Sunday, November 25, 2012

Winter Freebie and Read Aloud Ideas

Put the turkeys away (after filing my ideas away for next year, of course!), and get out the snowflakes because the winter activities are taking over! I really love fall with all the beautiful leaves and in-between weather, but the excitement of the winter holidays and snow days are hard to resist. That excitement motivated me to create a new "Big Kid" pack to follow-up my other seasonal ones.

As always, this packet comes with a freebie. Created just like my Halloween and Thanksgiving set, this winter word work activity has seasonal words to unscramble with wintery ways to practice them. Students will work on vowel/consonant patterns, wintery headlines (which I use to practice for writing workshop), story writing, rhyming poems, and art activities. I use the pack during word work centers or as bell work. Print and go!

Each month I also highlight my favorite seasonal books and ideas for them, so here are my top choices for December. You can see all of my picks in the sidebar, but these are my favorites.

Snowmen At Night: I use this book for writing workshop. We practice prompt writing several times each month. Not only does this help with our dreaded state tests at the end of the year, but it also allows me to do a quick writing assessment on an independent piece. Of course I like to make the prompts interesting, so I have students imagine that a snowmen they built came to life and write about their day together. I included directions, planning pages, and writing paper in my pack for this one.

Santa Knows: I read this one aloud to my students every year while we're working on our ornaments. Alfie plays the typical bratty older brother role (ha!) to his little sister Noelle. They get into an argument because Alfie doesn't believe in Santa. Noelle makes her Christmas wish for Alfie to be a nicer brother, which sets off a fun chain of events. I love the message this sends to my students, who are often struggling with Alfie's disbelief this time of the year.
A New Improved Santa: This book is too cute! Santa decides he is so-so-so boring and gives himself a total makeover. The students can't control their giggling as Santa changes just about everything we all know and love about him. As you can imagine, it doesn't quite turn out the way he had hoped. Fortunately, Mrs. Claus is there to save the day. I also use this one for a writing prompt, included in my packet. 
Santa Claus: This book is gorgeous! Written entirely like nonfiction, it describes everything you need to know about Santa. How does his sleigh fly? What exactly do reindeer eat? It also includes factual information about arctic animals and recipes too.

I could go on about books all day. =) If you need more winter ideas, you can check out the complete packet in my TpT store with all 15 ideas for winter fun with your class. I'll write a separate post featuring some of my favorites from the packet, but here's a sneak peek

Keeping with the winter theme, I couldn't resist making a Christmas set too. I'll post all the details tomorrow, but it's a Santa's workshop-themed multiplation game pack for common core practice. Yay!

There are even more winter ideas and freebies in Laura Candler's linky party. I'd love for you to join us!

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  1. Wow Christi,

    Your Winter unit for big kids is awesome! I just put it on my wishlist. Thanks so much for making all the fun stuff for our "big" kids.
    I Want to be a Super Teacher

  2. Thanks so much! I really enjoy making them for my own class so I'm glad others find them helpful too.


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