Holiday Traditions: A Review – Teacher’s Corner

Teacher’s Corner
The following are writing prompts and discussion topics you can use to help students think about Holiday Traditions.
This will be our last Teacher’s Corner post until 2023.
A family tradition is something a family does time after time or year after year. It is first organized by parents and is continued by children as they have families of their own. An example of a tradition is eating a certain food at Thanksgiving like turkey or pumpkin pie.
  1. Do you think it is a good idea for families to have traditions at Holiday time? Why or why not?
  2. Below  are two traditions that some families have described. Pick one of them and write about or discuss what you think of it. If you were going to suggest it to a friend, what would you keep about it? What would you change about it?
    Tradition A: Hide and Seek. A special present for each child was hidden somewhere in the house and the children hunted for it. If necessary, adults gave clues to help the children find the presents.
    Tradition B: Holiday Tournament. A game that all family members and any Holiday guests can play.A trophy is given to the winner that passes on to the next winner the next year.
  3. Imagine you are grown up, have a family of your own, and want to start a new tradition in your new family. Describe what that tradition might be and why you like the idea of it.
Teachers, you can use this blog in classrooms. Here are two ideas about how.
  1. For middle or high school parenting or child development courses:
    • Use the blog for discussion topics
    • Require students to research the topics and agree or disagree with what the blog is suggesting.
  2. For all courses, especially English Language Arts:
  • Use the blog for writing prompts for paragraphs, theme papers, journal entries, class starters, etc. Have students read the blog and respond to:
  • Do you agree with what is being said about kids? Do kids really act, think or feel that way?
  • Do you agree with what is being said about parents, grandparents, teachers and child caregivers? Do or should they act, think or feel that way?
  • What would be your advice on this topic?
  • What was left out of this article?
  • If you were a parent, would you use any of this information? How?
Why can this blog be a useful teaching tool?
  • Students that see connections between their coursework and their lives do better in school.
  • Most students will either be parents one day or have children in their lives that they care about, so the topical information can help them build their knowledge about children and parenting and develop a positive image of the type of parenting they want to do.
  • The new core literacy standards adopted by most states call for frequent writing in all courses.
  • Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can think critically. These prompts help students practice critical thinking.
  • Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can analyze what they read. These prompts help students practice analysis.