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This activity has MUCH versatility. It can be completed in one session with no gifts from the teacher, in one session with some gifts from the teacher (such as the holiday hot chocolate gift for the last four days of Christmas), completed several days before Christmas recess, assigning three or four days at a time with no or some gifts again, or twelve days before Christmas recess with none, some, or all of the gifts. YOU DECIDE!
In addition, I have created two different versions of this fourteen- page packet in case you want an element of surprise for each day. In that case, the last sentence is left off and the students fill it in after the teacher reveals the gift. If you are giving gifts, this may be a good option, otherwise students know exactly what’s coming each day by looking ahead in the packet. When I did this activity with my students, I ran the entire packet with the gifts revealed and presented it to them on the first of twelve days. I only heard one complaint out of 52 students, so this is your call.
Lastly, another option is to take the activity pages which are set up ready to run back to back in the order the packet was created, and just slice them into separate pages to hand out separately each day. I created the packet so that once run, you simply put page 1/14 on the bottom (the cover is on the back side), followed by 3/12 on top of that (13/2 run on the back side), followed by 5/10 ( 11/4 on the back side), and then 7/8 on top (9/6 on the back side)…in other words 1,3,5, 7 are placed on top of one another to assemble after running back to back. Students fold, you staple and it’s magic…all the pages are in order without any thinking involved. Note: When you run these back to back, one of the pages for each pair has to be upside down. (Just in case you didn’t know that!)
Lesson- Multiplication/Division of Decimals
I have students make two-sided stockings the day before Thanksgiving recess to hang on a bulletin board in my room entitled, “The Stockings Were Hung by the Chimney With Care,” to house some of the items I will give throughout the twelve days. Larger items I place in a basket with a sign that says, “Please take one” unless you are just handing them out.
I have several book versions of the song in my room for students to view including Jan Brett’s and The Twelve Days of Christmas in Michigan by Susan Collins Thoms (There are several other state versions of this fact filled book as well.). I introduce the books and then bring up the YouTube version of this song sung by Big Crosby and the Andrew Sisters (https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?fr=yhs-adk-adk_sbnt&hsimp=yhsadk_sbnt&hspart=adk&p=bing+crosby+12+days+of+christmas+duet#id=53&vid=c04cd505d93762116034f4a24d8efa2d&action=click. You could choose another version. I show the pictures from one of the books as the song plays.
After the song and book introductions, I pass out the packet, we read the gift of the day, and then students check their stockings or the basket and retrieve their gift. We do the first day together and I tell students they must show their work on the bottom of the page or number the item and show it on page 14 or the back cover for additional room. From that point on, students will complete each page as bell work each morning.
For Day 2, I slice astro bright card stock into bookmarks, and place assorted stickers on a table for students to make their own bookmarks that are unique for them, and I laminate. Several students made bookmarks as gifts for siblings. Stickers they liked included Frozen, cat and dog stickers, Avengers, Cars, cupcakes, and flowers. Students loved this activity. It also gives the teacher the opportunity to talk about gifts from the heart at Christmas time.
For Day 5, I bring up the following link: https://www.pnc.com/en/about-pnc/topics/pnc-christmas-price-index.html which shows the price breakdown of each item for the twelve days of Christmas from PNC Bank for the current year. There is a fun hidden picture activity from this site as well that I run for students who finish early.
My fourteen-page booklet is set up to include original text using a variety of free or affordable gifts including pencils, printable bookmarks (There are some really fun bookmarks on www.weareteachers.com.) a yummy treat of the teacher’s choice such as Christmas candy, cookie, or chocolate; classroom coupons (again there are some free, great choices at www.weareteachers.com), time to listen to Christmas carols, stickers, a BINGO game included or board game time, ending with four items for students to make holiday hot chocolate: a pack of hot chocolate in a clear Christmas baggie to add marshmallows, Hershey Kisses, and a candy cane on the last day. Keep all the items in the bag until the final day. Students can also color the cute clip art after they solve each problem as well.
I did not choose teacher clip art for the student cover to allow students the opportunity to draw their own teacher at the desk. The students love this! I allow them to choose any teacher they wish. Page 13 includes something they think their teacher would like and illustrate their teacher with that item. Lastly, when you choose your Christmas carol time, a great idea is to put on the YouTube of “You’re A Mean One Mr. Grinch.” The students love it!