Freebies for Back-to-School

It's back-to-school season again, and we want to share some of our favorite activities with you. They are all free for you to grab and use with your students, so be sure to check them out!

Jackie from ROOM 213 suggests that you get your school year off to an amazing start by planning activities that get students active and engaged right away. After a summer of freedom they spend a lot of time listening passively in most of the classes, so those first days of school can be a drag for them. Make an impression with your new students by doing activities that get them moving and talking to each other, like with this one. It's a great getting-to-know you activity that will help you begin to build community in your classroom.

Bonnie from Presto Plans finds that the beginning of the school year is the perfect opportunity to establish classroom routines! Even though it can seem to take a lot of time and effort, establishing effective classroom routines at the outset ends up saving you so much more time and effort in the long run. One of Bonnie’s favorite class routines is bell-ringers, which alongside giving students a consistent way of practicing important ELA skills also buy you a few extra minutes at the beginning of class. You can grab four weeks of bell-ringers for FREE by clicking here!

The Classroom Sparrow knows the value of setting up a classroom on the right foot from the first day. Use this FREE 2023-2024 digital daily agenda to help establish a classroom routine for your and your students! This editable template makes it easy to quickly display your class agenda, daily bell-ringers, learning objectives, and so much more! Click HERE to grab it!

Danielle from Nouvelle ELA likes to start with this Asset-Based Profile activity. Students begin by reading a story about three gamers. They assess each gamer’s soft skills (creativity, flexibility, problem-solving, etc.). Then, they move on to examine their own character traits. Then, you can have students present their profiles to help build classroom community. If you want to know more about this activity, check out this blog post about using Asset-Based Profiles to help students value their soft skills. 

Christina from The Daring English Teacher loves getting to know her new students by giving them an opportunity to fill out this free back-to-school student survey. To help create a welcoming and calming atmosphere, give your students some time in class work work on the survey while playing some music in the background. As students work on completing the survey, students can talk with one another while the teacher circles around the room and has quick one-on-one conversations with the students. 

Tracee Orman loves to encourage reading for pleasure, so one of the first things she does in her classroom is ask students to share selfies with (or of) their favorite books. Displaying these in the classroom not only sparks conversations about books, it offers an instant bulletin board or display you can keep up year round (and year after year)! To learn more, you can download the freebie here: Book Selfies

Addie Williams has a fun idea to get your students thinking outside the box!  She loves to get students to write and think creatively when the new school year starts, and this easy poetry activity will surely be a hit. Using a view from a window, students will write about what they see and feel as they look outside.  Use your classroom window, windows at home, or find some fun views online as inspiration.  Just print and go with this fun Out My Window Poetry freebie!

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