5 Ideas for Ringing in the New Year in the Classroom
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, I am napping prepping. Here are 5 ideas for ringing in the new year in the classroom.
Musical Shares Activity
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 rain (or is that only in Pennsylvania?).
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. Grab your free copy here.
Fill & Fold: Reflection and Goal-Setting
It’s the perfect time to reflect on 2022 and set some goals for 2023. After playing musical shares, we complete this Fill and Fold activity. Do both at once withthis activity you can find here.
This is perfect to print double-sided to save paper, reflect and create resolutions all at once! Each question for last year corresponds with a question for this year (for example: a book you read in 2022, one you want to read in 2023). I plan to hang these up so both sides show or they can easily flip back and forth.
Stand, Sit, Hands on Hips
Kickstart the post-Winter Break return with an engaging and hassle-free activity that combines movement, laughter, and a touch of knowledge—introducing Stand, Sit, Hands on Hips! Say goodbye to the post-vacation slump with this no-prep game that promises to infuse energy and excitement back into the classroom. Designed to get students on their feet, this interactive trivia game revolves around entertaining questions about Winter Break and the New Year. As the questions unfold, participants must quickly decide whether to stand, sit, or strike a pose with hands on hips based on their answer. It’s a dynamic way to review holiday adventures, share stories, and test knowledge, all while fostering a lively atmosphere. So, if you’re in search of an easy and entertaining post-holiday classroom activity, Stand, Sit, Hands on Hips might just be the perfect fit for you!
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).
New Year’s Bulletin Board Writing Activity
Have students what they are excited about in 2024 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!
Ringing in the new year with your students is a special time! I hope you have found some helpful ideas for celebrating the new year with your class. Looking for more activities for the first week back from break? Check out this blog post!
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