Friday, December 11, 2015

Holiday Centers & Candy Cane Word Work!

There is definitely excitement in the air so my motto this time of year is 'if you can't beat them, join them!'
All of my centers for next week are holiday related...
Stamping Center:
The kids will stamp their sight words in the ornaments and then use Holiday Smencils to write the words!
Want to make for yourself?  It's super easy:
Simply insert a table into a PowerPoint document.  Type the words you want and then insert ornament clip art (you can find images for free) to match the number of letters.

The following week (yes...we go until 3:30pm on 12/23!) they will write the letters with white crayon in the lightbulbs and then use watercolor paint over them to 'reveal' the letters to make the lights 'twinkle':
(I copied this one on cardstock to make it sturdier!)

Sight Word Puzzles:
You can find 27 'Ready To Go' Puzzles, plus editable templates for 2-5 letter words here:

My kids LOVE doing these puzzles!  Some weeks they choose to do 2 puzzles instead of going to early finisher baskets!

Listening Center:
They love the Froggy stories!  They will write about/draw what Christmas looks like to them!

Phonics Center:
I am breaking out stockings for this one!
I have 'stuffed' each stocking with pictures and they will reach in and pull out a 'toy'- they will write what letter the picture (toy) starts with!
You can find this editable pack here:

Read It, Build It, Draw It:
The students read the sentence (our sight word this week is 'said') and then build the sentence.  Some students draw and others re-write the sentence.  They then circle 'said' in the sight word reader and practice reading it to a friend.
We do this center every week and it has really helped them with sight word development, concepts about print and given them confidence as readers!
If you are working on 'said' and would like this set, you can download it for free here!

And their new favorite center...
Read the Room:
This will be our second week doing 'read the room' this year.
They will be walking around to find the holiday images.  They will ID what letter the picture on that card starts with and write it on the recording sheet:
It is specific to the letters we are currently working on and my students are having trouble with, but if you can find it useful, as well, I have put it up for FREE in this Dropbox download!

As I mentioned earlier, we go until 12/23, so for the following week I have a candy cane word work activity all prepped and ready to go!

It came from an idea I saw on Pinterest:

I thought it was such a cute idea and I shared it on my Facebook page it and it got so many shares!

But I didn't want my students to just glue words without practicing them, so I came up with an idea!
I printed large 'J's' on red cardstock (because I couldn't find a candy cane image without stripes!) and then found a 15-spot spinner from Graphics From The Pond to put all the sight words we have covered onto it!
I then made text boxes for all the words with dotted lines so the kids could cut them out to glue to the candy cane.

(The first set is the set of words you see here, the second set can be edited to fit any words you are working on!)

Each child (or you could have them work in pairs) gets a spinner, candy cane and set of words:

Using a paper clip/pencil, spin a word: 

Find the word that the paperclip landed on in the pile of words: 

and then glue it to the candy cane: 

Continue to spin, read word, find word and glue it to the candy cane until the candy cane is full and/or you have run out of words!
If a word is spun that was already landed on, spin again: 

Extra words can be glued to the back: 

To make the candy cane 'neater' you can trim off the excess white from the word strips: 

And here is your completed candy cane! 

BUT it doesn't have to stop there!
You can then use the candy cane and spinner for a word work game!
Put out some fun pom poms (or holiday erasers, candy, counters, etc!)
Students spin and then cover the word on their candy cane! 

Continue to spin/cover until all the words are covered!

The kids could even take the spinners home and continue to practice and play with their families over holiday break!

If you are still in need of some holiday resources, you can find my free and paid resources here:
and be sure to check out my New Year goodies too so that you are all prepped and ready to kick off 2016!

Wishing you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season!
Until next post.


  1. Replies
    1. You're very welcome! Enjoy and happy holidays!

  2. I just tried searching your tpt store for the I said Santa book and couldn't find it??

    1. Hi Sharlene-
      I don't have that in my store. I make the read/build/draw & book each week to match my sight word of the week. I will try to get it into Dropbox & provide a link but have a pretty packed weekend so I can't promise!

    2. Here is the bitly for the download!

  3. Hi Jennifer!
    I continue to follow your blog. What great ideas! Is the sight word stamping with the ornament using a white crayon in one of your packets on TPT? I have used your editable sight word puzzle papers. My kids love using these.
    Thanks and have a great holiday season!

    1. Hi Maryann,
      So glad you like it! Those 2 that you mentioned I don't have in my shop. I gave instructions on how to make it in the post- not sure if you saw that part! If I have some extra time I will add them to Dropbox and provide a link, but my 'to do' list is quite large right now so I don't want to promise anything!
      Have a great holiday!

    2. Good evening. I was just wondering if you have the Dropbox link for those papers yet. I tried to make it but I am not technology friendly. Thanks.

  4. I can't get the candy cane to print.. it doesn't show up in the preview??? Can you check it out please? Thank you so much! This is SUPER cute and I love that I can differentiate!

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Wow thank you for the great FREE resources. I love the candy cane activity and can not wait to use it in my room next week.

  7. I love the candy cane! My class is working hard on sight words last now as that is what our current class goal is. Thanks so much for sharing and for the freebie!

    A Very Curious Class

  8. I cant get the file to print, it just shows up blank

  9. I was unable to print, as well. Do you possibly have a Google doc equivalent? I also tried to print from a Microsoft office computer & was unable to get it. This looks like a fabulous resource.


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