First Week Lesson Plans

What To Do The First Week of School

I frequent teacher chatboards and mailrings and every year
I see the same question pops up -"What should I do the first day?" So I made this page to address that question! When I find great first day lesson plans or suggestions of what to do the first day, I add it to this page. Thank you to the teachers whose lesson plans are found below.

This page will show the routines and procedures used by many teachers over the most important days of the school year - the first week! I believe that these first few days are the most important and set the tone for the entire year. I hope these lessons help make your first few days a hit and make the year a smash!

Updated 2013

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Guess I will go ahead and start this page with my first two days of lesson plans. These come from my 2001 grade two classroom. It was my first year of teaching grade 2 after teaching K-3 resource room. I really over planned and these two days of lessons actually lasted me four days. I feel that as long as students are actively engaged you will not encounter behavior problems. So go ahead and over plan, it is better than not having enough planned! I tend to really write out the first few days of school plans. I feel like I am writing a script. I did find that this really made me feel prepared the first few days. I didn't even need the plans. After reading them over about two times, I was set. I would just glance at the plans and remember what I had written. It was like I had already rehearsed the show and the first day was so easy and fun. I recommend first year teachers to script out their first day plans. It really does help!

My main goals for the first few weeks are to set-up my classroom routine. I want my students to know what I expect and how I want it done. When this is perfect, I dig into the nitty-gritty academics. Also, I want my students to love their new classroom and really look forward to the year. I want to develop a community that respects each other and feels that learning is fun. This takes a good amount of time, about three weeks for me. These also seem to be the most draining weeks for me as a teacher. Sometimes I think, they will never get it. Then about midway through the third week, I sit down and just observe my class and think, "My gosh, they have it. The routines and procedures are running like clockwork. My class is finally perfect!" When you feel this, you know that the rest of the year will be smooth sailing!!!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2001

Objectives – Teach behavior system & signal- Get to know students - Organize class supplies and student desks – Describe class jobs

9:00 – 9:30 – Greet students at the door. Tell them to find their desk. Unload their bag and then hang up their coat and bag in the cubbies.  Pick lunch. (Help with nametags.)  Pick an office helper for the next two weeks and explain that it will be their job to take down the lunch count and money.

Name Tags:

Type a student’s name on a name tag in the space provided. Students who are leaving school on a bus would get a bus name tag.  Students who are walking home would get a sneaker name tag.  Students who are getting a ride home would get a car name tag.  After you type the names on the tags, print the tags on cardstock, laminate, and place a pin on the back.  Give each student their name tag on the first day. 

