1-2-3 Come Make Some Christmas Around the World Ornaments With Me
Few of us have the time or luxury, of being able to do a craft “just because”…
- Just because it’s fun.
- Just because the children will absolutely love it and be happily engaged.
- Just because completed projects make an awesome display, which will instill pride and build self-esteem,
-Just because it’s “hands-on”, which I truly believe is the best way to learn.
And because of all those positive things, I wanted to design something “extra special” for the holiday season, that’s quick, easy and fun, as well as very educational, to make even the Grinchiest of Bah Humbugs smile their approval.
Since many teachers dare to dally with a bit of craftiness during December, especially with their Christmas Around the World geography lessons, I designed this set of “Around the World” ornaments.
Each ornament features the country’s flag, a map of the country, as well as a sweet graphic, which people readily identify as being symbolic of that country. i.e. The Eiffel Tower for France.
You decide how you want to make each country’s 3-part ornament as well. There are quite a few options:
They can be kept as three, single flat ornaments, or add the "blank" ball and use it for a writing prompt, then glue them back-to-back to make two, flat ornaments.
For added sparkle & pizzazz, I added gold and silver glitter to the "metal" top of the ornament.
Another easy-peasy option is to simply staple the 3 balls at the top to make a "flip up" ornament.
Add a blank-ball page in-between each one, so older students can describe the flag on one, write an interesting fact about the country on another, then explain what the symbolic picture balll means on the other.
Children an also make a "Dangler" out of their ornmaments, by gluing them together vertically. They look wonderful suspended from the ceiling as a wall border in the hallway.
Finally, my favorite way to make them is to fold the balls in half, and glue them together to make a 3D ornament with either 3 or 4 sides.
How you use the ornaments is also up to you.
- As a whole group activity:
Do that country’s ornament as a culminating lesson when you’ve finished studying about it.
Easy-peasy: No more thinking about what craft to match up to the various countries, buying materials & then spending hours prepping.
These are “print & go”, plus, once you’ve explained the directions the first time, you no longer need to spend time doing that again. Another country—a new ornament.
Children feel empowered by the consistency, and can get right down to business; plus, they enjoy collecting them, much like they would a souvenir ornament from that county.
The beauty of even the 3D ornament, is that they fold down flat, and can easily be tucked into students’ “Around the World” suitcases after you're done displaying them.
I've included a storage envelope children can tuck their ornaments in, to keep them from getting tangled.
Each student can make the ornament that matches their “Country Report”. After they’ve finished their presentation, have them add their ornament to your classroom tree, or attach to a pine garland you’ve displayed as a border in the hall.
Besides the black & white patterns for students, I’ve also included full-color templates, so that you can quickly & easily make an example to share, to help explain what you want students to do.
You can suspend your set from the ceiling. They look wonderful swirling & twirling as you “study abroad”.
This is the first set in a series, and includes the following countries:
* The United States &
* Wales Plus a United Kingdom BONUS ornament.
These countries match those in my “Travels Around The World” packets that I’ve posted thus far.
The 2nd ornament packet in the series, includes the following countries:
* Argentina. *Brazil * China* Greece * India * Israel * Japan * Netherlands * Norway & * Switzerland
The 3rd ornament packet in the series, includes the following countries:
* Cuba * Egypt * Iran * Jamaica * Kenya * New Zealand * Philippines * Saudi Arabia & * Vietnam
Today's featured FREEBIE is from my jumbo "Christmas Around The World" packet. It's a "color me" greeting card. Hope you find it useful.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
My feet have hit the floor running this morning, as my "To Do" list is beyond long, but I'm excited to prepare for Thanksgiving.
Wishing you a relaxing and stress-free day.
"Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse." - Henry Van Dyke
1-2-3 Come Make Some Christmas Ornaments With Me
Here’s a quick, easy & fun Christmas name ornament, that’s a perfect little craftivity for party day or those crazy last few days of school.
Even the Common Core “Grinch” police, will have no problem finding this an extremely educational activity!
It can simply be done with little ones (PK-Y5) to practice their names, along with letter recognition, and the difference between upper and lowercase letters, vowels & consonants as well as counting.
Older kiddos, (K-3rd) can practice a lot of math:
such as graphing, addition, greater & less than, data analysis, inference, guess-timation, plus comparing & contrasting with a Venn diagram.
