First Day of School

Discussion in 'Second Grade' started by MrsF, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. MrsF

    MrsF Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    Hello all!

    This is my second year of teaching, and I made the move from SIXTH GRADE (in a middle school!) to SECOND GRADE this summer. I did my student teaching in second grade, so I feel confident that this was the best choice for me. I would love any advice you have on how to structure the first day of school. Any activities you feel work best? Thanks!
     
  2.  
  3. ally06

    ally06 Companion

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Messages:
    201
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    When I taught Yr2 a few years ago I would start the day with some introductions and then we would organise the books and stationery the chn had brought in and were sitting all over their desks! During the day we would get the classroom organised.
    We would go through a couple of procedures but I mostly taught them as they came up and the students needed to do that particular thing. During the morning we would discuss and negotiate our classroom rules.
    I always had the chn do a writing task on that first day - usually about their holidays - and a maths lesson. Because our school year starts just before or just after Australia day we would do some sort of fun activity about our country. We would also do a prayer circle (Catholic school).

    I always like to jump into work on the first day and teach procedures etc as we go.
     
  4. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Messages:
    3,729
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    They arrive and start making a name tag for their cubby (or desk, coat hook, whatever you need.) I give them time to do this and settle in. It's a good activity to start with because kids arrive at different times and some kids are dropped off by a parent and some come in on their own.

    I tap the kids and get them to freeze, and introduce my signal. We gather in our gathering spot on the floor, and I introduce myself, and tell them something about me. We play a name game.

    I do a read aloud, like First Day Jitters, or something like that and we discuss what it's like to start something new. I basically reinforce how excited I am for them to learn a lot and have a fun, safe year. I will discuss the first of my rules, like hand raising and why it's important at this time. By the end of the day, they will have learned all my rules, but we will "brainstorm" wording for them together, probably on day 2 and make a poster. Consequences will come up, probably on day 3- unless I need to reinforce things earlier. Usually kids are VERY good the first couple of days of school.

    So, after a morning meeting- I do go right into the schedule, calendar, and so forth at the morning meeting- we do a school tour. I take them to the bathrooms, the office, the playground, etc. We practice lining up and walking quietly. Then we have recess, and I introduce them to a new game they may play each day. I spend recess with them the first week, as I would hate for a child to have no one to play with. I usually teach 4-square first (even though many know it, it's important to review the rules) and then some kind of tag game the next day. This way, they know they have something to do when outside.

    After recess, we will begin a work period. I do Daily 5, so I follow the instructions for that to a T. It's very procedural and somewhat scripted, so I will follow that.

    I will introduce the art materials usually on the first day, and get them started on some kind of project. We have community supplies, so they need to know for example, where to put things back, and how to press on the markers so they don't get pushed in. I tell the kids I only put out one set of markers for the year. If they lose caps or ruin pens by pushing too hard, they won't have them to use anymore.

    I also introduce the pencil sharpening policy, and where to get paper. For my first day activity this year, we are going to make "clouds" with their hopes for the year. They will write something simple, just a sentence or two, like "I hope I get to go on a field trip" and will draw a picture. We will mount it to a cloud, glue on cotton balls and hang them from the ceiling. This gets them working, goal setting, thinking ahead, and using materials appropriately right away.

    I also will do math workshop, and have them basically just explore various manipulatives or learn a fun game. If someone has major math issues, I don't want them to feel bad right away. I want it to be fun. I got this book of unifix cubes puzzles, so I think I will get them to do some of the puzzles, and work with their table to collect 100 unifix cubes. I think this will be a good way to see their problem solving. Will they make one big long row, 10 rows of 10, piles? I will want them to show me how they got 100, and how they know it's 100. The unifix riddles are really cool, but I can't think of an example because I just got the book. So they will have some time to just do the puzzles too.

    I will start my read aloud, and have some nice cozy time as a class. I don't know what read aloud I want to do yet, though, otherwise I would give some pointers. I may want to do a Ramona Quimby book- whichever one is when she was in 2nd grade. I have to figure it out.

    Other things I will do that week:
    Take each child's picture and a class picture. They will make picture frames and decorate them for their individual picture and we will hang them on the wall.

    We will also go over the rules, and practice, practice, practice, practice. I model the right and wrong way, and they model the right and wrong way.

    We will create a poster or art piece about the things people are "experts at" which may be drawing, swimming, math, yu-i-oh, or whatever. I think this year I am going to do it as a banner or something.

    I will do a cooperative or team building activity each day. For example, create a venn diagram that shows the things you have in common and different from a classmate, sculpt something out of clay together without talking, as well as whole class team building activities- I have a whole book of those things too.

    I do NOT do major math or writing assignments until I see them doing simple things first. I use this as a way to assess them. I want to see them write a simple sentence, before we get into writing stories. I want to see how they interact with math materials, before I introduce new concepts.

    I make my priority procedures and rules first, and academics next. If the procedures and rules are in place, understood and practiced, the academics will flow much better later on!