I have name tags ready for you to use in our back to school packet. Click Here to Learn More!

~~~(Students should begin working on their book at their desk.)

Ther are tons of different independent activities for students to do at this time.
Both our Cdrom for Back to School and our Back To School Packets have a variety of fun and ready to use ideas.
Click here to learn more!

Collect supplies on the back table  Juice, pencils, wide rule spiral notebook, glue sticks, 2 black flair pens, baby wipes, wide ruled notebook paper, Kleenex.

They should place their scissors, crayons, and erasers in their take home folder.

Hand out labels for folders.  Decide which will be their take home folder.  Pass the other folder in when they have decided which will be take home.  Place take home folder in desk.

Get done early...
Click here for great reads for back to school week.

9:30 – 10:00 “Please put down your pencils and crayons and I would like to show you our signal that means you need to stop what you are doing and put your eyes on me.I clap a beat and then you lightly clap the same beat.” Practice the signal by having the students go back to work.

“We have something very exciting to do today and it is in this bag. 
First we have to go over some class rules and then look at the book you are working on.
And then we will go to the calendar to find out what is in the bag.”

“If you look in the middle of your groups of desks, you will see a group number. Your numbers are on the board and on the book baskets.You will receive points up on the board when I catch you being good If your group is kind and quiet I might give you a point. If your group is the first to be ready when I give the signal I might give your group a point.  If you ask me for a point I will have to take a point away.  At the end of the day we will count up the points to see which group has the most points.  The group with the most points gets a star on their chart from the star monitor.   (Pick a star monitor for the next to weeks and explain job)  When you fill your chart you get to go shopping in our class store.  I am going to open up the store and call you by groups to come up and take a quick peak in the store.  Remember if you fill your chart you can pick anything from the store.”  Call individual groups to look at the store.

“In our class you need to be a good listener.  You need to be kind to everyone.  You need to be a hard worker and you need to be safe.” Discuss these  “If you aren’t being these things I will ask you to sign the book and that means you owe me five minutes of recess.  If I have to put a check by your name that means you owe me all of recess.  If I place another check by your name, I will have to call home. But I do not think we will have to worry about anyone not following the rules.  What do you think?”

I also use Mrs. G's 4 Be's

Here is one from our BEE Themed Classroom Resources Packet - click to learn more!

Look over the book. 
Have volunteers share what they have written. 
Tell them to place this book on the corner of their desk to finish later. 
This should be the only thing on their desk.  Call groups to calendar that are ready and have neat areas.

Above is four pages from a back to school mini book found in our Back To School Packet. Click Here to Learn More!


Check out our Bee Themed Calaendar!

Or if you have an Ocean theme - we have a HUGE OCEAN Themed Decorations and Forms Set - You can modify most sheets if you have Publisher or Word...

Ocean Decor Theme
 To purchase and learn more - check it out at our
EJunkie store. 

See more pictures of the ocean set here!

10:00 – 11:0o– Before doing balloon activity go over bathroom rules.  They must place a tag on their desk when they use the rest room so you know where they are. 
They may only use the restroom if a tag is available.

“Some of you know each other because you were in the same class last year.  I do not really know any of you yet.  So I thought it would be fun to play a getting to know you game.  I am going to pick four people to come up to the front at the same time.  They will be given a balloon to pop.  (hold up balloon and pop it)  After they pop the balloon they will find a piece of paper with a question on it.  They should practice reading the question silently and then ask me for help with any difficult words.  Then one at a time they will read their question and answer it.”  Call six groups of 2-4 students at a time to come up and pop a balloon. After a student pops a balloon, give them a tootsie pop to eat quietly while they watch the other students!

Question strip for this activity are ready to print and use. Back to School Packet. Click Here to Learn More!

      Go over marshmallow toes – hall behavior and transitioning...

To get the files above to use - Click Here to Learn More!

Show a marshmallow.  Make a web on the white board with the word marshmallow in the middle.  Pass out marshmallow and ask students not to eat it right a way but feel it.  (soft, white, squishy, powdery, sweet, smells fresh…) Outline their remarks as they state their descriptions of the marshmallow.Drop your marshmallow on the floor and tell them to listen to the sound it makes on the floor.  They should come to the conclusion that it makes no sound.   It is quiet.  Explain to the class when they walk in the halls or around the room when other people are working they should have marshmallow toes and marshmallow voices.“What do you think that means?”Discuss that you would like them not to talk and to walk quietly in the halls using their marshmallow voices and toes. Read poem in pocket chart –


Walking through the hallways,

Everyone QUIETLY goes…

Being respectful, all the way,

Walking on our “Marshmallow-Toes!”

The Poem and Activity Sheetseen above are foun in our Back To School Packet! Click Here to Learn More!

11:00 – 11:20– Go back to seats using marshmallow toes and voices.  Explain that you will be looking for the group that does the best job of using their marshmallow toes and voices as they go back to their groups.  Award points to groups that did a good job.

Pick a pencil person at this time and explain the job and show what to do if a student needs a pencil.

Explain their writing job and how to head their paper with the name in the left corner and the date in the right corner.  First we write and then you draw a picture to match the story.


