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Arrival Activity for First Day
Old 07-08-2008, 06:58 PM
 
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What do you have on students' desks when they arrive on the first day?

Coloring page? Play dough?

Thanks for any suggestions!


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Old 07-08-2008, 07:00 PM
 
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I am thinking of having play dough out on desks this year. The teacher next door to me did this last year and it seemed to be a nice ice breaker for the kids.
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Word Search
Old 07-08-2008, 07:00 PM
 
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with all of their classmates names on it. I did this last year and they loved it. It kept them busy!
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Old 07-08-2008, 09:00 PM
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You've Got to Be Kidding Me!!
Old 07-08-2008, 09:18 PM
 
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The first day I have parents coming in with their child. I want to at least introduce myself and find out important information, such as how they will be getting home. I also like to talk to introduce myself to the children one on one. I need the children to have something they can do on their own. Also, they are only 6! They still LOVE playdough. I was thinking they could even make something with the playdough that would tell everyone about themselves. Then, after things have settled down and we are ready to begin, they could come to the carpet with their creation and share. For example, one child might make their pet dog and share about that.
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First Day Choices
Old 07-09-2008, 03:32 AM
 
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I put a basket with books, drawing paper (children can't wait to use their new crayons), and bags of pattern blocks at each group of desks. This assortment seems to satisfy the different types of learners and keeps the children occupied as I handle those first day tasks.



Last edited by ctj132; 07-09-2008 at 03:42 AM.. Reason: spelling
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Choices?? I like it!
Old 07-09-2008, 04:18 AM
 
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I like the idea of having choices at their desks. Last year I did a coloring page and then had books available on my special book display at the front of the class but I did not like the students getting up when I was still introducing myself to the other students.

What are some other things that I could put on the students desks (they are in groups of 4 and 5...Kagan school) Any suggestions??? Thanks!
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Fun Pad
Old 07-09-2008, 04:59 AM
 
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I usually buy "fun pads" at the dollar store. They seem to like them because they are more grown up than coloring books. They keep them in their desks and use them all through the year when they need something to keep them busy (like when I have a guest, a new student come in or other major interruption.)
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no playdough
Old 07-09-2008, 05:41 AM
 
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I agree- I would not do playdough the first day either- That could be very stressful for you trying to gather it all up and clean it up and it will probably end up on the floor as well and then a students step in it and on and on. Try it day 2 or day 3 but provide something really easy for you on day 1 . I love the idea of just putting out paper and drawing supplies. This will tell you a bit about their personality in what they choose to draw and you can observe fine motor skills. I am also going to have them decorate their nametag on day two with markers- I will have written the nametag of a sentence strip. Last year I bought the pretty ones and they end up getting all torn up- Then I had them decorate their own- they took more pride in them. I laminted them and taped them on their desks.
Good luck!
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Old 07-09-2008, 05:46 AM
 
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I wouldn't do play dough, but not for the same reason that dirtysocks mentioned! (who, by the way, was very rude) Play dough is great for kids way past preschool! I use it a lot during the year. I just wouldn't use it the first day while I help the others, because I haven't taught the expectations of play dough. I can see kids with behavior problems having a hay day. I usually just have a paper that says _____ is in second grade, or whatever grade. They write their name and draw a picture of themselves and color it. I put these away and save them all year, then at the end I put them in the front of their writing portfolio. Its amazing to see how their drawing skills & name writing have changed! If they finish this early they do a puzzle.
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Some ideas
Old 07-09-2008, 05:54 AM
 
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In the past I've done these. Not sure what I'll do this year. And by the way, I still playing with playdough and I'm 41 years old.
  • Had the kids work on a BB display (like paper T-Shirts or fish_ - whatever my "Welcome Board" is -
  • Coloring sheets
  • Draw a picture of what they did over summer vacation
  • Draw me a picture of your favorite thing to do.
Ooooooo - just had a brainstorm for the playdough idea. How about having the kids "cut out" the letters in their name with the playdough. A few years ago, I purchased a tin of cookie cutter letters and I have my own children use them at home with playdough.

Just thinking... the first week of school we focus on how our names are the same and different. Maybe I can give each child a different color playdough, have them cut out the letters and have them use this as some kind of way to compare/contrast their names. The kids would love that! Might get a little pricey though. I don't know. Just thinking off the cuff.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:11 AM
 
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I have the students decorate a blank boy or girl picture with their name on it. They make it look like themselves. I hang these up in the classroom and this is the order of my Student of the Day.
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In the past
Old 07-09-2008, 06:23 AM
 
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I have had a "name puzzle" at each students desk. I write each name on an index card, laminate and then cut the names apart (by letter). The kids arrange the letters to from their name. You would be surprised how many 1st graders can't do this!
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Old 07-09-2008, 07:25 AM
 
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I am always at a loss for what should be done the first thing on the first day and I have been teaching for 20 years!
At our school we go to chapel shortly after the bell rings. I always feel so rushed to do the attendance and lunch count and get everyone to the church! With this being the first time in first grade, I am even more nervous!
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Morning work book
Old 07-09-2008, 08:13 AM
 
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There are so many things you can do that first morning while students are arriving. Many of the PP had great suggestions. One thing that I have done is a name coloring activity. I type out each child's name in the bold/bubble letters (in microsoft word) so they can each color their names. I change the letter size to 14in long paper, so the names are HUGE! This takes awhile for the students to color. After which, the names are mounted on (student choice) construction paper and I briefly cut around their names to show the shape. These become the name tags for the wall of work. As the year go on, their art work is displayed under their names.

