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Comparing and Contrasting Christmas Around the World
Which set of standards are you looking for?
Students will be able to read different informational texts and compare and contrast the celebration of Christmas in two different countries.
- Tell students that today we will be learning about how people celebrate Christmas in different countries and comparing and contrasting Christmas in different countries around the world.
- Ask students if they celebrate Christmas, and, if so, to share some of their favorite Christmas traditions including activities, foods they eat, etc.
Explicit Instruction/Teacher modeling(10 minutes)
- Tell students that as a class we will read about Christmas in New Zealand.
- Draw a Venn diagram on a piece of chart paper.
- Label one circle as “Christmas in the U.S. ” and the other circle as “Christmas in New Zealand.”
- Tell students that as we are reading they will be looking for examples of how Christmas in New Zealand is similar to Christmas in the United States. This information will go in the overlapping section of the two circles on the Venn Diagram.
- Tell students that we will also be looking for examples of how Christmas in New Zealand is different from Christmas in the U.S. This information will be written in the circle under the correct heading. For example, in New Zealand they celebrate Christmas during the summer, but in the U.S. they celebrate Christmas during the winter.
- Remind students that they do not have to write on the Venn diagram using complete sentences. Instead, they can use single words or phrases (e.g. Christmas during summer).
Guided Practice(10 minutes)
- Project the Christmas in New Zealand worksheet on the board.
- Read the information aloud and ask students to follow along silently.
- Remind students to be listening closely for examples of how Christmas in the U.S. compares and contrasts with those celebrating in New Zealand.
- After reading, refer back to the Venn diagram and call on volunteers to contribute ideas to fill in the diagram.
- Write students’ ideas in the appropriate place and remind students where to write information that is similar and information that is different on the Venn diagram.
Independent working time(20 minutes)
- Tell students that it is their turn to compare and contrast Christmas in two different countries.
- Distribute the Christmas in Mexico and Christmas in Sweden worksheets.
- Tell students that they will be reading these two informational texts and comparing and contrasting how people celebrate Christmas in these two countries.
- Distribute the Nonfiction Compare and Contrast worksheet to each student.
- Tell students that they will use this worksheet to write down their contrasts and comparisons between Christmas in these two countries.
Support: Read each informational text aloud to students needing extra support. Talk through their ideas with them before they move onto filling in the Nonfiction Compare and Contrast worksheet.
Enrichment: Give students a copy of the Christmas in England worksheet, and ask them to add a third circle to their Nonfiction Compare and Contrast worksheet so that they are comparing and contrasting three different informational texts.
- On the board write some different categories for students to use to compare and contrast Christmas in different countries, such as food, names for Santa Claus, weather during Christmas, beginning and end of Christmas celebrations, etc.
- Tell students that you will read aloud an informational text called "Christmas in the Philippines."
- As they are listening, ask students to compare and contrast Christmas in the Philippines with Christmas in New Zealand.
- After reading, go through the categories on the chart paper. Ask students to give a thumbs up if people celebrate in the same way or a thumbs down if people celebrate differently for each category.
Review and closing(5 minutes)
- Discuss unique cultures and traditions with the following questions:
- Are there any similarities with how they celebrate Christmas compared to how people celebrate in Sweden and Mexico?
- Are there any differences with how they celebrate Christmas compared to how people celebrate in Sweden and Mexico?