Giraffes live on the savanna.

The weather is always warm.

Giraffes reach for tree braches.

They eat the leaves.

The Paragraph below comes from the books below. We use these most of the year! Click on a book to learn more!

Ask: “What is a savanna?”  Call on volunteers and then explain: “ A savanna is a grassland.  It is piece of land with many kinds of grasses.  It is located near the equator.”

Show Giraffe picture on computer. Let students listen to the sound it makes!

“After you have used your best writing to write about the Giraffe you need to draw a picture of a giraffe on a grassland.”  Show your picture.

11:15 – 11:25 – Call groups to wash their hands and then return to their seat to finish up work.  At 11:20place finished work in basket and unfinished work in folder.  Allow lunch packers to get their lunches and sit quietly and begin eating.  Call groups to line up for lunch when quiet.  Take to lunch.

(They should be able to hear the music while they talk quietly among their friends at lunch.) – May go over recess rules as they eat.

11:45– line up to wash trays.

11:50 – Dismiss for recess take picture before they go out.

12:20 – 1:00– To calendar for story.   Read story and discuss. 
(I read many books the first week of school. You can see some of the books and activities at the following link -

You also may be interested in our Primary Teacher Timesaver CDROm for Teaching Literature. CLick here to learn more.

Do calendar routine.

Discuss today’s date (Wednesday, September 5, 2001)

Someone comes up to do yesterday, today, & tomorrow  - What was yesterday?

Lunch count and attendance with greater and less than

How many days have we been in school?  (1)

How could we show that with money? (1 penny)

Now do a math box and show with (roman numeral, the word, a add & sub problem, tally, dice…)

1:00 –1:30- show banner and explain that they will be making a banner that tells about us.  Teams have banners and we are team so we will each make a banner about ourselves.  They need to first draw it with pencil and then collect a black flair pen and trace over their drawing.  Show banner

“My banner has my name.  I also drew a picture of a computer because I like to use the computer and I drew a book because I like to read.  Then I drew a apple because I am a teacher.  What are some things you might draw on your banner?”  Brainstorm (football, bike, dog, car, baseball bat, TV, pizza…)

Allow students to work on banner and complete back to schoolbook and giraffe.  Finished work goes in the basket and unfinished work goes in folder.

1:30 – 1:50– Start Math Lesson

Fun Icebreaker Math Dice Game - Free to print!

This game is part of this packet.  Click here to learn more. 
This packet also has a one dice version as well as a great puzzle game kids can play in teams.

2 easy back to school games

Click to Print the Free Roll and Cover!

“We are going to see how much you remember from first grade math the next couple of days.  (hand out paper)First I need you to put your name at the top left side of your paper and the date on the right.  We always put our name and date on all papers.  On the first line I would like you to write what I have here

163, _____, ______, ______, 167, _____…  Now see if you can fill in the blanks on your own.  Check work.  What do those three dots mean?

Let’s try one more together 210, 211, _____, ______, ________…  Check work

Now I am going to put three on the board and you will need to copy them and complete them on your own.When you are finished you may bring the sheet to me to check and finish any work from today that you have not finished.   If you finish everything you may get a book from the reading center to read silently at your desk.   (A & T will need this part modified)

724, 728, ____,______, ______…

42, 43, _____, ______, _____…

310, 311, _____, _____, _____…

1:50 – 1:55– Clean up and get ready for gym. Pick line Leader

2:25 – 3:00– Finish Math (SEE PLAN BOOK)

1,000 on the board

“What number comes next?  (1,001)

“Do we say that 1,001 or 1,000 and 1? (1,001)

“Can someone write 1,001 for me on the board?”

Hand out math journals and explain that they will be kept in the desk.  Have them turn to page one and tell them they will need to write the date and time on every journal page.  “let’s put today’s date and time on the journal page.”  Do number 1 together and have students finish the rest.  Walk around to help and check.  (A & T will need a modified number line to fill in).When students finish journal they should make sure that their back to school book is completed – that the giraffe page has been done and turned in – that their banner is complete.  They may then read a book silently.

3;00 – 3:10 – mini recess?

3:10 – 3:25– Distribute and explain other jobs.

“At the end of the day you will need to get your bag and coat.  Then check your tubby for any notes or papers to put in your take home folder./ MOOSE

The take home folder and MOOSE FOLDER goes home with you every night (the papers inside the folder may stay at home) and must be brought back to school everyday.”  Dismiss groups to do this.

Students put their chairs up and join you by the job chart.

We have already explained the pencil person’s job, the Office helper’s job, line leader, and star monitors job

Neat Nuts - will make sure there are no papers on the floor at the end of the day.

Book Bug - makes sure that the books are nice and neat in the reading center at the end of the day.

Pencil person - collects pencils and puts them in the sharpen jar.

Board Cleaner- moves all the stars to the absent side and wipes the boards clean with the eraser.

Now we will add up points and see which group won today and will get a star on their chart.  The star monitor will give those people a star.  The rest of you will go quietly to your desks and hand the pencil person your pencil.  The board cleaner, book bug and neat nut may do their jobs.  Everyone else sits behind their desks until I dismiss groups to the bus.

Hand out the LUCKY TREAT!!!! - Click here to learn more!

Thursday, September 6, 2001

Objectives – Introduce centers/ Explan Moose in more detail

9:00 – 9:20– Greet students at the door.  Tell them to find their desk.  Unload their bag and then hang up their coat and bag in the cubbies.  Pick lunch. (Help with nametags.)  After announcements the office helper will need to take the lunch money down.

