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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Holiday Fun

Is it just me, or does it seem like the kiddos are geared for Christmas from Thanksgiving on?  I try and try to go on with our "normal" routine--Treasures, Envision, ya know---that stuff!  They are so excited for Christmas, and I can't blame them.  I guess I'm ready too!  Sometimes though, if you can't beat them--join them.  That's what I'm doing from now til Christmas Break!

I'm sure you have seen this floating around the internet:

Great advice right? 
Last year, we did these cute little Santas suck in a chimney.  The idea came from Cara Carroll.  Her ideas are just Phenomenal!!  You can find her post <<HERE>> along with other awesome Christmas ideas. 

Last year when I made them, it was all about the craft.  I just wanted to see how cute they looked in the hallway.  This year, I wanted my students to tell me how they would help him.  I added a little lined page to the craft.  Here is what they look like.

After reading the story, students completed a sentence on how they would help get Santa out.

The Santa craft tied in well with our Math unit on Shapes.  We've been talking about congruent shapes, symmetry, plane shapes, and solid shapes. As we made our craft, we talked about many of those concepts.

First, students were all given a piece of red construction paper.  I showed them that we were going to make a square and two rectangles from it.  Then we folded our paper so the corner met the bottom edge.  They saw that they had a line of symmetry with two congruent triangles.  We cut off the excess (where the paper didn't overlap each other) to have a rectangle.  We then folded the rectangle in half and made two smaller rectangles.  Again, they saw they were congruent. 

This pieces became the legs and the chimney.
 We added a black rectangle on the top, and made "bricks" with our crayon. We discussed the word staggering as we added our bricks in between each row.  Then they glued their writing to the middle.
 We added cotton to the bottom of Santa's legs for his fur, and added cotton to the chimney for a snow effect.  (Since doing this Friday, I saw the 3D effect for snow on the chimney using glue and shaving cream--I LOVE it!) 

Here is a copy of my writing page if you want to use it.  You can click on the picture to grab it.
Thanks to My Cute Graphics (and DJ inkers) for the graphics/fonts.

Now, for this week.  I'm doing little mini units by the day (or couple days).  I'm not organized (or talented enough) to do those great visual lesson plans that you see several other bloggers doing.  BUT---I can share with you my plans for the next two days.

I will be doing a Gingerbread mini-unit.  
We will be reading these two great stories!

Then we will use a few of the writing activities (as there are a variety of writing prompts) 
The stations/games that are in this pack are to meet the needs of the variety of levels in my class.  The Read and Write the rooms are color coded (and different graphic) for my below and on level group.  One group will be working on short vowel (CVC) words and the other on digraphs.  The math stations are set the same way.  One group will be working on writing math facts/fact families, and the other group on missing addends. The spinner games in the pack are for my Fast Finishers (and to continue throughout the holiday season).  

For my high level firsties, I plan on using some of the activities in the Bubbly Blonde's pack. 
You can click HERE to see her blog post.
OR go straight to her store HERE

I love how I can enrich my high ones with her packet!!  There are some great on level activities I will be using through the holiday season as well. Perfect for fast finishers too! :)

 For math, I am using the Gingerbread Graphing  I included in this pack for a math lesson and .  
Lori from Teaching with Love and Laughter has this great freebie that goes PERFECTLY with the little graph activity.

You can click <<here>> to see this freebie on TpT. (Please leave feedback if you download)
We still will continue to review shapes, etc as set in Envision (as I need to stay on track with our Pacing chart) so
 I am also putting my Shaping up for Santa Game out for stations as well (also a good game for fast finishers or inside recess).
<<HERE>> is the post link in case you missed it before.
Other great things I'm including in this mini-unit are:
Kelley Dolling (Teacher Idea Factory) Bakin' Up Adjectives. 
<<Here>> is Kelley's blog link from her class, and <<here>> is the TpT link.

I also came across this great mini book on verbs from Christie at First Grade Fever.
<<Here>> is Christie's blog link--with a cute verb song anchor chart.
<<Here>> is the link to her FREE book on TpT.  (Be sure to leave feedback if you download)

Teaching with Style has a fun activity for a Gingerbread Hunt that my kiddos are going to LOVE!
Click <<here>> to see it. 

Somewhere in this mini unit, I want to find time to do Jen's craft.  I have loved these things since LAST YEAR.  Here's a pic of hers.
Is he not the CUTEST???  Check out her blog post <<HERE>> and she just recently posted some AWESOME gingerbread freebies.  You can see them <<HERE>>

Three more great ginger things before I leave this UBER long post!
Check out this freebie Katie (Queen of the First Grade Jungle) made.
<<Here>> is the link to her blog post (where you will also see her AMAZING gingerbread printables for her Busy Teacher's Friend). You can visit her store <<here>> for her freebie (Again, remember to leave feedback).

Look how cute this little dude is!  
He comes from Miss Kindergarten's Gingebread Family set.  How cute is this packet she has?  
Check her post <<here>> and her store <<here>>

I love Denise from Sunny Days bump games.  Check out her Gingerthemed one! :)
Click HERE


  1. Thanks for the shout Deanne! What wonderful ideas you put together for your readers!

  2. Thanks for all the great ideas and pictures. I am definitely a visual person.

  3. Woa!! Tons of great ideas!! Thanks friend :-)

  4. Wow, thanks for all of the great links! I'm going to use some of them this week! We have a week off from Treasures!!!! Yippee!!!

    Kelly @ I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

  5. Your Santa's came out really cute! Thanks for the shout-out and for sharing all your great activities with us.
    Ѽ Lori
    Teaching With Love and Laughter

  6. Great post, DeAnne! I love the Santa craft. We are doing ours this week. Also, I love the gingerbread man verbs book. We're reviewing verbs this week!

    Mrs. Wheeler’s First Grade
    Mrs. Wheeler TpT

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