merry christmas, with a corgi santa on a sled full of presents!

December is here, which means the holiday season is in full swing—bring some Yuletide cheer to your classroom with these Christmas classroom activities! An indisputable fact of this month is that your students are distracted by the festivities, especially as the winter break draws nearer and nearer, but no need to fret—we’re here to help!

Avoid the holiday brain drain and play into your students’ distraction by bringing the holiday celebrations into the classroom with themed activities. As a result, your students will be entertained by holiday assignments and learning! We’ve collected the following Christmas resources, including activity packets, reading assignments, and worksheets, all to brighten your classrooms with cheer and help your students practice key skills as the end of the semester comes near. 

We’ve also curated a collection of Hanukkah activities, sure to bring even more joy into your classroom!

Christmas Reading Activities

1. Roll-a-Christmas-Story 

Christmas activity acrostic poem cover

Acrostic poems are a wonderful ELA activity for students of all ages and a perfect way to celebrate the holiday season while working on vocabulary and creative writing skills. These holiday-themed acrostic poems are perfect for morning warm-ups in your middle and high school classrooms.

The printable activity comes with an empty word web to plan out their acrostic poem and offers a trickier challenge to get their poem to rhyme too. Your students may also choose from the four provided poem sheets (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or Bodhi Day), or you can challenge them to create their own with a winter holiday-themed word. While they work, you can talk about all the different ways Christmas around the world is celebrated.

Created and made available for free download by Your Best Drafts.

2. What My Teacher Wants for Christmas Writing Activity

christmas activities english 2 what my teacher wants for christmasThis next resource is another writing activity fit for elementary students, where you can see what they think you want for christmas! This activity is packed with different versions of prewriting sheets and writing paper, accessible to all levels of learning in your class. Students will be tasked with listing what they think their teacher (you!) wants for christmas, then consolidating their ideas into a letter to Santa on your behalf or a short opinion essay, depending on what you’d like your class to do. 

Not only will you enjoy seeing what your students think you’ll be wishing for this Christmas, but your students will have fun practicing empathy and seeing if they nailed what you desire!

Created and made available for free download by I’ll Take Seconds.

3. Holiday Figurative Language Task Cards

christmas activities english 3 figurative language task cardsThis next resource will have your students working as diligently as Santa’s elves, having them practice their knowledge of figurative language! A fun break between writing exercises or other assignments, this activity includes 32 printable (and digitally available) flashcards of similes or metaphors. Students will evaluate each numbered flashcard and determine whether its Christmas-themed statement is a simile or a metaphor!

Laminating the flashcards, cutting them out, then printing one of each worksheet for each student is all the prep work required. To reduce that even more, project the flashcards in a slideshow and have your students answer on their own or in groups!

Created and made available for free download by Teaching With a Mountain View.

4. Christmas Reading Comprehension Activity

christmas activities english 4 reading comprehensionOur final ELA resource from TeachersPayTeachers is a reading comprehension exercise. Provided is a passage about the history of the Christmas holiday, paired with five multiple-choice reading comprehension questions and a free response activity. The free response exercise asks students to draw conclusions based on the nonfiction text by describing the two facts they believe to be most important.

 Great for upper elementary/lower middle school students, this free, printable Christmas activity pack is easy to assign and an effective way for students to practice critical thinking this time of year.

Created and made available for free download by Rick’s Resources.

Christmas Reading Comprehension Passage from Piqosity

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is one of the best Christmas books, a story your students probably know and love. So your students can practice their ELA capabilities with a Yuletide spirit, we’ve included an embedded passage from our 6th grade English course’s unit on A Christmas Carol, paired with 3 reading comprehension questions and answer explanations.

Christmas Reading Passage: Excerpt from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Excerpt from A Christmas Carol from Piqosity's ELA 6 course.

Reading Comprehension Questions

1. The following sentence (lines 36–41) uses which form of rhetoric?

“What’s Christmas-time to you but a time for paying bills without money; a time for finding yourself a year older, and not an hour richer; a time for balancing your books, and having every item in ’em through a round dozen of months presented dead against you?”

A. Alliteration
B. Anaphora
C. Antithesis
D. Parallelism

2. In line 74, the word “impropriety” most nearly means

A. mistake.
B. mood.
C. effect.
D. reaction.

3. Scrooge and his nephew are contrasted in all of the following ways EXCEPT

A. Scrooge is grumpy while his nephew is joyful.
B. Scrooge is influential while his nephew is incompetent.
C. his nephew values Christmas and Scrooge despises it.
D. Scrooge is wealthy but his nephew is poor.

Passage Answer Key and Explanations 

  1. B

The phrase “a time for..” appears in three successive lines, a purposeful repetition that creates a rhythmic effect. Repetition of words at the beginning of successive clauses, phrases, or sentences is called Anaphora. It is easy to confuse Anaphora with Parallelism since both use repetition and parallel structures, but Parallelism is the repetition of grammatical structures. In this case the use of a specific phrase identifies the rhetorical device as Anaphora.

  1. A

The clerk applauds Scrooge’s nephew which annoys Scrooge. Thus, the clerk realizes he has done something improper and has made a mistake. The other options do not match the context or meaning of “impropriety.”

