The holiday season is indeed the season of abundance and gifts, and while the abundance in schools may come in the forms of chaos, germs, behaviors and lost mittens; the gifts come in teachable moments that the Winter holidays provide!
From learning about how others celebrate the season, to having a true purpose for writing, discovering math concepts, and for those of us who teach in Catholic and Christian Schools, learning about the Nativity!
Learning about how others celebrate the season:
These photos were taken after kindergarten students read stories with their reading buddies about how different characters celebrate the holiday season. The buddies then compared their own holiday traditions and drew side-by-side pictures of them.
The big buddies didn’t know it at the time, but their little buddies had a surprise in store for them, because the holiday season is also a perfect time to show kids that…
We write for real purposes!
I have dedicated an entire blog post to this topic here, but will emphasize that I think we need to bring back the hand-written Christmas card tradition (or begin that tradition for other holidays). It can feel frivolous and impractical in our world , but do you remember the thrill of getting real mail? Writing a card, addressing it, putting the stamp on and mailing it? It meant something.
Below are two growing sets of Christmas cards with multiple levels of support for your earliest writers!
So, as I was saying about little buddies, they made Happy Holidays cards for their Big Buddies (I’m still waiting on pictures…):
Math is everywhere during the holidays,
Here’s a popular post and product about counting by two’s with reindeer. I just added images to create toilet paper roll figures and / or crafts to the Big Christmas Bundle that make ideal manipulatives acting out the 10 at the Sled Song / Storybook:
Especially in patterns!
Learning about the Nativity
Reading picture books are always a great way to introduce and review content and vocabulary with kids, and there are many wonderful stories about the First Christmas. Having themed costumes, toys, puppets handy are a great way to inspire dramatic play! Check out these amazing Nativity Education Ideas for Young Students on Pinterest!
They also just can’t believe it when they realize that these are the exact same characters from their very own readers! Little minds blown! lol