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Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas?

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!
If you are already on vacation, congratulations for surviving! If you're still going, like I am, you'll be needing something extra special to keep those restless, overtired children engaged!

This week we did some STEM activities from this set: S.T.E.M. Activities for December.
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

The children had a great time creating face warmers for Santa!
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

And designing workshops for elves!
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

Every student was engaged, plus there was learning going on! Their reflections really showed they were learning about the Engineering Process, as well as learning to work as part of a team. I was proud of their achievements!

There's a lot going on this coming week. (Yes, we go through Friday afternoon at 3:30!) I'll be pulling out all the stops with some of my favorite holiday activities. 

We'll be painting, illustrating, and reading some of my favorite holiday stories. We'll also bring in a little Science and Social Studies with this resource: Science and Social Studies Activities for December.
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!


They'll be reading informational text about the North Pole and about the Aurora Borealis, practicing their mapping skills with a map of the North Pole, sorting Christmas scents, and learning about laws by sorting elf laws.

Besides all this fun, I'll be pulled out of class on Thursday for an IEP meeting, so I'll be assigning some of the pages from this resource: Holiday No Prep Activities
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

I can be sure the children will be getting fun practice on important reading, writing, and math skills with these! 

If all else fails, it's time to pull out the glitter! (Yes, I plan to!) Click the image for a link to Amazon. 
Of course, I hate to leave for vacation without being ready for that first week back! Here are a couple of resources I'll be pulling out at the beginning of January! (Click images for links!)
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

Here's a little something extra they can do with these calendars!

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!




The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun!

The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!

Here's a game my students have been playing for years called The Greatest Sum! I've put it together with lots of variations!

The basic game is played with two 2-digit numbers. The children choose one number square at a time, and decide where to place it on their boards. It doesn't take them long to figure out they should put the greater numbers in the tens column, and the lower numbers in the ones column. You can use the numbers included in this package, or you can use tiles, cubes. or other interesting manipulatives and write the numerals 0-9 on them, as I have done in these pictures.
The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!


Here's how to play:

1. Place the tiles (or number squares) face down between 2 "Greatest Sum" boards.
2. The first player takes a tile and places it in one of the squares on his board. That player should think about which square might bring them the greatest sum, since he isn't allowed to move it once he lets go!
3. Play continues between the two players until all squares on both boards are filled.
4. Which player has the greatest sum? Players may use paper & pencil, white boards, number grids, a calculator, or mental math to figure out the winner of each round. (Teacher's choice!)

As you can see on this preview, there are plenty of variations to this game!
The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!

Click the image to see the full set of this resource!

Click the image below for a freebie sample to try out!

The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!

Which player had the greatest sum?

The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!


The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers with many variations!

What Could be Better Than Books I That Kids Love?

What could be better than books that kids love? New Hampshire has a great way to introduce children to several new picture books, and a fun way to find out which books they love!

New Hampshire has a great way of helping children get to know some of the newer picture books. They have the annual Ladybug Picture Book Awards. 

All over the state of New Hampshire, 10 nominated picture books are being read to children in grades Kindergarten through third grade. When they've heard all 10 books, they vote on their favorite. 

These are the ten books for this year: (Each image is an affiliate link to Amazon)

                           
I LOVE the way my school organizes it. Each book is read by a different "guest reader", including the principal, assistant principal, guidance counselor, reading specialist, librarian, Phys. Ed. teacher, Music teacher, Art teacher, Technology teacher, and the S.T.E.M. teacher. I give my students a sample ballot (which has the pictures of the books on it) and let them write notes after they've heard each book. That helps them make an informed choice. 

I love that they get to hear several different adults reading quality books! It's so important to have adults model a love for books, and these books were awesome! Although I'm "too old" to vote, and I didn't get to hear all the books, I'd definitely vote for this one if I could:



It shares a TRUE story of an incredible event. I had goosebumps while listening to it.

Of course, some of the teachers get competitive. I even saw a campaign poster for Water is Water!

I think knowing that children were the ones who voted for the winners makes it clear these books are winners!

This was the 2015 Winner:
 

I'm sure you'll recognize some of these previous winners:

                             

For more about the New Hampshire Ladybug Picture Book Award Click HERE.

Even if you don't live in New Hampshire, it sounds like a fun project you could still do in your school, doesn't it?
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