You can almost guarantee that every child in your class will be familiar with the Doctor Seuss story about the grump Grinch trying to ruin Christmas for all of the Who’s in Whoville. This grouchy character is used to teach children a lesson in the importance of spreading kindness and goodwill at Christmas time. Further to this, the Grinch is a character with a sad past who ultimately learns the error of his ways and is accepted by the Who’s to enjoy Christmas with them. This teaches a more complex lesson about taking the patience to understand why people behave in a certain way, and that nasty behaviour might not always come from a place of spite.
As a teacher, you can use the story of the Grinch as a basis for a variety of different educational activities in primary school. Give children the opportunity to think about their actions and the actions of others with these ideas. With these activities, your students will be thinking more deeply about their actions through Christmas and when they return to school after the break.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas Classroom Activities
In the story of the Grinch, the Who’s we’re affected by their presents and food being stolen because, to them, Christmas was about their love for each other and enjoying each other’s company. Use this opportunity to talk to the students, especially those in preschool about ways they can let others know they appreciate them. In this PDF you can find instructions for creating special compliment cards to give out. Help the children to think of different sincere compliments you can give to people and task them with writing some compliments they want to hand out to their friends in class. You could also get them thinking about their families and maybe send them home with some compliments to give out.
Persuasive Writing: Why Shouldn’t the Grinch Steal Christmas?
Print and hand out this free download to let students get stuck into a persuasive writing task. Can your students come up with some plausible reasons why the Grinch shouldn’t steal Christmas? Ask the students to try and think about it from the Grinch’s point of view. Why does he dislike Christmas so much? What might change his mind? This download comes as a blank page, with narrow or wide lines for writing, or handwriting lines so you can pick which one suits your students’ writing skills the best.
For more handwriting tasks like this, we stock special handwriting exercise books that come with different handwriting templates based on level.
Don’t Smile Challenge
From the offset, it’s going to be difficult to keep a straight face, but this activity is useful for getting children to practise controlling their emotions and calming themselves down. Elect one student to go first. This participant has to sit at the front of the class facing everyone. The object of the game is for the person at the front to keep a straight face. Everyone else’s job is to try and make them laugh but without making any noise. Pulling faces and making gestures are allowed. Once the person at the front laughs they are out and the next person has to sit upfront and try to keep a straight face.
After the activity hand out some worksheets and ask each of the children to write what they would do to make the Grinch laugh.
Draw the Grinch
Turn this into a library activity by taking the class to the library or sending children in pairs. Otherwise, you could provide each table in the classroom with a thesaurus. Ask the children to describe the grinch’s personality. Is he grumpy? Funny? Happy? Task the children with using the thesaurus to come up with a list of other words to describe the Grinch. Depending on their literacy level you could ask for adjectives, verbs, and nouns.
Role Play Grinch Interview
A lot of miscommunications lead to the events that happen in the story of the Grinch. Get the kids thinking about how communication can help solve problems by setting up a Grinch interview. This activity is a great icebreaker if you've planned a school Christmas party. Have someone sit at the front of the class, this person is the Grinch. Everyone else should position themselves around the Grinch in a semi-circle. During the interview have the children ask the Grinch questions one by one about his or her actions and motives. The job of the Grinch is to think hard about how their character would feel and answer the questions how they think the Grinch would.
You could also get the children to pretend to hold up a microphone and tell them that this is a press conference, people can raise their hands when they have questions and the Grinch can point to the people he or she wants to answer. To really immerse the children in this role play game set up a podium or stage for the Grinch to sit on, like our role play theatre.
Make a Grinch Sound Dampener
In the story, the Grinch was annoyed by all the sounds the Who’s were making. Conduct an experiment with the children to see how you can muffle different sounds. Have two or three people stand outside and see how much noise travels. Are there any ways that they can soundproof the classroom so you can’t hear any noise when standing outside?
Try out various different ways of making noise and see how each one is affected and how it can be made quieter. Using a music pack like this percussion pack is ideal.
Springboard Supplies Pre-School 16 Player Percussion Pack