5 Ideas for Ringing in the New Year

Although we might not *quite* be ready for that first school day of the new year, it will be here before we know it. So while inside I am sorta, kind of dreading it #sorrynotsorry, outside I am napping prepping.  Here’s how I plan to ring in the new year in my classroom.
That first day back can be rough.  The kids are tired from sleeping in and staying up late.  It is inevitably dreary or possibly freezing raining (or is that only in Pennsylvania?)

Musical Shares

My favorite first activity of the new year I like to call “Musical Shares”. I play some music and students walk around. When the music stops, they pair up with someone to share 1 thing about their winter break. We repeat this 3-4 times so they’ve had time to share with multiple classmates.
After sharing, we complete this Fill and Fold activity. It’s the perfect time to reflect on 2021 and set some goals for 2022. Do both at once with this freebie you can find here.
This is perfect to print double sided to save paper, reflect and create resolutions all at once! Each question corresponds with each other (example: a book you read in 2021, one you want to read in 2022).  I plan to hang these up so both sides show or they can easily flip back and forth.
Ring in the new year with ring pops. Who doesn’t love them? Such a cute idea from Around the Kampfire! Let your students suck on them while they brainstorm resolutions or eat them at the end of the day while they read to ensure a quiet end to that first day back ; ) You can get a pack of Ring Pops on Amazon here.

Try a *free* New Year’s Game.  These are so fun to pair with ANY skill or even better–use it to practice/review classroom routines and procedures. Here’s how it works:
  • Choose one of the three games. You can divide your class into teams, play class versus teacher or just work together to win (this can be best if your kids get super competitive!)
  • Decide what you want to practice or review. You could do math flash cards, task cards or practice routines.
  • Project the game so your whole class can see. For Ball Drop Surprise, for example, students are working to earn all 4 NYE items. So, after a correct answer, choose a student to move one of the disco balls. Underneath will be one of the 4 items. The first team to collect all 4 wins!
Start by listening to a book from the “New Year’s” section of my FREE January Digital Library. These libraries are perfect for including in your morning meeting routine or an independent listening center!

I’ve created two free worksheets to go with Shante Keys and the New Year’s Peas and A Loud Winter’s Nap (both can be found in the digital library or you can buy from Amazon here and here).
Share about what students are excited about in 2020 with this easy to prep writing activity + bulletin board option. While I talk about resolutions too, I like to build up the excitement for what is possible in the new year! I love hearing about what they are excited about in their lives PLUS this makes an adorable display that you could even do before winter break and then leave it up through January!

Find it here: NY 2021 Bulletin & Writing 
What are your favorite New Year’s ideas for the classroom?

Happy Teaching!
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