I’ve included several worksheets and graphing extensions, plus a "secret" coded Christmas message that you can challenge your students to solve.
Make it a "speed" game, and see who can decode the message first.
Afterwards, students pick a partner and write a secret message to them.
For a sweet keepsake, have children write their name on the back, along with a date and grade, then glue their school photo on.
Click on the link to zip on over to my TpT shop to take a look: Christmas Name Ornament Laced With Math.
Laminate your students’ completed projects; punch a hole at the top & add a yarn loop.
Today's feartured FREEBIE is also an ornament. It's a fingerprint Christmas tree, sure to become a keepsake as well.
This little craftivity, is a terrific way to review the concept of +1 more and counting to 10, and includes a poem for the back:
"My fingerprints as you can see, have made a lovely little tree. They're stacked up straight and oh so tall, with love from me when I was small." Children sign and date.
Thanks for stopping by. I've got to hustle off to go buy the ingredients to make Christmas cookies.
That was one of my favorite memories with my Grama Lydia, and I hope to make it an annual tradition with Kaiden (3) & Kaitlyn (1) who are coming over today. Wishing you a love-flled day.
"Grandchildren are sprinkles on the cookies of life." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Christmas Craftivities With Me
"Welcome To My House" is an interesting and fun writing prompt with two door options.
For one, students decorate their construction paper door, trim and glue the “hinge” portion to a sheet of white paper, which they also trim. The other, is a “color me” option.
Inside, students write their final draft completing the writing prompt: "Welcome to my home for Christmas..."
Encourage students to use plenty of adjectives that involve their senses, to help describe what a visitor might see, hear, and smell, as they enter their home. I've included a completed sample to help you explain the lesson.
Students who don't celebrate Christmas, can simply write a "Welcome to my home" for another celebration or holiday that their family celebrates.
If you do a Christmas Around the World theme, students can choose a country, and welcome visitors to their home in France, Sweden, Mexico etc. as they write from that point of view.
Completed projects make a lovely bulletin board. I’ve also included an address tag, to go along with your display.
Next up is a class-made book: Who Will Pull Santa's Sleigh?
Introducing a writing activity with a story, grabs my kiddos attention, stimulates their imaginations, and gets them excited to get down to the business of writing.
Who’ll Pull Santa’s Sleigh Tonight? by Laura Rader, is a personal favorite of my students, and was the inspiration behind this class book writing activity.
The reindeer have all come down with a cold, so Santa holds auditions for replacement animals, with some outrageous and funny results.
To practice more standards, I like to read a similar story, so that my students can compare and contrast them.
A Venn diagram activity, as well as a graphing extension are also included in the packet.
Our comparison story is, "Who Will Guide My Sleigh Tonight?" by Jerry Pallotta. It's an adorable “go along”, with awesome illustrations!
In this story, the reindeer are not sick, as the tale starts at the beginning, before Santa thought about reindeer for the job.
Many silly scenarios are presented, as different animals try out for the job.
From skunks, kangaroos and giraffes, to monkeys, mice and even snakes, your kiddos will get lots of ideas of who should pull Santa’s sleigh.
Finally, The Twelve Days of Christmas packet, also includes several writing prompts, as well as an emergent reader, plus several games, which practice a variety of standards, as well as some posters and worksheets.
The emergent reader contains over 100 Dolch sight words!
Students read the sentence, trace and write the number and ordinal number word, then complete the writing prompts.
Besides the writing within the emergent reader, there are also 3 other writing prompts:
* “If money were no object, list 7 things you’d like to have”;
* “A Favorite Gift” where students tell about a gift that they really enjoy and why it’s a favorite.
* “Something Special For Someone Special” where children choose a person that they’d like to give a gift to and write who-what-why.
The featured FREEBIE today is "Me Mints!" one of my personal favorites. Completed projects make an adorable bulletin board. I've also included a smaller template, if you'd rather make a Christmas ornament.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by. I have so much to do, I'm not sure where to start.
A bit of housecleaning is certainly in order before I add any more Christmas decorations... hmmmm maybe I'll just go shopping instead. Wishing you a frolicking-fun day.