~~~(Students should begin working on their daily writing at their desk.)

9:20 – 10:20Today I am going to show you the centers that are out now.  You get to do your center when you finish your AM jobs.Today you have two jobs.  - The Hippo writing and the math sheet.  When you finish those you may go to your center.  You will see a dot on your table.  Put your finger on your dot.  Ask ind. Students what color dot they have.  Show center chart.  We have six centers.  If you have a purple dot you will be at the listening center.  Raise you hand if you have a purple dot.  What do purple dots do today?…

Show each center and expectations:

After you finish your jobs for the day, you will need to pick up your center folder.  All your center work goes into this folder.

Purple goes to the listening center today.  They will need to pick a book bag and an evaluation sheet and bring it back to their desks to listen to.  After they finish listening to their tape they must fill out the listening center sheet and put it in their folder.

Yellow goes to the reading center today.  They will need to pick a book from their group basket.  After they read the book they need to complete the book report in  their center folder.

Each day there will be two new people at the computer center.  Today is Bryce and Austin. Austin will use the white computer in the room and Bryce will use the pod computer.  The game I want you to play is loaded. You will need to put on headphones to hear the game.

Pink goes to a pocket chart.  They will count the money in each pocket and write the amount on the paper.

Green goes to the PoemCenter You will need your journals for this center. You will copy the poem into your journal and then draw a picture of the poem.

Red goes to word build.  At this center you will pick up a bag of letters and a piece of paper.  You need to make five words with the letters and then use each word in a sentence.  Put your finished work in your center folder and put the center away when you are done.

Orange goes to the sentence center.They will need to grab a sentence folder.

Allow them to get started and help where needed.  When they finish jobs and centers they will need to work on team flag.

10:20 – 11:15 – Begin favorites rough draft for computer.  Go to floor and tell them that we will go to the computer lab on Monday to type up a little report about ourselves to put on a webpage and display.  Model how to fill in favorites sheet.   Let them complete independently

Another similar idea and two free printables:

Do you send something to your new students to fill out as a kind of get to know you activity before school starts?  Here is a fun sheet you can send home and students can bring in the first day.  When they get to school you can cut them out and string them together to make a class banner.  Hang the banner along a bulletin board (Click Here for an idea that would look great with this).

All you need to create this fun sheet is the sheet –
Click here to download ME BANNER!

Here is a great way to get to know your students…  Either send them this form to fill out before school starts or have them fill it out on the first day of school.  Display these on a bulletin board with the title…  “Look who is online?”

Click here to print the form for Back To School News!

Our Back To School Glyph is also a great first week activity.

Back to School Glyph Craftivity

I have a new product. You can view it by clicking the link below.
E-Junkie Store (lowest price.)
Here is a great back to school craft / math activity / writing
activity for your first, second, or third grade classroom. It is
a great way for students to learn about their new classmates from
reading the data supplied. This makes a great display for open
house. Parents love guessing which glyph is their students. The
guess who books each glyph student is holding makes it even more
fun to display. Math, reading, and writing all thrown into one
fun display. This packet included the templates to make the
glyphs. It also includes data collection activity sheets to use
during glyph construction and after.

Back to School Glyph and Activities

So much learning fun for back to school time…

Back to School Glyph Activity

11:15 – 11:25 – Call groups to wash their hands and then return to their seat to finish up work.  At 11:20 place finished work in basket and unfinished work in folder.  Allow lunch packers to get their lunches and sit quietly and begin eating.  Call groups to line up for lunch when quiet.  Take to lunch.

(They should be able to hear the music while they talk quietly among their friends at lunch.) – May go over recess rules as they eat.

11:45 – line up to wash trays.

11:50 – Dismiss for recess.

12:20 – 1:00– To calendar for story.   Read Miss Nelson is missing and discuss.  Do calendar routine. 

Discuss today’s date (Thursday, September 6, 2001)

Someone comes up to do yesterday, today, & tomorrow  - What was yesterday?

Lunch count and attendance with greater and less than

How many days have we been in school?  (2)

How could we show that with money? (2 penny)

Now do a math box and show with (roman numeral, the word, a add & sub problem, tally, dice…)

1:00 –1:30- Discuss favorite parts of the story.  Show schoolhouse patterns.  Tell students that the first thing they will do is write about their favorite part of the story.  Then the teacher will check it and they will use their best writing to recopy it on to the good copy.  Then they may color the schoolhouse.  Put a picture of Miss Nelson on the Front Door and Miss Viola swamp on the back cover.

1:30 – 1:50– Recess

1:50 – 1:55 – Keep Money on table - Clean up and get ready for gym.  line Leader

Pass out moneybags – Have students hold up Q, D, N, P – Ask how much each is worth.  Have the students take out two quarters. 

“How much money do you have? (50)

Repeat with 2 dimes, 2 nickels, 2 pennies

2:25 – 3:00– Finish Math

More Money – take out 2 dimes, 1 q, & 2 p.  Think about how much money you have?  How did you solve this problem?  - Lined up from most value to least.  Let’s count this together.  (Do a couple)

Turn to journal page two.  We will do these together 1 at a time

3;00 – 3:15 – mini recess?

3:15– 3:25 – Distribute and explain other jobs.

“At the end of the day you will need to get your bag and coat.  Then check your tubby for any notes or papers to put in your take home folder.  The take home folder goes home with you every night (the papers inside the folder may stay at home) and must be brought back to school everyday.” Dismiss groups to do this.

Students put their chairs up and join you by the calendar - discuss MOOSE BOOK in more detail.

Here is plans I left for a sub... This may also give some ideas. I tend to go into great detail on sub plans. I subbed for a few months and always vowed to leave good plans when I was a teacher.

Welcome To Room 19

You will be working with some super second graders.  I hope you have a good day.  Please try your best to get the things done below.  Make a note of things you do not finish or do not get to

GOOD BEHAVIOR:On The white board next to the beehive you will see group numbers that correspond with groups of students.  Anytime you catch a group being good you may reward points.  You can give points for participation of groups, quietness, neatness, and anything positive.  Use it as you wish and where needed.

