3 Effortless Ways to Make Teaching in December FUN Again

3 Effortless Ways to Make Teaching Fun Again in December by The Teacher Next Door

December is always such a hectic month.

Not only do we have extra activities at home and school, but kids filled with off-the-wall excitement (yes, I get that but still), and so many interruptions to the daily schedule. Honestly, it feels almost impossible to get anything academic done.

Regardless of all the expectations and a long to-do list, I’ve made it my priority to Make December Fun Again. 

Because let’s face it, we need it this year!

Here are 3 Effortless Ways to Make Teaching in December FUN: 

1.) Incorporate Art 

There are two types of teachers in this world. Those that love art projects and those who don’t. 

Fret not; I have a set of 5 EASY art projects to incorporate in December that won’t have you moaning and groaning. (And, there will be no picking up glitter off the floor until May either. I promise.) 

Why Should You Incorporate Art Into the School Day? There are so many benefits! 

  • Helps students think creatively & outside of the box
  • Increases students’ critical thinking skills
  • Improves student decision-making skills
  • Helps students express their feelings
  • Builds confidence
  • Allows students who struggle academically to excel in another area & more
  • Creates lifelong memories of school that students will enjoy remembering 
  • Plus, parents will keep this art as a keepsake for years to come 


Here’s how you can celebrate diverse winter holidays in your classroom through the magic of art this year! 

Holidays Around the World FREE Art Projects by The Teacher Next Door

Here’s how you can use this must-have freebie! 

  • Whole class reinforcement of cultural traditions 
  • As holiday-themed centers
  • Jigsaw project (Students share their assigned holiday with the class to emphasize communication and collaboration skills)
  • Throw an International Holiday-Themed event


Free Holidays around the world art projects for upper elementary

2.) Pair the Holidays Around the World Print & Digital Unit with Your Art Projects for a COMPLETE December to Remember 

The Holidays Around the World Print & Digital Unit is a must-have for any teacher who wants minimal prep and planning during the month of December. 

This unit has enough materials for every day in December and then some! Talk about comprehensive! 

Holidays Around the World for Upper Elementary

By adding this unit to your reading block, you’ll incorporate important reading and social studies skills while teaching about the beautiful cultures and traditions from around the world. 

This unit pairs nicely with the Free Holidays Around the World Art Projects, meaning that your December will be filled with wonder, learning, and fun! 


Don’t miss this opportunity! Hit the play button on the video below to learn more about this affordable, must-have for the month of December! 

(Plus, you’ll get to use this unit, again and again, every school year!) 

Click here to learn more about the Holidays Around the World Unit!  


3.) Use Reading Games to Keep Kids Engaged 

Want to keep your reading centers fresh with essentially no prep at all? 

My Reading Centers just received a BRAND NEW update!

Here’s what’s included: 

Printable Reading Games

  • These are a classic! Print the task cards and game boards to play hands-on games that’ll bring back the feeling of school days of the past! 

Interactive PDF

  • Send one of the PDF games to your students’ devices, give directions and set expectations, and then have fun! The interactive PDFs will provide instant feedback to students as they go through the games. This means that you can focus on your small group instruction during this time! (Plus, these are EASY to send to hybrid students and still keep them engaged in important, grade-level appropriate skills.) 

Self-Grading Google Forms

  • Students see the task cards in Google Forms, answer them accordingly, and receive feedback at the end! Best yet? You get to see each students’ score and collect that data to use for future instruction, or you can put it directly into your gradebook! 


Treat yourself this December by grabbing one of the Reading Center Bundles for your grade level! 


3rd Grade Reading Centers Bundle

Reading Centers Bundle Cover Grade 3 - The Teacher Next Door



4th/5th Reading Centers Bundle

Reading Centers Bundle Cover Grades 4/5 - The Teacher Next Door



Celebrate Holidays Around the World through the Magic of Art

Why Reading Centers Are More Important Than Ever in the Upper Elementary Classroom

Book Ideas for Holidays Around The World 

The Teacher Next Door - Creating upper elementary resources that target standards for busy teachers


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The Teacher Next Door - Creating upper elementary resources that target standards for busy teachers

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