As the end of the year draws to a close you can feel a distinct buzz in the classroom and the staff room. The approach of the Christmas holiday fills school with a mix of emotions. As children are getting more excited about the break and lessons are winding down, teachers are guaranteed to be at the other end of the spectrum in a whirlwind of stress trying to tick off a seemingly endless list before the last day.
As a teacher, you might be looking for Christmas activities for school kids for a variety of reasons. From games that get kids revising topics to quickfire quiet Christmas activities in primary school that give you some breathing space in the frantic last week, you can find what you need in this guide. We cover fun Christmas activities for school crafting, science experiments, games, parties, and more. All of our school-age Christmas activities are suitable for kids from early years to KS1 and KS2.
Free Christmas classroom activities for kids
All of the resources and links in this article lead to free Christmas activities for school-agers. Where possible, we try to offer resources for Christmas activities to do at school that are easy to follow, and only require supplies that are easy and inexpensive to acquire.
Art and Craft Christmas Activities for Children at School
Crafting plays a big role in many Christmas primary school activities. Making decorations, Christmas cards, putting on a nativity play, or making Christmas foods are all creative Christmas activities for classroom time that children love to try out. These types of artistic Christmas school activities for children allow little ones to explore ways of expressing themselves and building confidence. But they also help children to feel more involved in the celebration of Christmas when family and community is so important.
Craft classroom Christmas activities are usually very adaptable too, meaning you can tailor an activity to the relevant age groups. Many craft projects can easily be adapted into Christmas school activities for preschool children.
Christmas craft kits are an easy way to provide young children with loosely guided school Christmas activities. Our kits all come with simple instructions you can lead the class through, or make copies of, for the students to follow. All of the needed parts come included, but there’s also the option to break the mould and change designs if you want to. Here are some of our favourite Christmas craft kits:
- Christmas Stocking Weaving Kits
- Nativity Stick Puppet Kits
- Christmas Puppet Kits
- Christmas Character Lanter Kits
- Christmas Cutout Card Kits
We also stock a massive Christmas Compendium that includes a range of different popular craft materials in Christmas themes like stamps and styrofoam and wooden shapes. Christmas activities for school-age children are made more fun and educational the more options you offer for creativity.
Resources for Christmas Craft Activities
Hands-On As We Grow: 25 craft Christmas activities for school children that only require household supplies like cotton wool balls and glitter. Examples include: ‘make a cotton ball candy cane’, and ‘make an egg carton Christmas tree’.
The Best Ideas for Kids: 30 craft Christmas activities for kids at school in age ranges from early years into primary school. All crafts are organised into themes: elf theme, snowman theme, Santa theme, and so on. Activities include: ‘make a salt dough Santa hand print’, and ‘make pipe cleaner snowflakes’.
Happiness is Homemade: 30+ ideas for crafty Christmas activities in school aimed at older children. These craft ideas require a bit more dexterity and patience to complete, with smaller parts like beads and tissue paper. Activities include: ‘make a tissue paper wreath’, and ‘make beaded snowkflakes’.
Christmas Activities for Children in School: Making Decorations
Making decorations in school is something that all children enjoy. School activities for Christmas decoration-making will keep kids happy and engaged in something creative if you need to finish off any marking at the end of the day. There’s an added bonus in that any completed decorations can be out up in the classroom for a Christmas party, or taken home as a present for the family.
Children can be tasked with making decorations from scratch, but it’s also useful to provide them with a jumping-off point. Having a foundation to work on may keep them focused on the task. Or you could use a decoration base to form a challenge and test their creative skills. We offer decoration kits and blank bases that can be customised:
- 3D Wooden Tree Decorations
- Paper Mache Christmas Decorations
- Star Hangers
- Embossed Tree Decorations
- Paper Mache Christmas Assortment of Decorations
Christmas Activities: School Decoration Challenges
Hand out Christmas-shaped Paper Mache Decorations and task the children with ‘disguising’ their decoration. Perhaps they could turn it into a new object by colouring it in and adding features. Or maybe they could cover it up with feathers. They must turn it into something completely new.
Hand out blank decorations and tell the children they need to make a ‘self-portrait’ Christmas decoration. Their decoration needs to reflect their personality and who they are, but without their name or face on it. Perhaps they could think of their favourite things or use pom poms or ribbon to suggest a signature hairstyle. Once the decorations are finished have the children put them up in the classroom or on the Christmas tree and look at them together as a group, trying to guess who made which one.
Science Christmas Activities for Primary School Kids
Students might spend a bit more time on arts and crafts in the days before Christmas, but other subjects don’t need to be neglected. We’ve got some festive fun Christmas activities for classroom science experiments that will encourage children to get excited about biology, chemistry, and physics.
Little Bins for Little Hands: 10 Christmas science experiments that are easy to set up and don’t involve lots of supplies. The supplies you do need are easy to acquire from homeware shops or supermarkets. Activities include ‘make erupting Christmas ornaments’, and ‘make a catapult’ for a miniature snowball fight with festive lollipop sticks.
Science Sparks: 20 Christmas science experiments, ideal for children in KS1 and KS2. Science experiments cover topics like different states of matter and cause and effect, all with a Christmassy twist. Older children will enjoy following a recipe to make grinch slime or putting together a fizzing elf lab. Younger kids can follow activities like creating their own frost or practising symmetry with decorating.
If you’ve been reading How The Grinch Stole Christmas in class your students will love our other Grinch-themed Christmas activities to do in the classroom.
