With the rapidly approaching holiday season, I’m always seeking content with an unusual twist to keep students engaged. Chances are, older students have read and written about snowmen, Santa, and Rudolph. How can I keep holiday-themed activities fresh?
In 2017, Bhavya Shah posted a captivating story, “What if Santa suddenly went blind?” on his Hiking Across Horizons website. Learn more about Bhavya and his journey with retinal detachments in his Story of my Life blogs and how blogging is an outlet for his “affinity for and amity with big words (or bombastic vocabulary)”. This amazing story has vocabulary that would make a high school English teacher proud!
Reading comprehension activities
This beautifully scripted Santa story has many aspects that can be incorporated into language arts lessons. Dive deep into the story to fully appreciate the story; so many possibilities to use this story for reading comprehension. The descriptive words and vocabulary will sweep you away into Santa’s new world!
Vocabulary Activities can include:
- Student finds and defines 10, 20 or 30 new vocabulary words
- Teacher provides a list of vocabulary words from the story (with or without definitions) for students to learn
- Student is asked to identify 5 descriptive words in a specific section (use headings to navigate to that section); student can write a sentence about how these words made the story more robust, setting the tone for deeper meanings
- Describe how Santa’s attitude changed throughout the story; support with descriptive/vocabulary words
- Write a fictional story that includes tasks that YOUR assistive technology tools help you to succeed (can be holiday-themed, such as the Santa story, another holiday character e.g. the Easter bunny or leprechaun) or any desired character
- Write a fictional story with the main character who has a visual impairment
- Write a fictional story that includes a character with YOUR eye condition; include challenges and explain how modification, tools, etc. help you succeed. (i.e. Albinism and the challenge of bright sunlight and how tinted glasses, hat, sun screen are used outside, and accessibility settings, such as invert colors are helpful.)
- Navigate to specific areas and/or words in the document, using the rotor and/or keyboard short cut commands to navigate by paragraphs, lines, words
- Use tech skills to look up and write down definitions
- Make a document or spreadsheet with all the vocabulary words and definitions
- Create a list of descriptive words and then write a short story that includes at least 5 of these descriptive words
Other Santa/Christmas-related posts:
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