Are you wondering how to homeschool during the Christmas season?
Keeping up with homeschool can be tough in December, but here’s a look at how to incorporate the best homeschool Christmas traditions into your school days!
December can be an easy month to slack off with homeschooling.
I know, because I’ve done it.
With gifts to buy, presents to wrap, cookies to bake, parties and concerts to attend, the holidays can feel overwhelming to anyone.
In fact, according to a study shared on CNBC.com, 42% of workers report that their stress is highest in December over all the other months of the year.
If this is true for those in the workplace, I’m willing to wager that this is especially true for the homeschool mom.
Not only do you have the same pressures as above, you also feel the desire to make the Christmas season special for your kids – and educate them at home too!
While you probably won’t have a large class holiday party or concert, there are many things you can do to make homeschooling wonderful during the holidays.
And the best part?
You don’t have to add extra items to your already crammed December schedule! Instead, you can carry out these special Christmas traditions DURING the school day – and learn while you do it. Is that a win-win or what?!
Free Resource Library
Before we get started talking about ways to make Christmas traditions part of your homeschool day, be sure to check out the Reluctant Homeschool Mama’s FREE resource library!
It’s full of great downloads that will help you to organize your homeschool and enrich your child’s education.
Also, new printables are added weekly, and there are lots of great homeschool Christmas resources on the way!
Click the image below to get access!
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9 Fun Homeschool Christmas Traditions
We’ll take a look at nine common family Christmas traditions and how you can find learning opportunities to apply in your homeschool.
The four main subjects we’ll take a look at are:
- language arts
Homeschool Christmas Traditions for Language Arts
Picture yourself and your kids cuddled together in front of the Christmas tree or the fireplace for these activities, okay?
Read Christmas stories
There are so many wonderful Christmas books for kids available! From pre-readers to chapter books, you are sure to find Christmas books to please every kid in your family!
While I have a long list of our favorite Christmas stories for kids on my other blog, here are a few of our very favorites!
These are all definitely worth checking out from your local library, but you may consider purchasing them to be able to read them year after year as part of your family Christmas tradition!
The Last Christmas Tree by Stephen Krensky
This story about a little tree looking for a home is both sweet and heartwarming. It raises awareness and creates compassion for those things (or people) that are different from the norm.
Olive, The Other Reindeer by Otto J. Seibold
Not only is the title of this book a fantastic play on words, it is a wonderful story of a little dog who goes after her dreams. While she looks different from the others, she is able to make a big impact.
(I recommend singing “Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer” after reading this book to see if you hear it a little differently!)
Reindeer Christmas by Mark Kimball MoultonI don’t recall how we were introduced to this book, but I am so glad it’s a part of our Christmas library. With rhyming sentences and beautiful pictures, this story is about a child who helps a wounded reindeer. His kindness does not go unnoticed, and he then shares his special wish with each reader of the book.
Christmas From Heaven as told by Tom BrokawIdeal for older children, this wonderful book tells the story of Gail Halvorsen and his experience as a young pilot flying over Berlin after World War II. Full of lovely illustrations and real photos, this story teaches the importance of kindness and the impact it can make.
Dear Santasaurus by Stacy McAnultyIn this book, a young dinosaur writes a series of letters to Santasaurus throughout the year. My kids love reading his explanations for his mishaps and seeing how his requests change from letter to letter. This is a fun read to follow up with writing actual letters to Santa.
For more language arts learning, you can have your kids write short book reports on any of these books or other Christmas books once or twice a week.
There is a great Book Report Form for your kids to use in the Homeschool Mama Resource Library! It’s just waiting for you to download and print as many copies as you need.
Write letters to Santa
Writing letters to Santa is a wonderful opportunity to teach or review the correct way to write a letter.
Grab the FREE printable Letter to Santa from the Reluctant Homeschool Mama’s Resource Library to make this extra special!
You could even print it on red or green paper for another festive touch.
Before your kids write their letters, be sure to teach the basics of letter writing. Their letters should contain:
- the date
- a salutation (Dear Santa,)
- a few short 2-3 sentence paragraphs about their year and their Christmas wishes
- a closing
- their name
Be sure to review their letters, looking for spelling and punctuation errors. If your kids still set a lot of store by Santa, you can emphasize the fact that they’ll want to do their best work on this letter.
