Whether you’re a first-time teacher or a seasoned educator, getting the year off on the right foot is certainly something to shoot for.
Day one often sets the tone for things to come, so it makes sense to kick-off the year right with entertaining and suitable activities.
With that in mind we asked fellow teachers on Edmodo how they’ve approached the first day of class. Naturally we received lots of eye-opening suggestions for activities. Some were insightful. Some creative. Some just plain hilarious (a big thanks to Alejandra Guzman for her idea, which may not apply to everyone, “Snowball fight!”)
Here are a few other suggestions that help break the ice, without requiring snowfall:
“I’ve used several over the years, but my favorite is to get them to seat themselves in birthday order from January 1 to December 31 without my help.”
“Give Me 5 — I ask students to share 5 things about themselves.”
“Anything that gets them up and moving around.”
“Have them interview their elbow partner, turn that interview into a paragraph, then have the partners stand and introduce one another using those paragraphs.”
“I like to start the year with world’s worst actor. The kids aren’t expected to be good which is very freeing and lets me see a bit about their performance comfort level.”
“I love art and other things where students create. This collaborative drawing ice breaker is fun.”
“2 truths and a lie.”
“Brainstorming a great school year, and creating a poster wall to get to know students and help them get to know one another.”
Stella Maris Berdaxagar
“We share our favorite book.”
“I like to have them answer a fun survey, or do a share out, sometimes will use some tech games to have fun with them, learn who they are.”
“Play the game where the teacher asks a question and kids move from one side of the room to another based on their answer. For example, the teacher says, “Pizza is one of my favorite foods.” Kids move to the right of the room if they agree and the opposite side of the room if they disagree. It’s a get to know you activity without a lot of risk.”
“I always start out with a Science mystery hunt! Gets the kids up and active and meeting new people.”
“Shoot selfies and show them in the interactive whiteboard while students describe themselves.”
Jose Angel Morancho
“Here’s my favorite way to start the school year off! I like to have students make a one-minute Animoto video about themselves to introduce themselves to the class. I then have them post the video to an Edmodo small group and have them comment and say nice things to each other.”
As you can see, the approaches are varied but most have a common theme: Get all of your students participating so they each feel involved, and let everyone get to know each other.
With that you’re sure to have a great first day that leads to a magical year. For more suggestions and tools for a successful year, discover the many features and topics available to you on Edmodo.