The holiday season can be a wonderful time full of fun and excitement.  As a teacher, however, it is sometimes hard to balance enjoying the holiday season in your classroom with staying on schedule with everything you need to teach.  That’s why it’s important to find ways to celebrate the holidays without losing instructional time.  If you want to bring some holiday spirit into your classroom while still sticking to your pacing guide, check out these helpful ideas!

How to Celebrate the Holidays without Losing Instructional Time

Christmas wreath decorations1. Decorate!

To make your classroom feel festive, add some holiday decorations.  You do not need to spend a lot of time or money to decorate your room.  All it takes is a few strings of lights, a wreath or other decoration on the door, some window decals, a mini Christmas tree, little stockings for your students, or any other easy decorations you can find.  In no time at all, your students will get into the holiday spirit without losing any learning time!

2. Use Holiday-Themed Worksheets

One easy way to celebrate the holidays without losing instructional time is to swap out your regular worksheets with some holiday-themed ones.  For example, you can have your kids write a holiday memory book during writing block or you can have your kids play holiday math games during stations.  Students will be doing the same work, but also enjoying the holiday season.  Check out my TpT store to find some fun holiday-themed worksheets!

3. Choose Holiday Books to Read AloudHow the Grinch Stole Christmas cover

Along the same lines as #2, you can switch out the regular books you use for read alouds (or small groups)  for some holiday read alouds.  You will still be teaching the same lessons, but can have fun by using holiday books.

4. Watch Holiday Movies for Indoor Recess

Instead of doing your same old routine for indoor recess, take this time to watch some holiday movies!  During the winter, there are usually plenty of indoor recess days.  By watching holiday movies at this time, your kids can enjoy the season without losing any instructional time.  You can find plenty of great holiday movies for free on youtube, such as How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Frosty the Snowman, Santa Claus is Comin’ To Town, and many more.

5. Give Students a Holiday GiftChristmas Present

Finally, you can celebrate by giving your students a holiday gift before they leave for winter break.  You do not have to choose something expensive or extravagant; your students will appreciate the gesture no matter what you give them.  A holiday gift is just a reminder that you love and care about your kiddos!


If you want to get into the holiday spirit, but are worried about what you need to get done in the classroom, use these five ways to celebrate the holidays without losing instructional time.

Do you have any other ideas to celebrate in the classroom?  Leave a comment below or shoot me an email!