Special Days to Celebrate in January

January can be a challenging month to keep students excited. Between coming back to school after holiday break and the cold weather in many parts of the country, January can drag a bit. So, try spicing up your classroom by celebrating a few of these unique days.

  • January 13 th: Friday the 13th

    Many people are afraid of the Friday the 13 th; there’s even a name for the phobia: paraskavedekatriaphobia. But, in reality, there’s no reason to be afraid. To help students overcome any of their fears, ask them to research some of the superstitions that surround Friday the 13 th and write a blog article explaining what they learn.

  • January 15 th: National Hat Day

    National Hat Day is exactly what the name implies—a day to wear hats! Ask your students to wear an interesting hat to school and to write a story about the origins of their headwear. You may even consider having your students create a hat to wear.

  • January 16 th: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day became a federal holiday in 1986 and serves to honor the legacy of Dr. King and his importance to the Civil Rights Movement. To honor Dr. King, ask students to research Dr. King’s many accomplishments and then lead a discussion about his impact on the world. You can find resources for different grade levels on the NEA website.

  • January 18 th: National Winnie the Pooh Day

    National Winnie the Pooh Day celebrates A.A. Milne’s birthday, the author who brought Winnie the Pooh to life. To celebrate, read a story, have a teddy bear picnic, or create stories about bears that include bear drawings.

  • January 24 th: National Compliment Day

    National Compliment Day, created in 1998 by Kathy Chamberlin, is the perfect day to say something kind to someone else. Go around the classroom and have students give a compliment to the person sitting next to them.

  • January 28 th: Chinese New Year

    The Chinese New Year is the most important traditional holiday in China. The date changes every year based on the lunar calendar. Ask students to research the Chinese New Year and explain its origin. In addition, you can find great resources on the TeacherVision site.

  • January 31 st: National Backward Day

    End the month by celebrating National Backward Day. Wear your shirt backward, eat dessert first, or see who can say the alphabet backward the fastest. Use your imagination and end the month with a little fun!

​SMART Goals to Enrich Your Teaching Practices and Your Life

This year, instead of making broad resolutions that are easily broken, consider making SMART goals. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound objectives that will provide you with a direct path to achieve success. Since SMART goals are targeted and time-bound, you will be more likely to stick with them and achieve success. Click here to learn more [...]

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Prevent Student Distractions with Bell Ringers

Imagine walking into a professional development course and on the board at the front of the classroom is a colorful PowerPoint presentation that reads: Welcome! You sit down and take out your materials, excited and ready to learn. But then a few minutes go by. Teachers are filing in and taking their seats, but there is nothing for you to [...]

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Bring Australia to Your Classroom this Winter

So far this month, we’ve looked at unique ways to enjoy December with your students by discussing ways to celebrate many December holidays from around the world. If you’d like to continue to delight your students with interesting and unique winter activities, we suggest focusing on Australia! Take a look below to learn about Australian-themed winter activities. You’ll likely [...]

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Unique and Not-So-Unique Days to Celebrate in December

When you think of holidays, you probably think of the winter holidays in December, but there are also some not-as-well-known special days that you can recognize to keep your students engaged! Take a look at the below list of days to celebrate in December as well as some activities that you can engage in with your students. December 7th: Pearl Harbor [...]

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​Combatting HIV/AIDS in the Classroom

Today, December 1st, is World AIDS Day. HIV/AIDS remains a global epidemic that affects our students, families, and communities both directly and indirectly. In the United States, more than 1.2 million people are living with HIV, and 1 in 8 of them don’t know it. Young people are the most likely to be unaware of their infection. Among people ages [...]

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This Winter, Celebrate Diversity in Your Classroom

Now more than ever, it’s important to recognize and celebrate the diversity we find in our classrooms. While many students associate the month of December with Christmas or Hanukkah, there are actually many other celebrations that happen throughout the world in December. Below is a partial list of holidays that take place in December as well as some ideas about [...]

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We're Helping Classrooms Thrive

In 2015, Advancement Courses began partnering with the online charity, DonorsChoose.org, by donating 10% of all sales during each back-to-school season to help students and teachers in need. From August to October, teachers across the country submitted their projects for consideration using #EveryClassroomCounts. 2016 saw a record breaking number of project submissions, and we were amazed by [...]

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​Thanksgiving Activities Across Subjects

Thanksgiving is next week, and your students are probably already thinking about turkey, stuffing, pies, and, of course, time off from school. If you’re looking for ways to keep your students’ attention and also get into the Thanksgiving spirit, check out the Thanksgiving-themed activities below. You’re bound to find an activity or two for which you and your students [...]

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Effective Read-Aloud Strategies for Your Classroom

The power of good storytelling, also known as a read-aloud, is about you, the teacher, joyfully and deliberately modeling a love for reading with your students. Read-aloud sessions can vary in length (anywhere from 5 to 45 minutes) and content, but the goal is the same: to demonstrate a passion for reading with your students. Here are strategies you [...]

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