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In this Secret Santa idea, acts of kindness are given instead of presents
5, 6, 7, 8
Title – Secret Santa – Acts of Kindness
By – Carol Moyes
Primary Subject – Other
Grade Level – 5-8
This activity can be carried out in the week before the Christmas holidays, and encourages the children to think about giving rather than receiving.
Preparation: prepare sheets of A4 paper with decorative borders that the children can color in. Included labeled spaces for each day you will be doing the activity. If you prefer, you can use plain paper and let the children design the decorations themselves.
Introduction: Introduce the children to the idea of a Secret Santa, i.e., someone who gives you a gift without revealing who they are. Explain that each child will become the Secret Santa to somebody else in the class. Everyday the Secret Santa will have to do something nice for their classmate, such as paying them a compliment; sharing with them; helping them with their work; including them in their games, etc. The idea is not to give a physical gift, but to give a gift of kindness.
Organization: Give each child a slip of paper and have them write their name on it — it’s fun if the teacher joins in to. Put all the slips in a box or bag and then invite the children to pull out a slip. The child whose name they draw will be the one that they are to be Secret Santa to. Stress that they must not let anyone find out who it is (put the slips in the bin as soon as they have memorized who it is!). To maintain the mystery, you could encourage them to carry out acts of kindness for other children in the class — this will make it harder for anyone to guess who they are Secret Santa to.
At the end of each day give the class a few minutes to write their act of kindness on their sheet.
At the end of the week the children decorate their sheets and turn them into scrolls, which they then sign and present to their classmate. Before you hand over the scrolls, you could ask the children if they have guessed who their Secret Santa is.
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