Start the year off with a "success kit" for your students! I've done this the first day of school for the past 7 years. Kids LOVE it and it encourages a little thinking "outside of the box." It involves giving them some candy, but I let them know that it's the ONLY time I'll give them candy (for the most part) and they go home excited about their success kit which I tell them is their first homework assignment: to share their success kit and what each item means with their parents.
Pass out one item at a time and ask students why you're giving it to them. For example, if you give them the toothpick, ask what it represents. Take ideas and then share with them the reason (to "pick out" good qualities of everyone, including themselves). As you make it down the list, their creativity is amazing and you might even like what they come up with better than what's on the list! After giving them all the items, give them a copy of the Success Kit list. This is the tool students will use to share with their parents. I let them eat the candy right then and there, save it for a time they "need it," or take it home.
I'm more than willing to send it as a revisable document if you download the PDF and find that you want to change any of the items in the kit.
You will need to have/buy: toothpicks, tissues, band aids, rubber bands, Gummy Worms, Tootsie Rolls, Starbursts, Smarties, Jolly Ranchers, Lifesavers, erasers, and ziplock bags. Typically it costs me 7 bucks and I have leftovers for myself, next year, or to give to students who come back to visit me from past years.