ESL Christmas Activities, Games and Worksheets

A Christmas Letter

ESL Christmas Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Matching - Elementary - 60 minutes

This fun Christmas activity can be used to teach Christmas vocabulary and traditions. The students are divided into teams of four. Each team is given a set of picture cards, which they shuffle and deal out evenly. The students then play a game where a Christmas letter is read out and they race to complete it by providing the words. The teacher starts reading the letter to the class using the word 'blank' for the missing words. When a missing word comes up, the students look at their cards and see if they have a suitable word to complete the sentence. The first student to hold up the correct picture card and say the word, scores a point for their team. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins. Each student is then given a copy of the worksheet. Students put all their team's cards together face up on the table and complete the letter for themselves. When everyone has finished, the answers are checked as a class. As an extension, the students write a reply to the letter where they write about the festivals they celebrate. These letters can be read aloud or displayed around the classroom. Students can also play a categorizing game, pelmanism game or game of 'Snap' with the cards.
 

Christmas Word Puzzle

ESL Christmas Worksheet - Matching, Writing and Spelling Activity - Elementary - 20 minutes

In this enjoyable Christmas worksheet, students race to write down 20 Christmas words by matching numbers to letters. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. Working alone, the students look at the numbers for each word and find the corresponding letters in the chart on the worksheet. The students then write the Christmas word in the space provided. When a student thinks they have finished, their answers and spelling are checked. The first student to complete the worksheet correctly wins. When everyone has finished, the correct answers and meaning of each word are reviewed as a class.
 

Christmas Word Search

ESL Christmas Worksheet - Reading, Spelling and Speaking Activity - Elementary - 25 minutes

In this festive worksheet activity, students find Christmas vocabulary in a word search and then use the words in sentences. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. The students look for the Christmas vocabulary shown on the worksheet in the word search and tick the words off as they go. When the students have finished, the position and meaning of each Christmas word is reviewed with the class. The students are then divided into teams of four. A Christmas word is called out at random from the word search. The first student to put up their hand and make an appropriate sentence with the word scores a point for their team. This process continues until all the words have been used. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.
 

Draw, Colour and Describe

ESL Christmas Activity - Drawing, Reading and Writing - Elementary - 30 minutes

In this creative worksheet activity, students draw, colour and describe Christmas pictures. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet and some coloured pens or pencils. Students then draw and colour a Christmas picture. When the students have finished, they think about what they can see in the picture and what is happening. Students then write adjectives, nouns and verbs they can use to describe their picture and write them in a box on the worksheet. Students then use the words in the box to write a description of their Christmas picture. Afterwards, the students present their pictures and descriptions to the class.
 

Imperative Snowflake

ESL Christmas Activity - Reading - Elementary - 20 minutes

Here is a practical Christmas activity to help decorate the classroom for Christmas. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet, a piece of paper and some scissors. Working alone, students read the instructions on the worksheet and make a snowflake using the paper and scissors. When the students have finished, the instructions are reviewed with the class. Students then use the snowflakes to decorate the classroom by hanging them up or taping them to the window. Students could also make their snowflakes more decorative by adding glitter. As an extension, students make small snowflakes and glue them to some coloured paper to make a Christmas card.
 

Letter to Santa

ESL Christmas Activity - Reading and Writing - Elementary - 20 minutes

Here is a useful Christmas activity for young learners. In the activity, students complete a letter to Santa Claus, telling Santa about the good things they have done this year and the presents they want for Christmas. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. Students begin by completing the letter with their name, age and location. Students then go on to write about the good things they have done this year and why they deserve a present. After that, students tell Santa what they would like for Christmas by creating a Christmas wish list. When the students have finished writing, they read their letters to the class. The letters can then be displayed around the classroom or sent to the North Pole.
 

Santa's Missing Hat

ESL Christmas Play - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking Activity - Elementary - 40 minutes

In this entertaining teaching activity, students perform a short Christmas play for the class. The students are divided into groups and each student is given a copy of the script. Each student is assigned or chooses a role in the play. Students then practice the script in their groups. Students rehearse the play several times and practice acting out the various scenes. When the groups are ready, they take it in turns to act out the play in front of the class. As the other students watch the play, they answer comprehension questions based on the story. When the groups have finished performing, the answers are checked with the class. Afterwards, students draw a scene from the play. These can be cut out and displayed around the classroom.
 

Thank You Letter

ESL Christmas Activity - Reading and Writing - Elementary - 25 minutes

In this fun Christmas activity, students write thank you letters for Christmas presents by completing a sentence and then passing the letter along to another student who writes the next sentence. This is a light-hearted activity and the students should be encouraged to be as imaginative or amusing as they like by completing the letters with the names of famous people, unusual Christmas presents and funny adjectives, etc. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. The class is divided into large groups and each group sits in a circle. The students begin by completing the salutation, e.g. 'Dear Batman'. Students then fold the letter along the dotted line so the part they have written is hidden. Students then pass the letter to the person on their right. Students then complete the next sentence and fold the paper as before and give it to the person on their right. This process is repeated until all the sentences have been completed. When the students write their name at the bottom of the worksheet, the letter becomes theirs. Students then open out the letter and read it aloud to the group. The letters should make an entertaining read.
 

