What We Can Learn from Dickens at Christmas Time
This time of year can be difficult for homeschooling high school. The days are gone when you could take a month off of regular school and do all the fun holiday things. What We Can Learn from Dickens at Christmas Time offers another way to approach the holiday season while homeschooling high school.
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With Charles Dickens as our guide, we can have big conversations and learn more about writing and story all within a seasonal backdrop.
So, what can we learn from Dickens at Christmas Time?
Certainly this story provides our teens with a look at “the man who learned better” theme.
You’ll find lots of resources and learn a few little known facts about this Christmas classic along the way.
Our Favorite Book Editions of A Christmas Carol
Everyone has a favorite.
I found that sweet little red covered edition at a library book sale recently.
These two are our preferred choices:
- A Christmas Carol Dover Thrift Edition-an unabridged and unchanged edition of the first edition published in 1843.
- Audible Edition Narrated by Tim Curry– this is our all time favorite way to enjoy this timeless story. Tim Curry is pretty captivating. You won’t be disappointed!
Movie Adaptations of A Christmas Carol
Have you watched any of the movie adaptations of A Christmas Carol?
It’s enjoyable to have a visual representation of the story.
In fact, if you have the chance to see a live performance I highly recommend it.
We once saw a big stage puppet theater version and it was lovely!
Here are a few ideas to enjoy:
- The Classic with Alistair Sim
- Scrooge– from 1951 in black and white
- The New Classic with Patrick Stewart-because Patrick Stewart!
- The Muppet Christmas Carol– of course!
- Scrooged– the version with Bill Murray which is a take on the more modern work-a-holic
Consider viewing more than one of these adaptations and compare them.
How are they the same and different from the original story?
How are they different from one another?
Which one is your favorite?
Learn from Dickens through Biography
Charles Dickens wrote during a specific time in British history about a particular time in British history.
He wrote about social injustice.
To know his writing, get to know the writer,
and the world he lived in.
Below are a few options:
- The Man Who Invented Christmas– is a movie that tells the story of how A Christmas Carol came to be.
- What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew– from Fox Hunting to Whist- the Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth Century England
- Dickensian– this a fictional series on Amazon Prime that is set in 19th Century London with Dickens’ book characters a part of the story. This one is for high schoolers for sure.
- Dickens: His Work and His World– not every book in high school has to be a huge read. You can learn quite a bit from shorter biographies.
- Excellence in Literature: British Literature– has a unit on a title by Charles Dickens which includes assignments on the author and his world.
Resources for Studying A Christmas Carol
If you want to do a deeper dive into the story,
check out these resources:
- A Christmas Carol Boomerang– from Brave Writer. This is a literature unit study with talking points on grammar and story style. These are a great introduction to studying literature with copywork, dictation, and big conversations.
- A Christmas Carol & Other Stories– audio recordings from Jim Weiss
- A Teacher’s Guide to A Christmas Carol– a literature guide
Other Christmas Tales by Charles Dickens
Did you know that A Christmas Carol was not the only story Dickens wrote about Christmas?
In fact, he wrote five stories with a Christmas theme.
Have you read any of the others?
Or you can get them all in one volume:
- Christmas Stories: A Classic Collection for Yuletide– a bind up of all five stories
- Christmas Stories– an Audible original of all five stories unabridged
Other Posts on Homeschooling at the Holidays
Homeschooling teens during the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas can be a chore.
Your kids aren’t young anymore, but you want to have fun.
Whimsy is everything-
even for teens.
Here are a few more posts that address homeschooling high school during the holiday season.
- Celebrating Advent in Your Homeschool with Teens– or simply observing Advent as a family when you have teens. Lots of resources here.
- Homeschooling Older Kids through the Holidays– what to do this time of year when it can’t be all fun, games, crafts, and baking. At least…not all the time.