There are a few approaches you can take when writing your lesson plans. My favorite way has always been by selecting a theme and looking at how you can teach standards through that lens.

Thematic units offer a fantastic opportunity to engage your students while covering a variety of subjects or topics.

In this post, we’ll explore the process of planning a thematic unit using St. Patrick’s Day as your theme!

Choose Your Theme

Choosing a theme is the starting point for any thematic unit. There are several ways to go about choosing your theme, but these are probably the most common ways to come up with a theme.

  • consider your students’ interests
  • align with your standards or box curriculum
  • seasonal and timely themes

In this post, we’ll focus on using St. Patrick’s Day for your thematic unit, which is especially suitable for March. St. Patrick’s Day offers not only a fun theme but also the potential to explore key concepts throughout the spring season.

St Patricks Day Kids in a Classroom

Identify Learning Objectives

The next step of planning your thematic unit is identifying learning objectives for your students. It’s important to remember that a theme is secondary to your objectives.

The most important part of teaching your students is covering the standards – not making everything fun. It’s certainly a bonus when you can make learning fun and exciting for your students, but that won’t always be the case.

Make sure you aren’t prioritizing a theme over your current learning objectives.

I can’t do this step for you, because everyone is on a different pacing schedule. So, before you continue, jot down the objectives for your core concepts over the next few weeks (or however long you plan to use this theme).

St. Patrick’s Day Key Concepts

Next, we get to dive into the theme a bit more. At this point, you want to brainstorm any concepts that are related to the theme.

For a St. Patrick’s Day thematic unit, brainstorm concepts that tie into the celebration. Think beyond the traditional symbols of shamrocks, leprechauns, or pots of gold. Consider more generic yet related elements like rainbows, the color green, or the concept of spring. These broader concepts can extend the theme’s relevance beyond St. Patrick’s Day itself.

Cross-Curricular Planning for St. Patrick’s Day

Now that you’ve identified your learning objectives and thought about some of the concepts related to the theme, it’s time to start thinking about integrating your core subjects with the theme.

Here are a few ideas to get you started, but remember to focus on your learning objectives first!

Language Arts Ideas

St. Patrick’s Day Stories

Leprechaun Letter Sounds

Rainbow Writing

If I found a pot of gold… Writing

Rainbow Rhymes

Math Ideas

Rainbow Patterns

Shamrock Shapes

Rainbow Number Bonds

Graphing Lucky Charms

Counting Gold Coins

Science Ideas

Rainbow Colors Exploration

Leprechaun Slime

Magic Milk Experiment

Shamrock Planting

Rainbow in a Jar

Social Studies Ideas

Irish Music and Dance

Irish Food

Ireland Flag

Holiday History

Map Skills

Gather St. Patrick’s Day Activities and Resources

Now comes the fun part… or the overwhelming part depending on your viewpoint. Personally, I love this part of the process!

There are so many great resources available for free or to purchase that sometimes it can be difficult to know if you are choosing the right resources for you and your students.

St Patricks Day 2d shapes
St Patricks Day graphing
St Patricks Day ending sounds
st patricks day sentence building
st patricks day sentences
st patricks day writing
St Patricks Day CVC words
St Patricks Day reading comprehension
St Patricks Day colors

Transform Your Classroom Environment for St. Patrick’s Day

This step is completely optional and is the first thing I would cross off your list if you are limited on time or energy! Transforming your classroom can really help students lean into your themes, but I know this can be an exhausting step. Don’t worry, your students will have just as much fun even if you can’t turn your classroom into a leprechaun village!

In fact, I would opt for something that would last a little longer so you aren’t changing your classroom space every week. This is where those more broad concepts related to a theme come into play.

For St. Patrick’s Day, opt for a more versatile theme, like rainbows. This not only suits the holiday but can seamlessly transition into a weather unit and carry throughout the spring season!

When planning your St. Patrick’s Day thematic unit, embrace the creativity and excitement that thematic units can bring to your classroom. By aligning this fun holiday with learning objectives and integrating your core subjects, your students can have fun with their learning!

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Creation Castle

Heather is the author of Creation Castle. She has experience with general education, special education, and ESL students in kindergarten through fifth grade. She specializes in early elementary math and literacy, as well as organization.