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Friday, November 30, 2012


by Clement Clarke Moore

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter's nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

"Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On Cupid! On, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night."
More Christmas Ideas:

Countdown to Christmas Bell

What to Do:

1.  Cut 13 strips of red construction paper that are about 1 inch wide and 8 inches long. Cut 12 strips of green paper with the same dimensions.
2.  Print out the bell pattern on yellow construction paper. Color with crayons if desired and cut out. (You could also decorate the bell with glitter, sequins, markers, etc. if you want.)
3.  Roll one of the red strips of paper into a loop and staple it onto the bottom of the bell. Loop a green strip of paper through the red loop to get the chain started. Continue to alternate the red and green strips of paper to make a chain that has 25 links in it.
4.  Hang the bell and chain up in a prominent place and tear off one link at the end of each day until Christmas.See source at
More resources:

Christmas Letter Surprise

Twas the Weeks before Christmas Letter Surprise

How to make a simple Christmas treat for someone special. A nice holiday surprise! Materials Needed:
  • Letter Below
  • Stocking or Basket of Holiday Gifts
  • Christmas Elf
This is a fun surprise gift that is left near someone's door without them knowing who left it! Print out the letter below or make up your own, find some holiday cheer (stocking stuffers, homemade cookies, etc.), make a little sign with a holiday elf on it. Then put them all in a little stocking or basket and leave them on someone's front steps - don't let them see you! You can use one of the elf pictures found on , Google or Bing.

Print out and include this letter:
Twas the weeks before Christmas
And all through the house
Not a creature was calm
Especially not mom

When from somewhere in the
Neighborhood an elf arrived
Delivering holiday cheer
Then running to hide

An elf has taken time to share
Now you can too
Copy this letter and your elf times two
Then spread the spirit to those near you.

Keep your elf on your door
So others will see
That you have a gift
Under your tree

Enjoy this Holiday Cheer
And remember to share
Merry Christmas to All
And a Happy New Year

Christmas Resources:

Beaded Christmas Tree Pendant

December Themes, Lesson Plans, and Celebrations

  December Themes, Lesson Plans, and Celebrations

icon December 6-12 National Handwashing Awareness Month

icon December 26-January 1-- Kwanzaa

icon December 1--Rosa Parks

icon December 2--Special Education Day

icon December 7--Pearl Harbor Day

icon December 16-- Boston Tea Party

icon December 17--Wright Brothers' first flight

icon December 20th--Hanukkah

icon December 21--Winter Solstice

icon December 25--Christmas

Some Suggestions for December

icon Christmas

icon Winter Solstice

icon Wright Brothers'

icon Polar Express

icon Gingerbread Man

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christmas Quotes

Christmas Quotes

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold,
everything is softer and more beautiful.
~Norman Vincent Peale~

It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air.
~W. T. Ellis~

Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind.
To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy,
is to have the real spirit of Christmas.
~Calvin Coolidge~

Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity.
To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.
~Author Unknown~

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.
~Charles Dickens, Ebenezer Scrooge, A Christmas Carol~

Christmas is a time of joy, a time for love and cheer,
A time for making memories, To last throughout the year.
~Author Unknown~

Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind.
To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy,
is to have the real spirit of Christmas.
~Calvin Coolidge~

Somehow not only for Christmas
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others
Is the joy that comes back to you."
~Elwyn Brooks White~ 

 Christmas, my child, is love in action.
Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas.
~Dale Evans Rogers~

Click here for best free educational sites, teaching ideas, lesson plans, fun activities, themes, strategies, resources, and teacher tips. We love visitors!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

December Lesson Plan Ideas

December Lesson Plan Ideas
Here are some great projects and ideas for your December classroom.
1. A gift or reward exchange.
2. Map holidays around the world.
3. A cookie contest.
4. Make a family recipe book.
5. Hold a multicultural holiday festival.
6. Decorate your room.
7. Holiday greeting country match.
8. Have student find out how and where their gifts are made.
9. Graph holiday sales.

Resources for December Theme Units-Lesson Plans-Activities-

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

Thanksgiving Webquests

Thanksgiving Webquests

More Resources:

Thanksgiving Poem and Songs


The year has turned its circle,
The seasons come and go.
The harvest is all gathered in
And chilly north winds blow.
Orchards have shared their treasures,
The fields, their yellow grain,
So open wide the doorway-
Thanksgiving comes again!
Author Unknown

I Am Thankful
(Tune: Are You Sleeping?)
I am thankful.
I am thankful.
Yes I am! Yes I am!
I'm thankful for my family,
And the friends who love me.
Yes I am!
Yes I am!

Thanksgiving Song
(Tune: Twinkle, Twinkle)
Let's be thankful for this day,
For our friends and for our play.
Let's be thankful; let's be glad,
For the food and things we have.
Let's give thanks for you and me,
And our home and family.

Thanksgiving Resources:

Thanksgiving Theme Unit and Printables - Ideas

Thanksgiving Theme Unit and Printables - Ideas, Activities, Reading Comprehension, Word Searches, Coloring, Crosswords, and Math Worksheets! Lessons, Activities, Unit Ideas

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Legend of the Five Kernels

The Legend of the Five Kernels
The first winter the Pilgrims spent in their new home food was very scarce.

Some days there was only enough for five kernels of corn. From then on, 
every Thanksgiving the Pilgrims put five kernels of corn on each plate to 
remind themselves of their blessings. Let's also remember!

The first kernel reminds us of the autumn beauty around us.
The second kernel reminds us of our love for each other.
The third kernel reminds us to be grateful for all we have.
The fourth kernel reminds us of our friends.
The fifth kernel reminds us that we live in a free country.

More Thanksgiving Ideas at  

Thanksgiving Alphabet Poem

A Thanksgiving Alphabet
...Turkeys, table spreads, being together,
...Happiness and homes to protect us from all weather,
...Aunts and uncles, a reunion in Fall,
...Nieces and nephews, family members all!
...Kind-hearted kin coming over for dinner,
...Surely you'll have fun, but you won't get thinner!
...Gourds and pumpkins, mouths open wide.
...Indians and Pilgrims we remember with pride.
...Very special times-there could even be snow.
...Imagine what it was like at Plymouth long ago.
...Never forget how the settlers led the way,
...Giving thanks and blessing this special day.

Author Unknown 

More Thanksgiving Ideas at

Sunday, November 4, 2012

November Teacher Guide-Themes-Lessons-Activities

November brings Native American Heritage Month and this week Election Day. Soon we have Veteran's Day, and Thanksgiving. Find resources-ready at a click-to connect your curriculum with upcoming events at the TeachersFirst Classroom Planning Calendar, always ready, just in time. (Don't miss our Native American Crafts unit!)
Our hearts go out to the many teachers and students in Sandy's path, many of whom are experiencing widespread damage, closed schools, no power, or no Internet access. We hope the rest of us who were lucky enough to continue school/life as usual will find a way to send support via the Red Cross or another reputable agency. 
May your students make you feel like one in a million this week.
Your "teacher to go,"
Candace Hackett Shively
Director of K-12 Initiatives
Source-Just click on this link to see all of it at: 

More November Activities-Lessons-Theme Units-Crafts: