KEEP IT FUN AND LIGHT WITH JUST THE RIGHT TOUCH OF RIGOR!
Those days just before Christmas break are among the toughest days of school. Students are restless and more than ready to call it quits. If you’re like me, you don’t want to start something new that can’t be wrapped up before the break. On the other hand, you don’t want to lose valuable instruction time. Here are several winter activities that offer tons of fun and learning!
My two favorite teaching resources, DIGITAL ESCAPES and PIXAR SHORT FILM WORKSHOPS, are now a pair! This one uses the film ‘Nutty Christmas.” A cute walnut must save himself and his nut friends from the villainous Nutcracker.
Want to make this activity extra special? Serve up this cheap and easy Candied Walnuts Treat. Students will think it’s funny to eat the protagonist!
SHORT FILM LITERARY ELEMENT WORKSHOPS
Winter or Christmas themed short film workshops are a great way to keep students deeply involved with literature before the break. But, they will just think they are having fun. Let’s face it. It’s nearly impossible to get students to read at this time of year. Fortunately, it’s EASY to get them to enjoy an adorable short film. This is one of the rare instances in which it’s better to take the easy route! These workshops guide students to reflect and respond to activities and questions about literature, and help students see through the lens of real writers.
DIGITAL GREETING CARDS WRITING ACTIVITY
Students absolutely LOVE writing greetings and sharing with their classmates. In this activity, students can choose from a ton of adorable cards or design their own. They prepare their card list, learn to address the envelopes, and formally format a cheerful, uplifting message to a group of their peers. They even choose from a page of cute digital postage stamps for their envelopes! This activity has safety instructions to make it fun and FAIR for all, so that no students get neglected.
This workshop includes all of the scenes from the short film version of this story and can be watched directly on the slides as students complete the activities. It also can be used with the play or any version of this A Christmas Carol. Students are guided through an analysis of how Dickens uses literary techniques to create his world-changing message.
3- Keep your students’ writing polished with digital writing prompts! These prompts are cool because they have a digital notebook and a digital chalkboard that links them to great videos. The two writing prompts in this resource are: Why Dickens Wrote A Christmas Carol, and A Trip Down Gingerbread Lane. Students are guided through their responses using R.A.C.E.T (t=transitions) strategy. Each includes a detailed sample response.