First day of school. That fabulous rush of parents, books, reminders from the office . . . and of course students. Trying to remember names. Organising seating. Going through expectations. Organising piles and piles of notebooks!
As you get ready for that first day, here’s five great blog posts from a range of teachers to inspire you to start off the year on the very best foot.
1. 5 Things to Remember
Overwhelmed by the thought of that first day? Five Things to Keep in Mind on the First Day of School from What I Have Learned is a great reminder of what is most important. There’s some great ideas here for learning and consolidating the names of you students and for team building as you create a positive classroom environment.
I really love the importance on learning names - and this reasoning behind it:
“As I mentioned earlier, every opportunity you have to say and interact with students names will help you learn them that much better. Once you learn their names, your brain can move onto other things, like figuring out their learning styles and personalities.”
2. Some More Ideas
Looking for some more first day of school ideas? Mrs Beattie’s Classroom offers What to Do on the First Day of School - filled with thoughtful ideas you can use from the moment students walk in the door.
I love the range of activities which are included here - but I especially love the early focus on entry routines. This is something which can get missed on that first day when everything is a little bit different, but getting it right early can set the tone for a great school year.
3. First Day of School in Other Countries
This one is a little bit different, but a great read - and great information to share with your students on the first day of school. Kid World Citizen has a great post What Does the First Day of School Look Like Around the World. I really, really enjoyed reading about the traditions of other countries and it made me reflect a little on first day traditions here in Australia.
I particularly enjoyed reading about the different celebrations of education around the world. The idea of celebrating learning from the first day of school is a great idea - and it’s a concept we could probably build effectively in our own schools and classrooms.
4. Content and Procedures
I loved You CAN Teach Content and Procedure from Day One! From Growing Grade by Grade. This blog post explores different ways to combine content and procedure so students are learning how to do things while they’re doing it.
There’s two things I particularly enjoyed about this post. The first was the tip about planning the procedures which were being taught with the content which was being taught. The second thing I enjoyed was the recommendation to role play procedures - such an easy idea, but such a valuable one!
5. One Thing for the First Day
What is one MUST DO for the first day of school? The Sassy Apple has shared one at The One Activity I Am Adding to My First Day Plans this Year.
This blog post explores the idea of bringing independent reading to students from the first day, not waiting to get them settled into routines and procedures, but showing students that reading is important and valued from the very first day. I can’t think of a better way to create a reading environment in the classroom.