Every teacher knows that December is crazy with a capital C! It is a month full of festivities, extra fun and probably a lot of end of semester testing too. This time of year teachers are always reaching to some of their old faithful holiday movies to fill in some time when days are just a little bit extra crazy and you need a minute to tie the loose ends together.
Many teachers like to have pizza party lunch in their classroom and have the kids watch a festive movie while they eat or end a holiday celebration day with a movie to help ease the chaos. I made a list of my favorite holiday movies for the elementary classroom to help you on your search!
My Favorite Holiday Movies for the Classroom
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
This is always a must watch each year. Kids and adults alike love the classic story of the bad attitude Grinch and his effort to stop Christmas all while he discovers what Christmas is truly about. There are SO many versions of this from a short 20-minute cartoon to the newest (and my favorite) animated version from 2018 that you will definitely be able to find one that fits your classroom needs. Kids of all ages love this one!
Educational bonus- read the book first and compare it to the movie you watch!
A Charlie Brown Christmas
The famous Peanuts friends in a classic Christmas tale. Everyone loves the Charlie Brown tree, this movie tells of the origin of that special tree. At only 30 minutes long, it is the perfect add on to a party or classroom lunch. This movie is perfect for a little bit older aged kids, I’d say grades 1-4 would love it.
Berenstain Bears Christmas Tree
Running only 25 minutes, this original Berenstain Bear movie of Papa Bear and his two cubs searching for their *perfect* Christmas tree will make your kids laugh but also help them learn about the true Christmas spirit. If your students like any Berenstain Bears shows, they will also enjoy this one!
Frosty the Snowman
This circa 2000 made for TV special is always a favorite for winter months. It’s songs are classics and kids of all ages love them! It is another 30 minute movie which makes it easy to add into your day when you need a few quiet minutes. You could even squeeze this one into January as well!
Olive the Other Reindeer
Have you ever read this holiday book about a little dog who tries to make it to the North Pole to be one of Santas reindeer? If so it is a MUST watch too! Every year that we have watched it, my kids say it’s one of their favorite Christmas movies. It would be best for grades K-3 I’d say.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Everyone loves this song, turned into a movie! It is on the older side (made in 1964) so you probably watched it as a kid, but it is still a well-loved classic. It relays a great message about how being different is what makes you special and unique!
Prep and Landing
This Disney series takes you on a journey from the perspective of two elves that are tasked with preparing the world for Santa’s visit. Rookie Elf Lanny has to remind upset Wayne about the importance of being an elf and having Christmas spirit. There are three Prep and Landing movies in the series, so you can watch over the course of a week. They range from about 25 minutes to an hour in length.
Do you have any other favorite kid-approved holiday movies on your list? I’d love to hear!
Looking for more ways to survive the month of December in the classroom? Check out these blog posts to help you out!