8:40 – 9:00 – Read over these plans to make sure you understand them.  Put a pencil on each student’s desk (pencils are next to the computer.  Put the Daily writing sheet on each student’s desk.

9:00 – 9:35 – As the students come in, remind them to select a lunch and get their unfinished work and take home folder on their desk.  Also remind students to place their homework packet in their homework folder.  At 9:10go over Daily Writing as a group.  When all are finished instruct them to place it in their take home folder.  – Jan is in the room at this time to work with A and R  She may pull them out to give them a spelling test.   The sped teacher and the speech teacher will pull Aand Rperiodically during the day.  Jan will get Astarted on her modified work.  When she finishes she may read a book to herself.

Send the lunch count down to the office with Kristina.

Now go over jobs.  The jobs are on the board.  The students are expected to complete these quietly while you pull kids for small groups.They know the routine and do an excellent job.  Reward the group that does the best job 10 points and the group that does second best 5 points.  I require them to stay quiet during this time.  Explain each job.  You will need to hand out the Word Wall Sheet I left and the money sheet.  As you pass this out instruct them to put their name on the sheet.

1.) Math Box – This is in their journal that they keep at their desk.  Read each problem to them while they follow along as you read. 

2.) Justice – Read over the writing on the board and discuss.  They need to copy this in their best printing.  Remind them that there will be no illustration today, just writing.

3.)        Chauncey’s Change Purse – Explain and pass out.

4.)Word Wall sheet – pass this out.  They have done sheets similar to this.  They may sit in front of the word wall to complete it.  They need to use words from the word wall to complete the sheet.

5.)Centers – They know the routine for Centers and you just need to mention this at their third job.

6.)Quiet Choice – They may choose to read silently, complete a free time sheet, draw, write in their journal color, or practice math facts.   (They know this routine)

9:35 – 10:55– You will be teaching reading groups at the back table while the class works on their jobs.  ALL THE THINGS YOU NEED DURING THIS TIME IS ON THE BACK TABLE!

9:35 – 10:00 –(On my desk you will see fish in a jar.  Spread a few on the back table facing down.  Have the student take turns rolling the dice.  Then picking up the number of fish on the die and reading the word on the fish.  If they get it right, they get to keep the fish in a pile.  If they get it wrong they need to put the fish back on the table.  Repeat till fish are gone.  Count fish. Student with the most fish wins.    Clean up when finished.

Read pages (       ) in the purple book.

10:00 – 10:25 – (CUBS –) Hand Out the blue books.

Read pages (        ) .  Then have them partner up and pick one of the pages to read to their partner.  Other students are expected to follow along with their fingers as others read.  Do each page twice.  Rotate through students.  2.) Explain that they will need to do page 4 in their packets at their seat.  They may place page four in the finished basket when they are done

10:25 – 10:45 –– Have this group take turns reading pages 76 – 78 in the blue Reading Mastery BooksThey need to be following along while the other reads.  Ask questions about the story as they read.  Have them partner up and find a quiet place in the room to read 64 – 70.Partners take turns reading a page.

10:45 – 10:55 – Walk around and assist students as needed.

10:55-11:15 – Have one student pass out the offices and have another student pass out a piece of notebook paper to each student.  Give spelling test.  I left a copy of the way I like the test headed and numbered.  Walk the students through it.  Then give the test.

Teacher : Spell the word frog, what word?

Student: Frog

Teacher:  A frog sat on a log.

The two bonus sentences at the end are

1.)The frog sat on a log in the pond.

2.)Did the boy drink his milk?

11:15 – 11:20 – Dismiss groups to wash their hands and line up for lunch.  The students that bought lunch may start eating at their desks.  Walk the students down to the cafeteria.  After each student has paid you may return to the class to watch them during lunch.

11:25 – 11:45 – Students eat as you monitor.If they have done a good job thus far, you may turn on the TV and press play on the VCR.  Turn off the TV and VCR at 11:40Remind students to take out their napkins and close their milks when done eating.

11:45 – 11:50 – Have students with trays line up to wash trays.  Take them to the wash station and have them properly was their trays. Gavin will be able to direct you to this area).  Return to groups and dismiss teams that are quiet and that have clean areas to recess.

11:50 – 11:20 – Your lunch.

11:20 – 12:50 – At 11:20, open the back door and let the students in.  At this time they may get a drink and then have a seat by the calendar.

Have Kelsey be your assistant for calendar.  She can help if you have questions.  The students know this routine well…

1.)Read the story I have left on the chair.

2.)Have student place the date on the calendar and tell the class the date.

3.)Pick students one at a time to fill in each part of the Attendance and lunch count section of the chart.

