Analysing Famous Christmas Tales

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The holiday season is a wonderful time to create lasting memories, and there is no better way to create festive memories than to share classic Christmas stories. A number of authors have been so inspired by the magic of Christmas and the spirit of selfless giving, forgiveness and peace, that they have created heartwarming Christmas stories that demonstrate the significance of the season. While many of these stories have been written for children, people of all ages often enjoy them year after year.

  1. One of the most famous holiday stories is Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer which was created by Robert L. May in 1939. The story tells the experiences of Rudolph, a youthful reindeer who possesses an unusual luminous red nose. Mocked and excluded by his peers because of this trait, Rudolph proves himself one Christmas Eve with poor visibility due to bad weather, when Santa Claus sees Rudolph’s nose and asks Rudolph to lead his sleigh for the evening. Rudolph agrees and is finally favored by his fellow reindeer for his heroism and accomplishment.

  2. A newer tale, but a very popular one is How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. It follows the Grinch, a grouchy, solitary creature who attempts to put an end to Christmas by stealing Christmas-themed items from the homes of the nearby town Whoville on Christmas Eve, intending to dump all of the Christmas stuff into the abyss. As dawn arrives, the Grinch expects the people in Whoville to let out sorrowful cries, but is confused to hear them singing a joyous Christmas song instead. He is puzzled until he realizes that maybe Christmas means a bit more than just presents and feasting. The reformed Grinch returns to the village to give back all of the Whos’ Christmas stuff and participate in their Christmas feast.

  3. A Christmas Carol by world famous English author Charles Dickens was first released in December of 1843. The story tells stingy Ebenezer Scrooge and his emotional transformation after receiving visits from the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man. The story illustrates the importance of generosity, kindness, and love for those in the community.

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Vocabulary:

  • To Mock: To make fun of; to laugh at.
  • Peer: An equal; someone of the same rank or kind.
  • Trait: A distinguishing quality or characteristic.
  • Grouchy: Irritable and bad-tempered; complaining.
  • Sorrow: A feeling of deep distress caused by loss, disappointment, or other misfortune.
  • Stingy: Unwilling to give or spend; ungenerous.

Recommendations:

When analysing a story, consider the following questions:

  1. What is the most important event? Is the plot believable?
  2. How is the setting created? Consider geography, weather, time of day, social conditions, etc.
  3. Who is the narrator or speaker in the story? Does the author speak through the main character?
  4. Who is the main character? Has the author described the characters by physical appearance, thoughts and feelings, and interaction (the way they act towards others)?
  5. How would you describe the main conflict?

Questionnaire:

  • How does Rudolph prove himself?
  • What makes the Grinch change his mind?
  • What does “A Christmas Carol” teach us?

Welcome to this activity created by Team Leader Mr. Marcos Daza from Reforma Branch. Take note of all the pink words, read the text, watch the video and answer the question in the comment section below.

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