A Christmas Carol

ESL Christmas Activity - Listening, Reading and Matching - Pre-intermediate - 25 minutes

This worksheet activity is based on the story "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens. The worksheet can be used to check the students' comprehension of the book or film. The students begin by reading an introduction to the story at the top of the worksheet. Students then watch or listen to the story "A Christmas Carol." As the students are watching or listening to the story, they match the sentences on the worksheet to each ghost, according to the things that each ghost shows Scrooge. When Scrooge has been visited by all three ghosts, the story is stopped and the answers are checked with the class. Students then predict what will happen next. The story continues and the students check to see if their predictions were correct.
 

Christmas Blockbusters

ESL Christmas Game - Listening and Speaking Activity - Pre-intermediate - 20 minutes

In this engaging Christmas game, students guess vocabulary related to Christmas from clues given by the teacher. A five-by-five hexagon grid is drawn on the board. In each hexagon are letters. The letters stand for words to do with Christmas. The class is then divided into two teams and a colour is allocated to each team, e.g. red and blue. The two teams decide which direction they want to play - top to bottom or left to right. The game begins with the center hexagon. The teacher gives a clue for the letters in the hexagon, e.g. if the letters were 'NYD', the clue might be: The first day of the year. The two teams then race to give the correct answer, e.g. New Year's Day. The first team to answer correctly wins the hexagon and it is coloured accordingly. The winning team then chooses the next hexagon. A clue is given for the letters in that hexagon and both teams race to answer as before. The aim of the game is to connect the hexagons from top to bottom or left to right. The first team to make the connection wins the game.
 

Christmas Conversation Questions

ESL Christmas Conversation Questions Activity - Writing, Listening and Speaking - Pre-intermediate - 40 minutes

In this rewarding activity, students complete Christmas conversation questions with 'Wh' and yes/no question words and then ask and answer the questions with a partner. The class is divided into two groups (A and B) and each student is given a corresponding worksheet. Working with the people in their group, students use question words in a box on the worksheet to complete a set of Christmas conversation questions. When the students have completed the questions, the answers are checked with each group. Students then pair up with someone from the other group. The students take it in turns to ask and answer the questions with their partner. When everyone has finished, the students give feedback to the class on what they found out about their partner.
 

Christmas Crossword

ESL Christmas Activity - Writing, Listening and Speaking - Pre-intermediate - 30 minutes

In this festive worksheet activity, students complete a crossword by defining and guessing Christmas vocabulary. The class is divided into two groups (A and B) and each student is given a corresponding worksheet. Both groups have the same crossword, but Group A has the words across and Group B has the words down. Working with the people in their group, students invent and write down clues for the Christmas words written on their crossword. When the students have finished writing, they pair up with someone from the other group. The students then take it in turns to ask their partner for a clue to one of their missing words, e.g. 'What's 1 down?' Their partner reads out the clue for that Christmas word and the other student tries to guess what it is. If the student guesses the word successfully, they write it on their crossword. If not, their partner continues to give more clues until the student is able to guess the word. When the students have finished, they check their spelling by comparing crosswords.
 

Christmas in England

ESL Christmas Game - Reading, Writing and Speaking Activity - Pre-intermediate - 40 minutes

In this insightful Christmas game, students learn about English Christmas traditions by completing sentences with adverbs of frequency. The students are divided into teams of three or four and each team is given a copy of the worksheet. The first sentence about Christmas in England is read aloud to the class. Teams then guess the missing adverb of frequency in the sentence. Teams that want to guess the adverb of frequency without a clue give their answers first. Teams that are unsure of the correct answer ask for a clue, but they must wait until all the answers have been given by the other teams before the clue is given. The teams that listen to the clue then give their answers and the correct adverb of frequency is revealed. Teams score five points if they guess correctly without a clue and two points if they guess correctly after a clue has been given. The next sentence is then read out to the class and so on. This continues until all the sentences have been completed. The team with the highest score at the end of the game wins.
 

Christmas Mimes

ESL Christmas Game - Miming and Speaking Activity - Pre-intermediate - 25 minutes

This amusing Christmas game can be used to teach or review common Christmas traditions and activities as well as the present continuous tense. The aim of the game is to guess what Christmas traditions or activities students are doing from mimes. The class is divided into two teams. One team goes first and chooses a team member to do the first mime. The chosen student comes to the front of the class and is given a mime card. The student then asks the class 'What am I doing?' and performs the mime on the card. When a member of either team thinks they know what Christmas tradition or activity the student is doing, they call out their answer by making a present continuous sentence, e.g. 'You are singing a Christmas carol'. Students must say the exact words on the mime card to win. The first student to guess the sentence wins a point for their team. A student from the other team then comes to the front of the class and so on. The game continues with teams taking it in turns to mime a Christmas tradition or activity until all the cards have been used. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.
 

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

ESL Grinch Video Worksheet - Listening, Reading and Writing Activity - Pre-intermediate - 30 minutes

In this video worksheet, students answer comprehension questions about the film "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. Students watch the film and answer the comprehension questions on the worksheet. When the film is over, the answers are checked with the class.
 
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