You may dread the holiday season. You’re not a Scrooge. With so many holiday breaks in such a short time span, it can be hard to make progress in the classroom. Not only are there so many days away from the classroom throughout November and December, but many brains “go on vacation” long before the actual holiday break begins.
Keeping the kids focused, engaged, and learning when their minds are really on gift lists, parties, travel plans, and decorations can make a your job quite tricky. With a little creativity, teachers can incorporate learning about holiday celebrations into their lesson plans.
Holiday Lesson Plan Ideas for Elementary Teachers
Here are a few ideas for teachers to include the holiday celebrations into day to day teaching.
Math Applications for Holiday Themes
- Use shopping examples to bring holiday fun into a math lesson. Figure up holiday budgets, the amount of tax charged on a transaction, or how much money will be left in one’s pocket at the end of the holiday season.
- For fractions, you can talk about slices of pie on the Thanksgiving table. Alternately, classes may work on “fraction of a group” problems by discussing which kids have which items on their gift lists.
- You can bring Santa’s workshop into the classroom, making each elf in the workshop responsible for crafting a certain number of toys.
- Plan the class party by adding up how many snacks are needed. For instance, if five children each bring in a dozen cookies, how many cookies are needed? Additionally, you can figure up how much money will be needed for the food at the holiday party.
Holiday English Lesson Plans
- Instead of diagramming dull sentences, have the students write their own about their holiday wishes and plans.
- Have each child list adjectives describing their hope for holiday gift, and play a game with the class trying to decide what each child most wants for Christmas.
- Assign essays describing students’ ideal Christmas. Remind the kids to use sensory words, filling their essays with detail.
Social Studies and Geography for Before Winter Break
- Explore the different winter holiday celebrations of different cultures across the globe.
- Discuss the origins of different holidays and holiday customs. Talk about how these celebrations have changed over time.
Health and Wellness for Holiday Celebrations
- Have students plan a well-balanced holiday dinner.
- Explain how over-indulgence on simple carbs affects one’s blood sugar levels.
- Analyze the nutrition and overall healthiness of the traditional holiday meal, and talk about ways students can tweak it to make it better.
More Classroom Holiday Crafts & Activity Ideas
If you’re looking for inspiration and ideas to make this pre-break season more fun and engaging for you and your students, be sure to stop by the Celebrations and Seasons category page. Also visit the Celebrations and Seasons specialty shop online to find all the classroom decorations & arts and crafts supplies you need.