More and more of our interactions are happening online, whether it’s at work or at school. For many, working or studying from home is a convenient option. However, limited in-person interactions can make it difficult to develop a sense of belonging. Remote work can be challenging for establishing a positive company culture at work, and it can be difficult for students who need social interactions to grow and thrive.
You shouldn’t have to sacrifice developing a sense of community if you work or teach online. There are plenty of ways to interact with each other, create some special memories, and have fun. Planning a virtual Christmas party is a great way to come together and celebrate.
Read on to learn more about fun virtual activities, games, and Christmas party planning ideas to make the holidays feel more special. You can implement most of these ideas on the platforms you already use to work or study remotely, and participants won’t need any special equipment. Don’t hesitate to put your own twist on these activities to match your company culture or the topics you’re studying in class.
Have fun planning a daily activity to make the week that leads up to the Christmas break more exciting. Or arrange a special day with three or four activities for a virtual Christmas party!
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Educational Christmas Activities
These fun activities are about using your creativity and learning new things.
1. Easy Christmas Crafts
This Easy Christmas Crafts class is the perfect way to kick off the holiday season. Participants will learn to create a homemade ornament with a few simple supplies they already have around the house.
This is a fun and easy class for all age levels, and you can have everyone share a picture of the ornament they created afterward!
2. The History of Christmas
Has Santa Claus always worn red? What was the first Christmas movie ever made? When did St. Nicholas become Santa Claus?
The history of Christmas is a fascinating topic, and it’s an opportunity to have participants use their research skills to learn more and share their findings. You can assign a decade to each participant and have an online class where everyone shares their findings in a creative format.
3. Christmas in Serbian
Learn about Serbian culture and traditions together. This online class takes an in-depth look at how Serbians celebrate Christmas and will help you learn new vocabulary words so you can discuss the holidays.
4. Write a Christmas Carol
Christmas caroling is a timeless tradition. Going door-to-door to sing isn’t an option when planning a virtual Christmas party, but you can have fun writing lyrics for your own Christmas carol.
Take the melody of a well-known song like 12 Days of Christmas or Little Drummer Boy and have a brainstorming session to come up with new lyrics. You can have fun writing a carol that reflects the ups and downs you went through as a group during the year!
5. Italian Christmas Traditions and Recipes
Schedule this fun conversation class for your group! You’ll learn about Italian traditions and discover some delicious dishes. It’s an opportunity to practice your conversation skills, discover another culture, and learn about baked pasta or Struffoli.
You shouldn’t have to sacrifice developing a sense of community if you work or teach online
Traditional Christmas Activities
Traditional Christmas activities are ideal for diverse groups or settings where participants don’t know each other well. Everyone will find elements that feel familiar with these traditional activities.
6. Christmas Scavenger Hunt
Organize a friendly competition with a scavenger hunt! Put together a list of Christmas-themed items and ask participants to display them during a video class or simply share photographs of the things they found.
Here are a few ideas:
- A vintage Christmas ornament
- Some Christmas lights
- A pinecone
- A wreath
- A photograph of Santa Claus
- A stocking
- Some mistletoe
7. The Best Christmas Tree
Who has the best tree decorating skills? Organize a fun competition by having everyone share images of their Christmas tree and vote for their favorite one.
You can put a fun twist on this activity by having different categories. You can, for instance, hand out prizes for the best miniature tree, the most creative tree, or the best pop-culture-themed Christmas tree.
8. Make Christmas Cards: Kids
Sending Christmas cards to loved ones is a great way to stay connected. Schedule this fun and creative class to have everyone make their own Christmas cards with a few simple supplies.
It’s a relaxing activity that doesn’t require any specific skills, and participants can discuss the experience of connecting with friends or relatives by sending Christmas cards. If you have a group that knows each other well, you can also have participants send homemade cards to each other.
9. Sing Some Carols
You can’t have a proper Christmas party without music. Schedule a video call with your group and have everyone sing a Christmas carol of choice. If participants aren’t comfortable singing in a live setting, ask them to record a short video of themselves singing. The duet feature on TikTok can be fun.
10. Watch a Movie Together
Most streaming services have a feature that allows you to watch movies as a group, provided that everyone has a subscription. You can also find browser extensions that let you create online watch parties.
You can also watch a movie together the old-fashioned way by having everyone tune in t the same TV channel when a holiday classic is on. You can chat during the movie or have a discussion afterward.
11. Share Your Favorite Christmas Recipes
Have everyone share their family recipes. It can be interesting to see what other people eat during the holidays and it’s a great occasion to discover new dishes.
You can have participants share a simple recipe card or take pictures of the finished product. You can also have fun scheduling a live cooking or baking session to have participants show how they prepare their favorite Christmas dish.
Virtual Gift Exchanges
Hosting a virtual Christmas party doesn’t mean you have to forego the traditional gift exchange. There are different ideas to explore to have participants exchange small gifts to mark the occasion.
12. Gift Cards
Did you know that gift cards are the second most wanted gift? Most merchants offer virtual gift cards that you can send instantly to a recipient’s email address.
You can set a budget and assign a recipient to each participant. You can also purchase a few gift cards and organize a friendly contest or giveaway to make your online Christmas party more exciting.
Ideas include gift cards for popular online stores, restaurant chains, or streaming services.
13. White Elephant Gift Exchange
If participants know each other well and are comfortable with sharing their addresses, you can assign a recipient to each person and have them send the most unusual or unpractical gift within a certain budget.
Get together the day before Christmas and have everyone share images of their gift. You can make this activity even more fun by having recipients attempt to guess who sent them the unusual gift.
