The holidays are here, and we are spreading classroom cheer with these 10 Christmas resources for upper elementary students.
The winter holiday season is so much fun in the elementary classroom as you can do so many winter and holiday-themed activities and lessons.
When I am looking for quality resources to use around the holidays, I focus on three different types.
First, I want resources that cover important academic skills.
These resources may be math or reading-related, but the holiday theme or the use of fun graphics gives them something a little something special that makes them feel like a treat rather than a task.
Second, I look for Christmas resources for upper elementary students that can act as transition or early finisher activities.
These are activities that don’t take a lot of time by themselves. They are easy to set up with little or no prep, and students can complete them quickly without a lot of instruction.
Third, I want resources that challenge students to be good problem-solvers and deep thinkers.
Puzzles, challenges, and escape rooms all require students to think strategically and analytically. I love when I can find holiday-themed versions of these activities because even though the puzzles and challenges are based on holiday themes, they are still cheerfully challenging.
These are the types of Christmas resources I look for around the holidays, but what about you?
Today, we’re talking about 10 Christmas resources for upper elementary students that you can grab right now to round out your holiday activities for the month of December.
10 Christmas Resources for Upper Elementary Students
#1 | Christmas Reading Skills Digital Jigsaw
This simple, no-prep holiday activity gives students a chance to get in the holiday spirit while also reviewing some reading skills. In an effort to unlock the pieces of the puzzle, students will read holiday-themed passages and answer related questions. If they get the question right, a new piece of the puzzle is revealed. If they don’t, they are prompted to go back and try again. The best part of the Christmas Reading Skills Digital Jigsaw is that it reviews skills that you have already taught in class, and it is self-checking, so it’s perfect to assign as an independent activity while you work with other students in small groups.
#2 | Christmas Digital Escape Tale
Now it’s time to work on some math using this super ‘fly’ reindeer story!
In this Christmas Digital Escape Tale activity, students will solve problems and complex puzzles in an effort to get Santa’s reindeer ready to fly. This activity gives students a chance to work on math concepts and definitely gets them thinking! I like this activity for early finishers or as a group challenge.
#3 | Build a Gingerbread House: Christmas 2 Step Math Word Problems
In this build-it style activity, students work through 2 step math word problems as they digitally build their own gingerbread houses. What I love most about this resource is that it comes in 3 different levels to allow for easy differentiation. All students can work on the same activity, but the levels can all be different and specifically chosen for each student.
- In level 1, they are asked to add & subtract up to 3 digits.
- In level 2, students practice adding & subtracting up to 5 digits & multiplying 1 digit X up to 3 digits.
- In the 3rd and hardest level, students are asked to add & subtract up to 6 digits, multiply up to 4 digits, and divide up to 4 digits by 1 digit.
#4 | Christmas Digital Puzzles
Here is another self-checking, no-prep Christmas resource for elementary school students that specifically focuses on math skills.
These Digital Christmas Puzzles are an awesome way to motivate students to think critically. The puzzles are challenging, but fun! To complete the puzzles, students must study the Christmas images and determine the value of each image, based on the values provided. They will need to add, subtract, multiply, and divide, plus use logical thinking and visual discrimination skills. These puzzles may be tough for some students, but that makes them great to use with both individual students or in small groups. Don’t worry, if students get a puzzle wrong, they will immediately be prompted to try again!
BUNDLE OPPORTUNITY: The four digital resources above are all available in a money-saving bundle that you can grab quickly using this link!
#5 | December Puzzle of the Day
If you are looking for Christmas resources for elementary school students that you can use each day leading up to the winter break, then take a closer look at these puzzles!
These December Puzzles of the Day are perfect for morning meeting time or during a transition.They are holiday-themed and an excellent challenge to get students’ minds moving first thing!
To read more about how brain-teaser puzzles add value to the elementary classroom, read this post.
#6 | Christmas Lockbox Challenge
If you are a fan of escape rooms, then you’ll want to grab this Christmas Lockbox Challenge. Students will work hard as they try to save Christmas.
Santa Claus took a vacation to Christmas Island and has lost his cell phone in the sand. Without his phone, he has completely lost track of time and is about to miss his return flight home to pack his sleigh on Christmas Eve. The only way to save Christmas is to call Santa’s hotel and send a reminder message. The problem is that the hotel name and phone number are locked in the box!
With 6 different challenges included in this resource, you’ll want to save a little time to let students really get into this fun and festive activity!
#7 | Christmas Scavenger Hunt (2 Step Math Word Problems)
This Christmas Scavenger Hunt gets students up and moving and reviewing 2 step math word problems. This combination of movement and math goes together like milk and cookies!
This Christmas Scavenger Hunt activity requires a little printing and cutting, but is pretty easy to set up, and even easier to implement.
#8 | Christmas Skill Racers (Digital Multi-Digit Addition & Subtraction with Regrouping)
Your students will love to practice addition and subtraction computation with this fun, digital Skill Racers activity!
Who is going to cross the finish line first? Will it be Frosty, Rudolph, Santa, or Gingerbread Man? Students will get to make a prediction and then answer 18 questions to move the racers forward and discover the winner.
Just as with some of the other Christmas resources for upper elementary students on this list, this resource has multiple levels for easy differentiation.
- Level 1 includes 2-digit and 3-digit mixed addition and subtraction.
- Level 2 includes 4-digit and 5-digit mixed addition and subtraction.
#9 | Christmas Sudoku
Sometimes a hands-on activity is the perfect choice to get students using their hands to solve a problem. I love this resource as it is a great stand-alone activity that can work as a transition activity or as a challenge for early finishers. I also love that it allows students to manipulate pieces as they attempt to solve the puzzle.
In this Christmas Sudoku, students will have to rearrange Christmas images in an attempt to solve the puzzle as quickly as possible!
#10 | Christmas Lapbook (A Religious Christmas Story Resource)
This Christmas Lapbook is the perfect hands-on resource to supplement your teaching of the religious Christmas story. The lapbook is a great way for students to organize information, consider the significance of each event of the Christmas Story, and keep all of their notes in one, easy to handle resource.
This list of Christmas resources for upper elementary students easily fulfills all three of the criteria I look for when picking holiday-themed resources for my classroom. They work for skill review, fit well into transition times, and challenge my students to think deeply. The fact that they are also cheerful, bright, and Christmas-themed is just icing on the fruit cake!
Take a closer look at each resource, and remember, if there is one you particularly like, it may be available in a bundle that will get you even more similar resources at a discount!