses many of the same phrases and vocabulary. Before class, download and print off the reader "Santa Gets Stuck" from our website. As you go through each page, point to the pictures and let your students shout out what they can see and think is happening:

Teacher: Who is this? (pointing at Santa and Rudolf on page 1)
Students: Santa and Rudolf!
Teacher: Yes, that's right! (reading from the story) " It’s Christmas Eve night. Santa and Rudolf are flying in their sleigh." What color are Santa's clothes?
Students: Red!
Teacher: That's right. Santa always wears red. (turning the page) ... Oh look! What is this boy doing?
Students: He's sleeping!
Teacher: Yes, that's right! Look, how many stockings does he have?
Students: 2!
Teacher: Yes, 2! He has 2 stockings for his presents from Santa.
etc.

Get the students really involved in the story by asking lots of questions (e.g. eliciting the objects and their colors) and even getting everyone to speculate about what presents the boy and girl have under the wrapping paper.

5. Do "Christmas Match Up" worksheet activity:
Give all the students the worksheet and have them match up the items taught earlier in the lesson and in the carol. As they are working ask individual students questions (e.g. Who's this? What's this?, etc.).

6. Review colors:
We are going to make some paper chain decorations with different colors. Before class, cut out strips of different colored card to make the decorations. Show each color and elicit it ("What color is this?", "It's red"). Next, arrange students in groups around tables put a good pile of the strips on each table and tell the students to spread them out. Next play "Slam" - Teacher shouts out each color and students have to slam their hands down on the color.

7. Make "Paper Chain Decorations":
In groups have students use glue to create chains, as shown in the picture below:

Paper Chain Decorations

Give everyone about 5-10 minutes to make their chains. Finally, help your students decorate the classroom with the chains. If you can, keep these decorations in your classroom for the next lesson.

Pine Cone Christmas Tress8. Make "Pine Cone Christmas Trees"

You may be in an area where you can collect pine cones - if not they are usually quite easy to buy in arts and craft stores. All you need is pine cones (one per student), glitter, cotton balls, small beads threaded onto some cotton or dental floss and a star for the top.

Then simply follow the steps here.

Keep these crafts as they will be used in the next lesson (make sure the kids' names are stuck on them).

Wrap Up:

1. Assign Homework: "Decorate the Christmas Tree"
2. Do your usual end of class routine (tidy up, put away things in their bags, sing "Goodbye song", etc).
3. As each student goes to the door to leave the classroom show them a flashcard and elicit the word (e.g. Santa). If they get the word right, they can leave. If wrong, they have to go to the back of the line and try again.

Worksheets / Print Outs:

Christmas Match Up Decorate the Christmas Tree      

Christmas Match Up

(lesson worksheet)

British English version

Decorate the Christmas Tree

(homework worksheet)

British English version

     

Flashcards:

Santa Rudolph sleigh presents Christmas tree
Santa Rudolph sleigh presents Christmas tree
decorations roast turkey Christmas pudding    
decorations roast turkey Christmas pudding    

Songs & Readers:

Happy Halloween (click to download) Happy Halloween (click to download) Santa Gets Stuck Reader    
We Wish You
A Merry Christmas
(click to download)
Jingle Bells
(click to download)
Santa Gets Stuck
(click to download)
   

Christmas (Lesson 2)

This is the second lesson in a set of 2. It uses the vocab use in lesson 1 and is a Christmas "party" lesson.

Details:

  • Time: 40 mins - 1 hour
  • Objectives: Recognize and identify 8 Christmas words and sing a Christmas carol.
  • Structures: "Merry Christmas", "Here you are", "Thank you"
  • New Vocab: None
  • Review Vocab: Santa, Rudolph, sleigh, presents, Christmas tree, decorations, roast turkey, Christmas pudding
  • Songs: "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" or "Jingle Bells" (download here).

Lesson Procedure:

PDF version (print)

Warm Up and Maintenance:

1. Start the lesson as you usually would (E.g. Hello song, "What's your name?", "How are you?", homework check, etc.).

2. Explain that today you are going to have a fun Christmas party! Put on your Christmas songs CD as background music. If you still have the paper chain decorations from the last lesson, put them up around the room.

New Learning and Practice:

1. Review vocab: Santa (G.B. Father Christmas), Rudolph, sleigh, presents, Christmas tree, decorations, roast turkey, Christmas pudding:
Before class, hide these flashcards around the room. Model by showing you are looking for the Santa flashcard.  Hunt around the room until you find the card. Now tell the students to find the other flashcards.

2. Play "Flashcard Touch" and "Missing Flashcard":
Flashcard Touch: Lay the flashcards out on the floor. Tell the students to put their hands in the air. Then Teacher calls out a flashcard (e.g. "Christmas Tree!"). Ss have to touch the card as quickly as they can. Play for a few rounds until you have done all of the flashcards.

