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Monday, December 24, 2012

ESL Christmas: The Nativity Story

Children participate in a nativity play at school as part of  a Christmas program
Many people around the world world celebrate Christmas with family dinners and gift giving.  But many are not all familiar with the reason Christians celebrate this special day.  

The following video tells the story of Christmas that comes from the Bible.  It does not matter if you believe the story or not, but IS is important to know the story itself if you want to understand Christian beliefs and culture.


Instructions
  • Try to listen to the story several times WITHOUT reading the subtitles. 
  • Then, try to answer the questions. ( Do NOT check your answers)   
  • Next, go back and listen to the story while you read the subtitles.  
  • Answer the questions again.  Check the answers. 
  • Read along WITH the speaker - at the same time, NOT after him. When you speak at the same time as the speaker, this is called shadow speaking. 
Before you listen, 
What is frankincense?
What is myrrh? 
 
MATCH:             shepherd:                 ruler                    to worship              angel  
                     (answers below)   

                                       
           





Traditional Christmas Carols: 

I'm including some traditional Christmas carols  that focus on the real meaning of Christmas.  People have sung these carols for hundreds of years, so it is useful for you to know some of them

Silent Night
"Silent Night" (German: Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht) is a popular Christmas carol, composed in 1818 in Austria. It was declared an intangible cultural heritage by the UNESCO in March 2011.  The best known Christmas carol in the world has been translated into more than 140 languages, and sung by every singer who has released a Christmas album.   

Silent Night  The song was sung simultaneously in French, English and German by troops during the Christmas truce[7] of 1914, as it was one carol that soldiers on both sides of the front line knew. ( Source: Wikipedia


Silent Nifght and the Secon d O'clock News 
In 1966 Well known singers Simon and Gargunkel    O'Clock News/Silent Night" is the twelfth and final track on Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, a 1966 album by Simon and Garfunkel. The track consists of anoverdubbing of two contrasting recordings: a simple arrangement of the Christmas carol "Silent Night", and a simulated "7 O'Clock News" bulletin of the actual events of 3 August 1966.
The "Silent Night" track consists of Simon and Garfunkel singing the first verse twice over, accompanied by Garfunkel on piano. The voice of the newscaster is that ofCharlie O'Donnell, then a radio disc jockey. As the track progresses, the song becomes fainter and the news report louder. Matthew Greenwald calls the effect "positively chilling".[1] Bruce Eder describes the track as "a grim and ironic (and prophetic) comment on the state of the United States in 1966".[2] ( Wikepidia) 




                                           Read about the Nativity Story 
Breath of Heaven

This song focuses on how frightened Mary was and her hopes that she could live up to the responsibilities she was going to have as the mother of God. The video features scenes adapted from the 2007 film "The Nativity Story" by New Lines Productions Inc. 






O Holy Night 

This song was originally written in French and is often sung at Christian services on Christmas eve. More than 100 artists have recorded this song, but my favourite has always been the Celine Dion version. I have included the French version with lyrics. 


Do You Hear What I Hear?

This song  focuses on what the shepherds in the field heard and saw on the first
Christmas when Jesus was born.








What Child Is This 













The next two songs focus on the joy Christmas is supposed to bring and reminds us that we need to remember to keep some of that joy in our heart even when things in our life are bad. 
 

Try to sing along with this next song as loudly as you can. Make sure you really open your mouth wide. It will help with your pronunciation, your phrasing and your speaking fluency. 



1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this video and script of The Christmas Story. I had a student ask me about the story at the end of our last meeting before Christmas. I am happy to find this, and I will share the video with her

    ReplyDelete

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