Summer is in full swing in the Northern Hemisphere. While we bask in air-conditioned rooms, it’s time to reinvent our favorite classroom ideas for July.
We know that coming up with new playtime activities and lessons isn’t always easy. Childcare teachers in America spend seven hours a week looking for instructional materials and spend more time teaching children in the classroom than in most other countries. So, we called in a little help from the authors of 365 Days of Classroom Fun to come up with some amazing classroom ideas for July.
Sit back and relax; we’ll take the wheel. Here are six activities to keep children engaged and entertained without spending long periods outdoors.
1) July 4th: Independence Day
Supplies needed: Patriotic foods, music, and American flags
Suggested Activities: Introduce children to the rich history of Independence Day! Hot dogs on the grill, patriotic music on the radio, and fireworks blazing across the sky all have an important meaning. Luckily, there are many activities in the Fourth of July playbook to share with your young students. You could print out an American flag coloring page, write thank-you letters to members of the military, or chow down on some festive Fourth of July foods. Who doesn’t love hot dogs and hamburgers?
- Teach students about the meaning of independence and the core principles America was founded upon. Simple values like freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of expression can highlight valuable lessons.
- Invite your students to share what being patriotic means to them.
- Celebrate the founding of America and the principles of freedom.
2) July 8th: Math 2.0 Day
Supplies needed: Calculators and math books
Suggested Activities: National Math 2.0 Day celebrates both math and technology. The math that goes into making cars, computer programs, and phones is obviously too complex for young children. However, calculators aren’t. This page offers a wide variety of calculator math games for children. So, play on — your students will never look at math the same way again!
- Teach children about the importance of math and how everyday objects were built with it. Create some simple math lessons that revolve around technology. Remember, teaching math to young children will boost their math comprehension later in life.
- Inspire children to enjoy mathematics. Math is consistently ranked as the least favorite subject in school. Use crayons, fun stories, and interesting games to keep students engaged and entertained.
- Celebrate by playing math-based games or telling some funny math jokes. Why was the math book sad? Because it had so many problems!
3) July 14th: Shark Awareness Day
Supplies needed: Shark books, photos, or coloring books
Suggested Activities: The theme from Jaws is what many of us hear in our heads when we think about sharks. But, did you know that your chance of being attacked by a shark is 1 in 11.5 million? You’re over 20 times more likely to get struck by lightning.
Shark Awareness Day is the perfect time to teach children about sharks and how they’re a vital part of our ecosystem. Despite the frightening depictions in the media, we rely on sharks to maintain the habitats of underwater plants and coral reefs. Teach children about the dangers of sharks but also emphasize their value in their diverse underwater habitats.
- Teach children about the different types of sharks. There are over 400 unique types. Angel sharks, hammerhead sharks, and goblin sharks are all fascinating creatures that spark children’s imaginations.
- Invite children to take an interest in the beautiful world of sharks. Of course, you can show them this video. Not that they haven’t seen it already!
- Celebrate by sharing photos, names, and habitats of various sharks. Print out some shark worksheets or dive into shark books.
4) July 19th: Water Balloon Day
Supplies needed: Water, balloons, and a change of clothes
Suggested Activities: Water balloons aren’t just a fun way to spend an afternoon; they teach kids valuable sensory-driven lessons. Sensory play is a vital component of brain development. So, have children bring along a change of clothes and get to work. This one is a little messy, so feel free to use the playground. Make sure to keep things fun, engaging, and friendly.
- Teach children to celebrate their senses. Let them handle the balloons, fill them up, and pass them around. The simple act of playing with water balloons can help children boost their creativity and become more attuned to their senses.
- Invite your children to describe their senses. What do the balloons feel like? What happens when you drop them?
- Celebrate fun and play! Try to keep things organized and cooperative (rather than competitive). See who can fill up a balloon with the most water before it pops. Have your students toss a water balloon back and forth with one another. Or, play an old-fashioned game of “hot potato.”
5) July 21st: Junk Food Day
Supplies needed: Healthy food and/or junk food
Who doesn’t love a little junk food? It tastes great. However, many children develop unhealthy food preferences during their early years that can carry over to adulthood. On national Junk Food Day, celebrate the avoidance of junk food. Make healthier versions of favorite snacks.
Or, bring in junk food and talk about the dangers of over-indulging. Moderation is key. It’s perfectly fine to share and enjoy some “junk foods” during the lesson. But, bring in “healthier” options to share, like fruit popsicles, corn chips & salsa, dark chocolate treats, popcorn, or fig bars. Whatever you do, try to teach children the importance of keeping these types of foods to a minimum.
- Teach children about nutrition and junk food. Let them know that healthier alternatives won’t just help them stay in shape, but they will also reduce their chances of getting sick and increase their energy levels.
- Invite children to share their favorite junk foods. Then, talk about some alternatives that are equally tasty without all of the added sugar and fat.
- Celebrate by eating healthy snacks and playing food-oriented games.
6) July 31st: World Ranger Day
Supplies needed: Paper, pens, and books about national parks, animals, or park rangers
Park rangers protect our national parks from illegal activities like poaching. They also assist visitors in learning more about the beauty of nature. In fact, park rangers are so important that they have their own day — World Ranger Day. July 31st marks the anniversary of the founding of The International Ranger Federation (IRF).
So, take this opportunity to teach children about the importance of park rangers and our national parks.
- Teach children what it takes to qualify as a park ranger and how rangers protect our natural treasures daily. Often, the idea of being outdoors all day fascinates young children. So, you may already have several students who desire to become park rangers. You can also take this opportunity to discuss some of our more popular national parks and the type of wildlife they host.
- Invite children to talk about their dream jobs. What do they want to be when they grow up? And, do any of them want to be park rangers?
- Celebrate by writing thank-you letters to park rangers or baking up some delicious outdoor snacks (like trail mix).
Discover Other Classroom Ideas for July in the Book
What are your top ideas for the classroom? As can be seen, July is filled with holidays that can be used to inspire curiosity and creative thinking in your young charges.
To make learning fun again, get your copy of 365 Days of Classroom Fun today. Written by industry experts, this user-friendly guide offers 365 unique classroom ideas that will inspire greater engagement in the learning process. With your copy from Amazon, you’ll get classroom ideas for July and beyond!
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