"Housework: Something nobody really notices, until you don't do it." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Study Coins With Me
I'm always looking for quick, easy and fun ways to study the various standards and still include my theme.
With that in mind, I designed this Christmas tree craft, that's decorated with coins. (penny, nickel, dime & quarter).
Run the tree template off on green construction paper, or use white and have students color.
Children pick a partner and take turns rolling the dice four times.
Their 1st roll equals how many penny ornaments they will glue to their tree, the 2nd roll is for nickels and so on.
Students color, cut and glue the matching number of coins to their tree.
This way, each tree will be trimmed differently.
After they are done “decorating” their tree, older students complete their math worksheet by adding up the total value of their tree, writing that on the star or trunk.
I’ve also provided a worksheet where students break down the total of each coin.
For more advanced math practice, have everyone share their total, write them on the board, and figure out how much all of the trees are worth.
Also included, are several worksheet options for different levels of study, including one that reinforces color words. The photographs of completed samples help clarify things.
Completed projects make an awesome bulletin board too. Caption: "Cent-sational Math Work".
Click on the link to zip over to my TpT shop to have a look: Christmas Money Tree
The other money activity that goes hand-in-hand with this one, is my "Christmas Cookie Dough" packet.
The packet includes an emergent reader, with several options for you to choose from, including 2 sizes.
The first one is a “cut & glue” the appropriate coin to the page, the other version already features a picture of the coin.
Students read the simple sentences, filled with 20 Dolch sight words. I’ve switched up the pronouns for that teachable moment as well.
They trace & write the coin words, as well as the values, and color words, then color the cookies accordingly.
I’ve also included a “Sum Cookies” craftivity, which makes an awesome interactive bulletin board, or wall display.
Children choose which cookies they want, then color, cut and arrange them on their aluminum foil “cookie sheet”. When they are satisfied with how things look, they glue their cookies down.
Using the “cookie key” or referring to the pocket chart cards, students figure out the price of all of the cookies on their cookie sheet, writing an equation showing the price of each cookie, then adding to solve the problem.
I’ve included a spatula to show their work, which is attached to their cookie sheet.
When everyone is done, collect and number the cookie sheets, then display them, along with the spatula answers.
For more math practice have children figure out how much the various sheets of cookies cost, writing their equations and solutions on the worksheet.
Students can do one a day, or however many you want them to do. They check their work, by flipping up the spatula flap.
Finally, there’s a cookie matching game. Depending on ability, students simply match a cookie to a cookie.
Older kiddos can match a cookie with its value, to the matching coin card, and/or the coin word card.
There’s also a certificate of praise as well: “When it comes to coins, you’re one smart cookie!”
Today's FREEBIE also features coin identification. It's a set of poster-poems. I hope you find them useful.
Well that's it for today. All this talk of cookies, brought on the cravings.
Time to grab a mug of milk and dunk my favorite--chocolate chip . . . Wishing you a delicious December.
"Never spend your money before you have earned it." -Thomas Jefferson
1-2-3 Come Countdown To Christmas With Me!
Counting down is a great way to help your students practice counting backwards, as well as visually being able to "see" the passage of time, which is a rather abstract concept for young children.
My Countingdown To Christmas Craftivity packet includes a variety of quick, easy and interesting ways for your kiddos to countdown to Christmas.
I've included a file folder cover, which your students can decorate, to keep all of their countdown work in.
Since there's a nice variety of options, why not have them do a countdown that they can color, another they bingo dot, and finally, one that they earn stickers for.
I’ve also included a Christmas tree and Santa’s beard countdown activity, where students snip off a section each day. (Let's "trim" the tree & Santa's beard.)
After the last one is gone, children have a paper ornament to hang on their tree.
Snipping paper is a super-fun way for kiddos to strengthen finger and hand muscles too.
The "fingerprint" keepsake wreath, is another fun way to keep track of time, and comes with a sweet poem for the center.
Children keep their work in the folder and take it out each day to countdown.
Only takes a few minutes, and frees you up to do some pull-out activities.
Send the folder home on the last day before vacation, so students can finish their countdown at home.
Finally, I’ve also included a “How many days until vacation?” Countdown paper chain that you can suspend from the ceiling by your calendar.
I review all sorts of math skills in just a few minutes, with this festive decoration.
