Ok...so we are all feeling the pressure of tested standards. I feel like every word I speak has to be connected to one of my state standards. It is hard to want to do other activities with my students, but have to tell myself...I don't teach that in 4th grade.
Due to these high expectations, we have completely taken the fun, crafty activities out of the upper grades...but we do still teach children, right?
My wonderful team came up with a solution to this...and joined it together with holiday fun...and got around that pesky "no holiday party"rule.
We call it Rotation Day. Each teacher, we have 5, plans a fun activity that corresponds with that holiday. We have 30 - 45 minutes for each class to rotate around to each other teacher. It is such a nice break for the kids. It is also a nice break for the teachers. It is so easy to plan one activity and do it 5 times in that day. It is a great opportunity to catch up on grading/cleaning/organizing/planning/anythingelsethatyouneverhavetimetodo.
Now, this is a privilege, so you can lose the right to Rotation Day. We only have recess 2 days per week (gasp, right). If you go to study hall, you earn a letter toward a word and when you spell the word, you lose rotation day. The amount of study halls determines the word. Our words so far this year have been, Halloween, Turkey, and Noel.