1-2-3 Come Do Some Christmas Writing With Me
I truly believe that if you give an interesting writing prompt to students, or toss in a bit of craftiness, or make it a bit like a game, you'll grab their attention and they'll want to get down to the business of writing.
With these things in mind, I designed 4, rather creative, writing prompt packets for December. First up is my "Spin a Winter Story Story" wheel.
These 14 story wheels are easy-peasy for you, as you don't have to constantly think up seasonal writing prompts, and highly motivational for your kiddos.
My students imaginations kick into high gear, creating some really awesome work.
So that you can use them every year, simply print, laminate, trim and attach a paperclip with a brass brad.
Children choose one, or several, of the 14-winter story wheels, then spin 3 to 5 times.
They incorporate those items into a short story or paragraph on the worksheet.
For more writing practice, I've included a "Spin a sentence" worksheet, as well as one where students spin 7 times, give those pictures a one-word name/description and then alphabetize those words on the worksheet.
Next up is "How to Dress an Elf", where children practice giving directions. My students LOVE the crafty aspect of this writing prompt; completed projects make a super-cute bulletin board too.
Encourage students to use transitions, ordinal numbers + adjectives when they explain how their elf gets dressed.
I’ve also included a set of transitional words on mini cards.
For that finishing touch, we used opalescent white glitter, flat-backed jewels and pom poms to add a bit of pizzazz to our completed “elves”.
If your students enjoy The Diary of a Wimpy Kid, they're sure to get excited about this next creative writing activity.
Diary of a Wimpy Elf includes templates to make a “top secret” file-folder diary, a variety of diary pages, clip art badges to decorate their diary cover with, plus a selection of incentive “stickers” that they can earn.
I’ve also included 30 writing prompt ideas to jump start your students' minds.
Finally, "Stuff It!" is a personal favorite and literally stuffed with lots of Common Core.
For the writing prompt portion of "Stuff It", students gather in groups of 3-4 and exchange their decorated paper stocking with each other.
Everyone in the group "stuffs" a Christmas compliment into their classmate's stocking, by writing something nice about that person. Encourage the use of adjectives.
These completed projects also make a nice, self-esteem building, December bulletin board, which is particularly appropriate if your school does the "Bucket Filling" program.
The other writing prompt option, is for students to "stuff" their stocking with a list of things they'd like to find in their stocking, if money was no object, or you could also write a realistic one.
Along with the writing prompts, students can also stuff their stocking with words that begin and end with the ST blend.
I've included an alphabetical list of 92 words that begin with st, as well as a list of 64 words that end with the st blend, plus matching mini-word cards.
There's also a set of 6 worksheets that are played as timed games, as well as an "I Spy a Shape" whole-group assessment game, plus a "Shapes on a Roll" dice game.
Today's featured FREEBIE is A Letter to Santa with a twist.
Instead of children asking Santa for something they want, they write on behalf of someone special to them, that they think deserves a present.
Introduce the activity to older students with "If there really was a Santa, and he really could bring a special gift..."
I've included my sample that you can share to help explain what you want your kiddos to do. Completed projects make a sweet "Christmas is Caring" bulletin board too.
Well that's it for today. My feet have hit the floor running! I have lots more shopping to do, and our tree's still not up!
Wishing you a day filled with energy, and lots of peaceful moments to breathe in the joy of Christmas preparations.
"May peace be your gift at Christmas, and all the year through." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Elf Craftivities With Me
The Elf on a Shelf book is so popular, that it’s found it’s way into the classroom, as a super-cute classroom management tool.
Even if your kiddos don’t believe in Santa anymore, it’s still fun to have a mischievous elf “spying” on them.
An elf provides loads of writing prompt ideas. Use him to launch creative writing prompts. "Write a note to the elf today about..." plus the "elf antics" you can do to add a bit of "elf fun" to December are endless.
You can also use him to practice spatial directions ("Where's the elf?" on, in, over, under, beside...)
I purchased some heavy-duty, Christmas-print bags, from Hobby Lobby. The Dollar Store and other craft supply stores like Michaels, also have a nice selection.
Because we recycle paper in our school, I had a supply that children could crunch up to stuff their elf with.
Crunching, snipping, accordion-folding paper, are super-fun fine motor practice for your kiddos, that will help strengthen finger muscles.
If you don’t have access to recycled paper, ask for some newspaper donations from parents.
When the belly is stuffed, fold over the top and staple. The bag sits nicely.
Children will glue their head to the top of the bag and the legs underneath.
You can also staple the body parts, to make sure they stay on.
Run the patterns off on construction paper and rough cut. Children color the face, trim and glue to their bag. I had my children color an ABAB pattern on the arms and legs, but these also look good as solid strips of red and green.
For a splash of pizzazz, I pulled cotton balls, then glued the “fluff” to the hat brim, as well as the cuffs of the mittens and shoes. Pom poms and a bit of glitter, also add those finishing touches.
Click on the link to zip on over to my TpT shop to see. Lunch bag Elf on a Shelf Craft
Be sure and have a look around, especially if you've started a wish list, as TpT is holding their annual Christmas sale.
Most shops are at least 20% off, and if you plug in the sale code: SMILES, you'll save an additional 10%. The sale is going on today, (November 30th 2015 to midnight December 1st).
The featured FREEBIE today is "Tweet Talk". It's a quick, easy & fun way to practice those writing skills, at the same time being aware of what's going on in your students' lives.
Well that's it for now. Thanks for stopping by. I sure could use some "elf help" for all I'd like to get done today!
First up though is to sort through my TpT wish list. I have way too much clip art listed to buy it all. Wishing you a holly jolly day.
"Whoever said money can't buy happiness simply didn't know where to go shopping." -Bo Derek