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12 Fun December Preschool Themes and Ideas for Pre-K

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I’ve got 12 fun December preschool themes with lots of hands-on activities your preschoolers are going to love this winter!  If you’re looking for preschool themes to make the holidays more fun in your classroom or homeschool, you’re in the right place. 

December is filled with magic and it’s the perfect time to explore all kinds of fun holiday and winter theme activities with your preschool students. Whether you’re prepping for a snowy day, enjoying the Christmas season, or searching for easy printables to add to your December lesson plans, I’ve got you covered. There are so many fun activities to enjoy with your students throughout the upcoming holiday season!

Ready to discover some easy printable activities and lesson plans for the winter months? Keep reading to find all my favorite December preschool themes and activities. I’ve got simple materials and printables to make learning about gingerbread men, Santa, snowmen, and polar bears a whole lot more fun!

december preschool themes

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12 December Preschool Themes

There are all kinds of fun activities to get excited about with your preschoolers during the holiday season. Winter theme units help keep students engaged and get them excited about learning.

Discover my favorite December preschool themes below and make celebrating the holidays in the classroom a fun time for learning!

Arctic Animal Theme

If you’re looking for a winter theme unrelated to the holidays, my arctic animal activities and printables are perfect for your lesson plans.

Check out some of my favorite ways to learn about polar bears, arctic foxes, and more with preschool learners.

Celebrate the winter season while learning about amazing creatures like the polar bear, the penguin, and the Arctic fox using my printable Arctic Animal Crafts. These cut-and-paste crafts help little learners practice critical fine motor skills and develop scissor skills while making lots of fun projects. 

arctic animal crafts
winter shape craft

Then, practice early math concepts like shape identification with my Arctic Fox Shape Craft. It’s a great way to learn about two-dimensional shapes with your little learners this December. 

Candy Cane Theme

Candy canes are a super fun December preschool theme! You can begin with this fun winter theme by reading The Legend of the Candy Cane by Lori Walburg. Then, introduce your preschool students to the scientific method and state of matter with my Candy Cane Science Experiment.

Christmas science experiment with candy canes

After that, practice early literacy skills and handwriting with your preschoolers using my candy cane letter tracing activity. You can find my tips for writing with candy canes and more fun activities for the Christmas season on my list of 56 Best Christmas Activities for Kids.

Christmas Around the World

Adopting a Christmas around the world theme in your preschool classroom is a perfect way to help your preschoolers explore other cultures this December. Kids can learn about geography, diversity, and so many other important topics with this fun theme. 

Christmas around the world crafts for kids

My printable Christmas Around the World Crafts are a great way to begin. Preschoolers will be developing critical fine motor skills, making fun holiday crafts, and learning about holiday celebrations all over the world! 

Christmas Tree Theme

Did you know the Christmas tree originated in Germany?

Traditionally, evergreen trees were decorated with lighted candles to celebrate the season. Whether you’re decorating a tree in your classroom or just singing the famous Christmas carol about them with your students, you’ll definitely want to explore this fun December preschool theme!

Have a great time with a Christmas tree dramatic play station in your preschool classroom. It’s a fun way to celebrate this time of year and engage your students in sensory play they’ll remember for years!

If you’re looking for more fun Christmas theme activities to use with this lesson plan, check out some of my favorite Christmas tree theme art projects and printables below.

Christmas Tree Name Craft

Easy Christmas Tree Shape Craft

Paper Plate Christmas Tree Craft

Christmas Tree Counting Activity

Christmas name craft
Christmas tree shape craft
Learn to count with this ornament Christmas activity

Community Helpers Theme

Dickens wrote about helping our fellow man during the Christmas season in his holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. This December, why not teach your preschoolers about the men and women who help our community every day? 

Don’t miss my printable Community Helper Lesson Plan filled with 15 fun activities and read aloud book suggestions for preschool students. Then, have fun creating your own community hero crafts with my cut and paste Community Helper Craft printables.

Forest Animals

Engage your preschoolers in caring for local wildlife by putting out a bird feeder to help the birds in your neighborhood this December. It’s just one out of tons of ways you can introduce your students to a fun Forest Animals preschool theme this month. Then, practice informative topic writing with my printable Animal Report Worksheets.