4.)Pick a volunteer to write the number 43 on the dry erase board.  That volunteer will call on other students to tell them different names for 43Allow them to call on about 8 students

12:50 – 1:30 – We have been discussing patriotic symbols. Have them brainstorm a list of those symbols as you write them on the board.  Read over the American Writing sheet together and discuss possible answers and write some more words on the board as you discuss.  Allow them to work on the sheet as you walk around and help students.  Collect sheets at 1:25 and get ready for recess. 

1:25 – 1:50 – RECESS – You may take them outside to the playground outside our classroom doors.  Be sure to prop our back door open, so you can get back inside through that door.   I allow them only to be in the bark area so that I can have my eyes on each of them.  Walk around and monitor. 

1:55 – 2:25 – Take the class to music.  Evan will lead the way for you.  You may check the work in the finished basket at this time and/or read over the math lesson.  Pick the class up at 2:25

2:25 – 3:10 – Complete the attached math lesson.

3:10– Have the shuttle bus students collect their things and get ready to go home.  They will need to check their cubbies and put papers in their take home folders.  You may dismiss them at 3:15 At this time you may make the statement; People with jobs may do them.  Also count points and reward the highest group a piece of candy from my jar!

3:10 – 3:20 – Dismiss groups 1 at a time to quietly get their things and check their cubbies.

3:25 – When the bell rings you may dismiss

#1. Primary Teacher Time Savers
For Back To School and Beyond!

This Packet is in Word Format.
All sheets can be modified to meet your needs.
For single classroom use only!

Only Available in Bundle. See Below.

#2. Primary Teacher Time Savers
For September Through December!

Click Here For Free Samples

This Packet is in Word Format.
All sheets can be modified to meet your needs.
For single classroom use only!

Only Available in Bundle. See Below.

#3. Primary Teacher Time Savers
For January Through June

Click Here For Free Samples

This Packet is in Word Format.
All sheets can be modified to meet your needs.
For single classroom use only!

Only Available in Bundle. See Below.

#4. Primary Teacher Timesavers
For Teaching Reading & Literature

Click Here For Free Samples

This Packet is in Word Format.
All sheets can be modified to meet your needs.
For single classroom use only!
Only Available in Bundle. See Below.

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What other teachers do!

I just gave you my lessons for the first few days. Here are some other tips and lessons from teachers. I have compiled these from mailrings and chatboards. Hope it helps.

About half of my half-day K's come to school with no prior experiences such
as pre-school or daycare. I can usually expect 2 or 3 criers and some VERY
reluctant kids. I ALWAYS get an adult in there to help me the first day or
two. Sometimes I can get the Speech or Spec. Ed. teacher, sometimes I have
used a tutor or even a Mom from the year before. I just have found I cannot
stop a couple kids from crying while trying to hold the others' attention. I
have their parents help them find their seat at a table and after parents go
I ask the children to color a picture of themselves. I ask them to put their
name on it too. I keep these, by the way, and make a beginning and end of
year picture thing at the end of the year. After they are finished coloring
I ask them to play quietly with the things at the table. I have legos,
unifix cubes, etc. out in tubs to play with. Assuming everyone is settled
down, we gather on the carpet and I give rules for good listening. We look
around the room at the different areas with our eyes and then I read a book
about coming to kindergarten. I give them some kind of snack at their tables
and we line up for restroom and drinks at the water fountain. I teach how to
line up, use the bathroom, and how to use the water fountain. I show them
how they will find their names tomorrow when they come in the room, where
their backpacks will go tomorrow, and that they will sit at their tables like
they did today. If I have time I will get out playdough for each table. I
always give them something to take home like a lollipop with a saying on it
like "I am a sucker for you!"
Gail in IN

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Posted by Barb-K in OH on 6/16/02

We do the first days of school a little differently.I really
like it. For the first three days of school, we schedule
individual conferences with our students and their parents.
They get to meet us one on one, bring in their supplies, pick
out their own seat, find their cubby, and go on a tour of the
classroom. I also get to get important paperwork filled out
from the parent and insure that I know exactly where that
student goes at the end of each day. The main part that the
children enjoy is making their own gingerbread man. I already
have the dough cut out on a piece of foil that I write their
name on. The students decorate their gingerbread man while I
do paperwork with their parents. I tell them that they get to
eat their cookie on the first day of school. This gives them
a reason to want to come back on the first day with all of
the students. Then we do the gingerbread man hunt like you. I
have done this for many, many, many years and I, like you,
would like to go in a different direction. However, I have
students each year come back to me from the junior high and
high school and still talk about the gingerbread man hunt.
So...each time I think I want to go in a different direction,
I think about the impression that the hunt made on them and I
stick with it. Why mess with something that has made that big
of an impression on students just because I'm tired of doing
the same old thing? I guess some traditions are just meant to

