The Reading / Listening - Level 3

A new report says Christmas in the USA is becoming less religious. Nine out of ten Americans celebrate Christmas, but only about half think it is a religious holiday. The report is from the Pew Research Center. It asked 2,001 adults about their opinions on Christmas. Just over half of those questioned thought Christmas was a religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "more of a cultural holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less likely than older adults to see Christmas as a religious rather than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will attend [church at] Christmas…and they are less likely to believe in the virgin birth."



People are also changing what they say to each other at Christmas and what they write in cards. More and more people are choosing to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". This is because there are also non-Christian holidays happening around the same time as Christmas. Many people want to include all holidays in their holiday wishes. The research also found that 79 per cent of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to church. Just 36 per cent will read the Christmas story in the Bible. The average amount of money people spend on Christmas is $914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look forward to spending time with their family.

Try the same news story at these easier levels:

    Level 0 Level 1   or  Level 2

Sources
  • http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/poll-christmas-is-a-commercial-holiday-not-a-sacred-holy-day-for-many/2013/12/17/
  • e07cd7fa-672e-11e3-997b-9213b17dac97_story.html
  • http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/18/christmas-non-religious_n_4453828.html


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



The 40 Lesson Activities on the PDF Handout

WARM-UPS

1. CHRISTMAS: Students walk around the class and talk to other students about Christmas. Change partners often and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

report / religious / celebrate / holiday / opinions / questioned / adults / attend church / changing / Merry Christmas / non-Christian holidays / wish / average / look forward to

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. CELEBRATE: What's the best way to celebrate? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners often and share what you wrote.

 

What do you do now?

What would you really like to do?

People

 

 

Presents

 

 

Food

 

 

Clothes

 

 

Parties

 

 

Words

 

 

4. MERRY CHRISTMAS: Students A strongly believe saying "Merry Christmas" is better than saying "Happy Holidays"; Students B strongly believe the opposite.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.



MY e-BOOK
See a sample

5. PRESENTS: Rank these and share your rankings with your partner. Put the (same-price) presents you'd want most at the top. Change partners often and share your rankings.

  • iPad

  • clothes

  • books

  • jewellery

  • expensive meal

  • sports equipment

  • a painting

  • chocolate

6. RELIGIOUS: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word "religious". Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.





BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

A new report say 80% per cent of Americans celebrate Christmas.

T / F

b.

A research company asked over 20,000 people about Christmas.

T / F

c.

Older people are more likely to see the religious side to Christmas.

T / F

d.

Older people are more likely to do to church than younger people.

T / F

e.

More people are saying "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas".

T / F

f.

Over 80% of Americans will watch a Christmas movie.

T / F

g.

More than 40% of Americans will read the Bible's Christmas story.

T / F

h.

People look forward to spending time with family most.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

1.

report

a.

rather than

2.

half

b.

probable

3.

opinions

c.

opting

4.

likely

d.

study

5.

attend

e.

discovered

6.

choosing

f.

thoughts

7.

instead of

g.

total

8.

happening

h.

be present at

9.

found

i.

taking place

10.

amount

j.

fifty per cent

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

Nine out of

a.

church

2.

Just over half of

b.

to say "Happy Holidays"

3.

see Christmas as a religious rather

c.

in the virgin birth

4.

They're less likely to say they will attend

d.

they say to each other

5.

they are less likely to believe

e.

money people spend

6.

People are also changing what

f.

than cultural holiday

7.

more people are choosing

g.

time with their family

8.

happening around the same

h.

those questioned

9.

The average amount of

i.

time as Christmas

10.

look forward to spending

j.

ten Americans celebrate





 

GAP FILL

A new report says Christmas in the USA is becoming less religious. Nine (1) ____________ of ten Americans celebrate Christmas, but only about half think it is a religious holiday. The report is from the Pew Research Center. It asked 2,001 (2) ____________ about their opinions on Christmas. Just over (3) ____________ of those questioned thought Christmas was a religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "more of a (4) ____________ holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less (5) ____________ than older adults to see Christmas as a religious (6) ____________ than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will (7) ____________ [church at] Christmas…and they are less likely to believe in the virgin (8) ____________."

