There are always those things that, no matter what, students will be undeniably excited about. From snacks to snow days, these are things elementary students love … and probably always will. Those little classroom rewards? Yup. They’ll always love those. A few minutes of free time? They’ll never pass that up. Check out our list of totally relatable things your elementary students go googly-eyed over.
Elementary students? Folder stickers. Middle schoolers? Water bottle stickers. High school students? Laptop stickers. Seriously, you can’t go wrong with stickers at any age. Check out our list of favorite teacher stickers here!
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2. Writing on the Whiteboard
Elementary students love feeling like the teacher when they write on the board! It’s like you’re giving them all the power.
Teach Jodi N. says her students are ecstatic going up to the whiteboard, “especially when they get to choose their marker from a colorful assortment!”
Image Source: @myteachertoldme
3. Snow Days
Honestly, who doesn’t love a snow day? Students and teachers alike share the excitement behind a day at home to sleep in, watch a movie, and grab some hot chocolate.
Have you ever seen a kid not get excited that it’s recess time? This is an obvious one, but kids truly need that time to refresh and get some energy out!
Apparently, Takis are all the rage. I couldn’t handle anything spicy at a young age, so props to them, I guess. Honestly, snacks, in general, go a long way for elementary kids. Eating in class makes them feel rebelious, but in a permitted way.
6. No Homework
No homework days are the best days. Even if you planned on not giving homework, it can be the best bribe to get students to behave during class time.
7. Movie Day
Since the days of the rolling TV cart, nothing brings excitement to a classroom like a good old movie day. Less work for me, more excitement for the kids.
8. Choosing Their Own Partner
Working with a friend? Cue students jumping off the walls.
9. Show and Tell
You can feel the excitement of a classroom flooded with students’ most prized possessions. There are sure to be a few funny ones that’ll keep everyone entertained. Read more about the funniest show and tell stories!
10. Scented Markers
I can smell them by just thinking about it. The best thing is the little dots on their noses after smelling the different markers in the pack.
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11. When Their Parent Comes into School
But they’re going to see them at home anyway, right? Either way, kids always jump for joy when a guardian is helping with a classroom activity or in the lunchroom.
12. Early Dismissal
I mean, we all love to go home early, right? The best part is they just might get to go home and watch movies or play video games for the rest of the day. Oh, and the kids love sharing where they’re convincing a parent to take them out to lunch (McDonalds, anyone?).
13. Working with the Lights Dimmed
There’s something about shutting off a few classroom lights that brings out the focus. They get so excited about this small change! Try out a Flashlight Friday, where students read with the lights dimmed and a flashlight in hand.
Third grade teacher Dana Q. says, “My class loves doing this every Friday. For 30 minutes, we turn off all the lights, close the blinds, and get cozy with a book. It’s amazing how a little flashlight can spark a new level of reading engagement!”
Image source: @2ndgradesassypants
14. Free Time
Have a few minutes of extra class time? Free time it is! And your students will be ever so happy about it.
15. Packing Up
It’s like they can just sense when it’s time to pack up. When it’s time, they’re just about ready to jump through the ceiling with their things ready to go in a pile.
Teacher Joy L. says, “Being allowed to pack up just one minute early” gives her students all the excitement in the world.
16. Animals. Any Kind
Someone walking a dog on the sidewalk? A lizard for show and tell? A new goldfish class pet in the room next door? Find out the benefits of a class pet!
17. Having Class Outside
If you’re able to take students somewhere to sit outside, especially on a nice spring day, they’ll thank you for it. Fresh air is good for everyone, and teaching outdoors has a host of benefits.
18. Gum or Mints
It’s something small, but since they aren’t always able to have it, gum or mints turn into an easy class surprise!
Teacher Kelly C. says her students aren’t partial to any edible treat. “Candy. Jolly Ranchers. Peppermint. You name it. They will eat it.”
19. Canceling a Test
Honestly, what kid isn’t going to be happy they don’t have to study?
20. iPad Games
Games of any kind, really. Adding an online game that ties into your lesson can keep students engaged and excited with something different!
21. Telling Me I Forgot to Erase Something
That tiny spec of the letter E still written on the whiteboard? Yup. They love to tell me I need to erase that too.
22. Being the Line Leader
They feel like the king of the world walking through the halls with their peers following behind.
23. Delivering a Note
Being chosen to walk a note to the office or another classroom? Yes, please!
24. Jolly Ranchers
If you’ve ever seen a blue-mouthed kid walking out of my classroom, just know it was probably a good day for them.
How’s this for a jolly rancher story? Third grade teacher Amy M. told us, “I used to give out Jolly Ranchers during state testing. Until once, a student showed me her cupped hand. Inside were two candies, each with a tooth stuck to it. I only hand out mints now.” Yikes!
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