One problem I have noticed when observing Christmas- themed English lessons with younger children is that the Xmas vocabulary that is covered is often chosen just for how seasonal it is or how well it ties in with craft work, leading to a classroom without the active, fun TPR that should be a standard part of all classes with smaller kids. Here are some suggestions for how you can add mimes to a Xmas class, whether you are eliciting, drilling or testing students on the words of things that will be all around them at this time of year.
- Snow- Move your fingers up and down as your hands drift slowly to the floor. To make it distinct from the mime for “rain”, make your hands drift from side to side as they fall.
- Reindeer- Use your hands to represent horns on your head, then maybe mime butting the students with your horns to add some “frightened” screams to the excitement
- Bell- Make an upside down bell shape with your hands and swing them between your legs, or put your bent arms at some distance from the sides of your body (like a gorilla) and swing your whole body from side to side
- Xmas card- Like opening a book (two palms folded together then opened), but look at the inside and smile
- Xmas Present/ gift -Make a box shape by putting your forearms out in front of you with arms bent at 90 degrees and upper arms touching the side of your body (like a robot), then move your arms to make the other two sides of the box with the two forearms crossing horizontally in front of your body one foot from each other, repeat many times, or just mime unwrapping a present
- Star - Spread both hands and touch the insides of both wrists then bend both hands back so you are showing the palms and ten spread fingers to the class, or make an X shape with your whole body
- Sock/ Xmas stocking -Mime putting on and taking off socks, maybe miming ‘smelly’ (waving your hand in front of your nose) when you take them off, or mime hanging a sock up on the fireplace
- (Christmas) tree- Draw a big triangle in the air with both index fingers, or make the shape with your whole body by standing up very straight with your legs together (at attention) and putting your straight arms at a 15 degree angle to your body
- Santa Claus/ Father Christmas- Mime a big beard with both hands, and/ or mime a big stomach or carrying a sack
- Snowman- Draw two circles in the air with index fingers or cupped hands, or mime making a snowman from snow on the ground
- Candle- Hold one hand in a tube as if you are holding the candle and the other hand cupped above it as if you are protecting the flame from the wind, then take the top hand away and blow the flame out
- Chimney- Stand up very tall and straight, then wave your hands round and round above your head as they get higher to suggest smoke coming out of the top of your head
- Cracker- Mime pulling either on or both sides of a cracker, then jump back in shock when it breaks and explodes
- Holly- Intertwine the fingers of both hands and make your fingers stick out like thorns. You could then get the students to touch your thorns and mime having their fingers hurt (jumping back and sucking their fingers)
- Mistletoe- Mime holding it above someone’s head with one hand and giving them a kiss
- Turkey- Do a waddling walk while flapping wings like a chicken but also mime the bit hanging down from under your chin with one hand, or make the outline of a big turkey in front of you with two hands and then mime carving it
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