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Teacher Guide: 8 Winter Holiday Themed Art Project Ideas for Grades 4 - 8

Seasons greetings! With the holiday season among us, finding ways to add that sprinkle of holiday cheer to your classroom becomes a necessary task. Sometimes, it’s hard to come up with projects that aren’t just printed from a backlog of winter themed worksheets. Don’t worry -- we got you covered! Here are 8 winter holiday themed art project ideas for students from grade 4 to 8!

A lightbulb painted to have Olaf's face from Disney's Frozen on the front. A piece of blue ribbon is tied around the top.

1 - Recycled lightbulb ornament

Get your students to bring in their own burnt out lightbulbs to create their own ornaments from recycled material! Have some of your own prepared just in case a few students don’t have one (which is an inevitability), and also have some ribbon and acrylic paints ready for your students to decorate with!

8 sculpted winter outfits in a 2x4 arrangement. All the outfits are sculpted with plasticine.

2 - Plasticine winter outfits

Create some fun winter outfits by sculpting them onto marker boards with plasticine! Your students can shape jackets, gloves, scarves and more onto the marker boards, and add textures and patterns by etching them into the plasticine with toothpicks! It’s not as difficult as sculpting an actual human figure, but is a lot more fun than just drawing the outfit onto a sheet of paper!

Here’s a tip: If you’d like this project to be more eco-friendly, the outfits could also be made from scrap fabrics and paper instead of plasticine!

A mini diorama of an angel and a pine tree covered in snow. The diorama is sculpted in plasticine, and a clear plastic cup is glued on top.

3 - Plastic cup diorama

Have your students sculpt mini winter scenes out of plasticine on top of a piece of markerboard! They can trace the bottom of a cup onto the markerboard first so they know the margins to sculpt within. Once their mini scenes are complete, they can glue the plastic cup on top of the board to create a mini diorama!

Here’s a tip: You could also have your students work with oven bake clay! Once the sculptures are baked, your students can paint them and glue them to their pieces of marker board for a sturdier finish.

A piece of faux pine coiled to look like a mini Christmas tree. An assortment of beads and plastic gems are glued on top, and the base of the tree is a cinnamon stick.

4 - Mini pine tree ornament

Cut up an old wreath or fake pine tree to get little sections your students can craft into mini trees! Have them glue on small beads and decorations to add their own creative touch to their trees -- they can even draw their own mini ornaments, or create mini ones out of sculpting materials! The trunk of the tree can be anything you see fit, from rolled up pieces of construction paper to cinnamon sticks to add a nice scent to the ornaments!

A bright yellow and red ugly Christmas sweater is painted onto a green background. A small piece of elastic string is glued to the neck hole to appear like an ornament.

5 - Designing ugly Christmas sweaters

Have your students design their own ugly Christmas sweaters! They can show off their personalities and interests by using a wide variety of materials, from the more traditional markers and pencil crayons to the less conventional pom poms and beads!

Here’s a tip: Your students can also craft these into ornaments to take home and hang up, or you can display them in your classroom as festive classroom decor for the season!

A painted illustration of a snowglobe. Within the snowglobe is a winter scene with a snow-covered pine tree on the left, and a snowman on the right. A piece of clear plastic is glued on top of the piece, with snowflakes painted on top of that.

6 - Snow globe illustrations

Bust out the paints and glue to create your own snow globe illustrations! Paint what’s inside the snowglobe first, and then glue on a piece of clear cut out plastic on top for a shiny, faux-glass look. It can be glued with white glue or a hot glue gun, but be sure to handle the hot glue gun yourself for younger students. Paint snowflakes on top of the plastic by dipping the back of the brush in white paint for depth!

Here’s a tip: To be more eco-friendly, the plastic can come from any food or product packaging, like salad boxes!

A simple watercolour painting of a polar bear in water. White acrylic snowflakes surround the polar bear.

7 - Polar bear painting

Paint some polar bears with a simple and small amount of materials! Have the students illustrate their polar bears lightly in pencil first, starting with a large circle in the middle for the head, then the horizon line, and simple triangle shapes for icebergs in the background. They can then paint their pieces in water colour -- this will help the “watery” effect that makes the bear look like it's swimming! Extra snowflakes can be painted on after with white acrylic paint, and extra lines can be done with thin sharpies!

A Christmas tree made up of small rectangles of green paper. Each piece of paper has an illustrated ornament in the middle.

8 - Collaborative Christmas tree

Have each of your students draw an ornament on a small, pre-cut piece of paper. For consistency, you decide the green they'll use to paint the background. Hang them up on the wall of your classroom in a pyramid formation to create your own collaborative Christmas tree! Whatever medium you choose to have them draw in is up to you!

Here’s a tip: While the students draw the ornaments of the tree, you can draw the star that goes on top!

Want more resources for your classroom? Check out our art resources for teachers section on our website for worksheets and lesson plans, and check out our school programs section, where you can book a virtual workshop with us for you and your class!

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