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Dr. Seuss's Christmas Lesson For Elementary School: The Grinch

written by: Jacqueline Chinappi • edited by: Benjamin Sell • updated: 11/17/2012

The ever popular "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" is a beloved classic from Dr. Seuss. This lesson will focus on the rhyming words found within the book as well as an activity which will help the students realize the true meaning of Christmas.

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    Getting Started

    The lesson will start off by reading Dr. Seuss' book "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." Most, if not all, students will have probably How the Grinch Stole Christmas already read this book or have had it read to them. The teacher should ask questions before, during and after reading the book.

    Questions for before reading:

    1. Who has read "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" before?
    2. What does Christmas or this holiday season mean to you?
    3. How do you celebrate the season or holiday?

    Questions while reading (can be used at various parts):

    1. What do we think the Grinch will do next?
    2. How do you think the people of Who-ville felt?
    3. Why do you think the Grinch is the way he is (so mean)?

    Questions after reading:

    1. Who is the main character?
    2. Why do you think the Grinch changed his ways at the end?
    3. Have you ever known anyone similar to the Grinch?
    4. Who knows what the moral of a story is? (if the students do not know this is when the teacher can explain that the moral of a story is the lesson learned, usually by the main character).
    5. What is the moral of this story?
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    Word Game

    Now ask the students if they noticed something about the way this book was written or how it sounded. What you are looking for here is if the students noticed many rhyming words. Explain to the students that words that rhyme sound the same but start with a different starting letter such as 'sit' and 'pit'. Go over some of the words such as:

    • side: lied
    • click: quick
    • day: say
    • tight: light
    • dear: here

    Ask students if they can think of any other words which rhyme with these sets of rhymes.

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    Holiday Spirit

    Discuss with the class how the Grinch did not understand the true meaning of Christmas. Explain that there are many people who do not understand the true meaning of Christmas. As a class project or bulletin board theme have students bring in various pictures either from their family photos or magazines which depict what the holidays mean to them.

    Have students compile all of their photos and clippings onto a large poster board, working as a group. Discuss what each student brought in and why it is important to them. Hang the project on the bulletin board for the Christmas season.