 

 

likely
half
birth
out
attend
adults
rather
cultural

People are also (9) ____________ what they say to each other at Christmas and what they write in cards. More and (10) ____________ people are choosing to say "Happy Holidays" (11) ____________ of "Merry Christmas". This is because there are also non-Christian holidays happening (12) ____________ the same time as Christmas. Many people want to include all holidays in their holiday (13) ____________. The research also found that 79 per cent of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to (14) ____________. Just 36 per cent will read the Christmas story in the Bible. The (15) ____________ amount of money people spend on Christmas is $914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look (16) ____________ to spending time with their family.

 

wishes
average
more
around
forward
changing
church
instead





LISTENING - Guess the answers. Listen to check.

1)

Nine out of ten Americans celebrate

 

a.  celebrates
b.  celebrated
c.  celebrate
d.  celebrating

2)

It asked 2,001 adults about their ______ Christmas

 

a.  opinions on
b.  opinion on
c.  opinion son
d.  opinions son

3)

Just over half of ______

 

a.  those questions
b.  these questioned
c.  them questioned
d.  those questioned

4)

They're less likely to say they will ______

 

a.  attendant church
b.  attends church
c.  attending church
d.  attend church

5)

they are less likely to believe in ______

 

a.  the virgin birthday
b.  the virgin birth
c.  the virgin birthed
d.  the virgin birthing

6)

changing what they say to each other at Christmas and what they ______

 

a.  write in cards
b.  writing cards
c.  writing in cards
d.  right in cards

7)

This is because there are also non-______

 

a.  Christianity holiday
b.  Christians holidays
c.  Christian holidays
d.  Christian holiday

8)

Many people want to include all holidays in their ______

 

a.  holiday wish lists
b.  holiday wish is
c.  holiday wishes
d.  holiday wishful

9)

Ten per cent of Americans ______

 

a.  spent over $2,000
b.  spend over $2,000
c.  spends over $2,000
d.  spending over $2,000

10)

People most look forward to spending time ______

 

a.  with their family
b.  with there family
c.  with they're family
d.  with that family

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

A new report says Christmas in the USA is becoming less religious. (1) ___________________ Americans celebrate Christmas, but only about half think it is a religious holiday. The (2) ___________________ Pew Research Center. It asked 2,001 adults (3) ___________________ on Christmas. Just over half of those questioned thought Christmas was a religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "(4) ___________________ holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less likely than older adults to see Christmas (5) ___________________ rather than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will attend [church at] Christmas…and they are less (6) ___________________ in the virgin birth."

People are also changing what they (7) ___________________ at Christmas and what they write in cards. More and more people are choosing to say "Happy Holidays" (8) ___________________ Christmas". This is because there are also non-Christian holidays (9) ___________________ same time as Christmas. Many people want to include all holidays in their holiday wishes. The research (10) ___________________ 79 per cent of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to church. Just 36 per cent will read the Christmas story in the Bible. (11) ___________________ of money people spend on Christmas is $914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look forward to (12) ___________________ their family.





COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS

1.

How many Americans celebrate Christmas?

2.

How many Americans believe Christmas is a religious holiday?

3.

How many people answered questions about Christmas?

4.

Who was more likely to think of Christmas as a religious holiday?

5.

Who are less likely to go to church at Christmas time?

6.

What are more and more people changing?

7.

What else happens around the same time as Christmas?

8.

What will 79% of Americans watch this Christmas?

9.

Who spends more than $2,000 on Christmas?

10.

What do Americans look forward to most about Christmas?

MULTIPLE CHOICE - QUIZ

1.

How many Americans celebrate Christmas?

6.

What are more and more people changing?

 

a) ten out of ten
b) nine out of ten
c) nine into ten
d) ten out of nine

 

a) their Christmas greetings
b) the presents they buy
c) when they celebrate Christmas
d) Christmas food

2.

