1. Put cookie icing in condiment bottles to cut down on the mess factor.

via Bake at 350

2. Give each activity station volunteer a winter-theme book to read aloud to their group in case they finish before the allotted amount of time is up.

3. Use recycled gold fish cartons as the base for mini gingerbread houses.

via Crumbs and Chaos

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4. Or, skip the graham crackers and use those mini milk cartons from the caf instead. Just be sure to wash them first!

via Crafts by Amanda

5. Holiday wrapping paper is an inexpensive backdrop for a holiday photo booth. Add some garland for a little sparkle and shine!

via Little Pumpkin Grace

6. Turn white pool noodles or empty wrapping paper rolls into giant peppermint sticks with red electrical tape.

via Everyday Celebrating on Pinterest


7. Jolly-ify dollar store plastic cups for prepackaged snacks.

via Simple as That Blog

8. Make Christmas trees out of pine cones...

via Elementary Art Fun

9. ...Just remember to bake the bugs out first!

via House of Hepworths


10. Use a permanent marker to work some holiday magic on prepackaged fruit cups.

via Mil Dicas de Mae

11. While you're at it, you might as well decorate those cheese sticks, too.

via A Burst of First


12. You know all those extra labels you have lying around? Stick 'em on juice pouches.

via A Frugal Friend

13. Coffee filters make great snowflakes.

via The Artful Parent

14. Gift your teacher homemade cookies in covered plastic wrap or aluminum foil boxes.

via Aunt Peaches

15. A Pringles can works in a pinch, too. But someone’s gotta eat all those chips first (take one for the team, room parents!).

via A Thousand Words

16. Turn an old bulletin board into a pin-the-nose-on-the-reindeer game.

via Fiona Carter

17. Or play pin a heart (or 20—he could use 'em) on the grumpy old Grinch.

via Twin Dragonfly Designs

18. Make hot cocoa for the whole class in a slow cooker.

via Mrs. Happy Homemaker

19. Use the bottom of a crystal glass to imprint snowflake shapes on sugar cookies.

via Chic Fluff

20. Transform store-bought doughnut holes into snowballs with a simple sign.

via Parties and Holidays

21. Decorate water bottles with pom-poms and pipe cleaners...

via A Healthy Slice of Life

22. ...And save some for your applesauce cups, too.

via The Melrose Family

23. Googly eyes and construction paper are a simple way to dress up clementines.

via Mommy Testers

24. Speaking of fruit, who says watermelon is strictly for summer?

via Eating Vibrantly

25. Upcycle baby food jars into customized miniature snow globes.

via Craftaholics Anonymous

26. Got water? Then you’ve got...wait for it...melted snowmen.

via Life in a Larger Story

27. Serve up something green (grapes, M&Ms, Kool-Aid) in a Grinch-inspired bowl or pitcher.

via My Paper Craze

28. A reindeer food bar is an interesting spin on a fun take-home treat.

via Crafty Sisters

29. “Wrap” tables into presents...

via Little Party Love

30. ...Or turn them into Polar Express trains.

via Chocolate's for Breakfast

31. What good's a train without a proper track (made of duct tape)?

via Bridgey Widgey

32. You can even line the school hallway with folding chairs and white Christmas lights.

via Harper Hoorahs

33. Turn white tissue paper into icicles and hang from desks, tables, windows, or a stage.

via Bridgey Widgey

34. Twigs make great reindeer antlers for your classroom game.

via Cul-de-sac Cool

35. Then again, so do balloons...lots of balloons. On unsuspecting parent volunteers, no less.

via Thrifty Fun

36. Turn candy canes into take-home treats using pipe cleaners and googly eyes.

via B and B Build a Life

37. Everyone's Elf on the Shelf will enjoy this make-and-take Cheerios snacktivity.

via Unconfidential Cook

38. Hershey’s kisses make great game pieces...plus, you (er, we mean the kids) can eat them when it’s over.

via I Can Teach My Child

39. Turn light bulbs into reindeer ornaments (good craft for older kids!).

via Catch Light Photography

40. Green cupcake liners make for a fun Christmas tree craft.

via I Heart Crafty Things

41. Make penguins out of recycled water bottles and cotton balls.

via Room Parent

42. Stock up on lots of toilet paper for this fun 'dress the snowman' game...

via Kitchen Stewardship

43. ...And don’t forget to save the rolls!

via Crafts by Amanda

44. Save those wine corks...not that you have many lying around, but just in case you do.

via Red Ted Art

45. Elmer’s glue and wax paper is an easy way to make snowflakes.

via Rock a Bye Butterfly

46. Thread cotton balls to make fake snow hang from the ceiling.

via Hostess With The Mostess

47. Decorate the classroom with a strand of giant holiday lights made from balloons and cups.

via That Is Really Pinteresting

48. Make snowflake ornaments out of pasta (add glitter if you're feeling fancy....You know you are.)

via DIY Enthusiasts

49. Old puzzle pieces will do the trick, too.

via That's What Che Said

50. One cookie cutter, two ways. Turn gingerbread men upside down and you have reindeer cookies.

via Mum in the Mad House

Originally posted in 2015 and updated regularly.