I firmly believe that if we have specific classroom procedures around the tools and materials we use in our classroom that we want students to follow, then we MUST explicitly teach each rule and procedure to them. But who wants to sit there and listen to boring rule after rule? And how can we ensure that students remember our classroom procedures?
With a getting to know you activity, of course! Get to know your students, create a positive classroom environment, and teach expectations in one fell swoop with this awesome getting to know activity!
Use this back-to-school upper-grade activity pack to explicitly teach your students classroom procedures.
Use the Math About Me activity to teach your students procedures regarding using pencils in your classroom.
Things to consider: Can they use mechanical pencils? Can they use personalized pencil sharpeners? Where do they get sharpened pencils? When can they sharpen their pencil?
Explain your classroom rules and procedures about pencils to your students. Discuss and model what using and maintaining a pencil looks like and doesn’t look like in your classroom. Then use the Math About Me page to both practice pencil expectations and to learn more about your students.
Ah, markers. Some teachers love them and others can’t stand them. They are both vibrant and messy at the same time. If you are planning to use markers in your classroom this activity is the perfect way to teach and practice marker expectations.
Things to consider: Where do you keep markers in the classroom? How do you maintain them to make sure they last longer? Can they always use markers? Or only for certain activities?
Again, explain classroom rules and procedures for using markers in your classroom. Explicitly model any marker expectations for your students. Then create a classroom full of dreamers by discussing what they want to be this year in your classroom. Have students use the BE poster and their markers to write and draw what they want to be. Create a fun and inspirational bulletin board with all of their posters.
3) Crayons/Colored Pencils
The beloved crayon (or colored pencil). No classroom is complete without them. With this getting to know you activity, you can easily teach expectations around the use of crayons and colored pencils in your classroom.
Things to consider: Where do they keep them? How do they sharpen them? What if they break?
The getting to know you activity makes for the perfect way to practice using crayons or colored pencils. Students use the color by number question page to answer questions about themselves. Then they practice classroom crayon/color pencil expectations by coloring their unique color-by-number frame completed with a self-portrait in the middle.
Create a large key and hang it in the middle of a bulletin board filled with your students’ self-portrait frames. This fun activity allows students to learn about each other and also find things they have in common by decoding each frame.
Who knew that such a small tool could cause so many different issues in a classroom? Has anyone ever had a student cut hair in their classroom? No, just me?! But we can work to eliminate those incidents by explicitly practicing how to use and not use scissors in our classrooms.
Things to consider: How do you care for scissors? How do you walk in the classroom with scissors? What happens when you misuse scissors?
Use this group getting to know you activity to build some teamwork and practice using scissors. Put students in groups of 4 and give each student a puzzle piece. They can create their puzzle piece all about themselves and then cut them out. Once each puzzle piece has been cut out, students can work together to put their pieces together and create a completed square.
Ah, glue. It’s one of those things that can be really fun to play with but also can cause quite a mess. Use this getting to know you activity to teach expectations around using glue in your classroom.
Things to consider: How do you open the glue bottles? Where do you store the extra glue sticks? And what happens when a glue stick has lost it’s top?!
Each student will create a hopes and dreams board about what they want for the year, both in and out of school. Use a variety of mediums to create the board. Cutting images and words out of magazines, newspapers, and craft supplies makes for fun getting to know you activity and a great way to practice using scissors in your classroom.
This is a big one! Computers come with a lot of rules and expectations that need to be discussed. Use this getting to know you activity to cover all the bases when it comes to using computers in your classroom.
Things to consider: What is acceptable internet usage? How do we handle distractions? Any procedures for picking up or returning laptops or tablets?
In this getting to know you activity students practice classroom computer rules and expectations by creating a newspaper about their first day of school. This activity comes with a digital link that allows students to create the front page of a newspaper filled with information about their new classroom.
This getting to know you activity for upper grades is a great way to get your students engaged, build class community, and teach your classroom expectations. With the included instructions and printables, you can make setting up this activity fast and simple. Loaded with tips, ideas, and examples this activity pack in the perfect way to establish classroom expectations and get to know your new students.