Click on the link to zip on over to my TpT shop to take a look at the Countingdown To Christmas Craftivities.
If you do Elf on a Shelf you may like the "Elf Help" countdown craftivity.
Have your students color the elf's "stockings" in an ABAB pattern to reinforce patterning.
I've included a traceable calendar of December, for years 2015-2017, with a blank one if you want students to fill in their own.
Tracing and writing the numbers as they countdown to Christmas, is also a fun way to practice numbers, as well as have a visual of "time passing". Click on the link to check out the Elf on a Shelf countdown craftivity.
Today's featured FREEBIE is also a countdown activity. I put "Santa" on my whiteboard and we do "You Can Count on Santa" during our calendar time.
Simply print off the poster on card stock, color, then choose a different child each day to pull apart a cottonball, and glue it to that number on Santa's beard.
Well that's it for today, have to make a mad dash to the store to get a few things before everything closes up for Thanksgiving.
Wishing you a day filled with many joy-filled moments.
"If men liked shopping, they'd call it research." ~Cynthia Nelms
1-2-3 Come Countdown To Christmas With Me
One of the things that I realized rather quickly, during the 10 years that I taught Y5's, was that younger children don't have a real good grasp of time. To help my kiddos with this, I did all sorts of calendar activities, so that they could visulalize the passage of time.
Counting down the days of each month, was extremely helpful. For holiday months, this was especially nice, because it dispensed with the "When is?" questions. "When is vacation, the party, fieldtrip..." or other special activities that they were looking forward to.
With that in mind, I decided to design a bunch of countdown to Christmas activities. These are simple, quick and easy, so you can choose several. They are fun independent activities that children can work on a few minutes each day, freeing you up to work one-on-one with students.
Each month I displayed a different countdown paper chain from the ceiling. I chose 2 to 3 different colors (appropriate for that month) to make the links out of, so we could review colors as well as patterning.
You can make the countdown to Christmas gingerbread paper chain craftivity for your class, or have students each make their own, to take home for more practice. I used white puffy paint (for frosting) and a plaid ribbon bow for extra pizzazz.
"You Can Count On Santa" is another fun visual for your students.
As with the gingerbread craft, you can simply make one for your classroom for calendar time, or run off copies for students to make one of their own.
Using a glue dot, children add a cotton ball to fill in Santa's beard. This is not my original idea, although I've been doing it long before the Internet. I love drawing Santa, and hope you like my version.
Since the Elf On A Shelf story has become a super-fun classroom management tool, I decided to make an elf-themed countdown craftivity as well.
As students countdown to Christmas, they trace and write the numbers and then color each section of the elf's stockings in an ABAB pattern. I added flat-backed jewels and mini pom poms for that finishing touch.
Since jewels are an especially "big deal" to little ones, you can use them as an incentive: Stay focused and complete your work and earn a bit of dazzle for your countdown elf.
1-2-3 Countdown To Christmas Alphabetically, is one of my favorites.
It's an alphabet booklet. Students trace and write the letters, as well as the Christmas-themed words.
They color the letter and picture, then write another word that also begins with that letter. There are so many options for Christmas-related words, you can easily request that the extra words also need to be about Christmas.
Starting December 1st, have students complete one letter. Since there are only 25 days 'til Christmas, remind students to complete letters Y and Z on the last day.
For more alphabet reinforcement, the packet also includes 10 worksheets, to help practice writing upper and lowercase letters, putting words in alphabetical order, skip counting the 24 days 'til Christmas by 2's, as well as practicing writing numbers to 31 (The number of days in the month.)
The worksheet in the photo, asks students "What Lowercase Letter Is Missing?" There are also two "I Spy" game worksheets.
Click on the link to view/download the Countdown to Christmas Alphabet packet.
Since my Y5's needed lots of scissor practice, I designed two countdown activities, where students snip off the days 'til Christmas.
The "Trim the Tree" scissor-snipping countdown craftivity, is my own idea, however, cutting off Santa's beard, was an idea I found dozens of versions of, on Pinterest.
I felt that Santa still needed a beard for his Christmas Eve adventures, so I revamped the concept, and designed a "Snipit Santa."
Both the Christmas tree and Santa, when completely trimmed, make cute paper ornaments or gift tags.