Gingerbread Theme

Whether it’s gingerbread mean or gingerbread houses, your preschoolers will love a Gingerbread December preschool theme. I’ve got lots of awesome gingerbread activities to keep them having fun and learning too!

Disguise a Gingerbread Project

Gingerbread Sequence Activity

Science Experiment with Gingerbread Cookies

Gingerbread Syllable Activity

gingerbread in disguise activity
gingerbread man craft
gingerbread cookie science experiment

You can even have fun making your own gingerbread houses in the classroom with graham crackers, frosting, and fun holiday candies. Your preschoolers will love building and decorating them! Plus, it’s the perfect STEM project to do together this winter!

Nativity Preschool Theme

Another December preschool theme that’s fun for kids of all ages is learning about the Christmas story. You can use my printable Nativity Crafts to build and create your own nativity scene in the classroom. 

Printable nativity crafts for kids
Christmas nativity hat templates for kids

Preschoolers will enjoy showcasing their creativity as they make their own Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus crafts! Plus, get tips on teaching the nativity story to preschoolers including some of my favorite picture books to read aloud, nativity themed freebies, and kid-safe nativity sets you can use in the classroom this December. 

Polar Express Theme

You should definitely read Chris Van Allsburg’s Polar Express to your preschool students this December. It’s a Christmas classic with lots of magic and important themes for kids. I’ve got lots of great Polar Express activities and crafts to make it extra fun too!

Make a Polar Express Bell Craft with my cut and paste template. Then, encourage your preschoolers to write about which gift they would ask for if they could be with Santa on Christmas Eve just like the boy on the Polar Express.

polar express craft of a sleigh bell
Christmas color by number

You can send home my Polar Express Coloring Pages for extra practice with color, number, and letter identification over the holiday break. Your preschoolers will have fun coloring these holiday pages with friends and family too.

Reindeer Preschool Theme

Kids love singing about Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer! This December you can capitalize on the magic with one of my favorite fun preschool themes for December! Explore reindeer in all sorts of different ways all month long. 

reindeer preschool theme

It’s a great opportunity to learn about these amazing creatures and get extra practice with lots of early academic skills too. Check out some of my December preschool activities all about reindeer to help you get started:

reindeer name craft
reindeer craft printable
Christmas shape craft

Printable Reindeer Name Craft for Preschoolers

Reindeer Counting Teeth Craft with Candy Corn

Shape Reindeer Craft

Reindeer Food Printable Activity for Kids

Santa Clause Theme

As every preschool teacher knows, there’s nothing preschoolers get more excited about than the big red man with the bag! Santa themed preschool lesson plans are certain to be a success.

Fortunately, I’ve taken the guesswork out of this busy time of year by putting together lots of Santa themed winter lesson plans and fun learning activities your students will enjoy. 

Santa holiday activity for kids

The best part is that these activities are all low prep so you can save time during the most magical time of the year. Check out my favorite great ideas for a Santa preschool theme below.

Santa name craft
Christmas shape craft
santa advent calendar

Free Printable Build a Santa Beard Christmas Worksheet

Easy Printable Santa Name Craft for Preschoolers

Santa Shape Craft and Worksheet Printable

Free Printable Santa Advent Calendar for Kids

Snowman Preschool Theme

Enjoy the cold weather with all kinds of printable snowman activities and lesson plans for your preschoolers this December. You can learn about the alphabet, develop early numeracy, and build fine motor skills in all sorts of fun ways.

Plus, snowmen are the perfect way to incorporate a fun sensory play activity in the classroom!

how to make a snowman

I’ve got lots of great snowman themed activities and printables to help along the way! Check out some of my favorites:

Winter shape craft of a snowman
shape activities for kids to learn real life shapes
preschool snowman activity for gross motor

55 Easy Snowman Crafts for Preschoolers

How to Make a Snowman Sequencing Project

Printable Snowman Shape Craft for Kids

Snowman Shape Activities

Count the Buttons Snowman Activity

I’d love to read about all the fun preschool theme ideas you have for this exciting month in the comments! Don’t forget to share your perfect theme for preschoolers this December, so we can all enjoy some Christmas learning fun before the holiday break.

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