Girl opening a Christmas present

What do you know about Christmas? Read this article to find out what people around the world do at this special time of year!


Do the preparation exercise first, then read the article and do the other exercises.

Reading text

Christmas is celebrated in around 160 countries around the world! Christmas celebrations can start from the beginning of December in some places, and in others they go on until January.

Christmas decorations

Christmas is a time for colourful decorations and lights. In many countries, people put up Christmas trees in their homes. These can be either real trees or artificial ones. They decorate them with lights, tinsel and baubles and often put a star on the top. In many towns and cities you can see lights and other decorations in the streets.

Christmas presents

Father Christmas, or Santa Claus, brings presents to many children around the world at Christmas! They sometimes get presents in a stocking – a large sock that children leave out when they go to bed on the night before Christmas. Other children get small presents in their shoes. In some countries, the presents come from other people, such as the Three Kings or the Baby Jesus.

Christmas food

Christmas food is different all over the world. Some people eat roast meat and potatoes, some eat fish, others eat soup or vegetable dishes. Many countries have traditional puddings, desserts, biscuits and cakes. Christmas is often a time for families to share delicious meals together.

A Christian Christmas

For many Christians around the world, Christmas is the time to remember the birth of the baby Jesus. In the UK, some schools have a nativity play, where children dress up and tell the story of Christmas. In many countries, there are nativity scenes in churches or in people's homes. Nativity scenes are small displays of figures, showing the different people and animals in the Christmas story. 

Christmas weather

In lots of Christmas films, books and songs, there's snow, ice and snowmen. For some countries in the northern hemisphere, Christmas means cold, winter weather. But for a lot of countries in the southern hemisphere, Christmas is in summer, and people spend the day in the sun at the beach!

So, Christmas can be very different in different parts of the world, and each country has its own traditions. But in most places where Christmas is celebrated, it's a very special time of year. Merry Christmas!


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