This is the survey I give my students on the first day of school. It's the first thing my students do after they find their seat. Some questions require a one word response, while other questions ask students to share a few sentences.
You can learn so much from the students not only from what they share, but also by how they complete the survey.
I believe demonstrating to students that you care about them and are interested in their lives help build a strong foundation for your teacher/student relationship and starts the school year off on the right foot.
I use the student interests in word problems throughout the year.
On the last day of school, I pass back the surveys. Students love seeing how much they can change over nine months.