A child's birthday is probably the most important day of the year to the child who is celebrating it. Teachers can make birthdays even nicer by making each student feel special on his or her special day. Birthday activities can be fun without requiring the teacher to spend all day on them.
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Classroom birthdays will always be a part of the school year. Students come to school excited about their special day, and they deserve to get a little extra attention when it's their birthday. Having a party for each student, however, might be more than you can manage, but that doesn't mean you can't celebrate each child's birthday in some meaningful way. Here are some simple and fun ways to make each child feel special on his birthday.
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A Circle Time Mini-Party
Stock up on party hats and blowers from the local dollar store, or ask parents to lend a hand. At circle time, announce the student's birthday, and then give out hats and blowers to wear. Read a birthday book to the class. Sing "Happy Birthday" to the special student, and then give him a birthday treat bag. Include items such as a small toy, pencils, erasers, a book, and a few pieces of candy. You can collect the hats to reuse later. The blowers will go in the kids' backpacks after the celebration is finished. At the end of circle time, give the birthday child a birthday certificate. Click here for printable birthday certificates.
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Decorate Birthday Cookies
Another great way to celebrate a student's birthday is with a cookie decorating party. You'll need sugar cookies and canned icing, as well as colorful sprinkles. The children will simply spread the icing and add sprinkles as desired. This treat is somewhat of an indulgence. If sugar is a problem, choose sugar free cookies and icing.
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Make a Class Birthday Book
Give each child a piece of paper and have them draw a picture for the birthday child. The students will write a birthday greeting on the bottom of the page. Collect all of the pictures and staple them together to make a big class book. Present the book for the special student to keep. This makes a great activity for kids to work on first thing in the morning as an arrival time activity.
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Pick a Treat from the Birthday Box
The "birthday box" is a large box with a lid wrapped in colorful birthday wrapping paper. Put a big bow on the lid. Fill the "birthday box" with small toys. Restaurant toys from children's meals are great, as well as dollar store items, or donated items from parents. Whenever there is a birthday in the classroom, bring out the box, open the lid, and allow the birthday student to pick a toy.
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Birthday Kid Clothing
Make a sash that says "It's My Birthday" on the front from a wide ribbon. You could also make or buy a brightly colored vest for the birthday student to wear all day. Birthday ribbons are available at many dollar stores and outlets, and make great little additions to kids' clothing on their special day.
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Choose to celebrate summer birthdays at the beginning or end of the school year. Pick one birthday each week for the first few weeks or last few weeks of school. Alternately, you can celebrate all the summer birthdays together on one day. The disadvantage to this is that each child will not have his own day.