First day activity/ English

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by inlovewithwords, Aug 18, 2007.

  1. inlovewithwords

    inlovewithwords Companion

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    Aug 18, 2007

    I need ideas for first day activities for English. I need all of your creative input because I am not creative. Please help.
     
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  3. KDS

    KDS Companion

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    Aug 18, 2007

    i call it Card Circle Story...or something like that...depending on my mood...ANYWAY, I get a stack of index cards:
    card one has a word on one side and another on back..
    EX: Cow
    Robot

    the next card has Robot on front and other on back...
    EX: Robot
    Texas

    i make about 30 or so cards...then i mix the cards up and give them to students...if time allows i get them to stand/sit in a circle so their cards 'line up'...ie: cow/robot card stands next to robot/texas card

    THEN the person with the first card....in this case cow/robot, starts a story that begins with the first word and gets to the 2nd word. They have to say at least 3 sentences (or more depending)

    EX: I went to a farm and saw a COW. It was a really big cow. Then i realized that the cow was actually an angry ROBOT cow.

    Person #2 takes over the story and continues:
    EX: The ROBOT cow was acting all crazy. SO i called my friend Bob and he said that i needed to get away from it. Then i ran all the way to TEXAS to be safe.

    Exercise continues until the last word on the last card is reached. Sometimes the story is good, sometimes not. you have to help some kids get going. But it makes everyone participate at least one time. If you have more cards than students, give extras to the 'good' students.

    As a hint, 90% of my card circles start with COW (so i remember which is card #1) and end with CAT (again, so i remember where the story ends)

    I usually only make one stack of cards per semester. Or i have the kids start doing them. The words can be anything...noun...verb...a famous person etc....somehow oprah gets in a lot of the game...lol
     
  4. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Aug 18, 2007

    I have a couple of favorites that I use.

    I teach at an alternative school, so my students come from all over the district and don't know each other. To help me and them with names, we play the ever popular "People Bingo."

    I've also got a list of about 60 odd questions and a ball with the numbers 1 - 60 taped to it. I toss the ball to them, and when they catch it, they have to answer the question number under or nearest to their right thumb.

    I've had kids interview and introduce each other, but you need some time for this. I'm on a block schedule, so I have time.

    My favorite "English-y" type thing to do is the Who Rocks Your World lesson from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. If your classes are pretty settled on the first day and you doubt there will be lots of schedule changes, you can start this right away.
     
  5. MsTeacher98

    MsTeacher98 Companion

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    Aug 18, 2007

    I like the beach ball activity--what kind of questions do you use?
     
  6. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Aug 18, 2007

    Of course, I can't find that file anywhere on my home computer! LOL!

    BUT, I know that I used some of the questions from The Kids Book of Questions and Would You Rather. I found both of those at the book store.

    If I can find them on Monday, I'll post them! If not, well, I guess I'll be making up a new set of questions. OY!

     
  7. hsenglish

    hsenglish Rookie

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    Aug 20, 2007

    I like the ball activity too...but how do you fit the numbers 1-60 on it? this does sound really fun! Any reason why you chose the #60 for the amount of questions? Thanks!
     
  8. ELAteacher

    ELAteacher Rookie

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    Aug 20, 2007

    I don't know what grade you teach, but here are a couple of ideas I'm planning on using with my 7th grade ELA classes the first couple of days of school:

    On a 5 by 8 index card, have students illustrate (draw) something memorable they did this summer. Then on the other (lined) side, they are to write about it. What did they do? Where were they? Who were they with? What was the weather like? How did this experience make them feel? Why was it so memorable?

    Another idea: so that you may get to know them (and see their writing ability), have students write you 3 paragraphs on the following:
    Paragraph 1: your thoughts/fears/impressions of 7th grade
    Paragraph 2: a goal that you have for the year
    Paragraph 3: something you want me to know about yourself

    I'm going to do both of these activities the first week of school. Hope that helps!
     
  9. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    Aug 20, 2007

    my favorite - I have my kids draw a picture of themselves, and then by the smile they write by different body parts...
    Smile - what makes you happy
    Head - what you want to be
    Left hand - what you need to stop doing
    Right hand - what you need to start doing
    Feet - where you want to go

    I have them draw these right on their portfolios that they will use for the whole year. Depending on how much time we have, we will share, or pair share, different aspects with the class.

    I have a whole packet of activities I put together for a workshop I did - if anyone wants it just PM me your email address.
     
  10. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Aug 20, 2007

    I chose 60 just because I wanted to lower the chance of repeating questions.

    I got an average size ball (like the size of a volleyball), and it was easy to fit all the numbers on that. Just write them on pieces of tape.

    I still kind find my questions! D'oh! I'll be making up some new ones today and tomorrow, I guess! Once I get them done, I'll PM them to you!
     
  11. Weazy

    Weazy Comrade

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    Aug 20, 2007

    I have posted this several times before. This is the activity I am using and the kids really like it.
    ________________________________________
    This is a first day activity which they create name tags without their names.

    I use construction paper cut in half, but a variety of other materials can be used. Each student chooses a piece. I tell them to pick a color that relates to them. (mood, favorite, etc.) They are to decorate the nametag, but only put their name on the back.
    I buy cheap do-dads at Big Lots, Wal-Mart (buttons, fun foam...) I like the multi-packs of scrap-booking paper, too. They use a lot of this. They can also use items from home since it will be their first assignment. Oh--they can also cut their nametag in a shape that describes them, too. They must use symbols, colors, objects, pictures, etc., that represent themselves. I encourage them to think beyond football player, cheerleader, and focus on who they are when they are away from their friends; quiet, reflective, bookworm. If they want to say they play a sport, I encourage them to look for other descriptive words, such as, competitive. Once they have created their nametags, each student explains his/hers to the class. This lets me hear their verbal skills and see their personalities. I can tell who will probably be the quiet students and who will be the performers. I ususally have a few who don't bring it in finished. This gives me a small inclination as to who the " never have homework completed" students might be. I don't expect everybody to be an artist, and those who simply draw on their nametag still have fun explaining it.

    Because I start the class by going over classroom procedures and expectations, we run out of time to finish. This is their first assignment. I always tell them that this will be the easiest assignment they receive from me all year. It is worth 10 points.
    I use sticky tac and hang them on my closet doors. They look nice, add color, and each class has fun guessing who made which nametag from the other classes
     

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