Christmas At School

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Time to learn about the original Santa Claus - St Nicholas - and to explore Christmas traditions and the importance of kindness and generosity. Our varied and engaging Christmas resources for schools are now available to download.

Historic churches offer memorable learning experiences.  Whether you're looking to bring the curriculum alive or creatively inspire learners, our expert team are here to help.

Learn about St Nicholas and Christmas Traditions

Learn about St Nicholas, the patron saint of children. St Nicholas’ feast day is celebrated on 6th December, and in many parts of the world, he is seen as the traditional bringer of Christmas presents.

Explore Christmas traditions and the importance of kindness and generosity. Our varied and engaging Christmas resources for schools are designed as a pick and mix, and you can choose all or just a selection of them to suit the needs and interests of your group.

Click and download the resource pack here.

Make your own Christingle

The history of the Christingle can be traced back to Bishop Johannes de Watteville, who started the tradition in Germany in 1747 by giving children in the parish each an orange, as St Nicholas is said to have done, to explain the meaning of Christmas. Christingle, from a word of German origin, Christkindl, meaning "Little Christ Child", is used to celebrate Jesus Christ as the "Light of the World".

Watch the video on how to make a Christingle:


Clay Piggies

Christmas has always been a time when people help those in need. This was also the case in previous centuries when worshippers in a church would donate to special boxes throughout the year. These boxes would be opened at Christmas time, usually 26th December, and the money given to the poor.

The boxes were made of clay, with a small slit for the money to go into, but to get the money back out again, the box would have to be smashed open, destroying it. These boxes were nicknamed ‘piggies’ – This is where we get the name ‘piggy bank’.

See our video here on how to make you own:


National Schools Learning Programme

We're delighted to offer a wide-ranging Learning Programme for schools, with engaging workshops which explore topics on a range of curriculum subjects from Art and History to Science and Engineering. Most Heritage Learning workshops are offered free-of-charge*.

Download Schools Learning Programme

Where possible, CCT's Heritage Learning team can work with teaching staff to deliver Covid-secure sessions for schools, both in historic churches and in the classroom. We are also offering an adapted programme in place of the usual school visits, with blended learning and digital workshops. Please contact the team to discuss your school groups' requirements.

Learning from historic churches

Churches are wonderful places to deliver many aspects of the curriculum and help learning to come alive in a practical and local context. They are great places to learn more about subjects like art, (local) history, archaeology, science, maths, architecture and heritage conservation – to name a few!

Looking for a Helping Hand?

Our Heritage Learning Team can tailor bespoke activities to your needs and deliver them in your local historic church or as outreach.

Or a Helping Handbook?

We can also provide teachers with everything they need for self-led, informal visits. See our teaching resources on this page for more information. Please always contact us to book your church visit, so we can ensure the church is open and available.