Ok, I’ll admit! I am a total teacher nerd!
You are too? Right?
I mean, I love, love, love all things back to school. The decorating, the prepping, the new teacher outfit. Going back to school is fun! I especially love meeting my new students for the first time.
Anyway, once they’re in your classroom, what do you do? I’ve got a list of four fun activities including a FREE resource from my Resource Library that you can do at the beginning of the year.
You know how the first weeks of school have little pockets of time that need to be filled. Here are four ideas that I’ve found or have used that I think are great to help you get to know your students better!
Paper Bag Introductions
This is a great activity to do so that your students get to know you! Place 5 items that represent you and place them in a paper bag. To introduce yourself you take the item out of the bag and show it to the class. Then you speak about it. Continue pulling items out of the bag and sharing about yourself.
A spin on this would be to have the students bring their own bags and share with the class about themselves! Or if you want to keep it anonymous, students bring in their bags and the class has to guess who it belongs to.
Ask for their Opinion
I bet not too many students are used to being asked, “What kind of teacher do you want?”!
They are used to hearing from others how they should behave but not too much on how their teacher should behave.
Ask them! And chart it!
This activity will only take about 5-10 minutes but will be so powerful. It will help you understand your students and what they want, more importantly, what they need.
You will be surprised with the cool ideas that they come up with.
End the activity by promising them that you will uphold those ideas. Let them know that you value their opinions, that their ideas and opinions matter to you. Even though they have smaller voices, they are being heard when they are with you.
I’d suggest posting this chart in a special place that you will be able to see daily.
Beach Ball Throw
This is fun and inexpensive! Have a beach ball or a few? Write some easy get-to-know you questions on the ball. Place students in one circle or multiple circles, if you have more beach balls. Students throw the ball and whomever catches it, has to answer the question that is facing them.
- Tell one place you went this summer.
- Share one fact about your favorite animal.
- What kind of games do you like to play?
- Do you prefer warm weather or cold weather?
- What is your favorite sport?
- How many siblings are in your family?
- Do you like to bike ride? Where do you go?
Want to do this year round? Instead of writing the question on it, write a number on the beach ball! Then you can have a set of index cards with the corresponding number and a question. Use it for science, math, social studies etc.
Find a Friend
In this Find a Friend activity, students walk around and get to know their classmates by asking questions. They find things they have in common or learn things about each other and write their new friend’s name in the square.
This is a great activity to get kids up and moving and talking with each other. If you don’t have time to finish the whole page, do it in short spurts throughout the week. If you have an extra 10 minutes to fill, have them “find a friend”.
This FREEBIE is available in my Resource Library.
Want more Back to School ideas and resources?!
This freebie is part of my First Week of School Teacher Plans! In this 100 page resource you’ll find everything you need to have a successful first week of school. It has
✷ planning pages
✷ check off lists
✷ editable student letters
✷editable parent pages
Click on the image to see it in my store!
Save your pin now and come back later!