christmas stories

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by jitterbug2, Nov 18, 2006.

  1. jitterbug2

    jitterbug2 Rookie

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    Nov 18, 2006

    Does anyone know any good Christmas stories for second grade? First grade does holidays around the world and third grade does Best Christmas Pageant Ever. We were going to do Polar Express but we just found out that first grade did that too! I'm out of ideas!
     
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  3. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Nov 18, 2006

    What about doing the twelve days of Christmas and having them act out the parts?
     
  4. Ms. Jane

    Ms. Jane Companion

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    Nov 19, 2006

    The Night Before Christmas might work.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nov 19, 2006

    How about the ideas behind O Henry's "The Gift of the Magi"?? The story itself is above their heads, but the ideas are wonderful.

    If you can do religious themes, how about The Little Drummer Boy?

    Or A Christmas Carol? Or the ideas behind It's a Wonderful Life-- that each of us has an effect on the world around us?
     
  6. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Nov 19, 2006

    The Christmas Star... but it's religious
     
  7. jitterbug2

    jitterbug2 Rookie

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    Nov 19, 2006

    yeah, I really don't want to get into the religious aspect because of all the "wonderful issues." I was thinkgin of the Christmas carol but do you think that it would be too hard for second grade?
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nov 19, 2006

    How about the Donald Duck Scrooge Mc Duck version? I haven't seen it in years, but vaguely remember it.

    Here it is: I bet your library has it:
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0085936/
     
  9. brightstar102

    brightstar102 New Member

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    Nov 21, 2006

    How about Twas the Night Before Christmas and then do the Texas version?
     
  10. 101dalmatian

    101dalmatian Companion

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    Nov 21, 2006

    We use The Grinch Who Stole Christmas amd Olive the Other Reindeer.
     
  11. ctopher

    ctopher Comrade

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    Nov 21, 2006

    Mr. Putter and Tabby Bake the Cake, His neighbor Mrs. Teaberry loves fruitcake but Mr. Putter doesn't want to give her a cake for Christmas that will break her toe so he decides to bake her a cake. But he doesn't know how! It's a GREAT story!

    Mr. Willoby's Christmas tree is another story we do.
     
  12. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Nov 21, 2006

    I always read a wonderful but little-known story called Holly and Ivy.

    From Publishers Weekly
    A beautiful story of wishing: of a little girl who wants a doll and a grandmother; of a doll that yearns for a child's arms around it; and of a lonely policeman's wife who wants a child in her home. Ages 5-10.
     
  13. brightstar102

    brightstar102 New Member

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    Nov 22, 2006

    thanks
     
  14. AnonyMS

    AnonyMS 7th grade ELA SDI in Texas

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    Nov 24, 2006

    All those "wonderful issues" are very valid ones for students who do not celebrate Christmas. Please make sure that all your students celebrate before you read any Christmas story.
     
  15. ctopher

    ctopher Comrade

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    Nov 24, 2006

    It can be a problem, but only if that's all that is talked about. I also teach my students about other winter holidays that others might celebrate. I don't think it's wrong for people of all faiths and no faith to learn what others do and why.
     
  16. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Nov 24, 2006

    Let's not forget that Christmas IS a federal holiday(secular)....not only a religious celebration.
     
  17. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Nov 24, 2006

    I have a cute book Twas the night before the night before Christmas...it's about how a mom gets sick & the family has to get ready!!!
     
  18. oscarfargo

    oscarfargo New Member

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    Nov 24, 2006

    I have a Christmas Story suggestion for your grade 2

    I know of a new Christmas story for your grade 2 students. You may send me an email if you are interested.
     
  19. AnonyMS

    AnonyMS 7th grade ELA SDI in Texas

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    Nov 24, 2006

    Federal holiday or not, it is religious holiday (not secular although commercialized) and if my non-Christian children are in a public school then they shouldn't have to be subjected to arts & crafts, stories, Santa, etc. which focus on Xmas.
     
  20. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Nov 24, 2006

    We have become a nation of special interests. Instead of enjoying a special season and putting aside sectarian differences so that Christmas can be savored, some of us are committed to finding offense with a holiday that promotes "goodwill toward men."
    How HORRIBLE your children should be subjected to historical traditions and beliefs!:eek:
    So, your children shouldn't have to be subjected to all the lights, decorations, Christmas trees, music, etc. that our cities and towns may STILL be able to decorate with, because if offends you? Tell the federal government. :rolleyes:
     
  21. ctopher

    ctopher Comrade

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    Nov 24, 2006


    Well Said!!!!
     
  22. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nov 24, 2006


    I am Christian. I teach in a Catholic school. My kids, along with my husband and I attend church on a regular basis. Christmas Eve is, hands down, my favorite part of the entire year.

    But in my son's third grade class, there are several Jews, at least one Muslim, and I'm sure a variety of other religions. Theses kids are 8. I'm sure they have no idea why they seem to be out of the mainstream. But Christmas is all around them, and they're not a part of it.

    And, regardless of what Uncle Sam says, Christmas is a religious holiday. "Goodwill toward men" is part of the message-- the real gist of Christmas revolves around a baby born in a manger in Bethlehem.

    Uncle Sam has been wrong once or twice in the past. Let's take a trip down memory lane to the days before the Civil Rights movement, when taxpaying Americans were told they had to sit in the back of the bus and drink from separate water fountains.

    The original post asked for a story for a group of 2nd graders in what I assume is a public school. There are a number of wonderful stories with positive messages that do NOT revolve around a holiday that a number of those small children do not celebrate. I see nothing wrong with a teacher trying to include ALL her children in the message.

