Professional Development

December 19, 2020

New Year’s Activities for Kids in the Classroom

Oh, a fresh start! While I truly believe there is nothing magical about a new year, it’s hard to deny that there is something about a fresh start and turning the page to a new year. Adults and kids both enjoy a fresh start, right? The fresh start is a great time to look at incorporating new year’s activities for kids in the classroom.

**Amazon affiliate links are used below at no cost to you.

Why New Year’s Resolutions?

You might be wondering, “Why should I even consider New Year’s activities for kids in the classroom?” Great question! Leaning into these conversations gives us the opportunity to foster and help cultivate a growth mindset. This is definitely something that was not taught to us when we were younger, but I love that my kids are learning it in school and that I am teaching it as a parent.

We can do hard things.
I’m not there, yet.
I can’t do ____, but I can do ____ and that will help me do _____.

When kids, and adults, take on this frame of thinking, we are more positive and encouraged toward our goal. We have an “I can do it!” way of thinking about things that seem hard.

Favorite New Year’s Read Alouds

An interactive read-aloud is a great way to start the conversation about the new year. These books are great to help jump-start their thinking about both how they celebrate and how they can embrace the power of “yet”.

New Year’s Activities for Kids in the Classroom

As classroom teachers, you see kids more hours in the day than their own parents do. (Side note: As a momma, this is a hard thing for me to come to grips with. I miss my kids, and often I want to be the one who is shaping and molding them.) Use this time to have kids reflect on how they can be helpers at home and at school.

1. New Year Flip Up Book

My go-to activity when we come back from break is always the New Year Flip Up Book. It’s a great way to get students thinking about the new year and themselves.

What do they want to improve upon at home and at school? What do they want to try?

Also, encourage them to reflect on things. What are the things they learned last year? What were their favorite moments of 2023?

How did they ring in the new year? Did they watch the ball drop? Did they get to see family?

You can use any of these talking points to have them do a think-pair-share or a whole class share, or to have them jot things on a sticky note and then do a gallery walk!

You can have your students record these things in the New Year’s Flip Up Book along the way as you discuss or after. This resource is available in PRINT and DIGITAL format!

This resource has six pages of activities for students to complete. I love flip up books because they make it simple to integrate writing into any subject or topic. Plus, they’re super easy to assemble!

CLICK HERE to grab this for $3 in my shop!

2. New Year’s Activity Countdown Freebie

Another fun activity to do with your kids is to have a countdown going in your classroom!

Create this paper chain that you can get FREE here!

Each hour, or half-hour, cut off a chain and do what it says for a little added fun and community building!

3. Time Capsule Freebie

Using a simple empty water or soda bottle, have them complete the sentence frames in this FREEBIE and place them in their bottle. Note: This is updated each year and is ready for 2024!

Next, add a note to the outside. Then either store them in the classroom for them to reflect back on at the end of the school year OR pass them on to their teacher next year! They can open them in 2025 for a fun trip down memory lane!

How are you ringing in the new year with your class? Are you setting goals together? Are you helping foster a growth mindset? What are you choosing to make space for even personally in your profession or home life?

I’d love to hear! Leave a comment below and let me know!

Happy Teaching,


Free Guided Reading Resource Cards

Free Guided Reading Resource Cards to help you plan your time and teach each group on their instructional level.

Hi, I'm Amanda

I’m a K-1 teacher who is passionate about making lessons your students love and that are easy to implement for teachers.  Helping teachers like you navigate their way through their literacy block brings me great joy. I am a lifelong learner who loves staying on top of current literacy learning and practices. Here, you’ll find the tools you need to move your K-2 students forward!


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