Celebrate the Season with STEAM
December 3, 2021
I love the holiday season. I don’t often show it, but I can’t help but get swept up in the spirit of it all. The snow, the lights, the celebration, it just makes you feel like a kid again. Of course, for educators the holidays tend to add another layer of chaos to an already hectic year. We all know how this season supercharges our students. They can smell their holiday break on the horizon and getting them to sit still and concentrate in virtually impossible.
My advice? Don’t fight it. There’s no point in trying to overwhelm the Holiday spirit, it will only make you seem like a grinch. Instead, channel that enthusiasm into your lessons. This is the perfect time to provide your students with opportunities for both learning and celebration. With a little creativity, you can build a winter wonderland within your classroom and create activities that are memorable, meaningful, and fun!
Let it Snow
Not sure where to begin? There are a few different avenues you can take. December is filled with different ideas to explore and different projects to challenge our minds. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Cookie Craft: Tis the season for sweets! Share this Cookiecraft activity with your students and get them think like scientists in the kitchen. Use freshly baked cookies to awaken their sweet tooth, then get them thinking how differences in flour, sugar, and butter affect the taste and texture of their confections. Why do they think that is?
- Snowflake Frenzy: Create the coolest snowflakes ever! Discuss the idea of symmetry and have students generate examples of symmetrical objects or figures. Then distribute sheets of paper and scissors. Allow students to experiment and explore with the way in which different types of cuts create different types of snowflakes.
- Go International: How do people celebrate the holiday season around the world? Take your students on a (metaphorical) trip around the world and discover the traditions and rituals people use to mark this time of year. For example, did you know there is a giant goat in Sweden that people are always trying to burn down? Or that KFC is considered winter cuisine in Japan? There’s a lot to learn!
- Cards of Care: While there’s plenty of cheer to go around this season, December can also be a difficult time for many people. Brighten up their week by having your students write cards of care! Challenge your students to think about others by creating cards for those people that may need the encouragement the most. If you want to be fancy, get your own wax stamp and mail the letters with an official class seal!
Give the Gift of Learning
So break out the candy canes and start hanging the colored lights. Have fun with your students this month and don’t feel guilty for indulging their extra energy. If you need more suggestions for engaging lessons, be sure to check out our latest Timely Topic, Happier Holidays! From a dozen STEAM challenges to kindness bingo, you can choose whichever free activities best suit your needs. Do one or do them all — the choice is yours. Happy Holidays everyone!