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August 1, 2017

Helpful Tips for Back-To-School

The summer is winding down and it is time to start thinking about classroom setup and the start to a new school year.  You walk into your classroom and often think "Where do I even start?" If you are like me, your entire room has to be packed up and put back together every year. I know...it is not fun! The great thing about it, is that every year you can pick a new theme for decoration! My favorite themes are camping, tropical, and superheros. What are yours? It was also a time to figure out how to arrange flexible seating.  Fast forward and your classroom is all set up and students are coming soon. What next? Here are some engaging, hands-on activities that will get your year started off just right!

Communication with parents is key to starting off the school year in a great way. You will love using newsletters and a back-to-school brochure. Sending a monthly newsletter home with parents to let them know what we are planning is very beneficial and parents love it. They are editable so you can easily get on your computer and change what you need to meet your needs.

Now let's talk about what we are going to do the first few days. It is important to start with an All About Me activity! They know the most about themselves so this is a great ice breaker activity. You will love seeing what your students write about themselves. You will always want to have one of these activities on their table when they come in the classroom. 

You will end up using all of these awesome BTS activities throughout the first week of school. It is important to show each student how important they are to the classroom community. The locker "Opening Up New Adventures" is an all time favorite! They make a great back to school or parent night display and most importantly the kids love creating their lockers.
You will want to have first day of school activities ready and available. The reading list activity is always a fun one and it is great to get an idea of what they enjoy reading.  As always the kids love talking about what they did over the summer. You may have a few that say they did nothing and for those kids you can have another prompt they are interested in. This is a great way to see their writing and start a fun journal entry. 

The first days of school would not be complete without having a pop-up book. I am warning you in advance your students are going to want to do these all the time. Luckily, I have created many of them for engaging writing activities. They can choose which back-to-school pop-up book and prompt they want to create and publish their first writing piece. 

Moving on to classroom rules. We all know that classroom rules are a must. Having your students create them can be such a great classroom community activity. 

This is an example of a slip I use for our classroom rules. After we discuss what a rule is and rules we think we should have in our classroom, they write down their own rule for our classroom. We develop our classroom rules as a classroom community. We write our rules on a large paper and display in our classroom. Having your students be a part of the rule making is an important part of your classroom management. 

There are so many awesome back to school activities you can do in the first few days. Here are a few more activities that will make your first days run smoothly: Pencils to decorate, Alphabetical Order Word Work, Math Color Sheet, Poem to Welcome Students, and Making Words. 

Make sure to head on over to Coffman's Creative Classroom facebook page to keep in touch! I love collaborating and hearing how you are doing throughout the school year!

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." - Nelson Mandela

Now you are set and ready to get out there and change the world! Have an awesome first week of school! 

Here is the link to all of these engaging Back to School Activities Click here for Back to School Activity Pack

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