The game that keeps the mystery, thrill, and surprise ALIVE! One of the biggest traditional Christmas games – Secret Elf. The rules to this game are simple. Each member of the group randomly picks another member’s name to become his or her secret elf. Wish lists are then given to each member so one can know and shop for what their secret elf hopes to receive. After shopping for your secret elf, gifts are wrapped, and the secret elves are revealed at your holiday gathering.

The CBHS B.R.I.D.G.E.S. class is already preparing for the Christmas holiday. Teachers Ms. Donna Mansolilo and Ms. Kathy Gormin-Gard began their secret elf process with the class. They gave each student their secret elf, pictures of gifts, and a budget in order to plan ahead before their trip to AC Moore.

On November 20th, the class headed on over to AC Moore on their quest to shop for their secret elf. This Community Based Instruction (CBI) trip allowed each student to put their budgeting, independent, and social skills to the test. Once they arrived, the students dispersed and secretly shopped for their secret elf. Students used their calculators to make sure they were under their budget, while also trying to get as close to $10 as they could. This was a piece of cake for them now. They also learned independent skills by keeping their secret elf a secret while also shopping on their own.

This event really emphasized the giving and keeping others in mind aspect. It was heartwarming to see how each of the students thoughtfully chose their secret elf’s gift. One of the students, Stephanie, shared that she had to decide whether to spend more money on one gift or purchase several cheaper items for her secret elf. Students also had to decide which gift their secret elf would enjoy more based upon their budget. Problem solving was an important aspect for the students to independently shop. It was a great experience for the class as they walked around AC Moore with their individual shopping carts, gift lists, and calculators.

The second part of the secret elf consists of taking class time to secretly wrap their gifts and will then exchange their gifts at the holiday party. We are looking forward to seeing the excitement on each of the student’s faces as they receive their gifts and find out who their secret elf was this year!