birthday ideas

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by iteachm123, Jul 22, 2005.

  1. iteachm123

    iteachm123 Comrade

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    Jul 22, 2005

    My apologies if this has already been started somewhere else. I will be teaching third grade this year (I'm a new hire at this school) and I would like to know from you how you celebrate birthdays in the classroom, particularly third grade. In the past, I gave the child a birthday certificate, we sang Happy Birthday to him/her as a class, and I bought pencils and sharpeners for the kids to use. This is my idea for this year but I would like your feedback on this please: I would like to purchase a small decorative box and put in items from Oriental Trading Company that he/she may choose from. I've noticed all kinds of small trinkets, pencils, erasers, etc. in their catalogs and I feel the price is farely reasonable. Is this idea a bad one for third grade or do you think they would like it?

    Thanks so much for your help. I really appreciate your advice and expertise! I hope you are all having a great summer.

    God bless,
    Michelle
     
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  3. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    Jul 22, 2005

    I used to put a birthday tablecloth of sorts over the birthday girl/boy's desk. You could make a chair cover instead or a placemat.

    I also got one of those birthday flags from a garage sail and hang it up by the doorway on the morning of a student birthday. I also post a premade birthday cupcake cutout with student's name written on it by our calendar under the phrase, "Happy Birthday!".
     
  4. hanvan

    hanvan Connoisseur

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    Jul 23, 2005

    I spend sooo much $$ all year long that birthdays are not at the top of my priorty list. I have a treasure box and I let them choose something from the box, sing happy bday, and give them a birthday certificate that I got fronm the teacher supply store. You could also do a bday pencil.
     
  5. IndyJo

    IndyJo Companion

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    Jul 23, 2005

    I give the student a card, a "Sit With a Friend" and "Free Homework Pass" coupons. At the end of the day, he/she sits in the Author chair to share any b-day plans. It is the most inexpensive gift for me. Also, that is the only time anyone receives a "Sit With a Friend" and "Free Homework Pass."
    coupon from me.
     
  6. Jaicie

    Jaicie Rookie

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    Jul 23, 2005

    Lve2tch, I really like the idea of a chair cover! :)
    In our 1st/2nd grade class, we keep birthdays pretty simple. (Like Hanvan, I spend so much $ on my class during the year.) We sing Happy Birthday, and the birthday child hands out treats. (Every year I have a few kids who can't afford to bring treats and/or their parent forgets, so I ask the child privately if they would like to hand out Cheezits or Teddy Grahams from the snack cupboard.) The birthday child gets a b-day pencil and b-day certificate from me. Then we make a birthday apple book for the birthday child. I have an overhead transparency of an apple tree. The birthday person calls on classmates to share a compliment while I write them on each apple. The kids say things like "Sandy's a good reader, she's respectful, likes to draw, she's a fast runner, etc. When the apple tree is filled with compliments, each child cuts out a separate apple-shaped page, writes a friendly birthday message on it, and decorates it for the birthday person. Then we staple them into a booklet. I like having all the students make something together that the b-day child can take home and read with their family. They're pretty cute and very cheap! ;)

    ~~Jaicie :)
     
  7. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    Jul 23, 2005

    I think all the mentioned ideas are cute. I think if you are going to spend money on the pencil and certificate then go a head and spend it on verious trinkets from Oriental Trading Co. (I love their catalouge!) I think the kids would love to choose a gift from a fancy box rather than get the same pencil all the kids get. I did see a suggestion from some one else to celebrate the kids' birthdays that come in summer on their half birthday so they get a chance too. I was wondering if in 3rd grade do the kids still like to wear a paper birthday crown?
     
  8. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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    Jul 23, 2005

    Regarding the chair cover...we had one in kindergarten that was basically two rectangles of denim sewn together on three edges (the denim was very sturdy). It was decorated with fabric paint and iron-on letters that said "Happy Birthday." I guess we really liked it...that was 16 years ago and I clearly remember Mrs. Wenzel putting it on my chair! :)
     
  9. mrs. dub

    mrs. dub Companion

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    Jul 23, 2005

    We had this idea for each classroom or grade level have a "class mom" who makes cupcakes or a cake at the end of every month to celebrate all of the students' birthdays that fall in that month. This way, no one gets left out or embarrassed by being singled out on his or her birthday, and it's a good excuse to have a regular monthly party.
     
