How To Have A Stellar First Day Of First Grade

The school year is wrapping up everywhere so it is time for teachers to start preparing for next year! If you are a first grade teacher, it is fun because school is still so exciting and new to the students. 

The great thing about that is that even though school is still relatively new to them, this isn’t their first experience with it. This means they have a little more confidence and independence than they did in kindergarten.  

Here are some tips for having an amazing first day of first grade: 

  1. Get to know each other! One of the biggest reasons for those first-day jitters is that students aren’t familiar with each other yet. Spend the first day playing some ice breaker games or crafts. You can pair students up for some activities so they can start developing friendships from the start. 
  2. Make sure to cover the rules. They may be familiar with a lot of them because they are likely similar to kindergarten rules, but summer break is a long time so it is always good to reiterate what is expected. Don’t forget to cover rules for the classroom, lunchroom, recess, and hallways. 
  3. Read books about the first day of school. Everyone loves a good book! Reading some about the first day of school is a fun way to illustrate how even though you may be nervous, it will all turn out okay. 
  4. Explain how your classroom schedule will go. Explaining to students what they can expect when they come into school is another great way to ease some of their nerves. Don’t forget to review going-home procedures so they are all prepared at the end of the day. 

After 20 years of teaching, I created an easy and detailed first day of first grade lesson plan! This includes a full day of detailed lesson plans with printables, links, editable plans, suggested plans, ideas, and activities! 

first day of first grade

Here is what’s included: 

  • 31 printables including detailed lesson plans, links, planning checklists, Welcome to First Grade welcome sheet, directions for the icebreaker name game, materials for First Day Jitters, name crafts, a photo poster, an All About Me Home Connection activity, name tags, and certificates!
  • An Editable PowerPoint to easily add students’ names to certificates, crafts and edit your own lesson plans
  • Classroom rules posters
  • Gingerbread Man hunt to find all the important locations at school!
  • Morning greeting and goodbye posters

first day of first grade

Everything you need for an amazingly fun first day of first grade!

Love these ideas but teaching kindergarten? Check out my post here.

first day of first grade

 

 

 


 

First Day Of Kindergarten Activities Your Students Will Love

It’s time to start thinking about the new school year! If you are a kindergarten teacher, it can be especially exciting because you are preparing for a year with brand new students who have never been to school before! 

first day of kindergarten

You are probably exhilarated, and your kids are excited too and maybe a little scared but that’s okay! You are more than prepared for a fun learning experience with lesson plans and activities that will keep your little ones busy every step of the day, right? 

If you aren’t quite prepared yet, that’s okay! I’m here to help. Being well prepared for the first day of kindergarten (there will likely be tears!), will save you so much time in the long run. Your transition times will be kept to a minimum and it will save your sanity! 

Here are some tips for having a stellar first day of kindergarten with your students: 

  1. Make it fun! As mentioned above, a lot of kindergarten students have never experienced school before so, understandably, they will probably be pretty nervous about this new experience. Once they start having fun in the classroom, they will realize how great learning can be! Playing some get-to-know-you games is a great first day of school activity. 
  2. Read some fun books. Find a great story to read together and do a simple craft to go along with the story. You can encourage your students to share what the story was about with their caregivers at home. 
  3. Discuss rules. This one isn’t as fun but it is necessary to make sure expectations are set from the very first day. Make sure to cover classroom rules, recess rules, and lunchroom rules so they know what to expect all day long. 
  4. Review going home procedures. This is a very important piece of information to cover. Going over what each student will do at the end of the day will alleviate some of the stress that usually comes along with that part of the first day. 

To help your first day go off without a hitch, I created my First Day Of School Kindergarten Activities Resource. It includes a full lesson plan! 

first day of kindergarten

Included you’ll get: 

  •  33 first day of school printables (includes detailed lesson plans, links, planning checklists, Welcome to Kindergarten coloring sheet, directions for a fun name game, name crafts, photo frames, A Kissing Hand Home Connection activity, name tags, certificates, and more!)
  • Editable PowerPoint to easily add students names to certificates, crafts and edit your lesson plans
  • Classroom rules posters
  • Gingerbread Man hunt to find all the important locations at school
  • How I Get Home hats

first day of kindergarten

Everything you need for a fun and successful first day! 

first day of kindergarten

What are your favorite activities for the first day of school? Let me know in the comments!

Want some more kindergarten teaching tips? Check out these kindergarten homework ideas! 

 

First Day Of School Icebreakers

The first day of school is one of the biggest days of the whole year. It is a day for meeting new people and first impressions. It is also the day you set the tone for what students can expect in your classroom. All of this newness can bring up a lot of emotions for your students. This is a day that they have been eagerly anticipating all summer. They probably stayed up late the night before, thinking about what is to come the next day. With all of the excitement and anticipation, there is sure to be a lot of nervousness too! 

Starting a new school year, with a new teacher, in a new classroom is enough to make anyone anxious. For this reason, the key is to spend the first day back helping our students feel important and comfortable in our classroom. 

A great way to do that is by having some FUN. Like the old saying goes, people will remember how you made them feel. Your students will remember how they felt in your class. Getting your students engaged in a fun activity can be a huge help in relieving stress and anxiety and help them feel comfortable and relaxed. 

One of my absolute favorite ways to do that is with Escape Rooms!

These fun interactive activities are all the rage right now. Students love them. You will easily be the most memorable teacher of your students’ life. 

That’s why I created this back to school escape room! You can use these step by step instructions to guarantee student engagement while they learn about each other and work as a team and solve a mystery and escape the classroom! With a little prep, your students will work as a team to break into a box, which breaks them out of the classroom as they beat the clock! This is a great way for ANY class to learn about their peers. 

Back to School Icebreakers

Included is a PDF file with step-by-step instructions, a link to incorporate a YouTube Video to HOOK your students into accepting a mission to break free from the Ice Queen. The mystery can only be solved by working through Icebreaker Challenges and using teamwork. Opening the box, (no locks needed) leads them to enjoy recess or a library break outside of the classroom. There are 3 tasks for the students to solve before they can break free.

Check out the YouTube introduction here! 

Looking for more first day of school icebreaker activities? Check out my Getting To Know You Fidget Spinner Activities. 

You can also check out more information on making your first day of school memorable here. 

First Day Of School Activities

What are your favorite ways to get your students to have fun on the first day? Let me know in the comments below!