10 Ideas to Make This the Best Week Before Holiday Break Ever

This next week of school can be hard to get
kids interested in class. I mean the struggle is real, and it can be
very tempting to just throw up your hands and put on a movie and post up by your classroom
door all day to keep an eye out in case your principal is heading your way. Not that I’ve ever done that before. But here’s the deal, there is so much energy
in the classroom this week, and this energy can be spent driving us nuts, or used to make
this a pretty incredible week of the school year. So here’s 10 ideas to make this the best
week before holiday break ever. What if your students write letters to World
War 2 veterans expressing their gratitude? Believe it or not, there are still many World
War II veterans living among us who would love to hear from kids and be reminded that
we haven’t forgotten about what they did for us many years ago. Students could also make crafts for them,
draw pictures, write poetry. Ideas are endless. Google retirement home, and give them a call. I guarantee you there are WW2 vets around
you who your students can connect with. But, they won’t be for long. And as a side note, any elderly person would
be touched and love to get letters from your students this week. What if you brought in a bunch of game boards
and let students bring them in too, and you just played for an hour. And always in my classes, I have a no video
game rule, no matter how much kids beg. I want them to relearn the magic of Connect
4. If you have older students, read the short
story To Build a Fire together, and then go outside and use the same supplies as the guy
in the story and actually build a fire with your students. It’s fun but also educational, all at the
same time. Just make sure you don’t build your fire
underneath a branch with snow on it. If you don’t get that reference, definitely
do this one with your students. Do a hands-on project competition with your
student. Try the Strong Tower Challenge, where kids
get in groups and compete to see who can build the strongest platform using popsicle sticks
and string and tape. Kids love it, it’s high energy, and it works
for any grade level. If you still want your students to write this
week, make it fun and holiday related. Check out videowritingprompts.com where there
are some amazing and hilarious writing prompts for your students to do this week. One of them is about getting a velociraptor
for Christmas. I think that’s appropriate this week. What if you made hot chocolate this week,
which can be done in a crock pot for super cheap and for a lot of people, and you had
a Hygge reading day. Hygge is the Danish word describing coziness
and comfort. You could turn the lights down in your classroom,
put on some warm music, encourage kids to wear comfy clothes that day and give students
the space to just read. And as a teacher, you have to model that behavior,
so you get to wear comfy clothes and read all day too. You can also turn up the energy, and have
a Christmas Carol writing competition. Have students rewrite a holiday song and then
perform it for the class. I’d encourage them to work in groups to
give a little confidence, but just have some time to get goofy, be loud, write a little
bit and use creativity, and have fun. You could play a music track from Youtube,
or if you have a guitar, bring it in and lead the carols
Have your students create ornaments from different odds and ends like paper clips, clothes pins,
construction paper , or whatever else you have lying around that you could bring in. But tell them their ornament has to reflect
their favorite memories from this last year. And when they’re done making them, get in
a circle and have everyone share the story of their ornament. Students can write a letter to someone who
needs it to let them know they are thinking of them. Whether its a parent, friend, teacher, sibling,
or anybody, students can learn the power of giving and receiving a handwritten note. And number 10, watch Die Hard with your students,
the ultimate Christmas movie. Just kidding. But it is the best Christmas movie. Whatever you do the rest of this week, soak
up this special time with your students, and have fun before you get a beautiful, hopefully-restful,
magical, grading-free, and much needed break. Merry Christmas and happy holidays.

2 thoughts on “10 Ideas to Make This the Best Week Before Holiday Break Ever

  1. Thanks Trevor, I’m going to share this with my educator friends. Peace, joy and blessings to you.

  2. I actually decided to have a board game day on Friday before watching this too!!! My high school students are so excited!

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