We all know that as a teacher, keeping track of student birthdays can be a daunting task, added to all the other classroom happenings. But remembering students’ birthdays can help every student feel seen, valued, and cared for. Your classroom may be the only place where many students get to celebrate their birthdays.
Sam, one of my second-grade students, was quiet and often chose to be alone. But that changed after we celebrated her birthday.
It was Sam’s birthday, and as she entered the classroom, her eyes brightened as she saw her desk. It was decorated with streamers, a birthday pencil, and a birthday card created by our Kindness Crusaders. Right after the morning announcements, we sang “Happy Birthday” to Sam. Her face lit up, and I could see that her eyes were filled with happy tears.
Although it may seem like a small gesture, students like Sam, who rarely get a chance to celebrate at home, treasure their classroom birthday moment. Having the class recognize her brought her to life – for the whole rest of the year!
The Birthday Bonanza Bin is here to save the day!
If you want to celebrate students’ birthdays but have a secret fear you’ll forget someone’s or you won’t be prepared, I’ve got you! Thanks to the incredible student Birthday Bonanza Bin and your Kindness Crusaders team, it’s all covered! The student Birthday Bonanza Bin becomes your ultimate weapon against forgetting or not being prepared for student birthdays.
As you’re meticulously planning for Back to School Night and worrying about student lists, spelling names correctly, setting up your room with space for everything, and desperately trying to make your bulletin boards Pinterest-worthy, you glance at your list of students’ birthdays, and there it is! Two of your students have August birthdays, and both are in the first week of school! Ugh! Another thing to do. No worries! You’ve got this handled with no stress.
To create your trusty birthday arsenal, grab some streamers, balloons, colored masking tape, markers, stickers, and birthday pencils. Stuff them all into a plastic bin. Congratulations, you’ve just created the beloved Birthday Bonanza Bin! Now, when the new school year starts, and you’re busy labeling every possible thing in sight—desks, supplies, popsicle sticks, job boards, folders, cubbies—you’ll have less stress knowing that your Birthday Bonanza Bin is ready to go!
So, how does it work?
1. Before the school year even begins, during the open house event, each student signs their name and birthday on a chart organized by month. (Click here to download a free one.) This nifty trick allows you to keep track of every child’s birthday without stress and without having to go through cum folders – again. Additionally, keep a copy of this birthday page for yourself and place another one into the student birthday bin.
2. When you’re putting up your bulletin boards and organizing for back to school, add a “Kindness Crusader” to your classroom jobs board. This student will care for any birthdays. Plus, you’ll have someone designated to carry out other various acts of kindness in the classroom!
3. Each week, the Kindness Crusader grabs the Birthday Bonanza Bin, checks the birthday list, and notes any birthdays for the week. When it’s a student’s special day, the Kindness Crusader or the Kindness Crusader plus their designees – known as the “Kindness Crusader Team” – spring into action. It is their job to make a card, decorate the birthday student’s desk, and give them a sticker, birthday bracelet, birthday pencil, or whatever you have collected. They LOVE the job of being gift-givers and desk decorators! And you don’t have to worry about missing a student’s birthday ever again!
As the birthday student walks into the classroom expecting a regular day, they will see their desk decorated with a birthday card, a birthday pencil, and maybe even a party hat-wearing stuffed animal. So exciting!
Creating the student Birthday Bonanza Bin
You can get everything you need from your couch on Amazon. Grab some crepe paper rolls, stickers, birthday pencils, and maybe some party hats. Seeing their classroom stuffed animals wearing birthday party hats will thrill your students.
Finding your student Birthday Bonanza Bin and getting it ready for your Kindness Crusader is super simple. You’ll feel like you’re helping your future self be ready for back to school! As soon as you’re back to school, you can easily add construction paper from your teacher’s workroom for making birthday cards. I store mine – I use Astrobright colored paper – under the bin, and if we run out, my Kindness Crusaders let me know.
Birthdays for the year are DONE!
You’ve got a fail-proof plan to ensure no birthdays go unnoticed in your classroom!
And if you have more birthday bin ideas, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below. You’ll always be prepared for your students’ birthdays. The Birthday Bin is ready to go, and your Kindness Crusaders will take care of remembering your students’ birthdays!
If you’d like something skill focused for your student Birthday Bonanza Bin, try these color-by-number pages for addition and subtraction. They have a birthday theme! And kids love color-by-number pages and will ask to do more. As one student said, “These tricked me into doing math!”
Below are the Birthday Bonanza Bin items my students and I love. You can find all of these by clicking the image for the Amazon affiliate link.