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The Best Christmas Pageant Ever



Last updated Monday, July 23, 2007

Author: Barbara Robinson
Illustrator: Judith Gwyn Brown
Date of Publication: 1988
ISBN: 0881039985
Grade Level: 4th    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Dec. 2004

Synopsis: Called one of America's favorite Christmas stories, and now a classic television movie, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever has been a favorite of young readers the world over since 1972. Funny, memorable, and outrageous, it is the story of a family of incorrigible children who discover the Christmas story for the first time and help everyone else rediscover its true meaning.

Note to readers:
•  Readers: You don't have to read the entire book. Instead, aim to read through chapter four, and tell the children that if they want to learn what happens next, they can check the book out at their school library.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Do you know any troublemakers? Why do you think they are so mad?
•  What does your class do to celebrate the holidays? Do you enjoy it?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What do you think the Hardemans would say if you asked them their version of the story?
•  What do you think happens next?
•  What would you have done if you had been a part of the pageant?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a program for the pageant.
•  Make holiday themed thank you cards to give to anyone who gives them presents.

Special activities:
•  Sing carols.

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!