Enjoy this Christmas lesson plan, suitable for children in grades 4–6.
The children will be able to
Arrange the children in pairs and invite them to talk about the many different things they do during the Christmas season. (eat special foods, visit relatives, sing songs, exchange presents) Say: Because the birth of Jesus is so important, we celebrate it over a number of days. Ask the children: When do we begin to prepare for Christmas in the Church? (the first Sunday of Advent) Explain to the children that today they are going to learn about the Christmas season and how it lasts for three weeks.
Pass out Student Handout A, The Promised One, and ask the children to read it silently. Ask a volunteer to read Luke 2:1–7. Ask: Which feast is described in this reading? (Christmas) What will happen next? (Angels will tell shepherds that Jesus is born, and the shepherds will go to visit him.) Ask two volunteers to read the next two parts of the story, Luke 2:8–14 and 2:15–20.
Tell the children that the next feast day after Christmas is the feast of the Holy Family. Tell them you are going to read them a story about the Holy Family, and then read Luke 2:41–52.
Then tell the children that Epiphany is the feast day following the feast of the Holy Family. Ask: What does this feast celebrate? (the three Wise Men visiting Jesus) Read Matthew 2:1–12 to the children.
Then ask them what the final feast of the Christmas season celebrates. (the baptism of Jesus) Read to the children the account of the baptism in Matthew 4:13–17.
Pass out Student Handout B, Hidden Message Crossword, and have the children complete the puzzle and find the hidden message. Use this activity to see if the children have an understanding of the main parts of Jesus’ life celebrated during the Christmas season.
Pass out the Prayer Service, Student Handout C. Have a few volunteers read Matthew 2:1–11. Make sure you allow time after the reading for silent reflection.
Print out the Family Handout, The Birth of Jesus, and have the children take it home to share with their families.