Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

December 8, 2010

Christmas Break Homework Assignments

Most teachers are nice enough not to give any real homework of the Christmas holidays, but there is nothing wrong with giving some inspirational homework assignments to discuss when they return in January. Consider giving these Christmas Break homework assignments a try:

  • Reflect back on Advent and thing of things you can do next year or even during Lent that will help make this season a special time of prayer.
  • Go to Mass on Christmas Day. Inspired by Jonathan Sullivan’s post about Advent Homework, ask the students to attend Mass on Christmas Day (or Christmas Eve). Many families do not do this despite the fact that it is a holy day of obligation.
  • Go to Mass on New Years Day. January 1 is a Holy Day of Obligation as well celebrating the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. Most people don’t know this. Give your students a reminder and ask them to go to Mass this day as well. (Note that in some years, like 2011, attending Mass is not required because January 1 falls on a Saturday or a Monday.)
  • Say thank you in a special way to someone who gave you a present for Christmas. Write them a note, send them an email, or give them a Facebook gift.
  • Send or give a gift to someone you don’t know. Participate in giving programs, giving trees, or toy drives at your local church or just give someone a random gift that they might enjoy.

Once the students return to school, give them some time to journal and discuss the assignments they took on. Fold this into a discussion about how their Christmas breaks went this year. Talk less about what they got for Christmas and more about what they gave.

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