I love all things holiday and am always looking for ways to engage my students and keep them motivated to behave and work during the months leading up to a major holiday. Even though my students are fifth graders, I still want them to enjoy a bit of the magic of Christmas. On this post, I will share a super engaging Christmas mystery bag activity that works well for a Christmas writing activity, a behavior incentive, a Christmas party activity or a combination of all three.
- Non-translucent Christmas bags or paper bags decorated with Christmas stickers
- Bowls small enough to fit inside the bags
- Labeled table tent cards — Click here to download the Christmas Mystery Bags labels on this post.
- Brown pudding (snowman poop)
- Round, brown candy (reindeer noses)
- Cotton candy (Santa’s beard)
- Green Jell-O (Grinch snot)
- Raisins (elf earwax)
- Round, chocolate cereal (Christmas mouse droppings)
- Orange jelly candy (nutcracker tongues)
- Canned corn (gingerbread eyeballs)
Setting Up the Christmas Mystery Bags
- Print and cut the labeled table tent cards.
- Prepare the items by putting them in the bowls. Be sure to make the “Grinch snot” the night before to make sure it has a chance to solidify in the refrigerator.
- Carefully place each bowl into a bag and set the bags and their corresponding labels on a table.
Christmas Mystery Bags in the Classroom
Here are some ideas for incorporating this Christmas activity in your classroom:
- Have the activity as part of a Christmas party . Call the students over a few at a time to feel the items. While you are calling students over, the rest of the class can be working on other Christmas activities.
- Incorporate this as a seasonal writing activity. After calling all of the students over to feel the items, have them write about the activity. Writing about an experience is a great way to calm students down after a high-engagement activity. They can choose one item to describe in depth using their five senses, choose a couple of items to compare and contrast, or write inferences about what each item is based on clues (how it smelled, what it felt like, etc.).
- Use this as a Christmas party activity with other holiday games and activities as part of a holiday rotation. This activity can be manned by you, another teacher, or a parent volunteer.
Want More Christmas Resources and Activities?
Christmas Activities and Ideas for Upper Elementary – Roundup of all of my Christmas posts!
This post was created in collaboration with Amy Stults at Geek Families.
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