One thing that I think is so important at the beginning of the school year is to build a classroom community and make each student feel like they are an important part of the class. There are so many fun activities you can do to accomplish this! Here are some of my favorites:
1. The Hand Tree - students trace their hands, then decorate and cut out. Use all the hands as the leaves on a tree or petals on a flower for a bulletin board display.
2. We are Family - have students bring in family photos and display them in a fun way!
3. We Fit Together - Each student decorates a puzzle piece to represent them, then you fit them all together for a great display!
4.Web of Kindness - "Another favorite activity in the compliment category is the Web of Kindness. It starts with one student holding a ball of yarn who pays a compliment to another student. At the same time he or she quickly wraps the loose end of the yarn around his or her finger and then tosses the ball to the one who was complimented. This goes on until a web is created. It's really neat and creates a great visual of teamwork. I end the activity with the notion of no matter what grade or age you are, kindness sees no boundaries. It is something we all want and something we should all share with others."
5. Who Am I? I've shared this before, but it fits my theme perfectly, so I thought I'd share it again. :) This fun FREEBIE is a great get to know you activity that helps even the shy students be able to share things about themselves. Students fill out the questions and draw a picture of themselves. Then you can gather them up and give the student a "quiz" to see how well they know their classmates! Try it again at the end of the year to show how much they have learned about each other!