    I hit the academics hard in about the third week of school. The first week is a half week, and the second week is get to know you, get to know the classroom, and learning procedures/rules.

    One cool thing- I think my first major writing assignment, will be for each child to take a picture of something in our class or at school, and write about the rules, procedures or what we do there. I saw this on someone's blog or website, and would quote it, but unfortunately the link was saved on my other computer.

    I think for math the first week, we will do a lot with the 100's board. Games and even an art project or two. I want to make sure they are very familiar with the 100's chart, before we get into the 2nd grade math skills. One fun, whole class game is like this: Everyone has a blank 100 chart on a sheet. I have predetermined a design on the sheet, maybe a smiley face or something. Then, I will call out 10 + 29, and they color in 39, or 2 less than 40, and they color in 38. By the end, they will have a design. This will help me see their basic skills- things I HOPE they learned in 1st grade, but you never know. If that's too easy to start with, I can make it harder as I go, 50-27, and they can jump on the hundreds chart to 23.
     
  5. jde3399

    jde3399 Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    Procedures, Procedures, Procedures!!!

    I know on the first day of school I do A LOT of talking! I usually type out everything I want to accomplish by the end of the first day with the times on it. I also make a list of things I can do if I have time.

    When the kiddos first walk in, I have an activity for them to do on their desks (usually a fish paper since I am doing an ocean theme this year). The kids take their backpacks with them to their seats- they don't have them up (because I am very particular...a.k.a OCD/anal). While they are coming in and coloring their papers, I go around and get their bus numbers and figure out which bus wave they will leave on (each bus wave is a different time, the kids do not all leave at once).

    Once the announcements are over, I introduce myself and do a read aloud (First Day Jitters ).

    I then have students unload their supplies- again I have a certain order of how they do this because some things I will use for the community and some things the kids will keep. I will then have them hang up the backpacks and unpack their lunch boxes and snacks and let the place them in the cubbies.

    I will then go over what goes into the students desk and how it goes (everything has a certain place inside of the desk-doing this helps keep their desks clean because I can't stand cluttered desks!).

    I will pass out and go over their homework folders. Inside their folders, they have a section for papers to go home and a section for papers to come back (homework, forms, etc.). They also have sheet protectors in the middle- one for their homework long, one for their math log, and one for their unit study guides. I also go over the forms that are in the folders already.

    I will the pass out their agendas and go over how we fill them out, when we fill them out, and where homework assignments can be found on the board.

    I will then go over the classroom rules, consequences, behavior chart, and incentive charts.

    I will then collect a writing sample. They are aloud to write about whatever they choose and draw a picture that goes along with their writing. They can write as little or as much as they want.
    I will then go over the class schedule and specials schedule.

    Students will take a break and eat a snack.

    I will then go over the classroom schedule and specials schedule. I will also go over classroom jobs.

    I will then go over the classroom library and procedures. I will let them check out two books that they can keep at their seats (they will have a book basket as well to keep their books in during stations).

    I will go over morning procedures- what they do when they arrive.

    I will go over recess and lunch procedures. I will also go over walking in a line procedure and we practice getting into line and walking in the line.

    They will have recess and lunch.

    Then we come back for math. I pass out their math books (these stay in their desks) and go over the calendar (which will be done everyday) along with the procedures for calendar math. I will then review basic numeration- have students fill out a numbers chart.

    Then we will go into social studies. We will review the classroom rules and they will complete pictures that go along with their classroom rules books.

    I will also go over their mailboxes and how they pack up for the end of the day.

    I know it sounds like a alot, probably because it is, but I always over plan. I do give them breaks in between because it is a lot of information they are given so I know they are on overload by the end of the day! But it works for me and the kids pick it up really quickly :D I hope I got everything. Hope this helps!
     
  6. MrsF

    MrsF Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    I cannot even begin to say how grateful I am for all these tips! Thank you so much! I am ordering 'First Day Jitters' through Amazon right now...! I knew I was going to be covering a lot the first day (really, the first few weeks), but I wanted some sort of fun/intro activities during that time. I definitely got those ideas from these thread! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!
     
  7. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    3,885
    Likes Received:
    93

    Jul 10, 2011

    Students arrive, place bookbags and supplies bags against the wall, and sit down to begin working on their All About Me booklet with the supplies provided at their desk. Students will be called up one at a time to go through their supplies and put them away in their table drawer.

    Social Studies
    All About Me
    TSW complete a booklet “All About Me” to describe his/her family, home, address, and favorite activities. This information will be used for a classwide getting-to-know-you activity.

    Morning Meeting
    TSW be invited to meet over on the carpet for the first morning meeting. We will go over the morning meeting rules, and be introduced to Everyday Counts/Calendar Math.

    Language Arts
    Read aloud: First Day Jitters

    We will sing “Hickelty Pickelty Bumble Bee” to learn each other’s names.

    TSW be introduced to the rules of Power Teacher, the “Class-Yes” response, and the “No Guff” rule.

    Math
    Birthday Graph
    TSW complete a card with their birthday on it, and then place it on the large grid on the wall in the classroom.

