A Blessed Christmas: A Unit Study Approach To Studying The Symbols of Christmas is a free online unit study that is Scripture based. The study is edited and adapted with permission by Kathryn M. Martinez based on original material by Karen Caroe. Martinez’s study was published in 2002, so a number of the weblinks no longer work. However, the content of the study is so good that it is worth using despite broken links.
For each day of December leading up to Christmas, a Christmas symbols or people serve as the themes. Some of the themes are the Advent wreath, gifts, ornaments, bells, St. Nicholas, Mary, shepherds, and the Baby in the Manger.
Each day begins with a brief explanation of the symbol or person, followed by Scripture verses and a discussion question. For example, the lesson on Gifts begins by explaining that the gift of Jesus is the greatest gift of all. Then it also mentions the gifts of the magi and the way we use gifts to show love to others. The Scripture passage is Matthew 2:10-11 about the gifts of the Magi. Then it poses the question, “The wise men worshipped Christ BEFORE giving gifts to him. We need to be sure worship comes before the shopping and giving of gifts. How can this be done?”
This is followed by a number of activities that you might use: crafts, recipes, reading on related topics, coloring pages, worksheets, games, puzzles, homemade gift projects, service projects, and songs. Types of activities vary from lesson to lesson. Instructions or details for some activities are included in the unit study itself while others are connected through the weblinks. The www.easyfunschool.com site has a link to a html version of this study, but the 49-page PDF version I reviewed seems to have a lot more detail. However, the “Christmas and Winter Activities and Lessons Index” page on the website at http://easyfunschool.com/IndexChristmas.html has links to individual activities, many of which seem to be the same as those in the PDF.
If you wish, you can rearrange the order of the themes to some extent to align with the liturgical calendar or your own preferences. However, you should begin with the first lesson on the Advent Wreath. This lesson includes a list of 28 activities that you might do to show love to others as well as additional Scripture readings. Examples of a few activities are, “Write a note to your father and tell him how much you love and appreciate him” and “Set the dinner table without being asked.” These and a few other advent customs described in the lesson might be used throughout the month. The study concludes with brief suggestions for celebrating the 12 Days of Christmas that begin on December 26.
The study uses quotes from the New International Version of the Bible and should be suitable for Christians of all denominations.