This is a First Day Bingo document I created to play around the first day of school. Or more realistically, the second, The first day at my school is full of filling out forms! No time for fun games. The students have to go around the room and get someone to sign their name to a square. My rule, because I have 30 students per class, is no more than two of the same name on their card! This gets them interacting with everyone.
Here are some tips for making the first days go smoothly:
- Have your name and subject outside your classroom, and a roster. Students want to know they are in the right place before entering the room.
- Have assigned seating. Kids are nervous. They are scared about coming in to your room for the first time. It’s even more nerve wracking if they have to make a decision about where to sit.
- Assigned seating also helps you quickly see who’s missing, and helps eliminate students being in the wrong place. Students dread that ominous teacher screaming out roll call, only to learn their name isn’t on the roster and being sent out.
- Have an activity for students to work on while they are waiting. Even if it’s something simple like a word search, something to occupy them while you get other stuff done is a good idea. This way, the class is managed the second they come in.
- Gallon sized ziploc bags are on our supply list, so students inevitably bring these the first day. If this is not on your list (and it needs to be, and I will explain later why!), go buy enough for your class for at least that day. All forms that students need to take home with them needs to go in these ziploc bags. I also write their name on their bag. If a student is absent, I make up a bag with their name on a post-it (so I can re-use the bag if the student doesn’t show).
- Speaking of supplies, figure out where you’re going to store all the supplies students bring on their first day. I picked up some cheap banker’s boxes from Wal-Mart, one for each supply on the list. Items are stored in the boxes, the item written on the outside, and stored for the time being. Students write their name on all their supplies, and toss into the appropriate box. Later, after lockers are assigned, they have two options: they can keep the supplies in the boxes or transfer to their lockers.
Hopefully those are enough tips to get you started thinking about your first day of school!