Literacy

Professional Development

November 20, 2021

19 Books to Celebrate and Teach Christmas Around the World

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Every December, my students and I would create an amazing staycation in our classroom by learning about Christmas around the world. We would do traditional crafts, learn songs, and even try different foods. One of my favorite ways to introduce this topic is through books about Christmas around the world traditions.

The holiday season not only brings super fun social studies lessons, but it also presents us with a unique opportunity to celebrate diverse experiences. Growing understanding and appreciation for each other’s differences helps build a classroom community of respect and kindness, too!

To help get you started on your Christmas around the world unit, I put together a list of books about Christmas around the world that will help you squeeze it in or dive deeper into learning. If you have several days to discuss Christmas around the world or just a few minutes, you’re sure to find a book to help!

Books for Celebrating Christmas Around the World

One great way to teach about Christmas around the world is to show customs and traditions and compare them. These books about Christmas around the world do that within one book. Plus, the illustrations are gorgeous. If you don’t have a ton of time to teach this topic, these books might be for you!

  • A World of Cookies for Santa: Follow Santa’s Tasty Trip Around the World by M.E. Furman
  • How Kids Celebrate Christmas Around the World by Pavla Hanackova

Mexico

  • The Legend of the Poinsettia by Tomie dePaola
  • A Pinata in a Pine Tree by Pat Mora
  • Too Many Tamales by Gary Soto
  • The Night of Las Posadas by Tomie dePaola

You can use the Christmas in Mexico Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

Germany

  • Cobweb Christmas: The Tradition of Tinsel by Shirley Climo
  • Christmas in Germany by Jack Manning

You can use the Christmas in Germany Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

Australia

  • An Aussie Night Before Christmas by Yvonne Morrison https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1A0_W5qVO9E
  • Christmas Wombat by Jackie French

You can use the Christmas in Australia Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

Italy

  • The Legend of Old Befana: An Italian Christmas Story by Tomie dePaola
  • Merry Christmas, Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola

You can use the Christmas in Italy Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

Sweden

  • Lucia Morning in Sweden by Ewa Rydaker
  • The Tomten by Astrid Lindgren
  • Christmas in Noisy Village by Astrid Lindgren

You can use the Christmas in Sweden Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

France

  • Babar and Father Christmas by Jean de Brunhoff
  • Christmas in France by Jack Manning

You can use the Christmas in France Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions.

America

  • The Night Before Christmas by Clement Moore
  • The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg

You can use the Christmas in America Flip Up Book to help engage students while they learn about these Christmas traditions. In another post, I have eight Christmas read alouds your students will love. You can find that list HERE!

Teaching Christmas around the world through books brings the world to the students right inside of your classroom! To help make lesson planning easier, I have two helpful resources that will let your students get a peek into traditions and customs around the world!

First, there is the Digital Christmas Around the World. This resource includes a PowerPoint with voice over so that you can have your students listen to each slide and follow directions and Google Slides for students to use independently in a station. Read more about it on my blog HERE!

Then there are the Christmas Around the World Flip Up Books. These flip up books integrate social studies, reading, and writing. Students can work on the flip up books in a whole group setting with you or complete one at each station if you set up rotations.

You can also use both of these resources together! You can have students work through the flip up book as they go through the digital PowerPoint if you want to extend a bit more. They can do this in a whole group setting with you or complete one at each station if you set up rotations.

Interactive read alouds are always my favorite! Holiday read alouds that also help connect students to new experiences take it to the next level. Do you have any favorite Christmas around the world books you like to use? Leave them in the comments!

Happy Teaching,

Amanda

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Free Guided Reading Resource Cards to help you plan your time and teach each group on their instructional level.

Hi, I'm Amanda

I’m a K-1 teacher who is passionate about making lessons your students love and that are easy to implement for teachers.  Helping teachers like you navigate their way through their literacy block brings me great joy. I am a lifelong learner who loves staying on top of current literacy learning and practices. Here, you’ll find the tools you need to move your K-2 students forward!

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