Next, teach your kids how to address an envelope and have your kids actually mail their letters to Santa.
To get a legit response from Santa at the North Pole, check out these detailed instructions at usps.com!
Christmas pj’s and poems breakfast
Your kid will love the opportunity to start school in their pajamas!
One morning during December, have your kids stay in their Christmas pajamas and share a book of Christmas poems with each other as you eat a warm breakfast!
You can choose to do this on the last day of school before you break for Christmas, or on any day when you need a break from the routine!
Here are a few wonderful Christmas poetry book options:
Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert FrostOne of the most well-known and lovely poems about winter time. This version has gorgeous art as well. You may consider encouraging your middle and high school age kids to memorize this poem!
Amazing Peace by Maya AngelouThis beautiful book by celebrated author Maya Angelou couldn’t come at a better time than now! This poem was first read by Maya Angelou herself at the 2005 National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony.
White Christmas of Loooong Dog by Jessica NealThis light-hearted poem is perfect for the lower elementary grades! Kids can see the wonder of a snow-filled world from the perspective of a cute and funny little Dachshund.
Homeschool Christmas Traditions for Science
It may not seem that there are many scientific Christmas traditions for homeschool, but keep reading to find out what I recommend!
Bake and decorate Christmas cookies
Baking Christmas cookies is a very common tradition for many families at Christmastime!
You can easily turn this fun event into a science lesson by learning about chemical and physical changes.
Be sure to compare and contrast the different processes between baking and decorating cookies.
For additional learning, your kids might enjoy reading The Magic School Bus Gets Baked in a Cake to learn more about kitchen chemistry!
Create and decorate gingerbread houses
Your kids may really enjoy creating and decorating gingerbread houses this Christmas!
You can make this a learning experience by studying engineering topics such as structural design, or environmental topics such as the best type of homes for different world biomes.
If you want to ensure that your gingerbread houses will be a success, you may consider using a gingerbread house kit like this one from Wilton.
I really like that there are four small houses to decorate. That way each of my kids gets to decorate his or her own house – and the project is a bit smaller (and less messy!).
Learn about and debate artificial vs. real Christmas trees
Whether you put up and decorate your Christmas tree in December or November (or earlier!), it would be interesting for your kids to learn about the environment.
They may want to research the impacts of Christmas tree farms and whether or not they are good for the environment.
Or your kids could study the process in creating a structurally sound artificial Christmas tree.
Have your kids make their own decision about what type of Christmas tree is better based on their research and hold a mock debate!
Homeschool Christmas Traditions for Math
While I highly recommend continuing with your math curriculum through the majority of December, here are a couple Christmas traditions that can provide some great math learning opportunities.
Give sibling or family gifts
aHaving your kids give gifts to their siblings can help them learn an incredibly important skill: budgeting!
To help your kids put their math skills into practice, have them do all of their spending calculations on paper instead of on a calculator.
For kids who have learned about percents, have them practice calculating sales tax for the gifts they want to give.
Make Christmas cookies
While making Christmas cookies can be a great science lesson, it can also provide lots of opportunities to practice math skills such as fractions.
As you bake together, have your kids handle the measuring cups and spoons.
Discuss how many one-third cups will fit in one cup.
If you are doubling the recipe, have your kids work out the new measures by adding or multiplying fractions too!
Homeschool Christmas traditions for geography
As Christmas is celebrated all over the world, this is a wonderful time of year to learn about different regions and cultures.
Santa Tracker map
Learn about Christmas around the world
Learning about how other nations and cultures celebrate Christmas can be a richly rewarding experience.
You may consider choosing a new country to study every few days or every week.
You can learn regional and cultural names for Santa Claus, read cultural Christmas stories, or make traditional foods.
Final thoughts on homeschool Christmas traditions
T here are so many ways you can help your kids learn as they participate in these wonderful homeschool Christmas traditions!
(In fact, some of these will be so much fun that your kids might just forget they are in school!)
While I know December can be super busy, it is okay take a little break from your curriculum to enjoy these fun homeschool Christmas traditions with your kids!
Don’t forget to check out the Reluctant Homeschool Mama’s Resource Library for some great Christmas printables!
Related articles about homeschool traditions:
9 Traditions to Make Your First Day of Homeschool Amazing
Related articles about homeschool Christmas:
–The 9 Best Homeschool Christmas Traditions for Fun and Learning