Keep Calm and Shoot Straight

A Blog for Teachers
by Mary Jean Powers

The Spirit of Christmas

Nov 29, 2021

“The true Christmas spirit is putting others’ happiness before our own, and finding you’ve never known such happiness.” 

Toni Sorenson

Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

Younger kids gradually become uncontrollably excited.

Older kids can’t wait for the break from school.

Adults feel increasingly stressed.

December is here.

So, what can we do to keep the ‘spirit of Christmas’ as the main thing?

How can we adjust our teaching techniques to accommodate “tidings of comfort and joy” in the midst of cultural pressure and unrealistic expectations?

How can we create “peace on earth” in our classrooms?

How can we nurture generosity and service and creativity?

Great questions! I’d like to suggest that you get together with another teacher and brainstorm some possible answers. I just Googled “what is the spirit of Christmas” and sorted through responses like …

  • gratitude
  • appreciation
  • giving to those most in need
  • creating good cheer
  • self-sacrifice
  • freedom from greed
  • deep-seated joy

Might it be possible to modify your lessons this month in a way that nurtures peace and accommodates joy? This will definitely look different for each age group, but it will be worth the effort it will take to allow a few extra minutes here and there for conversation, reflection, silence, stories, and appropriate activities. I am convinced that when we reverence seasons of life, minutes are added to each day. Taking time creates time. Funny how that works …

“The true Christmas spirit is putting others’ happiness before our own, and finding you’ve never known such happiness.”  Try putting your students’ happiness (for whatever reason!) before the rigidity of your lesson plans. This may free you to enjoy the season with them! Create some space for their joy and their fatigue, and I believe that your own stress will diminish. Learning will happen, but in a more pleasant atmosphere than the typical chaos of December.

Merry Christmas!

About Keep Calm and Shoot Straight

I am a teacher. You, too? I hope you love the profession as much as I do! I was 16 when I got my first teaching gigs – I had 20 private piano students and a Sunday School class of 4 and 5-year olds! At that point in my “career,” my definition of teacher was very limited. But now – after 45+ years of experience – I have come to realize that teacher can mean many different things. I’d like to share some of those insights with you! My posts will range from quotes to prayers, from cartoons to words of wisdom. Much of my teaching experience has been international, so you'll get to watch some video stories from around the globe. Jesus is the best Teacher I know, so I will be including Him in this blog, as well. I hope my thoughts and my story will encourage, provoke, and inspire you to become the teacher you’ve been created to be!

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Mary Jean Powers

Mary Jean Powers

B.A. in Christian Education
M.A. in Biblical Studies
Music teacher (band and choir director, private instruction) for 35 years
International Bible teacher for 17+ years
Certified Walk Thru the Bible instructor
Certified TESL International Instructor
CEU Provider for ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International)
Certified Life Coach and Chaplain

Who am I? A teacher coming alongside teachers!