Aah, the first days of school. Don\’t you love \’em? Clean classrooms, empty notebooks, freshly sharpened pencils, eager new students and the anticipation of a wonderful new school year. Nothing beats those first few days.
I always like to ease my new students into the year with some fun, relaxing and community-building activities.
Here are 3 activities I do during my first week back at school.
1. Beginning of the Year Story
You can\’t beat it for a back-to-school book because it\’s just so lighthearted and silly. Plus, first graders totally buy into the suspense and are usually convinced that the shark ate his teacher.
RELATED: MORE BACK TO SCHOOL BOOKS
Charades is such a fun game and requires absolutely no prep. Gather your students around the board or chart paper and brainstorm charade categories. Some good choices for young kids are food, activities, and animals. Brainstorm lots of words and phrases for each category. When you\’re done just keep the words on the board, but as the game goes on encourage the kids to choose a word that hasn\’t been acted out yet.
Preparing the words together builds anticipation and excitement.
This game can be played either in teams or singly. I usually avoid teams this early in the year because I\’m trying to build community. Everyone who wants a turn, gets a turn and I never force a child to come up and act out a word.
If your students are still learning each other\’s names then it\’s fun to pull a name out of a hat, invite that student to the front and introduce them by name: \”This is Andy.\” Then the whole class responds with \”Hi, Andy!\”. Then Andy begins his charade.
Below you can download a printable of some simple charade words and phrases to help you get started.
3. Hey There Neighbour
I also teach the kids a quick and fun way to introduce themselves to each other. They love the rhyme and actions and are always happy to play this.
We begin by learning the chant and actions in one big circle. Instead of high-fiving and shaking hands with each other we just do it in the air. After most people are comfortable with the words we switch to partners. You may have heard it before:
RELATED: BACK TO SCHOOL POETRY
Thanks for reading and I hope these ideas help make your first few days back to school relaxing and enjoyable!
DOWNLOAD: Back to School Printable
Thanks so much for stopping by!