20 Holiday Bulletin Board Ideas

holiday bulletin board ideasBulletin boards can be valuable resources to inform, remind and encourage students and staff.  They can also simply bring a refreshing smile to your day. This holiday season, try out some festive ideas and seize the opportunity to spread Christmas cheer.  

  1. Giving Thanks - Use a large evergreen tree with sprawling branches as the central image. Have students write things they are thankful for on red and green leaf cutouts to be placed on the tree and in large piles under the tree. Encourage continued responses by providing a basket pocket on the board with blank leaves.
  2. Helping Hands - Especially fun for younger students, have each child trace and cut out their hands on brightly colored paper to be used in a circle in the shape of a wreath. Possible board quote: "Many hands make light work." — John Heywood.
  3. Wrapped Up in a Good Book - Encourage students to take time to read holiday classics like The Polar Express or How the Grinch Stole Christmas this season. Display book jackets of favorites wrapped up like presents with colorful ribbons and bows.

Organize supplies for holiday bulletin boards with an online sign up. SAMPLE

  1. Holiday Greetings - Display holiday greetings from a variety of cultures and countries around the globe in their native languages. Use a large map for the background to show the areas of the world you're spotlighting.
  2. Hanging Stockings - Create a festive holiday mantle scene with hanging stockings (paper or cloth) large enough to contain fun activity sheets as incentives for students who finish their work early.
  3. All Aboard the Polar Express - Creating a paper train with each student's photo in a passenger window is always a hit. Consider posting students' writing samples in smoke clouds above the locomotive.
  4. Tree-mendous Work - Use a simple large green pine tree as the base with a caption that reads,  "________'s class does Tree-mendous work!" All month long you can hang examples of student work on the tree along with paper ornaments with the students' names at each corner.
  5. Have a Ball - Have students create ball ornaments with paper, glitter, buttons, sparkles or whatever fun materials you can find. The ornaments are then hung on the board with colorful ribbons.
  6. Get the Grinch to Grin - Ask students to make their own Grinch faces and write responses using the prompt: "To make the Grinch grin I would…"
  7. He's Making a List - Have Santa holding a long, wrap-around list with plenty of room to include shout outs and examples of good work for students or staff. The board may also include a sleigh of presents with more room for examples of stellar work.

Organize volunteers to create bulletin boards with an online sign up. SAMPLE

  1. Countdown Fun - As the holiday excitement builds, it's always fun to have a countdown board as encouragement. A large paper wreath with removable loops makes a great visual display, along with the title, "How many days?"
  2. Gifts from the Heart - Wrap lightweight box shapes of various sizes complete with shiny ribbons and bows and attach to the board.  Have students or staff list gifts for family or friends that can't be bought, such as kindness, smiles, prayers or acts of service, and have them place their ideas in the different boxes throughout the season.
  3. Snowflake Flurries - Create a snowy scene with individual snowflakes created by students. Using white coffee filters is an easy and rewarding way to craft the snowflakes. Simply fold the filter in half, and then once more, and cut shapes into the edges. Possible board quote: "Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile beauties, but just look what they can do when they stick together."
  4. Welcoming Doors - Beyond decorating traditional bulletin boards, the holidays are a perfect time to make use of classroom doors as a means to add a festive look to the room. Decorating a door as the opening to a large gingerbread house design (surrounding the door) is one way to add to the fun of the season.

Organize parent help in the classroom with an online sign up. SAMPLE

  1. Ornament Trees - After students create a variety of colorful ornaments using their names as a prominent feature of the design, arrange them on the bulletin board in the shape of a Christmas tree.
  2. Chill Out with Books - Cute penguin scenes are always a hit. Create a winter scene with penguins bundled up in earmuffs and scarfs, all snuggled up reading books.
  3. There's Snow Place Like Home for the Holidays - Display a festive map with red and green pins showing all the different places where students, teachers or employees are traveling (or would like to travel) to visit family or friends over the holidays.
  4. Ring in the New Year - Have each student write down one of their resolutions on a variety of bell shapes. Other possibilities include New Year's party hats, noisemakers and streamers for a festive display.
  5. "I Have a Dream" - Prepare early to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day this winter by posting various sections of his speech on the board, alongside the personal dreams of students, teachers and administrators. Use cotton balls to create the dream clouds.
  6. Soaring into the New Year - Use cutouts of hot air balloons with students' names or photos inside to create a fun display showing them rising upwards. Consider including a New Year's goal in the basket or balloon of each student.  Potential board quote:  "One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar." — Helen Keller.

Laura Jackson is a freelance writer based in Hilton Head, SC with her husband and two teenagers.