Thursday, December 15, 2011

Four Christmases, How the Grinch Stole Christmas & The Polar Express: Christmas Eve, Santa Claus

Talking about Christmas is always a referring topic, especially in the end of the year. I hope you enjoy this activity and Merry Christmas to you all!

I. Santa Claus Quiz. More than one answer is possible: Taken from the wonderful site
1. Santa Claus is also Known as:

a. Saint Nicholas b. Father Christmas c. Santa

2. The image we have of Santa Claus nowadays was created in:

a. the 18th Century b. The 19th Century c. The 2oth Century

3. Santa Claus' traditional transport is:

a. a motorbike b. a sleigh pulled by reindeer c. horses

4. The annual Santa Claus World Championships are held in:

a. Switzerland and Sweden b. Austria and Australia c. Iceland and Italy

5. Santa Claus gets into houses to deliver presents:

a. down the chimney b. Through a window c. Through the front door

6. Traditionally, the three kings bring children presents instead of Santa Claus in:

a. South Africa b. Spain c. Scotland

7. Santa Claus brings presents to well behaved children. What happens to badly behaved children?

a. He brings them coal b. They are caught and taken away c. They're whipped

Answer key: 1. a, b, c 2. b 3. b 4. a - races that include sledge racing, chimney climbing, karaoke. 5. a (possibly c, most cases don't have chimneys) 6. b - But Santa is becoming more popular nowadays 7. a, b, c - all are used to scare children into obedience.

II. Work in small groups. Do the comments below reflect your own opinion and experiences about Christmas and Santa Claus? Explain your ideas.

1. I used to believe in Santa when I was child and I believed it for a long time.

2. Santa Claus is an unfair tool for parents to make children behave well.

3. Making your children believe in Santa Claus is not fair because it means lying is okay.

4. The image of Santa Claus is just part of the commercialism of Christmas.

5. Santa Claus takes away the real meaning of Christmas.

III. Vocabulary matching. Match the words related to Christmas and their definitions.

1. Mistletoe

2.Trimming the tree

3. White Christmas

4. Stockings

5. Reindeer

6. Sleigh

7. eggnog

8. Christmas carols

9. Christmas Eve

10. Carving the bird

11. Chestnuts

12. Wreath

( ) This is a plant. There’s a fun tradition that North Americans follow during Christmas. Mistletoe is often hung from a doorway between two rooms. If someone stands under the mistletoe, it is customary for someone else (usually a member of the opposite sex) to kiss him/her.

( ) are commonly eaten at Christmas.

( ) a Christmas with snow.

( ) literally, ‘socks.’ People hang them in front of a fireplace. Small presents are placed there and usually opened on Christmas morning.( ) a drink commonly served at Christmas parties.

( ) cutting the meat and handing it out to people is called ‘carving’ the bird

( ) Santa rides in a sleigh that is pulled by them. The most famous one is Rudolph.

( ) a ‘carriage’ that rides on snow.

( ) songs that are sung at Christmas.

( ) the evening of December 24, also called “The night before Christmas.”

( ) decorating the tree is called ‘trimming the tree’.

( ) a circular band of flowers or foliage twisted together, used as a symbol or decoration. It is usually placed on the front door.

Answer key: 1, 11, 3, 4, 7, 10, 5, 6, 8, 9, 2, 12

IV. Take turns asking each other the following questions:

1. How do you celebrate Christmas?

2. Is Xmas time a good or bad moment in your life? Why?

3. Is shopping for Xmas a hassle or something fun?

4. What are the good and bad sides of Xmas time?

5. What do you usually eat during Xmas?

6. Do you celebrate Xmas on Xmas eve or on Xmas day?

7. Have you ever believed in Santa Claus? How did you find out he does not exist?

8. Is it fair that people help poor people during Xmas time, but not during the rest of the year? Why do they do it? What can be done about it?

V. Watch the first segment from the movie Four Christmases and discuss the questions that follow:

1. Describe the scene

2. How does this family celebrate Xmas?

3. Who still believes in Santa Claus?

4. What kinds of presents were given? Did the children like them? What about the adults?

Explain how you know it.

5. What's your opinion about the way the children were told Santa does not exist?

6. What do you think about the boy's reaction to the news?

7. How similar is the gift exchange to the one you have at home?

VI. Now watch the segment from the movie How the Grinch Stole Christmas and answer the questions below:

1. Describe the scene.

2. What vocabulary in exercise III did you see during the scene?

3. What did the characters do to celebrate Xmas?

4. How similar is Xmas day in Whoville AND your town's Christmas celebration?

5. In your opinion, is this scene's the most perfect or the most boring Xmas time? Explain it.

6. What were some of the things you saw in the segment that don't take place in
Christmas time where you live.

Watch the scene from the movie The Polar Express and discuss the questions:

1. Describe the scene.

2. What is the vocabulary in exercise III that you managed to see in the segment?

3. Who believes in Santa Claus?

4. Describe Santa Claus' personality, according to the segment.

5. How do the children feel?





  1. Claudio!

    This activity is sooooo nice!
    It is good to me too as I learn more about it!
    Miss you all so much!
    Happy Holidays!

  2. A very merry Christmas to you and yours, Claudio :) Alex