Teaching With Songs: Merry Christmas, Ed Sheeran & Elton John together!

Ed Sheeran & Elton John!! a great collaboration with an amazing song: Merry Christmas!


Here is the place to be if you believe in the power of songs to teach English!

The place to find Creativity, Inspiration, Teaching Ideas and Resources to bring Musical Innovation to your English Language Teaching Practice!

So, here we go! XD


This song-based STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLAN for ENGLISH language TEACHING features Merry Christmas by Ed Sheeran & Elton John. Students TALK about snow angels/snow butterflies, work in pairs to talk about winter themed pictures, PLAY a music video lottery in groups. There are optional exercises for A2 (vowel sounds), B1 (interactive worksheet with word search and listening exercise) and B2 Cambridge English: first (Interactive worksheet: use of English part 2).

OBS: This lesson plan was made for ONLINE TEACHING, but it can be modified for face-to-face instruction, as well.

Language level: A2, B1 (interactive worksheet), B2 (interactive worksheet)
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing
Topic: winter activities, Christmas
Materials: YouTube video, genial.ly presentation, interactive worksheets
Duration: 45 min - 1 hour
Download your free teaching resources: instructions pdf ; noninteractive worksheet b1. pdf; noninteractive use of English worksheet.pdf



Step 1 (5 min)

Write on the board: SNOW ANGEL. Ask: “What is a ‘SNOW ANGEL’ ?” Have them give you their guesses.

Then, show them the picture in slide 01. Genial.ly Presentation. LINK and say

This is a snow angel. Do you know how to make one?”

Step 2 (5 min)

Show slide 2. Show the gif of someone making a snow angel/butterfly and ask students if they’ve ever made one or if they’d like to and why. Tell them that some people also call it “SNOW BUTTERFLY”. Ask them if it looks more like an angel or a butterfly and why.

Step 3 (10 min)

Slide 03. Ask, “What are the people doing in the pictures?” Have students describe each picture. Pair work (breakout rooms). have students work in pairs and answer the questions:

In which picture would you like to be and why? Is there any activity you wouldn’t like to do? why? (obs. the pictures are from the music video).

Step 4 (10 min)

Music Video Lottery. Slide 04. Tell students they are going to watch the music video for the song. However, before watching the video, they are going to play a Music Video Lottery:

Divide students into groups. Show the slide 4 with the pictures. (Clock, Lion, Cat, Dog, Snowboarding, Surfing, TV, Radio, Horse). Explain that only five of those things will appear on the video. Their task is to choose the things and come up with reasons why they chose them. (The aim here is for them to use their imagination to come up with creative reasons why those things would appear on the video). Tell them that the crazier the better!

Examples of student’s explanations: ” we chose the picture of snowboarding because this is a typical activity for winter, so it’s probably going to be in the video” or ” we chose the picture of surfing because maybe they want to show how the activities change from summer to winter in the video!

Step 5 (7 min)

Put the groups in breakout rooms and give them 5 min to choose the pictures.

When the time’s up, have the group captains send their list of things via chat box privately, for you to check later who got more right things. Have students from the groups explain their choices.

Step 6 (10 min)

Play the music video for them to check. Answer: Clock, Lion, Cat, Snowboarding, TV. obs. the lion appears in the beginning of the video behind Elton John.


How many sunglasses appear in the video? a.3 b.7 c. 9

PLAY THE video again for them to check and count! (you will probably have some dispute over the number NINE LOL, in this case, show slide 5 with the visual proof!


A2 – VOWEL SOUNDS exercise with words from the lyrics (SLIDE 6 in the genially presentation)

B1- INTERACTIVE WORKSHEET with Word Search + Listening LINK. Description: students find words from the lyrics in the word search, then listen to the song and fill the gaps with the words they found. For students to see their results, tell them to click FINISH!! and then CHECK MY ANSWERS!

B2 – INTERACTIVE WORKSHEET – Cambridge English First Style Use of English part 2. LINK

This song-based lesson plan is sure to spice-up your classes! However, would you like to think, feel and act more creatively on your own to be able to turn ANY song you want into an engaging lesson plan?
HERE are TIME-SAVING ideas that do the heavy work so you can focus on the most important: INSPIRING and MOTIVATING YOUR STUDENTS to learn CREATIVELY!


That’s it for this week! I hope this activity is helpful and enjoyable! 


SUBSCRIBE to SAF’s FREE MUSIC CHANNEL (Copyright Free Music for Teachers!)



Happy teaching!  🙂


  1. Hi there!
    As teachers of English can you clear up a doubt I have about the chorus at the end of this song…. shouldn’t it be “it’s Christmas time for you and ME”…????
    You can say:
    “it’s Christmas time for you”
    “It’s Christmas time for me”
    But….”it’s Christmas time for I” ?????

    Does that sound like a huge grammatical blunder to you?? I wonder if Ed and Elton run their lyrics through a grammar check?!

    I’m eager to hear your view.
    Love the song though,
    Happy New Year to all

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello, Barbara! Happy New Year! Answering your question: they sure know their English all right! LOL the thing is when it comes do songs, musicians take some liberties! In this case, “for you and I” is a much better rhyme than the correct “for you and me”! Try singing it correctly and you destroy the melody! 🤪


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