  1. B

Scrooge and his nephew are distinctly contrasted in several ways. Scrooge’s nephew is energetic and “in a glow” (line 20) while Scrooge is sour. Scrooge says to his nephew that he is “poor enough” (line 26), and his nephew retorts that Scrooge is “rich enough” (line 29). Scrooge hates Christmas while his nephew defends it. In this passage there is no evidence regarding Scrooge’s power or that his nephew is incompetent, therefore “Scrooge is influential…” is the correct answer.

Christmas Math Activities

1. Christmas Multiplication Color-By-Numbers

christmas activities math 1 color by numbersMiddle-upper elementary students can have the opportunity to color in fun, Christmas-themed pictures while practicing their multiplication skills with this color-by-number Christmas classroom activity!

In terms of prep work, all you need to do is print out these free worksheets and distribute them to your students. Students will be tasked with answering the multiplication question in each section of the artwork, then coloring it according to the provided key. Perfect for early finishers or for independent work, this will help your students practice their times tables before the holiday break!

Created and made available for free download by Glitter in Third.

2. 12 Days of Christmas Word Problems

christmas activities math 2 word problems 12 days of christmasBeing comfortable working through word problems is crucial for all students, and this next activity is a great way to help your classroom practice! 

This resource provides students with a chart of the presents from all the 12 days of Christmas, paired with 10 word problems about the various gifts. Your students will love how this assignment immerses them in a Christmassy world, especially if you encourage them to color the decorations on the sheets once they’re finished with the problems! 

Created and made available for free download by Rachel Lynette.

3. Ugly Christmas Sweater Logic Puzzle

christmas activities math 3 logic puzzle activityLogic puzzles are great warm-up or end-of-day exercises, and this one is no exception! The holiday twist makes it extra interesting to students, even your hard-to-please middle schoolers.

This free, printable activity will keep your students thinking in the midst of all the holiday cheer, as they try to figure out which holiday party attendee wore which ugly christmas sweater based on several provided clues. What would make this activity even more immersive is allowing your class to wear their own Christmas sweaters to class this day!

Created and made available for free download by Lindsay Perro.

4. Christmas Activity Sheets: Algebra

christmas activities math 4 algebraic expressions cardsTeaching middle school math or Pre-Algebra? This activity will provide your students fun, holiday-themed practice in solving one-step algebraic equations.

These 30 algebra task cards, including all basic operations, will enrich your classroom all month long. Use them as exit tickets or warm-ups, in a scavenger hunt activity, in stations that groups can rotate through… the possibilities are endless! This resource even comes with a list of 20 game ideas for the task cards, so don’t feel pressured to come up with the perfect lesson plan. Plus, included are a student response worksheet and an answer sheet, all to help your classroom this busy holiday season.

Created and made available for free download by Promoting Success.

Christmas Math Problems from Piqosity

Christmas elves are sure to have a great grasp on math—they use it all the time in their jobs! To pair with the Math Christmas classroom activities above, we’ve created the following Christmas-themed math questions to quiz your students’ understanding of some key math concepts used this time of year. 

1.“The Twelve Days of Christmas” song describes a lucky person who gets one additional gift each day for 12 days, starting with 1 gift on the first day. What is the total number of gifts that this lucky person receives after the twelfth day?

A. 72
B. 144
C. 78
D. 66

2. A store is having a Christmas sale of 35% off on Santa Claus costumes. If the original cost of each costume is $350, how much will it cost after the sale?

A. $227.50
B. $210.00
C. $245.00
D. $192.50

3. In the North pole, half of all the elves are assigned present building duty and one-third are assigned wrapping duty. If an eighth of all the elves are assigned to look after the reindeer and the rest are unemployed, what fraction of the total elves do not have a job?





Math Answer Key and Explanations

  1. C

Here, we are trying to find the sum of all the numbers from 1-12.

To find the sum of a sequence of numbers, we can use the following formula:

Where n is the number of terms in the sequence, \mathbf{a_{1}} is the first term in the sequence, and is the last term in the sequence.

In this case, we have 12 terms, so n is equal to 12, \mathbf{a_{1}} is equal to 1, and is equal to 12.

Plug these values into the equation to solve for the sum. 

This lucky person received 78 gifts over the 12 days.

  1. A

Since we are marking down the price of the costume by 35%, we can calculate the new price of the costume by multiplying the original price by 0.65.

350 × 0.65 = 227.50

The new cost of the Santa costume is $227.50.

  1. B

In order to find the fraction of unemployed elves, we need to first find the total fraction of elves with jobs and then subtract the result from 1.

In order to add these fractions, we will need to find the least common multiple that the denominators share.

In this case, the least common multiple of 2, 3 and 8 is 24.

The total fraction of unemployed elves in the North Pole is .

Find More ELA and Math Resources at Piqosity!

We’re sorry that we couldn’t send you 23 birds, 5 golden rings, and 50 people of various professions, but we hope you’ve enjoyed these Christmas classroom activities! In thinking ahead for the next semester: you can find more (non-Christmas-themed) English, reading comprehension, and math lessons in our ELA and math courses! These are full-length courses available online through our app and can be purchased separately or received for free when bundled with our ISEE test prep courses.

Don’t forget to explore our collection of Hanukkah activities, a perfect companion to these resources for any classroom.

Thank You, and Merry Christmas from Piqosity!