Fantastic Ideas for Christmas Homeschooling with Teens

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Celebrating Christmas in our homeschool has always been a fantastic time. We have enjoyed fun Christmas homeschooling memories for years, but now that the kids have entered the teen years, it is a little different.

My kids have schedules and responsibilities outside of our home in a way that they didn’t when they were little, so I have to plan ahead and find ways we can all have fun together.

Ideas for christmas homeschooling with teens

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Christmas Homeschooling with Teens

One important aspect of Christmas homeschooling with teens is talking to your teens ahead of time! Have a discussion about your ideas for December and their reality.

1. Determine which of your planned activities require your teenager’s participation. Be very clear about the non-negotiables, and make sure you have plenty of negotiables.

For example, if you want to watch a Christmas movie every Monday afternoon, will your teen have to watch all of them? half of them? Can they choose which ones they’ll watch with you?

They might want to be a part of everything and they might pass on some of the ideas you plan.

Don’t take it personally if they aren’t interested in an activity. Enjoy it with their siblings or cancel it completely. It’s OKAY! Teens have their own lives and plans and goals. They also have schoolwork that is required for outside classes and they can’t blow it off for the holiday.

2. Offer them a leadership role. If you have activities with local groups, churches, or other organizations and your teen doesn’t want to participate in the “kid fun” anymore, see if they can volunteer or help.

This can be true for activities in your own home as well. Maybe they can help a sibling or organize an art activity behind the scenes with you.

You know your teens’ personality and needs during the stage they are in – find fun ways to includes them and support them as they grow up.

3. Include your teen in the planning. What do they want to add to the calendar? What are the activities they definitely want to be a part of?

Suggest a few ideas and traditions to see what they definitely want to add to the month. As for their suggestions for movies or small, fun treats.

4. Make decisions about their academics. Are there items on their school list that they can drop for the month (or at least a few weeks)?

Can your 5 day a week math curriculum back off to 3 or 4 days if you play games on the “off” day?

Can you skip a literature book in your “normal” curriculum to add in some holiday fun?

If your teen doesn’t typically participate in Morning Time, is there a way to make that happen for any special activities?

Can an assigned writing assignment be modified to include some Christmas themes or topics?

As you plan family fun for the month, make sure to consider your teen’s need to have time to work on their academics. No one enjoys the holiday when they are stressed about unfinished work.

Now Let’s Have Some Fun!

CHristmas School with Teens

Christmas Homeschooling with Teens: Countdown

When the kids were young, I participated in the picture book Advent countdown. I wrapped picture books and we unwrapped them and read one each day. Somewhere along the line as kids grew up, the picture book tradition faded.

So new ones were needed.

A few years ago, I found myself ordering a goofy, but fun Advent calendar with silly squishy toys. And my kids LOVED it. Turns out the teens in this house enjoy Moochi toys…who knew?

It made me realize that there are ton of Advent Calendars with items my teens can share. One Advent calendar for all of them made it a ton of fun to see what each person received.

This year I ordered one full of fidget toys and I know they will go nuts. I plan to put each one in a paper bag and then put it under the tree. Each day, starting on December 1, one of the kids will get to pick a bag.

So find a fun way to countdown because it is still fun!

Advent Calendars for Teens and Tweens

Christmas Homeschooling with Teens: Games

We add at least one new board game to our game collection every December. There have been years that we opened one a week, but typically I just grab one or two to begin our month.

This year (in our houseful of tweens and teens), I plan to buy two new games and possibly an expansion pack for one of them because I have a child who loves dragons. In fact, the expansion pack might just go in her gift pile as “something to read.

There are so many fantastic game options that work for the whole family, including younger siblings:

For some of our game playing favorites:

Math Games Your Tweens and Tweens will Actually Enjoy
The Best Card Games for the Whole Family
Board Games the Whole Family will Enjoy
Math Games for Your Homeschool
30 of the Best Board Games you And Your Teens will Love
The Best Games you can Easily Play on Video Chat

Another great option is a mall scavenger hunt, depending on the rules in your area.

Grab this free mall scavenger hunt

Finally, I have a free Christmas game pack that includes games your teen can play online with friends who are far away.

Of course, they can be played in person with your family or a group of friends.

Christmas Homeschool: Literature

It’s fun to take time during the holiday to read the same book as a family. Maybe it is a cozy winter chapter book and maybe it is a holiday-themed story. Whatever works for your family is the best choice!

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

The Classic Version – listen to the audio version as a family
The Graphic Version – for the teen who loves graphic novels
OMG Classics Version (teens and up)– these are hysterical, but definitely meant for teens

Host a book club for your teen and their friends! The Celebrate a Book guide for this title is a great option for teens to enjoy games, crafts, and food to celebrate and discuss this book..

I have an entire blog post full of detailed ideas for reading and enjoying this book with your family. You’ll even find tips for learning more about the author, Charles Dickens.

Join an online book club for teens

Join one of my Outschool Book clubs this month and let teen participate in an online discussion with friends. The 2021 book I picked for our online discussions is A Christmas Carol (graphic or classic versions are available).

Join one of my outschool book clubs. Find current listings by clicking through.

Christmas Homeschool with Teens: Cocoa Fun

One way to add somefun to the homeschool day during the month of December is to create a Hot Chocolate Bar. The teens in this house love making their own hot drinks during the day so a hot cocoa bar has been a huge hit!

I keep the hot cocoa mix and a few treats to sprink on the top. Most of the time we have sprinkles, crushed candy canes, whipped cream in the fridge, and a little hot cocoa for sprinkling on top.

Occasionally, I grab a few special marshmallows or mini chocolate chips as well.

Christmas Homeschool: Geography

Universal Yums

This is the tastiest way to enjoy Geography based learning and fun. You can order the Universal Yums Holiday Box and enjoy treats from around the globe while learning some facts about different countries.

This is always a hit with my teens!

Christmas Homeschool: Art

I love to pull out the Winter Wonderland Mixed Media Workshop course. My tweens and teens loved working through these projects with me. Our Mixed Media art notebooks are treasures of the holiday season.

Check out the Winter Wonderland Mixed Media course for Christmas Homeschool with Teens

You can also purchase a specific mixed media project that coordinates with A Christmas Carol. Since it is a single project, it is an affordable way to add some mixed media fun to your December School!

Grab a Mixed media Project for A Christmas Carol to use in Christmas Homeschool for Teens

Christmas School: Memory Making

Do not forget to leave plenty of time to make memories this holiday season. These activities vary from year to year, but it is important for teens to have space for additional time with friends. Find time for activities like:

sleepovers with friends under twinkle lights
an Ugly Sweater party
Ice skating

Teens ice skating as part of their Christmas Homeschool

host a cookie exchange
trip to your favorite dessert place
decorating together
Advent dinners each Sunday – ask your teen who they might like to invite
family movie night
visiting light displays in the area

We like to do a few things that are out of the ordinary, even if they are simple.

What do you enjoy with your teen in December?

Looking for gifts?

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A gift list for a teen who enjoys art
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