How many Americans believe Christmas is a religious holiday?

7.

What else happens around the same time as Christmas?

 

a) a third
b) 89%
c) three-quarters
d) half

 

a) holiday wishes
b) shopping
c) non-Christian holidays
d) skiing

3.

How many people answered questions about Christmas?

8.

What will 79% of Americans watch this Christmas?

 

a) 2,001
b) 1,002
c) 21,000
d) 2,100

 

a) a movie
b) the sun rise
c) their weight
d) how much they spend

4.

Who was more likely to think of Christmas as a religious holiday?

9.

Who spends more than $2,000 on Christmas?

 

a) younger adults
b) non-Christians
c) older adults
d) children

 

a) 10% of Americans
b) 20% of Americans
c) the average American
d) Most Americans

5.

Who are less likely to go to church at Christmas time?

10.

What do Americans look forward to most about Christmas?

 

a) Americans
b) younger people
c) those questioned
d) Christians

 

a) not working
b) eating
c) presents
d) family time

ROLE PLAY

Role  A – iPad

You think an iPad is the best present for your class to buy your teacher. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them things that are wrong with their ideas. Also, tell the others which is the worst of these (and why): a restaurant meal, chocolates or an iTunes voucher.

Role  B – Restaurant meal

You think a restaurant meal is the best present for your class to buy your teacher. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them things that are wrong with their ideas. Also, tell the others which is the worst of these (and why): iPad, chocolates or an iTunes voucher.

Role  C – Chocolates

You think chocolates are the best present for your class to buy your teacher. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them things that are wrong with their ideas. Also, tell the others which is the worst of these (and why): a restaurant meal, iPad or an iTunes voucher.

Role  D – iTunes voucher

You think an iTunes voucher is the best present for your class to buy your teacher. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them things that are wrong with their ideas. Also, tell the others which is the worst of these (and why): a restaurant meal, chocolates or iPad.





AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words 'happy' and 'Christmas'.

happy

Christmas

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • ten
  • opinions
  • 32
  • younger
  • attend
  • believe
  • say
  • instead
  • same
  • 79
  • 36
  • 914

CHRISTMAS SURVEY

From  http://www.BreakingNewsEnglish.com/1312/131220-happy-holidays.html

Write five GOOD questions about Christmas in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

CHRISTMAS DISCUSSION

STUDENT A's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word 'Christmas'?

c)

What do you do at Christmas?

d)

Why is Christmas becoming less religious in America?

e)

Do you like Christmas?

f)

Why do many people get stressed at Christmas?

g)

How should a very traditional Christmas be spent?

h)

Have your feelings towards Xmas changed since you were a child?

i)

Is Christmas too commercial nowadays?

j)

Should people go to church at Christmas?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article? Why/not?

b)

Is Christmas the same today as it was 100 years ago?

c)

Do you think Christmas is the best holiday of the year?

d)

What do you want for Christmas?

e)

What is your favourite Christmas song?

f)

Is Christmas better in the cold Northern Hemisphere or on a beach in the Southern Hemisphere?

g)

How important is it to celebrate occasions from other religions?

h)

Would you like to spend Christmas in another country?

i)

Is it OK to spend a lot of money on Christmas?

j)

What questions would you like to ask the head of Pew Research?





DISCUSSION (Write your own questions)

STUDENT A's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

LANGUAGE - CLOZE

A new report says Christmas in the USA is becoming less religious. Nine (1) ____ of ten Americans celebrate Christmas, but only about (2) ____ think it is a religious holiday. The report is from the Pew Research Center. It asked 2,001 adults about their opinions on Christmas. Just (3) ____ half of those questioned thought Christmas was a religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "more (4) ____ a cultural holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less likely than older adults to (5) ____ Christmas as a religious rather than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will attend [church at] Christmas…and they are less likely to believe (6) ____ the virgin birth."