  10. Jaicie

    Jaicie Rookie

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    Jul 23, 2005

    Mrs. Dub, I love your idea! :love: I wonder if I'll have a parent this fall who will be willing to do that? (Last year was my 1st year to actually have a "room mother", and I've been teaching for 8 years!) Maybe I could ask a different parent each month ...? They could sign up the first week of school ...? I'll give it some thought.

    :) :thanks:

    ~Jaicie
     
  11. Gopher4

    Gopher4 Comrade

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    Jul 23, 2005

    I teach 4th grade Reading and have about 48 students in all three of my classes. In the past I have given mini-birthday activity books that I ordered from Really Good Stuff along with a pencil for their birthday,but this year I bought a small picnic basket, attached balloons and I am going to fill it with new chapter books. On their birthday they will be able to choose a brand new book from the Birthday Book Basket. I purchased some of the books from e-bay. I also have purchased 95 cent books from our book orders. I stuck birthday bookmarks in the books as well. I don't have to start the year with a basket full up books - just enough for the first birthdays to have some to choose from - then I can add as we go along.
     
  12. MzB

    MzB Rookie

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    Jul 25, 2005

    If you want to put an educational spin on it (I definately plan on doing this), they have books that talk about birthday traditions around the world, with recipes and activities. You could make a birthday board with all the birthdays on it by month, and each first friday, the birthday people will pick a country out of the "birthday jar", and they will have a birthday "party" from that country on another day (maybe the last friday). The one book I saw had activities and little information you could share with the kids. You could take an hour out of the day, have the kids do the activity or make the snack, then eat and give out gifts (like the things you all have mentioned).

    This adds multiculturalism into the classroom. Also, if you have students from different countries, you could hvae them share their traditions and possibly have the parents come in, that kinda thing. And this way, its only once a month, and everyone gets covered (do a big party in June for June/July/August kids).
     
  13. LuvToTeach3rd

    LuvToTeach3rd New Member

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    Jul 25, 2005

    I teach 3rd grade in a very low socioeconomic area. Some of my kids don't have birthday parties at home or their parents, don't make a big deal out of their birthdays. I bake something (brownies, cookies, etc.) for each child's birthday. We sing Happy Birthday to them and then the whole class eats the goodies. They love this! Most of our kids aren't used to homemade baked goods, either. It doesn't cost too much, just time. It really brightens their day. I also give them a birthday pencil and certificate. They also get to keep a stuffed "Birthday Bear" on their desk all day. :love:
     
  14. iteachm123

    iteachm123 Comrade

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    Jul 25, 2005

    Thank you for all of your suggestions. In regards to LuvToTeach3rd, I realize some children don't get birthday parties at home and so I thought that at least they can have one at school. I believe that birthdays are very special and should be celebrated. After all, birthdays are a celebration of life.

    I plan on celebrating their birthdays, but would like to keep it simple because of expenses. I love the idea about baking something to bring in because some children would like to celebrate at school but their family may not be able to afford to bring something in. That's where I will come in. I've already bought birthday certificates and may buy something else that is inexpensive, perhaps at the local Dollar Store.

    Thanks again, everyone. I'm looking forward to this school year and will be reading this message board on a daily basis. It's already helped me a lot and I appreciate it.

    Michelle
     
  15. luv2teach21

    luv2teach21 New Member

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    Jul 29, 2005

    Hello Michelle I was on here looking for new ideas and saw you are from Ohio and you teach at a Prep and Fitness School. By any chance is it an Edvantage school? I'm asking b/c I also teach in Ohio at a Prep and Fitness School.
    How coincidental!:)
    Oh here's my idea. I try to make a big fuss over b-days. The b-day boy/girl wears a sticker all day that says "It's my birthday". I also let them bring in treats and sing to them regardless of if they bring one or not. This year I'm going to make sure every student gets a birthday card that is signed by all their classmates along with my normal certificate/treasure box treat. Hopefully this won't change too much b/c I have a little boy that doesn't celebrate b-days so we'll see how it goes:)
     
  16. iteachm123

    iteachm123 Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2005

    luv2teach21,

    Yes, the prep. and fitness school I will be teaching at this fall is the one in Trotwood. I am the new third grade teacher and am really excited. My building is in an old YMCA and it has such character! Our school joins many others in the Edvantages school system. How cool!!!