As for the dirysock person's post... that was quite rude and unnecessary. I, too, have done playdough on the first day. I have chosen to do it as a going home activity and teach our clean up song with it. The only thing about playdough is the messiness. However, if you make your own from JELLO the clean up is a BREEZE! Homemade jello dough is not dry and crumbly and it smells TERRIFIC! You can use any kind of jello flavor(scent) possible! If you want the recipe, just PM me and I'll get it to you.
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Handwriting Sheet
Old 07-09-2008, 08:35 AM
 
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I make each student a handwriting sheet with their name on it from www.handwritingforkids.com. I have them practice their first and last name all week as their morning work. It works out nicely so while I am greeting parents and collecting supplies, students are writing their name which all of them should be able to do without any help.

For those that finish early, I put some sheets with color words on them. They read the words and color the words the appropriate colors.
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handwriting
Old 07-09-2008, 09:16 AM
 
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I do what the previous person said. I give them a handwriting sheet with with name on it to practice. They do this for the first week and I too, put out color sheets and books for them to use when they are finished. This gives me a good idea right away of their fine motor skills.

As far as playdough is concerned, I have never used on the first day. I do use it throughout the year in my word work station and art center. Kids love to stamp out their sight words or spelling words in it.
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Great ideas!
Old 07-09-2008, 12:04 PM
 
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Thanks everyone for your suggestions.

This is my second year teaching. I actually don't remember what they did last year! The first day was a blur!

kjewelle, I really like the idea of letting the kids decorate their names in bubble letters.

Also, msharkey, thanks for the idea using the letter cookie cutters.

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Coloring page
Old 07-09-2008, 12:21 PM
 
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I've always used a Berenstain Bear coloring page (the cubs are off to school of course!) in first grade. It's at their seat which is marked by their nametag. I do like the idea of having them work on their own name and using it later to post their work underneath. When I taught 3rd, I had a scavenger hunt activity, i.e., find someone in class who had toast for breakfast, find someone who is wearing something with a star on it, etc. It was a good way to mingle and get to know names. Of course this wouldn't work well with first graders. I am usually so busy answering first grade parent questions that first day that I feel like I need an activity that doesn't require a lot of questions from the students. I don't think I would use play-doh because I like to introduce them to the procedures for it in another day or so. Of course we all know that the manipulation of clay is helpful for developing the muscles needed for fine motor control. Perhaps dirtysocks was joking??

I would love the recipe for Jello play doh. I have one for Pumpkin Pie playdoh also if anyone is interested. It smells wonderful!
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Playdough for My Class
Old 07-09-2008, 12:56 PM
 
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I like to have playdough out the first day for my first graders. I sparks conversations between the children, occupies their minds and their hands, and frees me up to give attention to each student who enters. When it is time to clean up the playdough we use that as the first routine we practice.
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Practicing Name
Old 07-09-2008, 03:22 PM
 
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Love2Learn2
Thanks for posting that site for the name worksheets. I love it. I can definitely see using this for students on the first day. Handwriting is something that we practice a lot the first couple of weeks at our school in first grade.

Last year I had a "placemat" that welcomed them to first grade. I think it was from Really Good Stuff. Since this is only my second year in a regular classroom I love reading all the great ideas.
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recipe
Old 07-09-2008, 03:30 PM
 
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I would love your jello recipe...will you share? Thanks
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Old 07-09-2008, 05:11 PM
 
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I'm so glad to see so many pp needing this TERRIFIC smelling dough! I know I sent many PM with the recipe, but then I realized a few of you don't yet have that access, so I'll copy and paste jello dough and a kool-aid dough recipe.

Here is the jello dough and a kool-aid dough! Have fun! As an FYI - sugar free jello dough lasts longer.

Jello Dough
1 cup white flour
1/2 cup salt
2 T. cream of tartar
2 T. Vegetable oil
1 c. warm water
1 three oz. pkg. jello (any flavor)
Directions: Combine ingredients and cook over medium heat until it thickens and pulls away from the sides of pot and becomes dull. * Note: it burns easily so don't put over too high a heat and keep stirring. Mold and knead until cool enough to touch. Store in a closed plastic bag; squeeze out extra air.

Kool Aid Dough
1 cup flour
1/4 cup salt
2 Tbsp cream of tartar
1 pkg Kool-Aid
1 cup water
1 Tbsp oil

Directions: Mix dry ingredients together in a medium pan Add water & oil Cook, stirring, on medium heat for 3-5 minutes until a ball is formed. Turn out on a well floured surface, add as much flour as needed for the dough to not be too sticky. Knead for 1 minute
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Bubble Letters
Old 07-09-2008, 07:20 PM
 
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Do you know the name of the font you use for the letter coloring? I tried finding it but couldn't. Thanks!
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Font
Old 07-09-2008, 09:52 PM
 
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http://www.proteacher.net/discussion...ad.php?t=90607

Here's the information on fonts that I posted on another thread. If you can't find the thread, it was abcheadlines, action jackson, and dash dot.
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Homemade Placemat
Old 07-11-2008, 10:10 AM
 
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I made this for my students on the first day. What do you think? What changes would you make? I'll print it on legal size paper.
Attached Files
File Type: doc First Day Placemat.doc (134.5 KB, 276 views)
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The placemat is awesome!!!
Old 07-11-2008, 10:50 AM
 
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How could I change the names to make it adaptable to my classroom? I am not very techy!!!
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Change
Old 07-14-2008, 06:23 AM
 
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I made it in Word. The student name at the top is word art. Just double click it to change it. The word search was done at www.edhelper.com. Just complete a word search, download it, save it, then insert it into the document. It will save as an adobe document. So you can insert it using Insert, Object, then choose adobe format. This should work.
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