Young students get soooo excited about the holidays so I like to harness some of that energy for learning activities. If an activity has a fun Christmas theme, they are in!
As you may already know, I love using sorting activities in the classroom. Young students have a natural instinct to make sense of the world around them and tend to notice similarities and differences, so sorting activities build on their innate sense of order.
Sorting objects into groups helps teach young children about relationships and attributes, helps them to compare and better recognize differences, requires and develops logical thinking and problem-solving skills, and shows them how rules apply to sets which helps train their brains to create organized thoughts and ways of retrieving information.
Small Group or Center Activity
Since I already had cookie sheets in the classroom because I use them for other activities and had a ton of cookie tins at home, I decided to set up a Christmas cookie sorting center.
Anytime I can use real props to make an activity more authentic and engaging for students it’s a win!
Since we are reviewing beginning sounds and starting to focus on ending sounds this time of year, I created practice centers for both.
I placed headings on cookie sheets and some paper Christmas cookies with pictures on them in a cookie tin. Students had to sort the cookies onto the correct cookie sheet.
We did 2 types of sorting. The first was “Starts with the letter” or “Does NOT start with the letter” and “Ends with the letter” or “Does Not end with the letter”.
We also sorted the cookies according to specific beginning or ending sounds.
I love how easy it is to differentiate the activity simply by changing the headings and cookies used. I can do targeted practice for the letters with which students are struggling.
When doing targeted individual practice, if I don’t have enough cookie sheets for each student to have two then they sort them on one cookie sheet.
Pocket Chart Activity
I have also used the cookies in our pocket chart while introducing or reviewing beginning and ending sounds. It gives it a festive, fun feel!
I also created a digital version for individual practice and assessment. Students love using technology and the fun Christmas theme and movable pieces keep them engaged.
If you would like to use these Christmas cookie sorting activities in your classroom, CLICK HERE to see all of the available resources in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.
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