    This is what I decided to do for celebrating birthdays in my class: I will send home a letter at the beginning of the school year to the parents and let them know that it isn't necessary to send in treats for their child's birthday because I'm going to do that myself. I know a lot of parents are busy and don't have time to make or buy treats so I want to take off the pressure for parents. I will give that child a checklist a few days before his/her birthday and allow him to choose what kind of treat he wants, such as cookies, cupcakes, chips, or brownies. He just puts a checkmark next to what he would like to have. I will make these myself and will count this as part of the gift. The child will also get a birthday certificate and will have a birthday bear on his desk for the day.

    Hope to hear back from you and find out if we are teaching in the same school system. You can privately email me if you want to at teachersrcool2001@yahoo.com.

    Michelle
     
  17. teacher62604

    teacher62604 Companion

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    Jul 30, 2005

    Just a little note on the "chair cover" idea, I have heard of teachers using a pillow case & decorating it with an iron-on transfer that says Happy Birthday. They they just slip it over the child's chair on thier birthday. The kids enjoy being special for the day!
     
  18. DaTeach

    DaTeach Comrade

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    Jul 31, 2005

    We are not allowed to have parties for birthdays, but parents may bring birthday snacks for recess time. Our principal announces birthdays over the intercom and of course we sing to them. I order personalized birthday pencils from www.forteachersonly.com for each student at the beginning of the year. I have it waiting for them along with a birthday card and a lollipop when they arrive on the morning of their birthday. You can personalize the pencils to say what you want, but most kids appreciate pencils with their names on them. Here is the link:

    http://www.forteachersonly.com/static/products/18W.php?item=18W&pv=1
     
  19. teacher62604

    teacher62604 Companion

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    Jul 31, 2005

    Hi everyone. I found a REALLY CUTE birthday chair cover at www.orientaltrading.com It is only $4.95. I bought it. I'm going to put it on the students chair on thier birthday. Here's a picture of it:
    [​IMG]

    By The way: You don't have to have a child's name on it like the picture shows, but you can if you want.
     
  20. swren

    swren Rookie

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    Aug 1, 2005

    We too are not allowed to have birthday parties @ school but parents can bring snacks to school & the principal announces birthday's.
    I really like the birthday chair cover!!!
     
  21. pamms

    pamms Comrade

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    Aug 1, 2005

    Books as gifts

    Hi...
    It has been fun reading all the ideas! I really haven't done a lot for Birthdays in the past. I actually teach in a fairly afluent neighborhood, so the kids get big parties etc at home. I usually have a card and a birthday sticker on their desk in the morning and then we sing to them (usually when we hand out whatever treat they've brought in). This year I'd like to add a birthday book box. This would be especially good in a lower socio-economic area! I am going to order one of those 50 books for 50$, or 100 books for 100$ from scholastic (using points intead of dollars if I can) and then keep a treasure chest of books for the kids to pick from for their birthday.
    Pam
     
  22. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Aug 1, 2005

    I've seen schools that, instead of classroom treats, ask/offer for the child to contribute a book to the library, either the school's library or the classroom library... a special plate is put in the front that it was given to ___ in honor of ___'s (number) birthday... often they're kept in a special "birthday books" section... they're all kid's favorites!
     
  23. yomo

    yomo Rookie

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    The birthday child takes a treasure chest home on the day before his/her birthday, and then fills it with his most treasured possessions. (They have to fit in the treasure chest, though.) The treasure chest comes back the next day, and the child can share his/her treasures with this class. This is my version of show and tell--something we just don't have time for on a regular basis, but that conversation/speaking in front of a group is so important. The morning of the birthday, the class manager passes a card around the room for all classmates to sign. I have decorated a shoe box with birthday paper, and place the cards from principal, teacher and class, along with a small treat into the box. I use the box over and over again. And I've never had to replace the treasure chest! I'll be using the same one for the fifth year.
     
  24. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    Aug 1, 2005

    I really like the chair cover. I am going to order one for my class this year. Thanks for sharing it.
     

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