4th December 2020
Encourage your little helpers to take part in Elf Day! Not only does Elf Day raise the Christmas spirit at your setting, it’s also an opportunity to raise money for people that are affected by dementia. Practitioners, volunteers and children are encouraged to dress up as an elf for the day and make a donation for Alzheimer’s Society using a JustGiving page.
The Gift of Knowledge
To explain the purpose of Elf Day, you could begin with an age-appropriate story. Some of your children will be close with grandparents that may be suffering with dementia. Others may not, but reading these stories will help children to become more empathetic towards people living with dementia; ultimately developing their Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Understanding of the World. Stories like: The Day Grandpa Bunny Forgot Ben’s Name and Lovely Old Lion are typically great topic starters. They tackle the issue of ‘forgetfulness’ which is a symptom of dementia.
10 Little Elves is a lovely tune for your elves learn. It supports number recognition and also shows the type of work that elves do. This song will be your hook to get the students engaged. They are great at remembering songs, so this should prepare them to learn new material.
Transform your ‘Construction Area’ into Santa’s Workshop. Give your little helpers hi-vis jackets with goggles as they ‘fix’ the toys around them using their toolbox. Also encourage them to construct some gifts too using lego, wooden blocks, soft ‘bricks’ - whatever is in your ‘Construction Area’.
Santa’s elves need to make decorations too! Place some festive-themed ceramic objects such as stars, reindeer, trees and angels that can be placed in the ‘Creative Area’. Provide children with a range of resources for them to decorate as much as they would like!
Due to the pandemic, children’s fine motor skills have not been developed at the rate that they should have been. Explain to the children that elves have to work for Santa, just like in the song. One of their tasks for the day will be to practice their gift-wrapping skills (you can use small wooden blocks as the ‘gift’). Go all out with wrapping paper, scissors, tape, bows and ribbons, pipe cleaners, name tags etc. As a treat for their hard work, they could have milk and a cookie for ‘Snack Time’!
Children that complete all of the Elf Tasks can be put on the ‘Nice List’. Depending on their ability, children can either find their name and attach it to your ‘Nice List’ or write as many letters in their name as they can remember. Being removed from the Nice List could be a sanction; but do not place children on a ‘Naughty List’ especially in front of their peers. If a child seems to forget the setting’s expectations on behaviour this day, have a chat with them about what they think would happen if Santa happened to come to visit today...
We wish you a Happy Elf Day!