Need something fun and engaging while winding down for the holidays? Are your students sick of Christmas movies and won’t sit still? Keep reading to find out how to wind down for the holidays (without losing your mind) using these fun Christmas activities for the classroom.
This year I have three activities you can do in your classroom that are easy, low-to-no prep, and will keep your kids engaged.
Now, all three of these activities require teacher input, so you won’t be able to pop on a Christmas movie and get your grading done, but you will keep your kids on-task and still enjoy the lead into the holidays.
Now, in Australia, we have a hot Christmas and our Christmas is after the end of the academic year. So by the time we get there, we’ve had a whole year of teaching, the sun is blazing, and (at least where I live) the humidity is at about 600%. Breathing makes you sweat.
You can imagine how well that plays out once students have finished their assessment but the people in charge insist that we aren’t babysitting for the last week of school.
This year I tried something different to throwing on a movie and getting my grading done. While I would have loved to do that, I knew the students were watching movies in so many other classes that they were getting bored of movies and mucking about during them anyway.
There wasn’t much point in throwing on a movie if students misbehaved and I couldn’t get grading done. So I decided to try three different activities instead.
Fun Christmas activities for the classroom #1: Trivia
The first activity was this trivia game. I told students to get into groups of three or four. They then had to choose a group name and which round they wanted double points.
Students could choose from books, movies, songs, Christmas around the world, and general Christmas questions. Most of my students picked movies or songs from double points.
I drew a table on the board and told students I would only ask the questions twice. If they were talking and missed it, not my problem. Then I handed around scrap paper for students to write their answers.
Then we started the game. I asked the questions and the students answered them. The canny ones were quiet so they didn’t give the answers away.
After each round, students would swap paper with another group and mark the questions while I read out the answers.
The game lasted about 45-50 minutes with my 7th-grade students, so it was the perfect length. I incentivized students by offering mini-chocolate bars as prizes. If your lessons are longer, you could always add a bonus round to the quiz.
Students had fun and so did I. Although I will say my voice got tired with my rowdier classes.
If you want to try this fun Christmas activity with your students, check out the freebie in my TPT store.
How else could you use this Christmas trivia activity?
This fun Christmas activity for the classroom could easily be used in a few different ways. You could do I did and read out the questions and get students to answer on scraps of paper
If you want to save your voice or want your students to work more independently so you can grade some papers or do other work, you could also copy and paste the questions into
The electronic quiz games might enable you to get your grading done, and if you have a willing student to lead, you could probably do the same with a PowerPoint.
You can also make the questions easier by providing more hints, such as the first letter or word. And you could make it harder by putting a time limit on how long students have to answer questions.
Fun Christmas activities for the classroom #2: Festive charades
The second Christmas activity I did in one of my classrooms was a festive charades game.
I had picked up a festive charades game from my local Aldi and took it in to work as a backup in case my trivia game didn’t pan out well.
Like the trivia game, I got students to choose teams and team names. Then I had one student volunteer to be the scorekeeper. She drew a table on the board and allocated points to the groups that correctly guessed the answer.
I was the moderator and checked what students got for their words so that I could help the students doing the charade work out who guessed correctly first.
This game was great with my 7th-grade students because it got them up and moving, kept them guessing (literally), and the prizes on offer incentivized participation.
It went for the whole seventy-minute lesson – the kids just kept playing and playing. It helped that the competition was close!
And with a scorekeeper (and part-time charade-actor-helper), I didn’t have to do much at all.
The kids had fun and I enjoyed watching students try to mime ice-skating, unwrapping Christmas presents in secret, and trying not to slip on the ice. Just to mention a few.
If you’re keen to try a festive charades game, there are bound to be heaps on Amazon. I found this cheap and cheerful one with a cursory Google. I haven’t played it, so I don’t know if it’s good, but I imagine most of the games are quite similar.
Fun Christmas activities for the classroom #3: Board games
Ok, the final fun Christmas activity for the classroom was to play board games. Now I usually bust out the board games on the last day of each term, so my students were not as excited by these as they were the first few terms.
But, they still played the games and had a good time. In my board game bag, I had Scrabble, Bananagrams, 5-second rule, Smart Ass, and Sequence. My students seem to like these games and they’re a mix of different types of games – team, individual, pairs, word games, number/card games, and fact-based games.
But I think I’ll have to invest in a few more games to take with me for future last days of term if I’m going to keep doing board games.
I would love to buy a few Christmas versions of classic board games, but I’m not sure the investment would be worth it for how often they’d be played.
Although I’d love to check out
These are all just links for you to check out the game – you might not be able to get them where you live. And I haven’t played any of them, so I can’t tell you if they’re good or not.
Having a few Christmas puzzles on hand would be good too. Although finding the right balance between being hard enough to take a lesson to complete, but easy enough that it can be completed in time would be a hard task!
That’s all for now folks…
I hope I’ve given you some ideas for fun Christmas activities for the classroom this year. If you want more Christmas activity lesson ideas, check out the posts below