There are just so many wonderful things that your students want to learn about at this time of year! I love to pull out the elements of seasonal celebrations and use them to create mini thematic studies. You'll find a blend of science, movement, literacy, and math in these activities about reindeer.
For second and third grades, try some non-fiction reading about reindeer with this freebie from A Grace Filled Classroom. Part of a larger set, this free sampler includes the great page you see here (perfect for use with a doc camera!), a graphic organizer/response to reading page, and a comprehension check which will also give you lots of info about your students' mastery of non-fiction text terminology.
Getting the wiggles out is harder than ever at this time of year! Look at this sweet little variation on the Hokey Pokey that I came across on YouTube from Kiboomu. At any other time of year, I might suggest PreK-1 for this, but right now I bet there are some desperate second grade teachers with students who'd love to be doing this fun little dance!
Click here to see it!
Who but primary teachers has not one but many favorite reindeer books? One of my top-of-the-list favorites is Jan Brett's The Wild Christmas Reindeer. I love this story about how Teeka struggles to prepare the reluctant reindeer for Santa's flight and learns something about herself in the process, but my favorite thing is the expressions on the faces of the reindeer! After you read it to your class, take a teaching hint from the blog of my friend Tara at The Math Maniac. Check out her great post about writing math story problems based on literature.
For more math, here's some reindeer math review for second grade, new at my TpT store. When your students play Rudy!, they'll practice addition, subtraction, missing addends, features of geometric shapes, adding and subtracting tens, and more. Here are the twists that keep this review game fun and fast-paced: Get a card with an answer of eight (you know, like the "eight little reindeer"!) - put all of your cards back in the bag. Get a "Rudy!" card - give one of your cards to any other player. There are two ways to win - get any eight cards, or collect five reindeer, each wearing a different color Santa hat.
Do you have a favorite reindeer book or activity that you've used with your class?