Click on the link to view/download the Let's Trim the Tree & Santa's Beard Christmas countdown - scissor practice craftivities.
Finally, if you're just looking for something super-simple for your little ones to do, as a countdown activity, click on the link for some Countdown To Christmas Coloring Pages.
I've included a cute gingerbread house cover, for a Christmas countdown file folder, so students can keep all of their countdown activities in one place.
I'd include one that they can color, one they use a bingo dauber on (dotting the days away), one they can earn stickers for, plus a scissor snipping option. These worksheets only take a few minutes, and because kiddos can work independently, you are freed up to work one-on-one with students.
That's it for today. I hope you found something here that you can use to help your students understand the concept of time passing.
My grama Lydia used to say that the older she got the more quickly time passed. Now that I'm enjoying my "golden years" I find that to be truer than true. Wishing you a peaceful, savor-each-moment kind of day.
"How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?" -Dr. Seuss
1-2-3 Come Do Some Winter Craftivities And Games With Me!
Did you ever have one of those days where you might as well have stayed in bed? Well that was yesterday! The reason there was no blog article was that our main server (in Texas) crashed. It seemed everything techno in my world went on the fritz, from my e-mail, to the printer and even my favorite design software was having glitchy hiccups.
I apologize if you tried to visit us and got an error-connection message. I'm back to being a happy camper with lots of FREEBIES to share.
Keep review of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and skip counting fresh and interesting, by making these puzzles. Laminate for an independent center (I've included a blank grid for kiddo's to place the pieces on), or have your students pick one, run them off and then they cut and glue them to a blue or black sheet of construction paper.
If you're doing the alphabet, have students think of a word that starts with that letter on the puzzle piece, and then write it on the appropriate tree-strip.
Remind students to leave a little gap inbetween the pieces. You can add a bit of pizzazz by dipping a Q-tip in glue and then dotting on "snowflakes." For an awesome effect, sprinkle with white or silver glitter.
These make a lovely bulletin board too. Caption: Learning About Letters and Numbers Is "Snow" Much Fun! or "Look At All Of The TREE-mendous Work From Mrs. Henderson's Kinders!" Click on the link for the Snowman Tummy Puzzles or The 13 Merry-Making Tree Puzzles.
Since the Silly Shaped penguins and Owls Shape Up "craftivities" continue to be in the top 10 downloaded items from my site, I decided to design a Shapely Snowman, as well as a Gingerbread set, with plans to make special shape pals for all of the months. (i.e. pumpkins for October and butterflies for April!)
You can make the gingerbread heads a game, by running the bow pieces off on red construction paper.
Instead of gluing the shape words inside the bows and then gluing them to the gingerbread head, glue only the bows. Keep the shape-word circles separate.
Students place the shape word on to the matching shapely gingerbread's bow. To make a girl gingerbread, glue the bows to the top of the head. Glue it as a bow tie under the chin to make a gingerbread boy. To add a bit of pizzazz, I used white puffy paint for "frosting." Click on the link for the Shapely Gingerbread packet.
There are also several things you can do with the Shapely Snowman templates. Make a laminated set for a bulletin board, or use as puzzles for an independent center activity.
For a center matching game, do not glue the hats on the snowmen. Instead make only one hat with interchangeable hat bands. Students pick a shape word-hat band and place it on the hat, then they look for the matching snowman and place the hat on his head. Play continues 'til the child has used all of the hat bands and snowmen. Click on the link to view/download the Shapely Snowman Packet.
Another popular winter activity is the Snowman Glyph. Each one turns out a bit different so this too makes an adorable bulletin board. Click on the link to view/download the Snowman Glyph.
Practice addition and subtraction with Dominic the Snowman Domino-Dice game. Click on the link to grab it.
That's it for today. Thanks for visiting. I hope you can stop by tomorrow for even more FREEBIES. My brain is on over-drive again, and since the weather outside is "frightful" I might as well have a "delightful" time inside designing away. Feel free to PIN away!
"Snowmen fall from Heaven unassembled." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Christmas Writing With Me!
I decided to share some of my favorite December Easy Readers with you today. These make nice whole-group reading activities or something simple and quick to plug into your Daily 5 writing block.
