This resource includes THREE activities for the beginning of the year. Have the students share information about themselves, collaborate and learn about each other and participate in a small group activity.
The first activity is one of my favorites! Once completed, these student products can make an excellent bulletin board for curriculum night. It also gives students a sense of community within the classroom. Students will provide a current picture of themselves (drawing or photo). Students are also asked to describe various things such as their strengths, hobbies, family and favorite number. On the back side of this page, you can copy additional questions that will give you insight about who they are as a person.
The second activity is a fifteen minute activity that allows the students to get to know each other through movement and discussion in the classroom. Students will circulate throughout the room talking to nine different classmates. Students will find someone who can do or explain what’s asked for in the box (one person per box). The student will ask the person to initial one box and to describe the answer to the problem. The other student will summarize and write what was explained. I created this 3 x 3 activity based on an example from the book Total Participation Techniques by Pérsida Himmele and William Himmele.
Before we start the 3 x 3 discussion activity, I also talk to the students about positive interactions in the classroom. I emphasis looking at each other in the eye, listening to each other and being kind/respectful.
The third activity involves twenty questions that can be used as an introduction activity. Students could be placed in groups with some of the questions. Initially, students can record their answers and then they could each share one with the group before proceeding to the next set of questions. Another option would be to have students circulating throughout the room sharing answers with each other without recording them on paper.
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