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December 11, 2013

Looking like Christmas

It's looking like Christmas in my classroom.  My patience level is dwindling, my room is looking messy, I feel completely overwhelmed, AND progress reports go home this Friday!!!

I really do love the winter holidays though.  Here are 3 "projects" we've tackled lately and completed with the holiday spirit.  


Traditions books are DONE - yes, capital DONE!!  They are all tied up with ribbon, graded, and just needing the kids to wrap them tomorrow.  It turned out that we had time to complete 8 pages inside… that's all that time would allow though.  The kids put them in order for the year: New Years, Valentines, Easter, Summer Break, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Birthdays.  Then we trimmed up the cover, glued it onto card stock, and ran it through the jumbo binding machine in the library.  (It was supposed to be spiral bound, but somehow the machine was adjusted to a 3 hole punch - and I didn't know how to change the setting - so we just used yarn instead.)  They came out so adorable!  I loved reading their family traditions - what their families do for each holiday.

(In case you forgot how I set this up in my classroom - we would brainstorm full class for each holiday.  The kids wrote a rough draft, went through a rainbow edit, had a friend check over their paragraphs, then would come to me for their final copy/ and fancy paper.)  I collected, and then last week we had a major paper passing out party just regarding these papers.  We then put them in the correct order, dealt with gluing the cover onto card stock, and then yesterday we hole punched & tied with yarn.  This morning was a final pass out/look through to see if they wanted to add anymore illustrations, and then I collected for the final grade.  I didn't write their grade in the book at all, just made notes on a separate paper, and tomorrow the kids will wrap them up.  

In addition to the books we have also been crafty. :)  

The kids put together an elf writing craftivity.  They had so much fun.  I shrunk the pages to half size so  I didn't use as much copy paper, but that meant they also fit perfectly on a 9 x 12 piece of construction paper.  Such a fun way to celebrate!

We also used this lightbulb template (found in this pack) to have the kids write what their one wish for Christmas would be…  whether it was one gift for the world or for themselves.  I just wanted us to learn about each other a little more.  I strung some yarn on the outside of my cabinet and hung the lighbulbs up on it.  You can't tell by this picture, but one side are my girls and one are my boys.  It was a little competition to see what "team" would finish the project first (plus it made it easier to find a specific kid).  

What have you done or made lately?  

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