People are also changing what they say to each (7) ____ at Christmas and what they write in cards. More and more people are (8) ____ to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". This is because there are also non-Christian holidays happening around the same time as Christmas. Many people want to (9) ____ all holidays in their holiday (10) ____. The research also found that 79 per cent of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to church. Just 36 per cent will read the Christmas story in the Bible. The average (11) ____ of money people spend on Christmas is $914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look forward to (12) ____ time with their family.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

for

(b)

as

(c)

from

(d)

out

2.

(a)

halve

(b)

halves

(c)

halved

(d)

half

3.

(a)

more

(b)

over

(c)

than

(d)

exactly

4.

(a)

to

(b)

by

(c)

of

(d)

from

5.

(a)

speak

(b)

happen

(c)

see

(d)

do

6.

(a)

in

(b)

at

(c)

on

(d)

of

7.

(a)

another

(b)

other

(c)

others

(d)

the others

8.

(a)

choosing

(b)

choice

(c)

chosen

(d)

chose

9.

(a)

put in

(b)

include

(c)

insert

(d)

invite

10.

(a)

wish list

(b)

wishful

(c)

wishes

(d)

wished

11.

(a)

volume

(b)

stack

(c)

amount

(d)

pile

12.

(a)

spender

(b)

spends

(c)

spent

(d)

spending

SPELLING

Paragraph 1

1.

eaeebtrlc Christmas

2.

about their nopisoni on Christmas

3.

Just over half of those unoteidesq

4.

more of a latulucr holiday

5.

less eyklil

6.

older atdsul

Paragraph 2

7.

hgancnig what they say to each other

8.

holidays gpnaihpne around the same time

9.

dlcienu all holidays

10.

holiday ehwsis

11.

The aagvree amount of money

12.

look wdfaror to

PUT THE TEXT BACK TOGETHER

Number these lines in the correct order.

(    )

Christmas, but only about half think it is a religious holiday. The report is from the Pew Research Center. It asked

(    )

People are also changing what they say to each other at Christmas and what they write in

(    )

$914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look forward to spending time with their family.

(    )

read the Christmas story in the Bible. The average amount of money people spend on Christmas is

(    )

are also non-Christian holidays happening around the same time as Christmas. Many people want to

1  )

A new report says Christmas in the USA is becoming less religious. Nine out of ten Americans celebrate

(    )

questioned thought Christmas was a religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "more

(    )

cards. More and more people are choosing to say "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". This is because there

(    )

attend [church at] Christmas…and they are less likely to believe in the virgin birth."

(    )

of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to church. Just 36 per cent will

(    )

of a cultural holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less

(    )

likely than older adults to see Christmas as a religious rather than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will

(    )

2,001 adults about their opinions on Christmas. Just over half of those

(    )

include all holidays in their holiday wishes. The research also found that 79 per cent

PUT THE WORDS IN THE RIGHT ORDER

1.

celebrate     ten     out     Christmas     Americans     of     Nine.    

2.

adults     opinions     asked     001     their     It     ,     about     2.    

3.

per     32     holiday    cultural    a    of    more    was    it    said    cent.    

4.

than     adults     older     are     adults     less     likely     Younger.    

5.

birth     They     are     less     likely     to     believe     in    the    virgin.    

6.

to    each    other    People    are    also    changing   what   they    say.    

7.

the    Christian   around    time   -   happening   same   Non    holidays.    

8.

the     per     read     story     36     will     Christmas     Just     cent.    

9.

spend     people     money     of     amount     average     The.    

10.

with     forward     their     to     family     spending     time     Look.    

CIRCLE THE CORRECT WORD (20 PAIRS)

A new report says Christmas in the USA is become / becoming less religious. Nine out of ten Americans celebrations / celebrate Christmas, but only about half / halve think it is a religious holiday. The report is from the Pew Research Center. It asked 2,001 adults about their / they're opinions on Christmas. Just over half of them / those questioned thought Christmas was a religiously / religious celebration, while 32 per cent said it was, "most / more of a cultural holiday". Greg Smith from Pew Research said: "Younger adults are less liken / likely than older adults to see Christmas as a religious rather than cultural holiday. They're less likely to say they will attendance / attend [church at] Christmas…and they are less likely to believe in / on the virgin birth."

