First day icebreaker

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by GatorGal, Jul 24, 2008.

  1. Yank7

    Yank7 Habitué

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    Aug 5, 2008

    I think this is a wonderful idea. the students will learn about each other. I would do some each day for a week. I once saw an exercise in which student were asked to list some items they found in the garbage from the night before and from this list they were asked to make predictions about the family. It was very interesting and informative. Let us know how things work out.
     
  2. MaddieMommy

    MaddieMommy Rookie

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    Aug 5, 2008

    Oh, that is scary to me. "I Never" in college was a drinking game that always ended up being about sex.

    I love the 2 truths and 1 lie. I always keep them guessing because my truth that gets them is I have a Chinese Grandfather (I'm blonde with blue eyes). He is my Step Grandfather.
     
  3. MsTeacher98

    MsTeacher98 Companion

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    Aug 6, 2008

    I like this one! You can also just write numbers on the ball. So if their left thumb is #1, you could post/read off the list whatever question corresponded with #1.
     
  4. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    Aug 6, 2008

    That's what I was thinking, because I don't want to use a big beach ball - too tempting for teens to go nuts with it.
     
  5. Weazy

    Weazy Comrade

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    Aug 6, 2008

    I have my students make nametags--without their names. Using half a sheet of construction paper they can draw or glue different items that describe who they are.This gets them up moving around the first day as well. I encourage them to tell things about themselves that others do not know. (not to personal) Maybe they like to write, or listen to classical music, but their friends don't know that about them. I also encourage them to use colors to represent mood, etc. I ask them to try and be a little more creative them football=football player, book=likes to read. Dig deeper--who is favorite author, etc. They leave their name off.
    You have 2 options:
    mix nametags up and let kids figure out who's who OR
    let them present their nametag (this is what I do) then I hang them in the room.
    1. You find out quickly which kids do homework. There is always a couple of kids who do not finish the assignment, and many times they are the ones who do not do any homework.
    2. You find out who likes to get up and speak in class and who doesn't.
    3. You find out if the class enjoys doing artsy assignments.
    This is so much more than an icebreaker. I hope it makes sense!! I have had great success with this activity.
     
  6. Aussiegirl

    Aussiegirl Habitué

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    Aug 6, 2008

    Footprint activity

    Before school starts, I have a bulletin board in my room that has only the words: "Stepping into 8th Grade". THen I give each student a footprint. They have to fill it with things about them such as the college they want to go to, what they want to do when they grow up, their favorite food/sport/animal/book/actor etc. They have a certain amount of time to complete this and then I ask for volunteers to explain their footprint. Surprisingly, most of the kids volunteer! I have a footprint I've already created so I use that to show them as I give the directions. The kids then staple their footprint on the bulletin board. It is interesting listening to the kids commenting on all the footprints. It also gives me a chance to see which kids are more/less visual and hands on. It also helps fulfill a learning standard - oral presentation.

    Disclaimer: I got this idea from somewhere on the web... Ms. Chandler perhaps?
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2008
  7. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Aug 7, 2008

    Aussiegirl--I did the footprint activitiy with my grade 6 students a couple of years ago, but I had them trace their footprint. When we took them down, partway through the year, I put them in their portfolios. It was really interesting, at the end of the year, to compare how much everyone's feet had grown!
     
  8. sciencegurl

    sciencegurl Companion

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    Aug 7, 2008

    I really like this idea. My kids would eat it up. I'm so stealing it for the first day :) thanks
     
  9. Ms.C teaches

    Ms.C teaches Rookie

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    Aug 7, 2008

    Great ideas, but. . .

    These are all great ideas for me, who is going to be a first year intern. I have a little notebook that I keep jotting down ideas in. I especially like the beach ball and the foot prints activity. Here's where my "but" comes in. When I bounce these ideas off my significant other (keep in mind I'm very excited:2up: to begin my teaching career), it bumms me out when he doesn't think they're as good of an idea as I do. He didn't think the foot activity would be much fun for 6th & 7th graders, but I really like it. I hope I'm not alone. I'm sure I'm driving him crazy when I tell him about all the things I want to do in the class with my students, but I'm beyond excited! Just needed to vent a little. I figured people here would understand.

    Keep the great ideas coming, I love them!
     
  10. GatorGal

    GatorGal Cohort

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    Aug 7, 2008


    This is a great idea!
     
  11. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Aug 7, 2008

    A high school teacher friend of mine did the same activity, but he also read Longfellow's A Psalm of Life with the kids before making their footprints. It went over really well, but it probably is best suited for upper level students.
     
  12. Aussiegirl

    Aussiegirl Habitué

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    Aug 8, 2008

    I like the idea of using their actual feet! Hmmm, not too late to change my plan :)
     
  13. Aussiegirl

    Aussiegirl Habitué

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    Aug 8, 2008

    I just looked at the psalm of life - great poem but too high for 8th graders in general. Maybe I can find another one.
     
  14. crzymtngirl75

    crzymtngirl75 Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2008

    To update: We started school this past Monday...and my 9th graders LOVE the beach ball. I have it sitting behind my desk and for the last 2 days they ask to play at the end of the period!! :) Hope this helps!!
     
  15. Passion4Teachin

    Passion4Teachin Rookie

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    Aug 14, 2008

    did you do it with NUMBERS? or with QUESTIONS?
    ---- I was thinking that it might be a better idea to use NUMBERS so then you can even use the beach ball as a review for a test, etc.
     
  16. mathteacher28

    mathteacher28 Rookie

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    Aug 15, 2008

    Last year, I had my 6th graders fill out a questionniare about themselves (favorite food, subject, song, etc.). Then I had them go around the room and find a person who had the same answer as them for each of the questions so they could see what they had in common with others. I collected the papers at the end of class and saved them for the last day of school. On the last day we played a game where we could see who could remember all their answers correctly (only one student out of nearly 100 remembered them all). It was hysterical watching them try and remember and watching them get embarrassed about some of the movies or singers they put down on day 1.
     
  17. crzymtngirl75

    crzymtngirl75 Rookie

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    Aug 16, 2008

    I have the questions I posted earlier on it for now. It is a great time killer for the last few minutes before the bell. I have another one not yet blown up to use later...I think I am going to steal your idea for a test review ball! :) awesome!
     
  18. midwestteacher

    midwestteacher Cohort

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    Aug 25, 2008

    I have a worksheet that we fill out in class. It involves some thinking skills also, so it just isn't fluff.
    If I could throw caution to the wind and really take a risk, I would.....
    The comic character I would most like to be is...
    The most important decision of my life was/is...
    As a child, my favorite game was ...
    My favorite movie of all time is .....
    What makes me laugh is....
    Today, I like to play by...
    I cry when...

    I need _____ to make my life complete because....
    If I had _____ I would be the happiest person in the world.
    I can explain my life as an animal and that animal is a .......
    I like to imagine I am the cartoon character _____ because.....
    A gift that I can give to others is ......
    A gift that I would like to receive from others is ......
    If I had all the money in the world, I would......
    I will eat anything that is put in front of me except......
    School for me is......
    If I had to give up a prized possession, it would be......

    After everyone answers the questions, we share our answers.
     
  19. sciencegurl

    sciencegurl Companion

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    Aug 26, 2008

    that is just beyond lame. You handled it very well IMO. FWIW, at least at the HS level, using your computer when kids are in the room is common place. It's not like we're surfing the net, but entering grades online, even typing up a worksheet is something I'll do when my kids are preoccupied with seatwork. I typically only do it when they're watching a video or something, but occasionally will pop a grade or two in when they are working (between my rounds answering questions and giving help).
     

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