In My Winter Color Words booklet, students read, trace and write the color words and then color the pictures. The last page has students write about their favorite winter color and draw a picture of something that color. Click on the link to view/download it.
This easy reader has been so popular, that I decided to make one featuring penguins; this too reinforces colors and color words.
The last page has students write which penguin was their favorite, as well as draw a picture of something a blank penguin is holding and then color it.
I did a huge penguin unit in January, but I know many teachers have penguins as a theme for December too, so I'm featuring some penguin activities this month. I've also included a certificate of praise in this packet. Click on the link to view/download the Penguin Colors booklet.
Hurry! Help Santa, is an older easy reader before I had all the software, graphics and fonts that I have available to me now, but it's still a favorite that I think your kiddo's might enjoy too. In this easy reader students trace and write as well as cut and glue. I've included traceable word cards and a graphing extension as well. Click on the link to view/download the Hurry Help Santa Get Ready easy reader.
December is a Great Month includes many Dolch words. Children use picture clues to help them read the story as they cut and glue the matching pictures to help explain why December is such a great month.
Two graphing extensions, 33 traceable word cards + a certificate of praise are also included. Click on the link to view/download the December is a Great Month easy reader.
Light Up The Tree reinforces numbers, number words (through 10) as well as colors. Students trace and write the numbers and number words + draw that many light bulbs.
On the last page children guess-timate how many lights are on the tree. A graphing extension is included. Click on the link to view/download he Light Up The Tree Easy Reader.
In I See Circles At Christmas, students also trace and write. A graphing extension + traceable word cards are also included.
As another writing extension you could have students choose a square or rectangle and challenge them to write their own I See booklet. Click on the link to view/download the I See Circles At Christmas easy reader.
If you like the idea of students creating their own booklets, be sure and check out the Christmas Class Books, where students write a page to go with 3 different booklets. Includes 5 graphing extensions, so you can incorporate math skills. The class-made books are:
After students share their work, collect and collate the pages into a class book. Click on the link to view/download the Christmas Class Books packet.
Thanks for visiting today. Feel free to PIN away. I design and blog daily, so I hope you can stop by tomorrow for lots more FREEBIES.
"I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try and keep it all the year." -Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol
1-2-3 Come Do Some Christmas Craftivities With Me
If you'd like to put a lid on the question: How many more days 'til Christmas vacation? make a countdown craftivity. Last week, I designed one with a gingerbread using a paper chain, so you could work on patterning, but if you'd like your kiddo's to see and practice real numbers, then you might want to make either Santa's Countdown Beard or the Finger Print Wreath.
Counting down the days to Christmas, by gluing a cotton ball on a numbered circle, is not my original idea.
I've seen it many times, in a variety of ways, all over the Internet, so I thought I'd draw a Santa and give this idea a whirl too. Click on the link to view/download the Santa's Countdown.
Make one for your class and take turns having students glue a cotton ball on each day, or run off a copy for each child and set this up as a daily center.
An easy way to set up independent centers, without taking up a lot of room, is to use TV trays. Simply keep all of your students' Santa's in a basket on one of the trays and a bottle of glue and a container of cotton balls on another.
If you'd like an alternative to Santa, I also designed a Countdown to Christmas Wreath.
So that you can reinforce the fact that December has 31 days, both the Santa and wreath have numbers to 31.
Have students circle the 25th with a red or green crayon so they can readily see that special day.
Students can opt for a paper-heart "bow" or a real ribbon one. For the added "awww-dorable" factor, have children glue a photo in the center.
To countdown days, students press their thumb onto a red stamp pad and place it on the appropriate day. Click on the link to view/download the Countdown Wreath.
If you're looking for some other keepsake wreath activities, finger painting one was a Y5's favorite.
Because learning colors was one of our standards, I'd often have students mix 2 primary ones to make a secondary color.
This also was a teachable moment for reviewing equations: Yellow + Blue = Green. A "magical" way to do this, is by fingerpainting.
Put a dollop of yellow and a much smaller dot of blue on their tag board wreath cut out. Children swirl and mix 'til they have a pretty shade of green.
My kiddo's often squealed in delight: "Mrs. H. come quick! Come see! My paint is green!" Their joy was worth the bit of mess.
