Beginning of the Year

Welcome Banners

Help students to feel welcome on their first day with these banners:

My Strongest Suit

Use this fun activity to help children remember that everyone has a different strongest suit…and a different weakest suit.

Use this fun ice-breaker activity to help children start conversations about their summers.

My Class Books

This is a great activity for the first week of school. Children can keep these books in their binders (behind the same tab as their class schedule and class rules), on their shelves or in their desks, and can refer to them throughout the year to review what they learned about their teacher and classmates at the beginning of the year.

Start by having each child draw a picture of their entire class, including themself and the teacher.

Spend time with each child individually, getting to know them and letting them get to know you as they fill out this page.

On the first day (of this activity), have each child draw a picture of themselves in this box and answer the first two lines. Make copies for each other student. Over the course of the first week, have each child meet with each of their classmates to fill out the second two lines in their book for that classmate. This is a great page to refer back to throughout the year to remember how to best get along with a classmate when troubles arise.

My Favorites

This is a fun activity page for children to create at the beginning of the year. Save in students’ files to add to their memory books at the end of the school year.

Excused Homework

Losing homework can be very stressful for young children. To help put them at ease, let each child fill out one excused homework pass at the beginning of the year, to keep in their file for when they want to redeem it. If you want to get a bit silly, read students a book such as Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst, or Arnold in a Pickle, by Marc Brown. Encourage them to make up the wildest, most extravagant excuse for their lost homework (making it clear that this is intentional fiction, not lying, since you are in on the joke). The creative writing will well make up for one day’s lost homework.

First Day of School Frames

Print these frames onto cardstock for children to color. They can either draw a picture of themselves inside or cut out the inside and take a photo with it framing their faces.

First Day Hats

Print these hats for younger children to color and wear on their first day of school.

Back to School Signs

Print these signs in color onto cardstock to use in first day of school photos.

First Day of School Photo Props

Print these on cardstock (and laminate to keep using year after year) and attach to craft sticks for a first day photo booth.