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Mystery Christmas Carols

Everyone has a favorite Christmas carol. Illustrate a carol and then try to identify each other’s songs!

  • Grade 2
    Grade 3
    Grade 4
  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Directions

    1. Christmas carols have very interesting histories. Share books with students in a read aloud format such as "Silent Night: The Song and Its Story" by Margaret Hodges or "Silent Night, Holy Night: The Story Behind Our Favorite Christmas Carol" by Myrna A. Strasser to learn the history of that carol. How did caroling get started? From what countries are the carols a tradition? Invite students to do investigate the history of Christmas carols. Provide them with a variety of text and electronic resources for this activity.
    2. When research is complete, ask students to choose a favorite carol and find out the story behind it. On construction paper, write the carol title, a brief history, and the words to at least one verse and the chorus with Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils.
    3. On the other side of the paper, ask students to sketch a picture that illustrates the verse chosen. Color the drawing with Crayola Twistables® Crayons.
    4. Students display their drawings. Challenge classmates to identify the name of each others’ carols from clues in the illustrations.
  • Standards

    LA: Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.

    LA: Use information gained from illustrations (e.g., maps, photographs) and the words in a text to demonstrate understanding of the text.

    LA: Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time, sequence, and cause/effect.

    LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 3 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.

    LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.

    SS: Describe ways in which language, stories, folktales, music, and artistic creations serve as expressions of culture and influence behavior of people living in a particular culture.

    SS: Give examples of and explain group and institutional influences such as religious beliefs, laws, and peer pressure, on people, events, and elements of culture.

    SS: Identify and use various sources for reconstructing the past, such as documents, letters, diaries, maps, textbooks, photos, and others.

    VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.

    VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.

    VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.

    VA: Identify specific works of art as belonging to particular cultures, times, and places.

  • Adaptations

    Students create a flip book which illustrates an animated version of a scene from favorite Christmas carols.

    Working in small groups, students compose original lyrics to a favorite Christmas carol melody. Students practice their lyrics in preparation for presenting the song to classmates. The school's music teacher may assist with this writing activity if available.

    Students investigate other holiday songs and illustrate their messages.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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