We wanted to take this opportunity to share a little bit about our Daily Concept Builders™ resources. These resources are a great way for your kids to learn important, relevant, seasonally appropriate vocabulary for each month. December is a perfect month to give this great program a try as it is solely focused on holidays around the world.
The first resource we want to introduce you to is our Daily Concept Builders™ calendar. These calendars are an awesome resource because they provide a word of the day, interactive student calendars, and a daily math pattern. Days 3-9 are all about Hanukkah.
You can purchase our book about Hanukkah or the ELA Book Bundle with all 5 holidays! This book comes in color and black and white for the kiddos to highlight the holiday words. There is also an acappella recording of the song. We’ve updated the books to make them more interactive for your students. Take a look! For your students: Hanukkah is a holiday celebrated by the Jewish faith. It celebrates a time in Jewish history when the Maccabees were at war and their oil was only supposed to last 3 nights. Instead it lasted 8 and that is why the Jews light 8 candles on a menorah each year at Hanukkah. They exchange gifts each night, celebrating with latkes, a dreidle game, and family time. Children win gelt through playing dreidle or will sometimes receive it as a gift from relatives.
Here’s a fun, easy, process-based menorah craftivity for your kiddos:
This is the book that Pam uses with her class. They also like to sing the words. There are also comprehension questions in the back of each book.
Pam drew a menorah on the board for the students to copy on their green construction paper.
Then they glued popsicle sticks for the candles.
Next Pam put glue on each stick and they sprinkled glitter on them for flames. They loved this part!
See some other fun ideas for Hanukkah below:
St. Lucia’s Day
Another great word of the day product is our concentration game. A fun, inexpensive way for your kiddos to learn more about holidays around the world. The students love the real photos of the words, and Pam said they have been great for her ELL students! Click here
to buy it now! We have lots more great resources for holidays around the world that you can check out here
For your students: St. Lucia’s Day is on December 13 and celebrates Saint Lucy, the patron saint of Sweden. The girls all dress in white and wear wreaths with candles in them. They serve cookies and other treats to their families. One traditional treat for St. Lucia’s day is saffron bread. Boys wear white hats with stars that are appropriately named “starboy hats.” This holiday is meant to bring light in the darkest time of the year.
Below are a few pictures of the St. Lucia wreaths and starboy attire Pam does in her classroom:
Here are some more ideas for St. Lucia’s Day:
This is the book that Pam uses when she is teaching about St.Lucia. Click on it to see more!
Pam uses these cards in different ways. She has taped the cards around the room and let the students write their answers on the recording sheet that is included, used the cards for discussion about the calendar words, and as Brain Bounce, which her students love to play and ask to play again and again. Some teachers like to use these cards for Scoot as well. Click on the picture to see more!
Las Posadas is a holiday that started in Mexico. It is now celebrated in Mexico, Guatemala, and a few other South American countries. The celebration is a time to remember the birth of Jesus and the journey Joseph and Mary took to find a place to give birth. In spanish, “Las Posadas,” means “the inns,” which didn’t have room for Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus. This holiday is celebrated from December 16-24 with parades, piñatas, and other festivities. Each night a child dresses as an angel and leads the parade through town. They stop at each house and are refused lodging until they reach the end of the procession. The poinsettia is a flower used for decoration during Las Posadas.
Here are some ideas for Las Posadas:
Pam uses this book when her students are learning about Las Posadas.
Pam uses these cut and paste sheets for a guided reading center. Students are exposed to a sight word and a calendar word every day and they are challenged with a critical thinking question on each sheet. Pam loves seeing how the students answer their questions.
Christmas is a holiday celebrated around the world in many different ways. It began as a way to remember the birth of baby Jesus and grew into many different traditions. Many families have a Christmas tree that they decorate with ornaments. Kids hang stockings for Santa to fill and he leaves presents under the tree. Families also give presents this time of year. Lots of people like to eat candy canes and bake cookies for Santa.
Here are some pictures of activities Pam has done in her classroom:
Here’s a summary of our Sugar Cone Christmas Trees:
We had so much fun decorating sugar cones to look like Christmas trees. You just color white can frosting with green food coloring or now you can just grab green frosting and frost a sugar cone. The students also created a snow village on the plate. They used powdered sugar for snow.
Pam uses this as a center during her holiday party and invites parents to help.
These are just a couple examples of the finished products. This is so much easier than the gingerbread houses! You can use teddy grahams or gummy bears as villagers. You can also make candy sleds to go on the plate and marshmallow snowmen! Pam lays the tree down on the plate and slides the whole display in a freezer gallon size bag with the student’s name already written on the bag. This is a great way to take it home.
Here are some other Christmas ideas:
St. Nicholas Day
Christmas in Other Countries
Candy Cane Hunt
Your students will love this book about Christmas!
Our last Daily Concept Builder product is this fun and engaging sight word center. Pam’s students love to build the sight word of the day onto their cards and then Pam encourages them to use their letters to build their own words. She also uses this as a center during her guided reading time.
Kwanzaa is a holiday celebrated by African-Americans around the world. Families celebrate from December 26-January 1 and they focus on seven principles: umoja(unity), kuji-chagulia(self-determination or working hard), ujima(working together and being responsible), nia(purpose), kuumba(creativity), imani(faith). Families have a kinara with 3 green candles, 3 red candles, and 1 black candle. All gifts are handmade to symbolize the labor of the parents.
Here are some Kwanzaa ideas:
Have your kids pair up and make gifts for one another. This is a nice way to celebrate unity.
Umoja or unity chain
Video about Kwanzaa
Lots of great Kwanzaa crafts
Your students will enjoy reading and singing about Kwanzaa!
So, as you can see, by the time your students have completed all of these resources in the month, they have been very involved with the monthly vocabulary and sight words. Pam has seen great progress with her student’s writing skills as well as their vocabulary development! Thanks to Daily Concept Builders, her students are having fun and are very engaged with vocabulary!
We hope that you will take this chance to use Daily Concept Builders during December while all of our holiday resources are on sale!
As a bonus, we also have a Holidays Around the World poem freebie for you. Hope your kiddos enjoy it!