Set aside to dry. Later, students add finger print holly berries and glue the poem in the middle: "I made this pretty wreath for you. I made it mixing yellow and blue. Yellow + blue as you have seen, makes a lovely Christmas green. The red berries--I'll give you a hint, are made from someone's finger print. This wreath is a circle it has no end. It's like my love, that I now send." Click on the link to view/download the Fingerpainted Wreath Craftivity.
Another idea is to draw a circle in the center of a large square of tag board. Paint child's hand with green paint and have them press it around the circle to make a wreath. (To keep things bright, paint-press; paint-press etc.)
My son, Jason, did this activity in Y5's 29 years ago and I still have it somewhere in the basement! Click on the link to see a tutorial of another mom doing this with her daughter Elsie.
Instead of paper, she used fabric. To make a fabric project do-able for a class, simply have students bring in a plain white pillowcase.
Reindeer are the perfect animals for making hand and foot print "craftivities." I've designed several for you to choose from.
The Lunch Bag Reindeer is A wonderful keepsake art project that makes a great manipulative to whole group assess spatial directions, and body part identification.
This paper bag puppet is terrific for interactive play during a reading of many December stories featuring reindeer characters! Click on the link to view/download the Lunch Bag Reindeer.
My personal favorite reindeer "craftivity" is Rudy. His head is made by tracing a child's foot with their shoe on. The antlers of course are hand prints cut from a darker shade of brown construction paper.
Add a neck and wreath collar and you have an adorable keepsake. The poem on the collar: "These are my finger prints oh so small, that I left on your heart and every wall. This is my hand you used to hold, when I was only ____ years old."
Ribbon, wiggle eyes, a red pom pom nose and a photo of the child, add those finishing touches. Click on the link to view/download the Reindeer Hand and Foot Print Crafts.
Also in this packet is Reindeer Noses. "Sliders" are a quick, easy and fun way to whole group assess, in this case, 2D shapes.
To review an ABAB pattern as well, have students alternate coloring the shapes red and black. Call out a shape; students slide to it and hold it in the air.
Call on quiet students to continue to choose shapes 'til all have been reinforced. You can see at a glance who is is having difficulty. I'm designing The Reindeer's Nose easy reader today; so I hope you can stop by tomorrow to grab that freebie as a nice language arts follow up.
The last craftivity in the reindeer keepsake packet features a reindeer that students color. You can add wiggle eyes and a pom pom nose as well. Call students up to the painting center and paint their hand a dark shade of brown. Press to make antlers.
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"To dance with the moon, you need only become friendly with the dreams of a reindeer." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Make a Gingerbread Glyph With Me
I enjoyed making glyphs with my students each month. Glyphs are a pictorial form of data, also known as a pictograph.
They are an easy and interesting way to help reinforce listening and following directions and make a great display for a hallway. My Y5’s enjoyed making them + they provided an opportunity to learn more about their classmates.
If listening and following directions, is a report card standard for you, glyphs are a wonderful whole group assessment tool for that.
Because of the variety of questions, you can also turn some of them into graphing extensions. i.e. Do you like gingerbread? Have you ever made Christmas cookies? etc.
Turning your students into glyph detectives is also a fun way for them to learn how to collect data and analyze results.
Give students 10 minutes to see how many gingerbread glyphs they can figure out. By using your personal glyph as an example, take a moment to explain how they would go about doing this.
When the glyphs are complete, number them, and display the gingerbread in the hallway. Write a list of student names at the top of a pre-numbered sheet of paper.
Give students 5-10 minutes in the hallway to try and figure out the gingerbread glyph mysteries.
When the timer rings, flip up the glyphs to read whose glyph it is, and have students self-correct their papers.
The person with the most correct, gets a gingerbread sticker or whatever you deem is appropriate.
I’ve included my purple gingerbread glyph as an example. The coloring didn’t come through the scanner as bright as I wanted it to. Click on the link to view/print the Gingerbread Glyph
If you are looking for other glyphs, I have made one for each month. Click on the link to go to the glyph section. Scroll down to view the examples and click on whatever else you want to download.
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Do you have a glyph you could share with us? I’d enjoy hearing from you. email@example.com or post a comment here.
“Little by little does the trick!” -Abraham Lincoln.