(a.k.a. – Teaching on Christmas Day)
Christmas in the mission field can create homesickness or opportunity. This year, I chose opportunity. Taiwan’s Ministry of Education determines our school calendar. While we are a Christian school, we are not allowed to celebrate the birth of Christ on Christmas day. We hold Christmas activities a few days before the 25th, but on the holiday itself, it’s business as usual. I wanted to mark the special day, but I couldn’t host an official classroom party. So, I got a little creative.
Apparently, I talk about tacos . . . a lot. My bilingual speech class students have repeatedly asked me to make them tacos. Tacos for Christmas? The time was right, but how do I explain it to the school? Research. I created a lesson plan for students to present speeches discussing traditional vs. non-traditional holiday foods. Tacos would be a non-traditional holiday food in Taiwan; therefore, we would conduct informative research. We would enjoy tacos during class on December 25. This is Christmas day? What a happy coincidence!
I expected my students would enjoy a food centered lesson, but something unexpected happened as well. While eating and relaxing, we visited informally. The kids were curious about Christmas traditions at church. We discussed candlelight services, children’s services, and the differences between Christmas Eve and Christmas morning services. The Holy Spirit was working through our taco research, allowing me to share a little more about the ways we celebrate the birth of Christ – with or without tacos.