Holiday celebrations and traditions can be some of the most exciting parts of the school year for everyone from students to administrators. But how do school leaders create a culture of inclusion and respect while navigating the holiday season? Check out our collection of culturally responsive teaching plans, leveled books, and fun seasonal classroom activities to help each person celebrate the holidays in their own unique way.
Share Your Own Holiday Traditions
Learning about the cultural histories, religions, families, or traditions of each classmate and teacher helps build empathy, curiosity, courage, and understanding. Sharing stories about holiday traditions also gives students an opportunity to ask questions, rethink stereotypes, and strengthen relationships.
Ask students to talk about whatever makes them feel comfortable and encourage students to appreciate each other as they share with the group. It could be traditional foods and recipes, maps of places lived or visited, collages of family ancestors, or a story about their own family’s holiday traditions. Work in small groups or have students pair up to encourage more focused conversations.
Choose fun, wintertime classroom activities that capture the spirit of the holidays while building an atmosphere of compassion and empathy. You can celebrate traditional or world holidays with your class by having students make art, share holiday dishes, sing songs, dress in holiday attire, respond to writing prompts on holiday writing topics, play traditional games, create or re-enact holiday dramas, watch documentaries on the holidays, or anything else engaging and celebratory that you and your students can dream up. Activities like these make everyone feel included in the celebration, creating an environment of respect and acceptance.
Read About Winter Holidays Around the World
Share a Digital Holiday Card
Send some cheer to friends and family, near and far, with our adorable digital holiday card! Download for free!
Make Paper Snowflakes
Try this festive, hands-on classroom activity with your students, whether in-person or remote, and share the results with the whole class. Let’s Make Snowflakes!
Inspire Students With Seasonal Writing Prompts
Use Writing A-Z seasonal writing prompts to inspire original student compositions! The seasonal photo writing prompts for December include imagery like houses lit up with holiday lights, a forest in the snow, and freshly baked gingerbread men. Explore seasonal writing prompts.
Explore Interactive Science Lessons
Take advantage of the many useful activities available with Science A-Z and help students learn about the changing seasons and seasonal weather with Interactive Science Lessons like Orbits of the Earth and the Moon to discover the science behind the Winter Solstice, Changing States of Matter to learn how water turns to snow, or Weather and Climate to talk about the changing of the seasons. Check out Interactive Science Lessons.
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