Summer coming to an end can be bittersweet. Many are excited to get back into a routine but some wish summer would never end. In order to get everyone excited about school starting again, it is important to make the first few days of school fun. There are a lot of activities that can be done to get students involved and allows everyone to get to know each other. Even first day of school math doesn’t have to be boring if you are creative with your lessons.
A fun way to get your students excited is to do the first day of school time capsule. Create a form with a bunch of questions about themself. Allow them to fill it out independently and offer help if needed. You can use glass jars to put their forms into. You can have them decorate their jars by drawing on paper and taping it to the outside or rolling it up inside of the jar. Save these for the end of the year. At the end of the year, have them fill out the form again so they can open their jars and compare how they have changed.
To get students up and interacting with each other classmate bingo is a great way to do so. You create a bingo sheet with things such as I have a dog, my favorite color is blue, or I like to play sports. This will encourage students to get to know one another and communicate with each other. For the students that get a bingo, you can give them a small prize like a sucker. This could be played in multiple rounds as long as the students are enjoying it.
Give your students some power and control in your classroom by creating classroom rules together. This allows your students to give their opinions and ideas on how they want the classroom to feel. A very common rule that is brought up would be to treat others the way you want to be treated. There are so many other ideas that could be given by you or your students. Having everyone contribute and participate can help them feel that the rules are easier to follow.
Get a large set of dice and for each number on the dice have questions associated with it. For example, when a student rolls a two the question could be if they have any pets? You do this for numbers one through six and give students rolling the dice. This allows all students to participate while getting to know one another. It gives the students an opportunity to find other students that whom they may have things in common.
Make It Fun
No matter what grade you teach, the first day of school is meant to be exciting and fun for your students. Do activities on the first day of school that allows them to get to know you and each other. Time capsules, class bingo, classroom rules, and the dice game are all great ways to get your students involved. The way you handle the first day of school can leave a lasting impression on your students.