Science Christmas activities for Primary School: 10 Minute Tasks
- Freeze some small Christmas decorations into ice cubes. Talk to the children about different states of water and how and why we get snow and ice at Christmas time. Challenge the children to find ways to thaw out the objects in their ice cubes.
- Write a letter to Santa with invisible ink. Use a mixture of lemon juice and water to paint a message onto a piece of paper with a paintbrush. Once dry, hold it carefully under a heat source like a candle or lightbulb to reveal the message.
- Conduct an egg drop experiment using only Christmas wrapping materials such as paper, sellotape, ribbon, and even Christmas cards.
Classroom Activities for Christmas: Games
Fun Christmas classroom activities like games are a good way of blowing off stream as everyone gets excited about the coming holiday. These group, interacting activities also allow you, as the teacher, to build bonds and engage with your students about something external to normal classroom topics. Christmas activities at school such as group games make a welcome and essential addition to your Christmas party, which we’ll cover in more detail next.
Pass the Parcel (with a twist): in this version of the game, get the kids to pass the parcel, each taking one layer of wrapping paper. Watch out though, there will be ‘coal cards’ hidden in some of the layers that require them to carry out challenges. Challenges could include crossing an obstacle course blindfolded or saying a tongue twister.
Christmas Scent Guessing Game: Use jars covered in wrapping paper or boxes to disguise the objects inside and then let the children take turns smelling the top of each. They will have to write their guesses down on a piece of paper. Hand out prizes for those who get them all right. Scents included could be Christmas tree clippings, oranges, chocolate, and cranberry sauce.
Christmas Charades: Many of the students might already know how to play charades and if not they’ll have family playing it this Christmas! Make this version of the game festive by only including Christmas-themed cards. You could include things like ‘reindeer’, ‘snowman’, ‘turkey’, and ‘elf’.
Stocking Guessing Game: in this game, the children will be guessing whose stockings are hanging up in the classroom. Fill stockings with items of a certain theme so that they ‘belong’ to a certain character and let the children go around the room and investigate their contents during the party. At the end, you can take guesses as to who they belonged to. This is a flexible game in that you can adapt it to certain topics the children have been learning about in class. Are you reading Oliver Twist in English? How about a stocking filled with ‘stolen’ gold and jewellery for Fagan? Or how about a stone-age stocking filled with flint arrows and animal skins?
Mitten Racing: a game more suited to younger children, this is a good opportunity to practice hand dexterity. Children could race in pairs or in groups. Have each child put on a pair of mittens (the kind without separate fingers) and challenge them to unwrap and eat a sweet. The person who finishes first is the winner or the group with all those finished first is the winning group.
If you’re planning a bit of quiet time during the school day or you want the students to engage with something constructive while the Christmas film is on, choose a Christmas worksheet from our blog The Only Christmas School Activities Worksheets You will Ever Need.
Party Ideas for Christmas Activities in School
We thoroughly cover everything you need to do to prepare and throw an amazing classroom Christmas party in our blog on fun Christmas activities for the classroom party. Here are some other ideas if you need last-minute, quick and easy Christmas classroom activities for children’s parties:
- Decorate gingerbread people.
- Pin the tail on Rudolf.
- Musical chairs with Christmas carols.
- Christmas film trivia.
- Secret Santa.
- Write a Christmas story - each child writes a line and folds it back, so the next person can’t see the previous line.
- Write a Christmas wish list as a class (get imaginations running with whacky requests like ‘next year we should have a playground water slide’).
Making up stories as a group can be made even more fun with a game like Story Spinners, which helps kids along with prompts as they spin the spinner on boards for ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘where’, ‘when’, and ‘why’.
Preparing for Next Year with Christmas Classroom Activities
For students, the next school term couldn’t be farther off. For teachers, it’s an entirely different matter, and working throughout the Christmas holidays is all part of the job. Aside from fun Christmas activities for kids at school, you might be thinking of ways to make life easier by tying up as many loose ends as possible before the end of term, and having some little helpers around can make a big difference at this hectic time of the year.
Clearing Out Old Work
Although the big clear out happens at the end of the school year, doing a halfway clean up will help you to come back after Christmas feeling fresher, and make that end of year task a bit less daunting. If you’re wondering what to do with old exercise books and schoolwork, enlist the help of your students to clear out their own trays and drawers of belongings. Christmas activities for primary school children can always incorporate a bit of clearing up and organising in disguise! Have the kids select a few things to take home for showing the family during the holiday, or use old pieces of work to make a Christmas collage.
If your mind is on advance prep for next term already, we cover a few useful back to school activities after Christmas in our blog.
Reviewing What You’ve Learned
Giving the kids a chance to go over recent work will help to solidify it in their minds, offering you a fighting chance of making things stick over the Christmas break! Coming up with fun ways to revise work will allow children to relax and get into the Christmas spirit at the same time. Fun school Christmas activities for revising topics could include:
- Put on a Christmas talent show or play featuring characters from topics that have been covered this term. Task the children with creating a character each based on something they learned this term and let them take turns on the stage performing.
- Write a letter to the North Pole about something interesting you learned during term time.
- Hold a class quiz with tasty prizes.
- Arrange a playground scavenger hunt with clues based on facts the children have learned.
Christmas activities for kids in school offer teachers and TAs an opportunity to combine learning with fun and help children to associate their learning environment with play, confidence, bond-building, and togetherness as we all celebrate and anticipate Christmas together.