Do you have any school traditions? I have a few, and I seem to add one a year! A tradition that we had growing up was making ornaments or crafts for
family members. I carried this on through college, and when I started teaching I started the ornament tradition. My first year of teaching I realized that there were many teachers that didn't necessarily fit into a "clique" to join in holiday giving fun. I was one of those teachers. Now, I am not upset at all.. I am a little high maintenance :) I also realized though, that everyone deserves a little something for Christmas. I was used to making 30-40 ornaments a year anyway for family and friends... so I just multiplied it a little :) So, 10 years ago, I started making ornaments for every teacher, cafeteria worker, paraprofessional, and janitor that was on campus. I believe that every person on campus works extremely hard for our students.. just in different ways. I also believe that the holidays are a great way for us to show our appreciation! I have made everything from wire ornaments, to bowtie pasta angel, to popsicle stick ornaments. This year I made snowmen (I think this is my second year to do this.. but I try really hard to not repeat!) The first set of these (100) had earmuffs on and the second set (100) didn't have earmuffs. I made enough for my new friends at Elliott.. but I just couldn't leave out out my Stipes friends!
Another one of my traditions (started within the last 5 years) is the handprint shirt. I know.. I know.. super cheesy.. but I LOVE HANDPRINTS!
Since my classes are usually smaller, the handprint t-shirt is a great addition to my Christmas shirt collection. These are done with t-shirt puffy paint. The ornaments are thumbprints! I always add the year too :)
I have had some help with the next tradition! I have some amazing people in my PLN! Dyne Smokorowski and I met at Podstock.. and now for the past 2 years have had our classrooms exchanged Holiday Cards. We also have an afternoon where we have skyped, read a book together, and sang Christmas carols.
So, I end this post with a tradition I hope to start in my classroom.. and eventually in my own home. Today I received a SUPER special gift from a SUPER special person! On my doorstep today was a box from Andrea.. not me.. but my most Amazing friend from Kansas! An amazing friend that has done so many behind the scenes things for me..ones that I will never be able to repay (but hope to pay it forward) I got an Elf on the Shelf! You should have seen the happy dance when I opened him! I can't wait to start this new holiday tradition!
I am so thankful for my parents for helping me start the traditions of crafting and making things from the heart. I am thankful for students that are willing to continue my tradition of handprint shirts. I am thankful for Dyane and the best Christmas card exchange. I am thankful for Andrea for helping me start a brand new tradition! Thank you all from the bottom of my heart!
As I pull out all of the materials for all of my traditions.. my husband rolls his eyes and asks me why must I do it all. I guess I can chalk it up to my OCD. But it is really for the fact that these things make my heart happy.. and hopefully brings a few smiles to the people around me!
Do you have an classroom traditions?