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Morning Work Centers for December

Some people put their holiday decorations up the day after Halloween.  I don’t judge.  I get it, it’s a magical time of the year. So I’m hoping you won’t judge me when I tell you that I have every intention of starting December Morning Work Stations a week before December actually graces us with its presence.  I just CAN NOT possible wait.  I know my students are going to FREAK out with excitement.  Morning Work for December is HERE!!!

And with 36 activities from which to choose, I’m going to have a tough time panning it down to the only 12-15 stations that I usually have going, but I’m gonna try.  I figure anything I don’t get to will get added to my Christmas Break Party Stations.  Hey, these activities are fun, engaging and my students love them so why not?

So if you’d like to get a peek at all the goodness included in this month’s set, here’s what I put together.   Remember, each activity includes a materials list and, most importantly, an ‘in action’ I CAN card to help make these activities more independent.

If you’re wondering where I found any of the materials for these sets, you can find a list of materials HERE.  Just scroll down past the items for Back To School Morning Work and you’ll find the list for December.

This post does contain some affiliate links for your shopping convenience.  I do receive a small commission when someone purchases an item after clicking on a link.  These commissions help with the cost of maintaining this blog and allow me to continue bringing you valuable content, activities, and ideas.

Activities In This Set:

1.Sight Word Paper Punch Garland

Editable sight word cards are included to help make differentiating this station easy.

Don’t have letter paper punches, no problem. Just substitute stamps!

2.String Your CVC Lights

Use links to string your letters in order.

Then open the self-correcting card to see if the answer is correct.

Need a response sheet to differentiate it and make it a bit more challenging?  How about something like this?

3.Link Your Lights Sight  Words

Use those same links to make sight words.

or string up your lights

or exchange your lights for ornaments.  I’ve included ‘I Can’ sheets for all of these possibilities.  Oh and the sight word lights are editable so you can create the list of words you want.  Heck, print them on different color paper to easily organize them by different sight word lists.

4.Linking Gingerbread Numbers and Quantities

Plastic links have never gotten such a workout.  Next, link like quantities to numbers.  Tally’s, ten frames, objects and numerals all together in one place.

5.Peppermint Sand Sight Words Trays

More editable sight word fun.  Sight word work should never be boring so how about indulging the senses with peppermint sand and candy cane writing utensils?  Peppermint sand trays smell so AMAZING.  You students will love it.

6.Playdoh Holiday Counting Math Mats

It wouldn’t be morning work without breaking out some Playdoh.  I personally think you can’t find a better and cheaper fine motor tool.  Here we combine math with fine motor for an excellent morning work activity.

This version includes the number and a little scaffolding help.  Students can match up the playdoh ornaments with the ornaments on the cards to make the number.

This version has them counting the ornaments on the mat but making them in a ten frame independently for another challenge.

7.Playdoh Holiday Counting Making Ten

For students who need an even greater challenge, making 10 would be perfect.

8.Playdoh Decorate Your Tree, Gingerbread

And just for fun . . .

9.Holiday Q-tip Painting

Q-tip painting has quickly become a class favorite. We use this technique for practicing letters, sight words and even thematic pictures.  It’s a great fine motor activity and can really strengthen hand-eye coordination.

10.Hidden Christmas Tree Bulbs In Therapy Putty

Therapy Hide and Seek has several choices.  Students can simply work the putty to find hidden objects.

11.Hidden Bulbs Find and Sort

Or they can find the objects and sort them by color . . .

12.Hidden Bulbs Find, Sort, Graph, and Count

Or find, sort, graph and count the treasures, or in this case plastic bulbs, that they find.

13.Race To Fill Your Bulb

Differentiate this activity by providing different types of dice, numerals, dice in dice, 12 sided, 9 sided. .whatever you choose.  Students roll and use tongs to place that many pompoms in their ornament.

14.Deck The Halls Ten Frame Self-correcting Cards: Counting Before and After

Fun little Dollar Tree ice trays take make numbers on a ten frame more engaging than ever.  Add a pair of cheater chopsticks instead of tongs for moving manipulatives into the tray.

More self-correcting cards mean more independence for Morning Work.  This activity uses ten frames and works on numbers before and after.

Open the card to see if you answered correctly.

15.Deck The Halls  Ten Frame Self-correcting Cards: How Much More To Make 10?

