Playing Favorite Holiday Songs

Welcome to “Playing Favorite Holiday Songs.” This lesson shows how to use familiar holiday songs to stimulate reminiscing conversations. Although the lesson uses Christmas as an example, you can adapt this lesson for any holiday celebration.


In this lesson you will learn to:

  • Use familiar songs to start reminiscing conversations
  • Be receptive to the need to adapt the conversation based on your partners’ abilities


  • Print out the instructions provided below
  • Find a pleasant, quiet location indoors where you and your partner can hear easily, and can freely move and sing together (as the mood strikes)
  • Collect:
    • Two chairs
    • A table (any size)
    • Water or favorite holiday beverage (additional refreshments optional)
    • CD player, iPod, or device with speakers or a traditional record player
    • Three favorite winter holiday songs – in recorded or website linked video. Have the selection include one favorite of yours and two of your care partners for the holiday of your choice (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Solstice, New Year etc.)
    • Family photographs and/or decorations from winter holidays
    • Small memo-book or blank index cards and a pencil

Optional additions to set the scene:

  • Songbooks, sheet music or song sheets
  • Musical instrument(s) which either/both of you play or have in the past
  • Fresh baked holiday treats or drinks associated with family traditions

Set aside 30 to 45 minutes with your care partner for this session.


Please take a moment to review Care for the Caregiver before beginning this lesson.

Individual Steps

You may also watch the individual steps for this lesson. Each of the five steps below will guide you and your partner through the special techniques for this lesson. To make sure you get the most out of this lesson make sure to move through each step in the order they are presented. And remember – have fun!

  1. Consciously Breathe

2. Sing and Move

3. Call and Response

4. Create Together

5. Savor the moment

Written Instructions

Print the entire lesson plan for “Playing Favorite Holiday Songs” here.

Return to Top
Show URL on hover link