    Can we try to keep it civil, in keeping with the aforementioned "goodwill towards men"??
     
  23. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Nov 24, 2006

    I believe I have!
     
  24. Music Doc

    Music Doc Habitué

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    Nov 24, 2006

    Just a quick thought here......the U.S Constitution provides for Freedom OF Religion........not Freedom FROM Religion. This country, whether people like it or not, was founded on Christian principles and beliefs. Today it seems that it's okay to promulgate every set of beliefs EXCEPT Christianity....and I, for one, am tired of it. If someone has a desire to share a story about Christmas and does so in a positive manner, I would say absolutely share the story.
     
  25. jitterbug2

    jitterbug2 Rookie

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    My thought really is that it is literature. I teach my students that they may believe in what ever they like and that they take their beliefs seriously. Everyone believes different things and there is nothing wrong with the differences. That does not mean however that they can be ignorant of what those other beliefs are. The only way they can get along with people of different faiths and beliefs is to understand people of different faiths and beliefs. I am a strong believer that every grade needs to be taught these differences and I teach it no matter what the grade may be.

    However, getting back to my original question, seeing as how I was the one that began this post, I think that as long as it is a good piece of literature it needs to be shared. If parents do not wish to expose their children to the differences of the world they do not need to send them to public school. I say that if a book such as Polar Express is a wonderful piece of children's literature then it needs to be shared with our children whether it be about Christmas and Santa or not. Just as I would not deny my students access to stories such as Polar Express, I would also not deny my students access to other great books like African folklore, Black History books, lengends and myths, or just plain silliness. We read stories from other countries all throughout the year. Why should I deny them the opportunity to read a great piece of literature during the Christmas season?
     
  26. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nov 25, 2006


    I would prefer to keep this a public discussion, not a private debate. So I hope you don't mind if I respond to your PM here.

    The closing lines of your post, particularly the rolled eyes at the end, seemed to imply a lack of respect, or tolerance, or something, for positions which did not agree with yours. If they were meant to imply something else you have my apologies.

    As to the role of the government, several state governments shut down for Good Friday. In NYC, alternate side of the street parking rules are cancelled for Yom Kippur. So sometimes it's about recognizing and respecting a holy day. Remember, our founding fathers were fleeing a state religion. They were very careful not to establish one of their own.

    My own children learn about the holy aspect of Christmas at home. They know that the creche we got (upon request) as an engagement gift is one of my most cherished possessions. They go to mass on Sunday mornings. My kids don't need to learn the real meaning of Christmas at school.

    Sure, we secularize it. I wear my Santa hat shopping during December. They bring in goody bags at Christmas time. But the ones to Yousef and Joshua, who do not celebrate Christmas, have penguins and snowflakes. Kristen and Joey, who do, get Santa and Rudolph.

    Maybe it's a regional thing: there's such a great diversity of people around here that we're sensitive not to step on each other's toes. So my Korean born son fits right in there with his blonde sisters and all the other kids in his class. He learned the Dreidle song last holiday season, and made menorahs right along with the wreath he made in school. They did several worksheets on Kwanza. I have no objection to our kids learning about all the holidays and holy days that are celebrated-- the tremendous diversity of our people is one of the most magnificent parts of our nation. But diversity isn't about Santa vs Rudolph-- we've got to acknowledge that some people don't share our beliefs. Their tax dollars are also supporting our schools, and their kids should not be indoctrinated into our point of view. It's those of us who feel that school is a place for religious beliefs who should be looking for other schools-- hence the Catholic school where I teach. Public schools here are meant for all children of all faiths, not just those in the majority.

    My early posts on this thread suggested some fairly neutral stories for the 2nd grade class. I included some others in case the original poster was teaching in a Christian school.

    Well, I'm out. I've said my piece and you can feel free to agree or disagree.
     
  27. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Alice, I'm not trying to debate anything. And it really isn't about agreeing or disagreeing with you. I merely stated facts. The "rolling of eyes" is my frustration at the lack of tolerance for MY beliefs and rights as an American too. Christianity, particularly at Christmas time has come under attack by MANY in this nation. Public school is for ALL children........Christian children too. No one is talking about "indoctrinating" someones faith into the schools. I didn't say ANYTHING about the baby Jesus! I mentioned it is a Federally recognized holiday, and as such we should be able to recognize it freely, without scorn from others. It has NOTHING to do with what region of the country you are from or teaching in a public vs. private school. We have a lot of diversity here as well. I wasn't trying to "step on toes" in my reply. For someone to feel "subjected" to anything more then a nationally recognized holiday, is being intolerant in my opinion.
    Well to the Original Poster......good luck finding a story.
     
  28. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Kinderkids, I'm not sire I understand your point. Are you saying that we shouldn't include Hanukkah and Kwanzaa in our December celebrations at school? I'm confused.

    Christmas is a federal holiday (to the government) because so many Americans celebrate it. Many of those people aren't Christian or believers. Yes, it is secularized, or embedded in our culture without the religious aspect. I don't see anything wrong with teaching the religious meaning of Christmas at church and home and joining in with others for the secular aspect at school.

    I love the book Holly and Ivy by Rumer Godden. It is about a young child looking for a family at Christmas.
     
  29. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    No, not saying that at all. In fact they should be included, by all means!!. I just think that people shouldn't go to extremes of avoiding anything that mentions the word Christmas.....I think it has become a "bad" word and as such, there has been a fear to even say it in the public sector. Sorry daisy if I was unclear.
     
  30. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Nov 25, 2006

    Ohhhh, I understand. Thank you. One year I went a little overboard trying to make sure I included Hanukkah in our lessons and the kids thought I was Jewish. Guess I overdid it.
     

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