Posted by Sandi on 6/17/02

We have a Teddy Bear Picnic the first day. The letter that says
who their teacher is explains the activity. All three sections of
kindergarten come together. The kids bring a stuffed animal,
parents are invited to stay (we request no siblings). We read
Brown Bear, Brown Bear; Act out We're going on a Bear Hunt; Sing
songs: ABC, Ten Little Teddy Bears, The Wheels on the Bus, Twinkle
Twinkle, Eensy Weensy Spider; Compare the attributes of the
different stuffed animals; Play parachute; Play on Playground;
Have snack. While kids eat snack, we also do a BRIEF info session
about how kids are to bring backpack/parents should check backpack-
folder daily/explain staggered schedule (1/2 kids come next day
then the other half the next day then ALL the following day). Pass
out supply list, make sure emergency info is correct and answer
any questions. We've done this for the past 8 years and it has
worked out great.

Posted by Tallytchr on 6/17/02

Spend a good deal of time the first week on rules....but not
so much that you overwhelm them. Second graders want to
please...but they also are becoming more independent and peer
oriented. Second graders are very make
your rules specific but reasonable. Second graders are also
very make sure your rules are fair but firm.
Second graders have very tender, sensitive feelings...they
are just becoming aware that everything they do isn't
considered cute and adorable anymore (they are no longer the
cute little kindergartners or the fantastic first graders).
They are now sort of just in there with all the other school
age kids...and the transition can be a bit rocky. So have
rules that are firm but compassionate...they will try to
please but they are also stubborn little critters who want to
do what they want to do!

I tend to give my rules out a bit at a time....during the
first day...I talk about the BIG not interupting
when someone is talking...not coming up to me and "patting"
my arm...when they can use the bathroom and get water...

In my room...rules change according to what activity is
taking I have rule cards that I change when we
are doing certain things. These cards are a visual clue as
to what I expect during that time.

I have a Quiet Work Time has a picture of children
working at tables. On this card I have these rules...

1. You are working without disturbing your neighbors
2. Use a whisper voice if you need to ask for help
3. You may use the bathroom/get water quietly

Another rule card: Group Time
1. Sit with hands and feet to yourself
2. Listen to the speaker
3. Don't talk to your neighbor
4. Take turns..signal with your hand

I try to keep the rules simple but explicit. At the
beginning of the year...we model and talk about this a lot.
The first week of school...I have my children draw pictures
to illustrate the rules...children working quietly...children
lining up quietly with hands to themselves.

Second Graders usually know the rules...they just need help with your expectations and specifics.

I have TWO rules that are posted at all times in my
room...One is the Golden Rule...and I have it written in gold
glitter on black poster board "Treat others the way you want
to be treated"...and the other is Thumper's Rule: "If you
can't say something nice...don't say "nuthin" at all" Most
of second grade conflicts can be directly related back to
these rules. We talk about these two ALL year long. I refer
back to these whenever conflicts arise.

I spend quite a bit of time at the beginning of the year with
rules...but I try to break these up into small chunks of time.

The first day of school for second graders is fun. They
aren't babies anymore...they can read and write. I use these
skills as part of my "rules" instruction.

I read Miss Nelson is Missing and The Teacher from the Black
Lagoon. The first week we do a lot of talking and writing
and drawing about our new classroom.

I give them a "guided tour" the first week....each day I add
a new part of my room...and we talk about how to use that

The First Day....every year it seems like all I do is TALK.
I usually have something on their desk to begin with....I use
a coloring page I got years ago with Arthur walking to school
with a backpack. They usually sit right down and begin to
work on this.

I have group a about the rules a bit.

Then I send them back to their desks...we do a math
page...usually an easy addition subtraction page to get a

The first day sort of proceeds along with short group times
and short work times....

Have lots planned....expect to get about half of it done!

The first week is a lot like over planned...but
don't expect to get it all done...there is always next week!

Mix short group times with independent work times...I don't
usually try to do any small groups the first week. I keep
them all whole group, doing the same things to begin with.
As they get used to me and the rules of my classroom...then I
begin pulling small groups for instruction...and increasing
independent work time while I do small groups.

Hope this helps

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You will be spending a lot of your day going over rules and procedures. I also read a story on the first day. Just have fun with your class and get to know each other. You might
want to play a name game and have a simple seatwork page,
depending on the grade level. If you teach first grade or
up, you will probably spend some time passing out books.
Hope this helps.

