My Holiday Wish List Lesson Plan

My Holiday Wish List Lesson Plan

Created by Meghan Montgomery, 3LPlace, December 2016

Applies to: Relationships, Self Awareness, Social Awareness.

Purpose: Help individuals deal with the stress of holiday gift-giving and gift-getting and recognize that this experience is different for everyone, based on their own friend, family, and financial systems


  • Explore the value and meaning of a wish list item
  • Create holiday wish lists
  • Mail wish lists to a beloved person (for example, a family or dear friend) to alert them to individuals’ holiday wish list

Materials needed:

  • Paper
  • Family or friends address
  • Envelopes
  • Pens/pencils/markers, etc.
  • Stamps
  • Graphic organizer
  • iPad/laptop
  • Copier

Activity Steps

Part 1 - Idea of Gift-Giving/Getting and Creating a Wishlist

  1. Discuss with members what gift-giving/getting means to them personally. For example: how do you choose a present for a person? Do you like to go Christmas/holiday shopping? What does it feel like to receive a present? How do you feel when you receive a present you don’t like? How do you feel if someone tells you that they didn’t like the present you gave them?
  2. Create own wishlist for the holidays of 3 desired items

Part 2 - Value and Meaning of Wishlist Item

  1. Ask members to read their 3 part dream holiday wish list aloud followed by isolating their prioritized item.
  2. Use graphic organizers to dig deeper into the meaning, practicality, value, etc., of the item selected. Fill out graphic organizers with relevant input.
  3. Once complete, share as a group with staff modeling and encouraging relevant questions and comments.

Part 3 - Mailing Wishlist 

  1. Review wish list and isolate one person to mail the wish list too
  2. Write a short letter to the person, stapling wish list to the letter, followed by addressing envelope  (“To” and “From”) and putting a stamp on the envelope
  3. Walk to a mailbox or the Post Office to mail letter/s

Note: Not everyone benefits from the generosity shared around the holiday season by strong family systems.  Be alert to individual backgrounds and triggers in conducting this activity.

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