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Celebrating the Holidays at School With These Classroom Gives

These classroom gives show that the holidays are more than lights, presents and vacations. The holidays are an exciting times for kids. Gifts, festivities and vacation from school  make it a special time of year. Sometimes gifts seem to get the spot light on the holidays. However holidays also remind us of  what we really value, like spending time with friends and family. It is a perfect time of year to reflect on the things we are lucky to have in our lives.

It’s also a wonderful time to introduce the joy of giving to children in the classroom. Getting students involved in daily giving can be a fun and life changing lesson. Learning to give can lead to a life long habit.  The old saying is true, studies have shown we enjoy giving more than receiving!  Below are some fun classroom give ideas to get children in the charitable mood.

Food Donations During The Holidays

A classroom food donation is a way for students to help those in need in their community. Guide students giving by specifying what type of non-perishable goods are best. Often food banks have lists of the items that are most needed on their websites.

This is also a great way to introduce children to what local non-profits do .To get students even more involved, take a field trip to a local food bank. Many food banks are happy to do tours of their facilities.  Teachers can also organize a food sorting morning or afternoon with their class. Students can take part in food sorting and bagging produce. It’s an active way for children to see where their donations go.

Send Greeting Cards To Others – Pick Who You Want the Cards to Go To

Pen pals have often been a fun staple of a the student experience. It’s a way to teach children empathy, social skills and the capability to understand different points of view. Sending greeting card to a local children’s hospital is way to teach children how to be a good friend. A colourful hand made card can brighten the day of patients who may be feeling lonely around the holidays.

Most hospitals have specific card guidelines, but some general rules are:

  • Send positive messages like : “Happy Holidays” or “Sending you smiles”
  • Making cards generic so that they can be given to a boy or a girl
  • Avoid mentioning a specific holiday as hospitals serve many people of different backgrounds
  • Start making cards early, cards need to be reviewed before being given to patients

Host a Classroom Pajama Day

Pajama Day is an excuse to stay comfortable and smile all day. Being a past youth worker in a school, I got to see some really creative pajama days. Bear paws as slippers and animal onesies were popular. One boy even wore a night cap!

Pajama Day is popular with kids of all ages and can be easily combined with giving.  Teachers can ask for a small donation, food donations so kids can dress up in their favourite pajamas. The amount can go to a local charity that the students pick themselves.

Getting children excited about giving is always a good idea. It changes a classroom or school culture, increases student’s happiness and even gets families giving as they follow their child’s giving journey. If you liked reading about food donations and was inspired about this idea,  check out this inspiring post from our blog about  a food share program.


What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)