Christmas is almost here! Are you ready? This would normally be the time when we are planning our classroom holiday parties and activities. This year, though, it is different for many teachers globally, thanks to the pandemic and distance learning.
If you are worried that your fun, festive holiday plans for your students are ruined, I am here to tell you that you don’t need to call them off! You have to shake them up a little. The fact that we can stay connected with our students even when we can’t be in the classroom is amazing.
It is also very versatile.
Since distance learning started, teachers everywhere started thinking outside of the box to keep their students engaged in learning from afar. Basically, just being the rockstars they are!
If you are able, send this party invitation to your students! Fill out the date and time along with the link information. This will build anticipation for your party.
There are now tons of digital learning activities being shared every day, including holiday and Christmas activities. Because of this, you can absolutely still have a fun virtual holiday party for your kiddos virtually!
Here are some ways you can have your virtual holiday Party
1. Have a Read Aloud
Find your favorite holiday book and read it aloud to your students. After the story, you can do a directed drawing or a simple craft with your students connecting to the story.
I love reading The Night Before Christmas each year. I like it because it is short and magical. There’s also a lot of unknown vocabulary that we can discuss.
I’d love to know what your favorite games are. Share with us in the comments below!
2. Play Virtual Christmas Games
You could play Simon Says (“Simon says act like a reindeer!”), Freeze Dance (to Christmas music), or a fun game of Christmas Guess Who.
I’ve also created some fascinating games you can learn more about by clicking here! I’ve included three games called Guess the Lyrics, Guess the Movie, and Christmas Scavenger Hunt.
The first game I made is the students must read the first part of the lyrics. They must complete the sentence by saying, typing, or writing the rest of the lyrics.
The next game is called . In this game, students are challenged to read pictures. The pictures represent the title of the movie. They must guess the movie’s name by saying, typing, or writing the rest of the lyrics.
Check out this amazing middle school class!
Finally, the last game is . You’ll get your players moving. They’ll search for an object and complete an activity with this object.
Then, you can send these individually or share them during the virtual party. This is a HUGE community builder!
These games can be played as a whole group or in small groups. There are several different ways to play these games.
3. Give Themed Activities
First of all, these can be educational games or activities that your students can follow a link to like my Christmas Math Games or it can be a game you can all play together on your video call.
Additionally, direct your students on how to complete holiday activities from home. You can also try simple STEM activities like my Christmas STEM challenges here, Christmas color by number worksheets, or make some DIY Christmas gifts for their parents.
Here’s an example of this Christmas STEM challenge where students must create a gift box using only graph paper, scissors, and tape. Once they’ve created a box, they then can create a design on the present.
4. Open Gifts
If you’re able to organize a Christmas gift exchange for your students or found a way to get them little Christmas gifts, you can arrange for everyone to open them together from home.
If not, then you can do this one-word activity. In this activity, students use either a Google Form or Microsoft Form to write one word describing each student in the class.
Once students have completed the activity, you can copy and paste the words onto a personalized slide (or virtual Christmas card) for each student. Next, you share these with the class. It’s an adorable way to build community!
Despite everything going on in the world right now, there are still lots of ways you can stay connected with your students and have fun together. Just get creative with it. Stay positive and have FUN this holiday season!
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If you need more classroom Christmas ideas, check out my writing ideas for your classroom elf!