Make it a bit more challenging by adding a ‘how much more to make 10’ card.

16.Ornaments Grab, Spin and Win

Working on greater and less is more fun with tongs and some mini ornaments.  Just grab an ornament and read the number.  Spin the spinner to see if the number that is greater or less is the winner.

17.Fill Your Sleigh Self-Correcting Cards(0-10)

More counting practice with Dollar Tree goodies.

Make the number using tongs to move your ‘gifts.’

Open the self-correcting card to check the answer.

18.Decorate Your Tree  With One More and One Less Self-Correcting Cards (0-20)

Get creative and use whatever you have handy (flat marbles, plastic bingo discs, stacking counters) to decorate your tree and record the numbers that come before and after.

19.Holiday Sticker Count

Any small sticker will do, but I love to pick up a couple of books of these thematic stickers.

The smaller the greater the challenge.

20.Gel Bead Sort

Whatever you call them, Orbez, Gel Beads, Water Beads . . . they are a ton of fun and are great for fine motor control.

Simply sort by color.

21.Gel Bead Roll and Win

. . . or make it a game and add dice to challenge students to see who can fill their cookie cutter first.

22.Jingle All the Way Maze

I prefer to use Duplos for this activity because it’s a first for my students, but they tend to pick the skill of making mazes up quickly.  Add a jingle bell instead of a marble for a little-added fun.

23.Holiday Lego Challenge:  Tree, Ornament, Stocking

Who doesn’t love a challenge? This month it’s a stocking, ornament, and tree?

24.Candy Cane Patterns with Beads

Students can never get enough practice patterning  . . .

25.Constructing Letters and Words

Where ever and whenever you come across transparent or interesting manipulatives, grab them up.  Translucent manipulatives on a light table are so engaging.

And even without a light table, students enjoy using their hands to make the letters in sight words.  These sight word cards are editable so you can use the words that are perfect for your students.

26.Ornament Containers Count and Record

If you can find these mini containers from the Dollar Tree, snatch them up.  But don’t worry, any small container will work.

Here students count and record the number of candy canes (or whatever manipulative you have to offer them).

27.Stocking Stuffer Containers Adding Up

For students who are ready for more of a challenge, try these Stocking Stuffer Containers.  They include two different mini erasers for adding and recording.

28.Ornament Lowercase/Capital Matching Puzzles

These matching puzzles plus a fund sensory bin equals tons of fun.

29.Ornament Letter Sounds Matching Puzzles

If your students need more of a challenge, try these puzzles for beginning sound and letter.

30.Ornament Simple CVC Words Matching Puzzles

Or for even more of a challenge, match up these CVC puzzles.  Printing these items off on different colored cardstock makes it easy to organize for differentiating.

31.Jingle Bell Patterns Color Patterns

Such a fun manipulative for patterning.  You can pick up these jingle bells at Dollar Tree.

And open the card when you’re done to check your answer.

32.I Spy an Ornament Letter Match Up

I really loved the Autumn Transparent Table Scatter that I scored for November’s Morning Work set, but I also knew that it wasn’t always easy to secure those items.  So for this month, I used something a bit more accessible . . . transparent, flat marbles (You could also use plastic bingo discs just as easily.) The playing mat is editable so you decide which letters (or words) your students will use.  You just need to paint the corresponding letters on the manipulatives.

33.I Spy an Ornament Sight Word Match Up

And for sight words . . .

34.  Trim Your Tree With Numbers

This was a favorite from last year that I decided to include in this packet.  Students select an ornament from a stocking and compare it to their partner.  The spinner is spun.  The student with the greater (or less than) number gets both ornaments and gets to put them on their ‘tree.’  The student who decorates their tree first wins!

35.Balancing Bulbs

Students select a word family card from the stocking.  If they read the word correctly, the keep the ornament and get to ‘balance’ it on their tree.  The first student to finish decorating their tree is the winner.

36.Holiday Straw Necklaces

And just for fine motor fun . . . and patterning . . .

My kinders LOVE LOVE LOVE making straw necklaces . . . go figure.

And that’s it for this month.  If you’d like to learn more about this set, check it out by clicking HERE or on the picture below.  You can also find a complete materials list by clicking HERE.   If you are interested in seeing this item in my TpT store, just click HERE.

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Marsha Moffit McGuire

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