Gift exchanges during the Christmas season are a time-honored tradition, but many public schools don’t allow them. But some do and certainly plenty of private ones! Here’s how you can make it festive for everyone.
There are several activities you can impose to make the gift buying interesting.
The rules of gift-giving are the most important part of any exchange. You can set up a system where handmade or put together gifts aren’t purchased but made by someone, and you might want to have an unofficial rule that prohibits glitter as well (let’s be real – who wants those little sparkles on their clothes). There should also be limits on how much people spend in order for it not to become too expensive for children because they love getting new things so much!
But once the gifts are ready, there is a lot of fun that can be had exchanging them with kids.
The kids always get a kick out of the “stealing” aspect on white elephant gift exchanges. One fun way to do this is by drawing numbers and then selecting gifts from the pile in order according to their number, taking turns exchanging for other presents with friends until everyone has chosen one at which point you can steal if there are any left.
Having a child draw the name of another at random for an annual gift exchange is not only fun, but it also encourages children to think about giving as opposed to receiving. It’s challenging too! You can make this twist even more exciting by telling the kids that they have to buy something and wrap it up without revealing who their recipient will be.
In the mystery storyline, you can have each child open their gift then try and figure out who it is from. Whether they are asked to make a present or not will depend on your guests’ skill level but some children might be better at drawing than others which may give them an advantage in solving this complex puzzle!
To make gift giving more interactive, have the children guess who is gifting them with a present. If they are wrong, then they must do something silly before guessing again – like making animal noises or doing jumping jacks!
Another fun activity for gift giving among children in a classroom is to have each child make a game piece for an unknown board. Everybody brings their handcrafted game pieces and dares one another with the communal map, creating all sorts of wonderful stories about what these handmade treasures might unlock!
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