27th December 2007 at 00:00
What is the link between mince pies and the crusades? Who invented Christmas crackers and why did they originally have love poems inside them?

Answers to these and many more questions about Christmas in England can be found on the website of Woodlands Junior School in Tonbridge, Kent - along with an online advent calendar, Christmas teaching resources and jokes.

Nobody can accuse this school of being half-hearted about the annual celebration. It has a Christmas fair, Christmas lunch, Christmas performances and sends children to Hever Castle to sing carols.

While other schools are replacing the three kings with the seven dwarves, Woodlands is sticking with a traditional nativity play.

The jokes on its site, displayed among falling snowflakes and accompanied by a festive jingle, are sent in by children from all over the world. Here are just three from a vast collection:

What do you get if you eat Christmas decorations? Tinselitis.

What is brown and sneaks around the kitchen? Mince spies.

What did the pack of Walkers say to the Skips? Merry Crispmas!

Groan-worthy stuff. But ideal for Christmas cracker-makers.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today