Spark Student Motivaton - Secret Elf Pals and a Freebie!!
Elementary AMC November 23, 2013
Happy Saturday everyone. We woke up this morning to snow! It is definitely motivating me to decorate for Christmas or at least watch Christmas movies!! I am going to take a few minutes to link up with the most motivating teacher I know, Joanne, at Head Over Heels for Teaching for....
I want to share an idea with you that I did with my class last December (I am sure I got this idea from a blog or Pinterest but I can not remember where or which blog - I am sorry - I would happily give credit if I knew who it was!!) and will be doing again this year (my students have already asked about it and are super excited to start). It is Secret Elf Pals.
Here is what we do:
Day 1 - decorate a lunch bag with a Christmas theme. I put their names on the bags in marker so they are easy for me to see.
Pick a name out of an elf hat (one of those lovely dollar store elf hats I am sure we all own). That is your Secret Elf Pal (I record the names - just in case!). Destroy the slip of paper and keep it a secret!
Day 2 - start on the Secret Elf tasks - draw a picture for your person, make a Christmas card, give them a compliment etc. I do not have them do a task everyday because some days in December we are being Secret Elf Pals to others in our school/community. For example one day we secretly delivered Christmas erasers to a younger class, or we left sharpened pencils on all the desks in a class or but candy canes in the staff mailboxes.
Day before class party - set up class store (dollar store items, gently used items, donated items from parents). Students buy their Secret Elf Pal a gift with money class money. In previous years we were running a classroom economy so they already had class money. This year they will be earning Elf Bucks in December for good behaviour - they use it to buy their pal a gift then they can buy for themselves.
Last day of school/school party - students get their stocking/bag - guess who had their name and they reveal themselves.
I also like to read Junie B Jones Jingle Bells Batman Smells - even though they are too old for Junie they still love this story.
If you want a copy of the Secret Elf Pal task cards I have made you can click here. Here is a sample of the cards - there are a few blank frames to add your own tasks too!
I also made a set of Elf Calendar cards. You can pick those up on my FB page under the Fan Freebie tab. I cut the entire black border off so they fit nicely on my calendar.
Be sure to check out all the motivating ideas being shared on Joanne's blog today.
You may also want to check out this elf persuasive writing unit...
Lastly check out my post at The Organized Classroom today - you may find a little motivation there too!