# Christmas in Australia Lesson Plans

Christmas in Australia is influenced by European traditions, but there are some big differences. Christmas takes place in the summer in Australia, since it’s in the Southern Hemisphere.

That’s an excellent opportunity for a science lesson. For this activity, you’ll need some things:

• Place a lamp with a bare light bulb in the center of the room.
• Use Mavalus tape to form an X on the floor with the lamp in the center.
• Hold up the month word cards, read them together, and make certain that students are clear on all the months. Do the same with the seasons.
• Review the seasons if necessary.
• Use the word cards to explain that the equinoxes and solstices are the first days of the seasons.
• Mark the ends of the tape  on the floor with the equinoxes and solstices.
• Place the card for “December” by the “winter solstice” card. Place the June card by the “summer solstice” card. Have the students place the remaining month word cards on the floor in the right places between the tape spokes.
• Find and mark your location on the globes being used.
• Invite volunteers to hold the globes. The globes should be held at an angle of 23.5 degrees. Model this for the volunteers; it is not necessary for young students to remember this number. The angle should be the same for each globe. Have the volunteers stand by the word cards for June and December. If you have more globes, distribute additional volunteers around the circle
• Explain that the light bulb represents the sun, and the globes represent the earth at different points in its orbit around the sun.
• Ask students to help you determine which piece of seasonal clothing each volunteer should wear. Distribute the clothing according to the seasons.
• Turn off the classroom light.
• Have the volunteers stand on the tape lines.
• Observe how the light from the bulb falls on the globes.
• Have students say, write, or draw what part of each globe is in full light.
• Now mark Australia on the globe. Repeat the experience with new volunteers. Conclude that the Northern and Southern Hemispheres have their seasons at opposite calendar times.

If you are in the Southern Hemisphere, simply reverse the procedure, demonstrating your location first and following up with a location in the Northern Hemisphere.