As a room parent, one of the responsibilities is to plan for the winter or Christmas party. For classroom parties, we typically do a game, a craft, and a special snack. For our event, I had approximately one hour to do all the activities. This is a party I planned for my son’s second grade class last year which I chose to revolve around a theme. The theme for the party was a “Snowy Adventure”. All of the activities involved something snow related. It was a huge hit with the children, the parents, and the teacher! A couple of weeks before the party, I sent home a newsletter type note to the parents to let them know when the party was and what kind of activities we would be doing as well as asked for volunteers. In my experience as a room mom, I have always found that parents liked to be involved and are very pleased when they are informed of upcoming events.
The party was simple with three basic ingredients: a fun interactive game, a craft that could be taken home, and a delicious snack. For the game I came up with a “Survivor” style game that the children played in teams of four, which I will explain in detail below. For the craft, the students made a dangling snowman ornament. I used the one on Family Fun’s website as a guide. This involved some prep work in advance, but worked out really well in the time allotted for the party. Finally, for the snack we decided on snow cupcakes, snack mix, and a drink. I made sure to involve volunteer parents in all facets of the party: before party prep, sending in snacks, assisting with the craft and game, and helping with clean up. The parents also sent in small toys or candy for the class that the children distributed into winter goody bags which the children took home the day of the party.
The Snowy Survivor game is a combination of 4 activates students have to complete as a team. You will need to have each activity prepared in advance and have adults assist throughout the game to make sure it moves along smoothly. The first activity in the race is to build an ice tower using sugar cubes. I gave each group around 50 sugar cubes in a bowl. The teams had to build a tower that could have a base of 4 or 5 cubes and then build up. You could use more or less depending on time and skill of the students. Once their towers were completed without falling over, they then go to the next station which is a snowball toss. I purchased these really cute plush snowballs from Oriental Trading (online toy company) that have funny faces on them. I made sure to buy one per student so they could take them home after the party. For the toss, I bought cute baskets from the dollar store and covered them with foam snowflakes. Each student in the group had to successfully toss their snowball into the basket before moving on to the next task. The group then moved back to their table where there was a puzzle for them to complete as a group. I bought 24 piece puzzles that I spray-painted white in advance, to look like snow. I wrote a question on the puzzle in black marker, then took it apart and put all the pieces in a bag. The students had to put together the puzzles in order to reveal the question. The question can basically be anything you want it to be. It could be about Frosty the Snowman, something they just learned at school, or even something about their teacher. You might even have a question that involved them doing some math work to find the answer. Once the students know the answer, they must be the first to write it on the board or tell the teacher.
At our party, I did the game first, and then I had parents ready to pass out supplies for the ornament project. The students worked on the ornaments independently. I had the 3 circles already put together for them, so they just had to add the face, buttons, hat, and scarf. I had hot glue guns available to put on some of the parts. I made sure to have parents assist with the gluing. After they completed their ornament, we let them dry to take home and we prepared for snack time. If needed, a parent could read a story during this time, possibly Frosty or another snowy tale. At our school, the snacks have to be store bought, so we found some fun snowy cupcakes to serve along with chips and drinks. The kids ate their snacks and then enjoyed looking at all their fun prizes they received in their winter goody bags. You could have Christmas music playing in the background and bring along a winter bingo game just in case you have extra time. The children always have fun playing a good game of Bingo. You could make your own using things such as: snow, snowman, coat, gloves, hat, hot chocolate, sled, snow shovel, snowball, ice skate, snowboard, etc. Whatever you do, get involved with the students and have fun! The best parties are those that involve fun, laughter, and time together with loved ones!