Missing Flashcard: Tell the Ss to close their eyes. Take away a flashcard and tell the Ss to open their eyes again. Ask "Which picture is missing?". Ss have to shout out the missing flashcard. Play a few rounds.

Note: For larger groups, divide your Ss into groups of 6-8 and play the games in their groups.

3. Make Christmas Cards:
Christmas cards are easy and fun to make in class with some construction paper and common craft supplies.  Before class, you'll need to cut out enough card for each student.

Christmas Card CraftTell the Ss they are going to make a Christmas card for one of their classmates. Either assign a classmate for each student to make a card for or let them chose themselves. Then have students draw, paint or use felt to make a Christmas scene on the card (Santa, holly, a Christmas Tree , etc.). Students can then decorate the cards with glitter, cotton wool for snow, shiny stickers, etc.

Older kids can write a Christmas message inside the card and for smaller kids you can help them write their own message (even get them to trace over a message written lightly in pencil). Make sure they include their classmate's name with the message.

Finally, the students put their Christmas card into an envelope.

4. Present Christmas Cards and Sing "We Wish You A Merry Christmas":
Get all the kids sitting in groups with the Christmas tree pine cones they made in the last class. Teach the expressions "Merry Christmas", "Here you are" and "Thank you".  Then model giving a Christmas card to a student whist saying the expressions.  Then have the students give their Christmas cards to their classmates while saying the expressions.  Everyone can now open their Christmas cards.  Ask some students questions about their cards (e.g. Who was your card from? What is the picture? What does it say inside?).

Now sing the carol from last week's lesson (download at the end of this page).

Use the following lyrics with the song:

"We Wish You A Merry Christmas"

Chorus:
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
We wish you a Merry Christmas,
And a Happy New Year.

Verse 1:
Santa and Rudolf,
Will fly in their sleigh,
We'll open our presents,
And have a great day!

Chorus

Verse 2:
Our Christmas tree's up,
With decorations,
We'll eat a roast turkey,
And Christmas pudding.

Chorus

Verse 1 again

Chorus

Verse 2 again

Before playing the song, line up the flashcards on the floor or the board. Then, play the song and prompt the words by touching the flashcards.

NOTE: We also have an adapted version of the carol "Jingle Bells" which you may want to use instead of or as well as "We Wish You A Merry Christmas". You can download this at the end of this page.

5. Play "Flashcard Pass the parcel":
Pass the parcelAll kids love this game!  Before class prepare the parcel.  Make sure you have enough candies for each Ss and a picture / flashcard of the Christmas vocab for each Ss.  The idea is for each layer of the parcel to have a candy stuck to vocab picture (e.g. Santa, Christmas tree, etc.).  When each wrapping paper is removed the student will have to correctly say the word of the picture in order to keep the candy.  Wrap up the first candy / picture and then for each layer add another picture / candy.

Play the game sitting in a big circle.  Play Christmas music and have everyone pass the parcel around the circle until you stop the music.  The student unwraps the first layer and has to say the word for the picture to get the candy. Keep going and make sure every student has a chance to remove a layer and get a candy.

6. Play "Musical Chairs" or "Musical Cushions"
Musical chairsPut enough chairs or cushions in a circle for each student, less one (e.g. if you have 10 students put out 9 chairs or cushions).  Play the music and have the students walk, skip around the circle of chairs.  When you stop the music the students have to scramble to sit down on a chair.  The student remaining is out. For the next round remove a chair. Finally, the game will have 2 students and one chair and the winner is the only one remaining.

7. If you still have time, play another Christmas party game.

We have lots of Christmas games & activities - select any you feel will work well.

Wrap Up:

1. Assign Homework: "Santa Maze 2"
2. Do your usual end of class routine (tidy up, put away things in their bags, sing "Goodbye song", etc.
3. As each student goes to the door to leave the classroom show them a flashcard and elicit the word (e.g. Santa). If they get the word right, they can leave. If wrong, they have to go to the back of the line and try again.

Worksheets / Print Outs:

Santa Maze 2        

Santa Maze 2

(homework worksheet)

 

     

Flashcards:

Santa Rudolph sleigh presents Christmas tree
Santa Rudolph sleigh presents Christmas tree
decorations roast turkey Christmas pudding    
decorations roast turkey Christmas pudding    

Songs:

Happy Halloween (click to download) Happy Halloween (click to download)      
We Wish You
A Merry Christmas
(click to download)
Jingle Bells
(click to download)
     

Related Stuff:

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Notes:
  1. To view and print a flashcard or worksheet click on the thumbnail image.
  2. For detailed printing instructions, click here.
  3. British English version = British English version - click the flag to open and print. Click the thumbnail image to see the US English version.