People are also changing what they / these say to each other at / by Christmas and what they write in card / cards. More and more people are choosing to say "Happy Holidays" instead / rather of "Merry Christmas". This is because there are also non-Christian holidays happening / happened around the same time as Christmas. Many people want to inclusive / include all holidays in their holiday wishful / wishes. The research also found that 79 per cent of Americans will watch a Christmas movie, but only 59 per cent will go to / for church. Just 36 per cent will read the Christmas story in the Bible. The average volume / amount of money people spend on Christmas is $914. Ten per cent of Americans spend over $2,000. People most look forward to spending / spent time with their family.

Talk about the connection between each pair of words in italics, and why the correct word is correct.





INSERT THE VOWELS (a, e, i, o, u)

_ n_w r_p_rt s_ys Chr_stm_s _n th_ _S_ _s b_c_m_ng l_ss r_l_g___s. N_n_ __t _f t_n _m_r_c_ns c_l_br_t_ Chr_stm_s, b_t _nly _b__t h_lf th_nk _t _s _ r_l_g___s h_l_d_y. Th_ r_p_rt _s fr_m th_ P_w R_s__rch C_nt_r. _t _sk_d 2,001 _d_lts _b__t th__r _p_n__ns _n Chr_stm_s. J_st _v_r h_lf _f th_s_ q__st__n_d th__ght Chr_stm_s w_s _ r_l_g___s c_l_br_t__n, wh_l_ 32 p_r c_nt s__d _t w_s, "m_r_ _f _ c_lt_r_l h_l_d_y". Gr_g Sm_th fr_m P_w R_s__rch s__d: "Y__ng_r _d_lts _r_ l_ss l_k_ly th_n _ld_r _d_lts t_ s__ Chr_stm_s _s _ r_l_g___s r_th_r th_n c_lt_r_l h_l_d_y. Th_y'r_ l_ss l_k_ly t_ s_y th_y w_ll _tt_nd [ch_rch _t] Chr_stm_s…_nd th_y _r_ l_ss l_k_ly t_ b_l__v_ _n th_ v_rg_n b_rth."

P__pl_ _r_ _ls_ ch_ng_ng wh_t th_y s_y t_ __ch _th_r _t Chr_stm_s _nd wh_t th_y wr_t_ _n c_rds. M_r_ _nd m_r_ p__pl_ _r_ ch__s_ng t_ s_y "H_ppy H_l_d_ys" _nst__d _f "M_rry Chr_stm_s". Th_s _s b_c__s_ th_r_ _r_ _ls_ n_n-Chr_st__n h_l_d_ys h_pp_n_ng _r__nd th_ s_m_ t_m_ _s Chr_stm_s. M_ny p__pl_ w_nt t_ _ncl_d_ _ll h_l_d_ys _n th__r h_l_d_y w_sh_s. Th_ r_s__rch _ls_ f__nd th_t 79 p_r c_nt _f _m_r_c_ns w_ll w_tch _ Chr_stm_s m_v__, b_t _nly 59 p_r c_nt w_ll g_ t_ ch_rch. J_st 36 p_r c_nt w_ll r__d th_ Chr_stm_s st_ry _n th_ B_bl_. Th_ _v_r_g_ _m__nt _f m_n_y p__pl_ sp_nd _n Chr_stm_s _s $914. T_n p_r c_nt _f _m_r_c_ns sp_nd _v_r $2,000. P__pl_ m_st l__k f_rw_rd t_ sp_nd_ng t_m_ w_th th__r f_m_ly.

