The winter holiday party is extra special because our kids are excited for vacation to begin and it’s a perfect time for parents to celebrate together and thank the teacher. Spending time in the classroom during parties shows your gratitude more than money or gifts!
Are you planning the party this year? Fun and memorable class parties share some of the same key ingredients – simple decorations, fun music, a craft activity, story time, a game, and a snack or treat – so use this to do list to help make your party a success.
Make a game plan
Check with your teacher about party times, preferred activities, story selection and a theme. Some schools choose a multi-cultural celebration, others prefer a theme of winter or snow, and some celebrate a single holiday like Christmas.
Successful class parties need lots of helping hands to staff the party stations. VolunteerSpot.com saves time and makes it easy to create an online signup sheet so parents can quickly choose their party duty (craft table, story reader, game leader, etc.) Or, for those who can’t make it in person, parents can sign up to help by sending snacks, decorations or craft supplies.
Cupcakes are a classic, but consider fun healthy alternatives such as snow-stix (fruit kabobs rolled in shredded coconut) or ‘snow balls’ – small bags filled with popcorn and yogurt covered raisins.
Plan Crafts & Games
When choosing a craft, keep it simple and quick, and be mindful of mixed skill levels in the class. Craft stores sell pre-kitted classroom activities, or try these easy crafts from MakeandTakes: coffee filter snowflakes or beaded ornaments.
The classroom size and the number of kids participating will help guide your game choice. Holiday-themed BINGO and Freeze-Dance are classics that are sure to bring giggles.
Hold a “Free” Gift Exchange
Kids love a gift exchange and here are two ideas that are practically free:
Used Book Exchange: Invite each child to bring a gently used book giftwrapped to share with classmates. Kids pick a number out of a hat and take turns choosing their surprise. (Bring a few extra in case someone forgets their book.)
Favor Coupons: Children draw names and think of a small favor a classmate would enjoy. Each child writes the favor on a piece of paper and presents the ‘coupon’ in a decorated envelope. These little gifts of kindness can be anything that can be done during school hours – pushing a friend on the swing, saving a seat at lunch, reading a story to their friend – let the kids surprise you with their thoughtfulness!
Plan a Group Teacher Gift
Skip the soap and candles (teachers have closets full) and consider making a group donation to the teacher’s favorite charity or asking parents to contribute to a Winter Break Basket the teacher can enjoy with her own family. Include items such as movie tickets, discount coupons for attractions and holiday productions, and gift cards for coffee shops, restaurants or day spas.
For more ideas, see this list of favorite teacher gifts from real parents.
Leave no evidence
Plan time to put the classroom back in order after the party. Be sure to bring extra trash bags and packaging for kids to take home their craft items and leftover treats.
Have fun and be flexible
When things don’t go as expected, remember that the kids don’t know what you had planned and they’ll be having a great time enjoying the break from routine.
Condensed To Do List to Add to Cozi:
- CHECK WITH TEACHER TO DECIDE ON:
- Theme - holiday, winter, or multi-cultural
- Party date and time
- Activities and stories
- Treats or snacks
- GET HELP FROM PARENTS
- List duties - set up, make/bring treats, man a station, read, clean up
- Create a sign up sheet
- PARTY HAPPENINGS
- Plan crafts, games, gift exchange
- Plan teacher gift
- Post-party clean-up - leave no trace!
See more shopping and to do lists in the Cozi List Library.
Join the Cozi Family Dinner Club today
Get family-approved dinner recipes each month and members only giveaways! Learn more.