    Through-out the Day:

    Classroom and School Rules
    TSW be introduced to our classroom rules, as well as discuss the reason for having rules.

    Rules and Procedures:
    Collect supplies
    Work on "All About Me" book
    Introductions
    Rules & Procedures
    Fire Drill
    Pencil Sharpening
    Crayons
    Passing in papers
    Small groups
    Raising hands
    Leaving for the bathroom
    Switching classes
    Lunch and tables
    Asking questions
    Tour school
    Take Pictures

    Homework:
    Students will receive their BEAR binder and learn all about these binders and how to use them.

    Students will be issued their “Parent Information Booklet” to share with their parents this evening.

    End of day read aloud: Miss Malarky Doesn't Live in Room 10.
     
  8. AZMrs.S

    AZMrs.S Cohort

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2011
    Messages:
    611
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 10, 2011

    WOW!!! Great tips! I will definitely be using these as a first year teacher! Thanks! :)
     
  9. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    3,885
    Likes Received:
    93

    Jul 10, 2011

    Mrs F.

    I used to teach 2nd in Va. I have a lot of materials for VA SOLs for 2nd grade on my teacher's web page. If you see anything that might help, then help yourself.

    http://www.quia.com/pages/jthomas/page15
     
  10. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2007
    Messages:
    1,867
    Likes Received:
    96

    Jul 19, 2011

    Many "How should it look" lessons!

    For instance, when we gather to read a book, how should it look?
    THEY make suggestions...sit the whole time, stay in one spot, raise your hand, listen to the story, etc. I review their suggestions for several days when we gather and then occasionally throughout the year.

    We do "how it should look" mini lessons for:
    lining up
    working at desk
    silent reading
    walking in the hall
    when I ring the wind chimes for instructions
    everything but not all day one...the most common trouble areas first and then throughout the year as they arrise.

    We do these often thru the year too.
    "How should it look at our assembly"
    "How should it look when Mr. Smith bring his iguana?"

    I am a firm beleiver that EVERY expectation needs to be taught.
    We have fun with it too doing it 'the wrong way'.
    We'll also have refreshers.
     
  11. CFClassroom

    CFClassroom Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2008
    Messages:
    1,726
    Likes Received:
    1

    Jul 26, 2011

  12. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2004
    Messages:
    2,397
    Likes Received:
    4

    Jul 26, 2011

  13. hoc1

    hoc1 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 17, 2011

    I read your post and I have also moved from grade 6 down to grade two. I have taught grade two before about six years ago. First day for me is more about creating a positive safe environment and begin to introduce some routines and rules as they arise. This is what I am working on currently for the first day:8:30 Meet and greet the students at the door and ask them to find a seat that the would like to sit at take attendence start to make mental note of students names. Start with telling student that I have two really important rules in the class. Always raise hands to take turns and always show respect to others in our class.

    8:40 Introduce myself to the students pull out items do five items that tell something about me (puck for playing hockey, picture of a ring for being married, picture of Cassie and Rebecca for being a mom, the number five and six for grades I use to teach, and a picture of Callie to show I have a pet). Students are allowed to ask two questions for each item reminding them to raise hands and not call out. Ask them to also say their name before they ask the question

    9:00 Student name game ????

    9:15 Brain Break Activity ???

    9:30 Coloring sheet during that time also call them up one by one to take their picture, weigh them, and see how tall they are. This goes in their file for their end of the memory book.
     
  14. Srohl

    Srohl Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2011
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 17, 2011

    Hey Rainstorm,
    How does the song go? I have never heard of this song before! Thanks for sharing:)
     
  15. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    3,885
    Likes Received:
    93

    Aug 17, 2011

    Hickelty Pickelty Bumble Bee,
    Won't you say your name for me? (Child says her name. Singers repeat it.)
    Won't you whisper your name for me? (Child whispers, singers repeat it.)
    Turn off your voice, and clap it for me. (Child claps the syllables, singers repeat it.)
    Won't you shout your name for me? (Child shouts her name.)

    Then you move on to the next child, and repeat until you've done the whole class.
     
  16. Dr Kevlar

    Dr Kevlar Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 24, 2012

    Great stuff in here! I will be student teaching, but I am definitely going to be "mining" this thread for future ideas.

    Thank you!
     
  17. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,565
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 24, 2012

    Wow, thank you for such detailed responses! I am gleaning ideas from each one of you. This is my fifth year teaching, and my fourth year of thinking, "Oh! Now I get it!" :lol:
     
  18. racm

    racm Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2011
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 4, 2012

    Thank you so much for all of the info!
     
  19. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    3,060
    Likes Received:
    538

    Aug 4, 2012

    I stick a list in each area of the room of the procedures I need to teach for that space. That way when we are in that area I know what to cover while we're there. It also keeps me focused when teaching procedures - I'm not hopping around the room.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. futuremathsprof,
  2. miss-m,
  3. jadorelafrance,
  4. Jonathan Small,
  5. czacza,
  6. TrademarkTer
Total: 310 (members: 6, guests: 254, robots: 50)
test