PUNCTUATE THE TEXT AND ADD CAPITALS

a new report says christmas in the usa is becoming less religious nine out of ten americans celebrate christmas but only about half think it is a religious holiday the report is from the pew research center it asked 2001 adults about their opinions on christmas just over half of those questioned thought christmas was a religious celebration while 32 per cent said it was "more of a cultural holiday" greg smith from pew research said "younger adults are less likely than older adults to see christmas as a religious rather than cultural holiday they're less likely to say they will attend [church at] christmas…and they are less likely to believe in the virgin birth"

people are also changing what they say to each other at christmas and what they write in cards more and more people are choosing to say "happy holidays" instead of "merry christmas" this is because there are also non-christian holidays happening around the same time as christmas many people want to include all holidays in their holiday wishes the research also found that 79 per cent of americans will watch a christmas movie but only 59 per cent will go to church just 36 per cent will read the christmas story in the bible the average amount of money people spend on christmas is $914 ten per cent of americans spend over $2000 people most look forward to spending time with their family

PUT A SLASH ( / ) WHERE THE SPACES ARE

AnewreportsaysChristmasintheUSAisbecominglessreligious.Nin
eoutoftenAmericanscelebrateChristmas,butonlyabouthalfthinkit
isareligiousholiday.ThereportisfromthePewResearchCenter.Itas
ked2,001adultsabouttheiropinionsonChristmas.Justoverhalfofth
osequestionedthoughtChristmaswasareligiouscelebration,while
32percentsaiditwas,"moreofaculturalholiday".GregSmithfromPe
wResearchsaid:"Youngeradultsarelesslikelythanolderadultstose
eChristmasasareligiousratherthanculturalholiday.They'relesslik
elytosaytheywillattend[churchat]Christmas…andtheyarelesslike
lytobelieveinthevirginbirth."Peoplearealsochangingwhattheysay
toeachotheratChristmasandwhattheywriteincards.Moreandmor
epeoplearechoosingtosay"HappyHolidays"insteadof"MerryChris
tmas".Thisisbecausetherearealsonon-Christianholidayshappen
ingaroundthesametimeasChristmas.Manypeoplewanttoincludea
llholidaysintheirholidaywishes.Theresearchalsofoundthat79perc
entofAmericanswillwatchaChristmasmovie,butonly59percentwil
lgotochurch.Just36percentwillreadtheChristmasstoryintheBible.
TheaverageamountofmoneypeoplespendonChristmasis$914.Te
npercentofAmericansspendover$2,000.Peoplemostlookforwardt
ospendingtimewiththeirfamily.





FREE WRITING

Write about Christmas for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner's paper.

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ACADEMIC WRITING

It is sad that fewer people are celebrating religious holidays.  Discuss.

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HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google's search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about Christmas. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. CHRISTMAS: Make a poster about Christmas celebrations. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. RELIGIOUS: Write a magazine article about religious holidays around the world.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT? Write a newspaper article about the next stage in this news story. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

6. LETTER: Write a letter to an expert on Christmas. Ask him/her three questions about it. Give him/her three of your opinions on it. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE (p.4)

a

F

b

F

c

T

d

T

e

T

f

F

g

F

h

T

SYNONYM MATCH (p.4)

1.

report

a.

study

2.

half

b.

fifty per cent

3.

opinions

c.

thoughts

4.

likely

d.

probable

5.

attend

e.

be present at

6.

choosing

f.

opting

7.

instead of

g.

rather than

8.

happening

h.

taking place

9.

found

i.

discovered

10.

amount

j.

total

COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS (p.8)

1.

Nine out of ten

2.

Half

3.

2,001

4.

Older adults

5.

Younger adults

6.

What they say to each other at Christmas

7.

Non-Christian holidays

8.

A movie

9.

(the richest) Ten per cent of Americans

10.

Spending time with their family

 

MULTIPLE CHOICE - QUIZ (p.9)

1.

b

2.

d

3.

a

4.

c

5.

b

6.

a

7.

c

8.

a

9.

a

10.

d

ALL OTHER EXERCISES

Please check for yourself by looking at the Article on page 2.
(It's good for your English ;-)

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