Column: 'Christmas Carol' still has valuable lessons to offer

Don’t get me wrong; I’m happy to be retired, but there are a few times throughout the school year when I am reminded of just how much I enjoyed teaching middle school.The run-up to Christmas break is one of those times.

In the weeks before they are released from school, students radiate an excitement that is contagious. I enjoyed introducing holiday related writing and reading activities in my class. My very favorite thing was working with my classes on Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.”

I do believe I read some form of the story each of the 30 years I taught. My first few years we read a condensed version of the story in Dickens’ own words. The 1840’s vocabulary was a challenge, I daresay, but it was worth it, and the fact that most of the kids knew the story helped put the words in context. It was a good opportunity to talk about how language changes.

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