I always love to see how other teachers plan their first few days of school. We start on a Thursday. I usually spend the first week (only 2 days) and the next full week transitioning into somewhat of a regular schedule. There are so many fun activities to do at the beginning of the year, plus many many rules and procedures to teach. Here's a glance at my first two days. Stay tuned for the next five days, coming later this week.
7:30-7:45- children will sit out in the hall and read books quietly.
7:45- After the bell rings, I will explicitly go over the unpacking procedures. The kids will learn where to put their backpack, lunch, snack, folder, and notes from home. I always start the day with a handshake, high five, or a hug (the kid's choice) as they walk in the door. This will start day 1. We will practice walking in quietly and having a seat at their desk (this will set the tone for when we start Morning Work).
8:00- Morning Meeting- (we will practice coming quietly to the carpet and learn how to push in the chairs before coming)
- Introduce myself-- then play true or false game (from Mrs. Brantley) using the facts I gave them
- Children introduce themselves- we will go around the circle and each child will share one thing. Then I always try to go around and remember all of their names. Normally there's another child or two that thinks they also can name all the children in the class.
- We will go over the rules for the carpet
- Read Aloud- "First Day Jitters"- discuss any worries about the first day
8:30- Pass out supplies- I will give students their plastic shoebox with the majority of supplies in it. I like to go over each supply and discuss a few rules ("our highlighters are NOT markers" "we do not poke holes or draw on the big eraser" "your scissors are for cutting paper ONLY"...). At this point I will explain to them that they each have a class number, and point out that all of their supplies are labeled with their number. They will go back to their seats and put their box in their desk. I will also pass out their Unfiinished Work folder to put in their desk.
8:45- Lining Up/Hallway Rules
- I will ask students to come to the carpet (calling them by their class number for practice)
- We will read "The Kissing Hand"
- I will pass out marshmallows and we'll create a web of words to describe the marshmallows. This discussion will lead to having "marshmallow feet" in the hall. The Teaching Heart has more specific details if you're interested in doing this activity.
- I will show them how to line up at the door. We will practice it until it is just the way I demonstrated (even if it takes SEVERAL tries!). I don't want them to practice bad habits.
- Tour of the school- We will practice walking in the hall by taking a tour of the school. We will walk past all the special teachers' classes, the nurse, and office. Then, we'll head downstairs for a quick review of the lunch line procedures. Since they are in first grade, most kids already know how to get their lunch. Lastly, we will stop by the restrooms for a quick break. I will have a girls demonstration and a boys demonstration of what to do in the restroom (do your business, wash and dry your hands, leave-- NO playing in the restroom.) The boys always get a kick out of me coming into their restroom, but I leave nothing up to interpretation!
9:15- Explination of Behavior System
- Read "Officer Buckle and Gloria"
- Create Class Rules Together
- Explain bead system and how I'll send home notes in the folder
9:40- Snack (I will take first day pictures of each child while they eat)
10:00- Math About Me (you can find the printables here). We will complete two squares. Depending on time, we will make a class graph of "How many pets do you have?"
10:30- We will clean up, practice coming to the carpet, discuss lunchroom rules, and I will pass out their lunch number clips (I write each child's name on one side of a clothespin and their lunch number on the other side. They use these the first couple weeks of school to memorize their lunch numbers. The clips work well because they can clip them to their shirts and still hold a lunch tray with two hands.)
10:45-11:15- PE (we actually go to PE right before lunch. So the kids take their lunches and leave them outside of the gym until after PE-- saves a trip back up and down the stairs)
11:50-Recess - Hopefully we will be able to go the local civic center (right next to the school) and use their gym the first month of school. If not recess will be super short because August is super hot in Alabama.
12:10- Popsicle break outside before getting back to work
12:20- Writing- The first grade teachers decided to incorporate math into our writing so we created a Math About Me book. The kids will complete one page a day. They will copy the sentence as I write it on the board ("I have one _____") . The next day it will say (I have two _____). They could fill in the blank with body parts, objects, friends, pets, etc. We will do this for five days. Click here to download a copy.
12:55-1:20- Writing- continued- The children will write about the first day of school in their journals. We will share some after they are finished.
1:20- Chapter Book Read Aloud- I'm planning to either start the year with "Junie B- First Grader at Last" or "The Treasure Tree." Not sure yet.
1:25- Discuss the day. Learn procedures for packing up. Pack-up
1:40-2:20- Specials (Art today)
2:25- Early Dismissal
2:35- Late Dismissal
Wow! Day 1 is very long (and will probably feel 10 times longer on August 11th). If you're still reading, here's Day 2 (this ought to be shorter!)
7:45-8:10- Unpack, Start Morning Work (I will be giving them simple "Number Posters" to color with markers- oooh! They always love coloring with markers. And it's a treat in my room!)
8:10-8:40- Morning Meeting
- Pledge/patriotic song
- Calendar on Promethean Board
- Practice with names
8:40-8:50- Read "The First Day of School" poem and illustrate (Yes, this should have been done on day 1, but there just wasn't enough time. We will discuss how today is more comfortable than the first day because everything is a little more familiar and you've made a few friends)
8:50-9:30- Math About Me- 2 more squares and a class graph "How many people in my family"
9:30-9:40- Read Aloud "A Pocket Full of Kisses"
9:40-10:00- Writing- Math About Me Book ("I have two _____" -- eyes, hands, feet, ears, dogs, etc)
10:15- 10:30- Independent reading from tubs (this won't be silent reading yet because I want to have an official mini lesson first. Children will just read easy books with a friend) I will start assessing reading levels and let children choose just right books to put in their book boxes.
10:30-10:45- Chapter book read-aloud and daily news
12:20-12:30- Restroom and water break
12:30-1:00- Journal writing and share journals
1:00-1:30- Play-doh or play with fish from Oriental Trading (they love these little fish. I usually give them 20 in a baggie to leave at their desk. They are allowed to get them out after their work is finished). I will use this time to assess reading levels
1:40-2:20- Specials (Computer lab- no break for me this day because we go with our kids to computer)
2:25- Early Dismissal
2:35- Late Dismissal
Newsletter for the Week of May 1
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