Christmas

Welcome to my Christmas pages, where you'll find loads of Christmas related things to see and do, l have games,
Christmas clipart, recipes and of course links to Christmas sites. 
With a separate page for Teachers containing classroom activities, lesson plans, 
a suggested reading list, links and more compiled for your convenience.

l would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy holidays!





The History of Christmas

Celebrated on December the 25th, Christmas is probably the most joyous holiday celebration. Traditionally Christmas is a time for families, gift giving, food and songs. And for many religions it is the time to celebrate the birth of Christ. "Christmas" comes from the Old English word "Christes Maesse"meaning "Christ's Mass".

According to the Bible, angels announced the birth of Jesus to shepherds, and a bright star led the three Wise Men to a stable in Bethlehem. The Bible does not state the 25th of December as the day on which Christ was born, but historians believe that this was the time when many pagan festivals were celebrated. These festivals were to celebrate the "Winter solstice" the time when the days begin to lengthen in the Northern Hemisphere.

The 25th of December was decided as the day to celebrate the birth of Christ by the Western Church in Rome, while the Eastern Church chose January 6th. After many years the holidays were merged, and Christmas was then celebrated in a twelve day festival. To this day only the Armenian Church celebrates Christmas on January 6th.

The traditions of Christmas

Just like Easter, Christmas is celebrated in many different ways in many countries. Although many countries have very similiar customs, from the gathering of families to gift giving and of course Santa.

Giving gifts: In ancient times gifts were given as part of the midwinter festivals and followed on to become a tradition of Christmas. In different countries, gifts are given on Christmas Day, New Year's Day or on Christmas Eve.

Santa Claus: In many countries gifts given to children are said to be given by a magical, mysterious person known in English speaking countries as Santa Claus or Father Christmas, who legend has it was a fat, jolly elf, who wore a red suit with a fur trim. The legend of Santa is said to have begun in Asia minor, where a 4th century bishop St. Nicholas was said to be very generous to children. He later became the patron saint of children. Children in Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands still to this day call him Saint Nicholas. The children of France call him Pere Noel.
Decorations: In ancient times decorating was an important part of the pagan festivals. The northern Europeans would bring evergreen boughs inside in the winter time to remind them that life would return in the spring. Other evergreen plants such as the mistletoewere said to have magical powers. It is told that if two enemies stood under a branch of the mistletoe they would put down their weapons and embrace. In modern times Christians gave new meaning to decorations such as holly, fire, candles and other lights which all have signifigance in todays Christmas celebrations.
Christmas trees: As with most Christmas traditions the Christmas tree also came from Europe. People started to set up trees in their homes on Christmas Eve, the 24th December to celebrate the feast day of Adam and Eve. When the idea of trees became more popular, people began to decorate them with candles and other ornaments.The Christmas tree was introduced into America by the Germans in the 1700s, and became popular in England in the 1800s when Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, a German prince married Queen Victoria of England, where he set up a decorated Christmas tree in Windsor Castle.

Christmas cards: The very first cards given at Christmas time were created in 1843 by John C. Horsley an English artist. By 1860 Christmas cards were very popular throughout the United Kingdom, and by 1874 they were introduced into the United States by a German emigrant printer, Louis Prang who designed and sold coloured cards. By the mid 1800s he was selling up to 5,000,000! cards per year!

Christmas in Australia

Celebrating Christmas down under is very different to the winter scenes that we normally associate with Christmas. December here in Australia is the first of the summer months, so our Christmas days are normally hot, hot, hot! But, we tend to keep with the traditions associated with Europe and still have our big Christmas lunch, with all the trimmings, put up the tree and exchange presents.

Australian Christmas links

Merry Christmas

Read about the history and tradition of Christmas in Australia.

Christmas Down Under

Koala's Christmas

Contains information about how Christmas is celebrated in Australia; 12 days of Christmas Aussie style; Clipart; Cards; Recipes and an enormous amount of links.

Christmas in Australia

Features three Australian Christmas carols and plays the instrumental music.

Aussie Jingle Bells

Contains the words and music to Aussie Jingle Bells.

Aussie 12 days of Christmas

Contains the words and music to Aussie 12 Days of Christmas.

Christmas fun stuff

Nobody ever forgets Santa's famous reindeer, Rudolph, but do you know the names of all of Santa's reindeer? Not to worry, l can never remember them either, so here they are:


Rudolph, Comet, Cupid, Vixen, Dancer, Prancer, Blitzen, Dasher & Donder.

For Christmas fun and games visit these sites:

Christmas concentration game

Christmas pictures

Here's some pictures to print and color, click on the text below the picture to get a larger version.

Christmas Word search and crossword puzzles

Welcome, we've got 4 word search puzzles here of varying difficulty. The first is designed for beginning readers, so even they can get in on the fun.

Merry Christmas from BlackDog

Write a letter to Santa, play games, print and play mazes, food, activities, puzzles, links and more.

Christmas tetris

Love Tetris? Then you'll love this online Christmas version.

Christmas checkers

Play checkers online.

Welcome to Claus.com

CLAUS.COM is the oldest and most popular Christmas website on the Internet. It has become the Internet's first Christmas tradition, and it attracts millions of kids and parents every year. Santa Claus and his helpers have created a truly creative experience for kids of all ages. There are lots of things to see and do that you won't find anywhere else.

Elf school

Subsection of CLAUS.COM. Earn Honorary Elf Diplomas by playing some of the elves' favorite games. Santa Claus has arranged for you to be able to print out a personalized Diploma for each Elf School game you play. There are lots of fun games! And the diploma has been completely redesigned this year to be even more colorful.

How the Grinch stole Christmas

Read online How the Grinch stole Christmas by Dr Seuss.

'Twas the night before Christmas

An online version of "Twas the night before Christmas, by Clement C. Moore, illustrated with animated graphics.

Special Christmas puzzle page

Your choice of three puzzles: Snowman, Santa and a New year puzzle.

Bethany Roberts' Christmas Library

Children's book author Bethany Roberts site contains Christmas stories, legends, poems and an animated version of "Twas the night before Christmas plus more.

      This page was last updated March, 2016.