It’s the first day of a school year or the first day with a new group of students. Routines aren’t set, classes like music or PE haven’t started, and you don’t want to spend every minute explaining expectations.
What to do with this initial time that’s provides you with information about your students, gives them a chance to be creative, and begins the process of building a team in your classroom?
Have your students make people to be posted on the wall. Maybe up high, above your bulletin board?
You have a chance to talk to students as they decorate their person. You might have them add a vest or T-shirt with representations of their favorite sports, activities, or places to visit.
You gain insight into who chooses to work carefully and may need more time in the future. Which students work very quickly and may need to be encouraged to take more time? Do you have students who may struggle with fine motor skills? You can have private conversations with students as they work.
You might post student work under each person or take them down at the end of the year and send them home with a final packet of papers.
What are other ideas for activities for the first day of school or the first day with a new group of students?