Wednesday, November 1, 2017

A Parent Holiday Gift That's As Easy as 1, 2, 3!

The winter holiday season is one of my favorites, but it always sneaks up on us SO FAST. A lot of important things often slip to the bottom of my teacher priority list as we are quickly overcome with all of those "extras"--holiday sing-alongs, pajama days, you name it!

One of the things I always used to wait to figure out until the last minute was our parent gift, which always stressed me out to no end since it's really the FIRST thing you should be planning. If it isn't made in the classroom, a lot of our students won't have a gift to give their parents and families, so I take it to heart every year to help my kids create something meaningful that they will be proud to bring home. If you are searching for the perfect gift for your students to give their families this year, look no further! This directed drawing calendar is the perfect mixture of whimsical and sweet:

 This calendar was created with fridge space in mind, so not only is it adorable, but it will save you paper and the families will save space. To create this, each student needs 6 pieces of paper, some art supplies, a few "extras" and you are good to go!

Each calendar page comes with a cute, funny pun that is sure to engage your kids and bring a smile to the parents' faces.
There are step-by-step directions for each monthly picture so students of all drawing abilities can feel like Vincent van Gogh. These directions are meant to be projected onto a whiteboard, but can easily be printed for students to use.

My favorite way to do these in a primary classroom with 20-something kids is to have the kids do the drawings together as a group (usually with clipboards in front of the SmartBoard). This usually takes about 3 days. Once all the drawings are finished, I set up a couple tracing and painting stations around the room. The kids travel to the tracing station where they will trace each pencil drawing with a black pen or marker. Once the drawings are traced, they will head to a painting station (or coloring, if crayons are more your thing). I use these stations in addition to my usual math and reading stations so kids are still adhering to our normal routine, but instead swapping out a "learning" station for a more "fun" station as the calendar is completed.
The product comes with a project introduction for the kids, a how-to implementation guide for the teacher, a set of projectable or printable directions for each month, and more! Check it out here for more photos and information! 

Happy holidays! 
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