Here's an overview of what I did with my kinder kids during the month of December:
Our entire Kinder team decided the do the Elf on the Shelf with our classes, and it was such a blast. The kids LOVED it... and "Jordan" (as my kids voted on for his name) was a good motivator for good behavior! Every day the elf moves to a different location (after he returns from the North Pole to tell Santa who was naughty and nice, of course) so the kids would pile into the room in the morning on a desperate search for Jordan. And it didn't matter where he was, they laughed hysterically about it. You can register your elf's information online, so we thought up facts and descriptions to say about our elf and watched a video from Santa about what his job was. Every so often, I'd have "Jordan" bring a special surprise or treat from the North Pole. We made peppermint floats one Friday afternoon - combine ginger ale and vanilla ice cream, shake green or red sugar crystals on top and then stick a small candy cane on the side of the cup. So fun! Another day he brought a box of candy canes, and on the last day before break, he brought a huge present - a package of play food for our kitchen/home living center, since it had literally nothing but the scraggly toys that came with whoever the previous owner was. Haha. We also kept a journal to write about where our elf was each day. There are so many fun things you can do with it! I highly recommend it to any moms or teachers out there.
The day Jordan the Elf dropped off some candy canes, I decided to do a little candy cane activity that can be found in Deanna Jump's Christmas unit on TPT (which is fantastic, by the way). We taste-tested our candy canes and then made a web of all the different words we could use to describe our candy canes - I was so impressed at the words they came up with! We then completed the candy cane graph/poem from Deanna's packet - I love how it turned out! Only one student didn't like how they tasted! We analyzed our data (sorry, didn't get a pic of that) and made our own graphs to go along with the big one.
Since we were in school an extra week longer than usual, it gave me tons more time to plan holiday-themed centers. I used a couple of activities that I got last year from Cara Carroll - Santa number word match and gingerbread word family game. The kids loved them, Cara, so thank you for sharing! They also created candy cane patterns using paper squares.
Near the end of our holiday unit, I came up with an Elf on the Shelf writing craftivity. The kids had to write a letter to our Elf to tell him why he should tell Santa that they should be on the "good list". Some of their responses were hilarious! One kid said, "Because I never get spankin's at home!" and others included "I get a green light every day!" and "I won't hit my sister anymore." HA! Very persuasive. ;)
Here is an "in-progress" elf. They turned out SO cute. When I get a chance, I'll post the tracers for you guys.
I'm putting together a weather unit that I'm hoping to get posted for my first product to sell. You can do so many fun things with weather; I love it every year!
I am going to enjoy my last day off tomorrow with some church, football, and friends. Oh and as an aside, I am still relishing my amazing night at the Phoenix Coyotes game tonight - I got to witness our captain, Shane Doan, score his first ever hat trick. It was an epic night! Go Yotes!