14. Donate to a Nonprofit
Make the holidays more meaningful by picking a nonprofit you can support as a group. Everyone can make a small donation and share some information on social media to encourage friends and relatives to donate as well.
You can also look for a nonprofit with a wish list on Amazon or another platform. Organizations that collect toys or warm clothes sometimes have wish lists with items you can purchase online.
You might also like 63 virtual gift ideas.
You can help everyone adopt healthier habits for the new year by exploring these Christmas-themed games and activities.
15. Host a Christmas-Themed Fitness Class
Online workouts became incredibly popular during the pandemic. Among those who followed online fitness classes during the lockdown, 70% planned on keeping this healthy habit.
You can host a holiday-themed fitness class with some Christmas music or costumes. You can also organize a trivia game and have participants do some push-ups when they don’t know the answers if you want a fun alternative to a fitness class.
16. Go for a Christmas Walk
Encourage everyone to get some fresh air by going for a brisk walk and taking some photographs of a few Christmas-themed things. You can have participants take pictures of the Christmas decorations they come across or have them snap a selfie with Santa Claus.
Up the ante by turning the Christmas walk into a competition and sending a gift card to the first participant who can share a selfie with Santa Claus.
Volunteering isn’t something you can do with a virtual group, but you can challenge participants to donate some of their time by helping a non-profit during the week before the holidays.
Schedule an online meeting so everyone can share their experiences. Students or workers can volunteer at a local homeless shelter, help out at an animal shelter, work at a non-profit thrift store, or do some outreach to ask for donations.
You can also make a difference by challenging everyone to cook a few meals for a family in need in their area or for the homeless.
18. Holiday Special Bollywood Party
Try something new with this fun dance class! The Holiday Special Bollywood Party will have everyone moving and sweating to some upbeat tunes. This 30-minute dance party session is an engaging group class that is both fun and challenging.
You might also like easy dance moves you can use at a party.
Organizing a few friendly contests can bring everyone together and make the holidays more exciting. Think about hosting a series of contests and dividing your group into teams to see who can earn the most points over the week.
19. Pet Costume Contest
Christmas-themed pet costumes are fun and adorable. You can ask everyone to send a fun photograph of their pet in a holiday outfit. Turn this activity into a fun competition by having everyone vote on the best submission.
Since only some might own a pet, offer an alternative category where people can submit a picture of their best holiday-themed costume or favorite DIY Christmas ornament.
20. Ugly Sweater Contest
The ugly sweater contest is a staple of every office Christmas party. The goal is to wear the ugliest holiday-themed sweater. Participants often modify sweaters or even knit unique creations from scratch.
This tradition works well in a remote environment since you can have everyone show off their horrible sweaters on a webcam. Make sure to give you extra points for the participants who customized their sweaters or spent time on DIY knitting projects!
21. Snowman Contest
See who can build the best snowman and share a photograph online. The fun thing about this activity is that not everyone might get enough snow to build a snowman where they live. People will have to get creative and find the best way to create something that looks like a snowman without snow.
22. Christmas Jeopardy
Replace your weekly class or meeting with a game of Christmas jeopardy. If you used the History of Christmas activity listed above, you could use the fun facts participants uncovered while researching to create a series of questions about Christmas.
You can also use trivia from Christmas movies or research unusual Christmas traditions to make the questions more fun. If you have a large group, this game will work best if you create teams. Make the game more exciting by having some gift cards or another prize for the winner.
For a team where participants don’t know each other well, a virtual Christmas party can be an opportunity to organize a few icebreakers and bring people closer together.
23. Favorite Christmas Stories
Schedule an online meeting and have everyone share their favorite Christmas story. Participants can share a funny anecdote from their childhood, talk about something that happened to someone they know, or share an unusual news story.
This game will help everyone get used to expressing themselves in front of a webcam. It will also give you a better idea of who has strong communication skills.
24. The Naughty List
What is the worst thing you’ve ever done to end up on Santa Claus’ naughty list? Have everyone share the worst thing they have done and rank the results to see who should be on the naughty list.
For work teams, you can turn this game into a fun team-building exercise where each department has to come up with its most significant achievements and worst mistakes for the year.
25. Best or Worst Gift Ever
You can learn a lot about someone by asking about their favorite Christmas gift or about the worst gift they ever got. This fun activity can help you learn more about the things different participants value in life, and there will be a few laughs as participants recall the strangest gifts they have ever received.
These Christmas games are easy to organize and keep your virtual Christmas party going.
26. Christmas Charades
Charades is a game that translates well to a virtual environment since participants can mime things in front of a webcam. You can organize a Christmas-themed game by having people guess the titles of popular Christmas movies.
27. Christmas-Themed Pictionary
Organize a Pictionary game by having participants draw on a piece of paper and hold it to their webcam or ask people to share images drawn with Paint for hilarious results.
You can have participants illustrate the title of popular holiday movies and specials, Christmas carols, or even traditional Christmas dishes.
28. Virtual Christmas Party Murder Mystery Game
You can find free scripts for murder mystery games where each participant plays a character. Each person receives information relevant to their character, and players must interact with each other to find the culprit.
You can transpose a script for a virtual setting by having players interact during a video call or even share in-character social media status updates.
29. Multiplayer Video Games
You can organize a fun virtual Christmas event by having everyone play a multiplayer game together. Pick a free multiplayer game that everyone can download and create a server to have participants play together. Some games even have Christmas-themed events!
This activity might work best with small teams since coordinating an online gaming session can be challenging if you have several players.
Here are a few examples of video games you can play together as a team:
- Among Us