Looking for a Christmas assembly?
Chances are you or someone you know will be doing a Christmas themed presentation of some sort over the next month. Whether it's an assembly, Christmas lunchtime party, youth group session, service of some sort or even a team celebration, we thought we'd bring our latest ideas and thoughts about how to talk about Christmas into one blog. So here it is.
Ultimate resource links
Firstly, there's loads of great resources already out there. Rather than list them all for you again each year (and many of them are still relevant), for our ultimate list of Christmas links, click here (but don't forget to come back to this page after!).
Secondly, what are your own thoughts and feelings about Christmas? Here's some of my thoughts about how we can use our own experiences to impact how we navigate and explore this season with young people: click here COMING SOON! (and don't forget to come back for more if you're still looking for ideas!).
John Lewis. Let's face it, they do advertising really well. Last year's advert had us all glued to the TV during ad breaks rather than turning the sound off and making a cup of tea. Check out the 2010 campaign combined with some of schools worker Matt Turner's thoughts here. This year's campaign got us all talking a couple of weeks ago...be honest now, were there tears? Here's this year's ad on YouTube (John Lewis 2011)...who wants to have a go at transforming this one? There is a nice way that this could turn into a thought provoking assembly - you know it! (we'll add the link here when someone comes up with something).
Oh, and if you feel in need of a touch of cynicism and agree with Guardian writer Charlie Brooker, take a read of this: "This year Christmas adverts aren't adverts, they're 'events'. Ghastly events"
(This article also highlights some other classic Christmas adverts from this year, which can all be tweaked to communicate meaning in some way. have fun!)
Church radio ads
As cheesy as some church advertising boards can be at Christmas (who doesn't cringe when they see "Jesus is the reason for the season"?!), some of the stuff out there is really quite good. Church Ads do a great series of radio commercials and this year's theme is fashion, with the nativity in the style of a fashion catwalk. It's worth a listen. Not sure how you would use this in an assembly, but you could certainly divide up the radio commercials between a class in RE and then get them coming up with their own. Take a look at the Church Ads site here: http://www.churchads.net/.
Christmas Number Ones
In the last few years TV viewing around Christmas has become about the winner of X Factor and which couple will beat the rest to win Strictly Come Dancing. The winner's song from X Factor for a few year's running claiming the Christmas number one, and the Strictly stars....erm, appearing on breakfast TV sofas. This year there seems to have been a shift and not many young people I know are very excited about who the winner will be this year of Mr Cowell's dwindling UK show. Strictly seems to have gained a bit of support from this decline in ITV viewing, but is there a gap here for music performers, who release songs throughout the year, play concert after concert after concert, stick it out in the charts through it all, to have a chance at number one? What is it about the prestige of having a Christmas number one that is so important? And what is it that makes a great Christmas number one song. Is it about the lyrics and how much they resonate with our understanding of why Christmas is so important?
How about for a music lesson leading up to Christmas you review all the number ones from the past ten years. Divide the songs up between your class and in groups have them analysing lyrics, genre, etc etc and them have them present their songs to the class (with a segment of music, some background and what the song is communicating). Then have the class vote for their favourite. You could even use the results in a Christmas assembly with a student talking about why this was voted top.
Ok, this is going to be an ongoing blog. I'll update Facebook when things are added (so 'like' our Facebook group if you haven't already and you'll get the updates).
If you have your own suggestions to add, simply comment below or on Facebook.
Happy creating time :)