I always have them do a writing assignment. "Today is the first
day of the school year 2002-2003. If they are older You can add
I am thrilled to be back or I am disappointed to be in school
because....... ! "
I set up standards and classroom management. Let them discuss
rules although you probabably will already have them written
out I try to let the children come up with some so they think
they have a say. I use a Marble jar and I put in marbles or
take out marbles if needed when it gets full I have a class
treat. I try to fill it the first week for a candy bar.And then
from then on it takes longer. Iexplain lots of what we are
going to bne studying what is expected.
Pass out one book
Have them take it home to cover it. and Look it over with their
The second day I pass out journals and we start writing in them
while I do roll and lunch money. I always have a statement or
question written on the board that they must write a paragraph
or more.The journals I go around and sticker or stamp them at
least once a week. We go to Mass 3 x a week and Then I have a
math 5 minutes practice fact sheet that we do all together. and
Correct in class. It gets them into the groove for the day.
Then I do calendar etc etc. And talk about learning center
schedule. I have my children count off the first day of school
in fours or five depending on how many children and I have a
learning center set up for that many stations with enough
things to be done each day for the week during free time.
then I go into reg schedule. What ever that will be. I find
with third grade they enjoy to have something different than
reading first thing every day. It makes them feel as if they
have really grown up.....Ussally it is language or phonics then
I go into reading...
After lunch I use read aloud from a chapter book....for 20
minutes. I think this year I am going to start with Wind in the
Willows. I hope this helps. Write me privately if you want as I
have taught every primary grade...Posted by
Maggie on 6/09/02

My first day schedule goes something like this:

When students arrive they have a file folder that was decorated by previous year's students on their desks. In it is a letter from the student, a fun pack (various fun pages) and a mini phonics fun book) Also before the first day of school we have a parent night. Students get directions to make a "Get to Know Me" bag. Students share these throughout the first day and rest of week.

1. Introduction---attendance, etc. Welcome!

2. Read Teacher from the Black Lagoon--discuss nervous feelings, etc. pass out welcome bag-----

Welcome to Second Grade!!!

The items in this bag have special meaning:
*The cotton ball is to remind you that our room is full of
kind words and warm feelings.
*The chocolate kiss is to comfort you if you are sad.
*The sticker is remind you we all stick together and help
each other.
*The star is to remind you to shine and always try your best.
*The penny means you are valuable and special.
*The tissue is to help dry someone’s tears.
*The eraser is to remind you that everyone makes mistakes and
that is okay!
*The lifesaver is to remind you that you can always come to
me if you need to talk.

3. Share my "get to know me" bag

4. Collect and organize supplies

5. Crocodile Bingo (bingo board with various topics such as "has a pet cat, went on vacation," etc.)

6. Show around room (centers, work center, book corner, etc.)

7. Introduce class mascot

8. My Promise poem--students read and receive pencil

Each day I’ll do my best,
And I won’t do any less.
My work will always please me,
And I won’t accept a mess.
I’ll color very carefully,
My writing will be neat.
And I simply won’t be happy
‘Til my papers are complete.
I’ll always do my homework,
And I’ll try on every test.
And I won’t forget my promise--
To do my very best!

9. Work Samples (handwriting poem, phonics pretest, etc)--take student pictures

10. First Day class book---what do they want to learn this year

11. Rules, money behavior plan (sometimes moves to following day)

I also have a lot of "first day" books I read throughout the
day. Last year I bought these fortune tellers from Really
Good Stuff--students wrote their answers on the inside flaps
and then paired up to learn more about each other. They
really loved this! Carrie 2/OH

I always start the first day with playdoh at their seats. That way, you can go around and make sure they've emptied their bags of supplies and notes and gotten their nametags.

Then, basically I run through a simplified day.

We do the Pledge.
We discuss the Procedure for coming to carpet,
Procedure for sitting at carpet – Criss Cross, Give Me Five,
How to tell me they need to use the Bathroom (thumbs up - so
they dont interupt - then I just head nod or shake)
(Explain your expectations for EVERY procedure that you have
in your class as they come up. Makes it so much easier. Like
how to hang backpack, how to puch in chairs, how to walk to
carpet, how to sit at carpet, etc.)

After that, we do a real Short version of Calendar:
Discuss what we will learn at school during the year.
Read Berenstein Bears Go to School or another first day book.

Do the Freeze Dance – Practice hands on shoulders when they hear "freeze". (How I get attention in my classroom.)

Brainstorm rules
role play rules

Practice Firedrill, how to walk in hallway, tour building


Make smiley face Hats

Take first day Pictures

Give out first day Certificates

Pack Up

Then for the rest of the week and the next, we talk about school and friends and All About Me. We do lots of get to know you activities and name games.

Hope that helps - KTeach VA on 7/22/02

I usually have something on their desk for them to start on....I use a coloring page with Arthur walking to school. They can immediately sit down and do this without any instructions.

I don't know if you have kids bring in supplies...whether you have desks or tables...these logistics will make some difference in how you start out.

If you have desks...they can just put stuff away. If you have tables...I'd designate a table for different things...we have kids bring in kleenex...soap...markers...folders.

Once we are a little settled...I usually have a short group time...I talk a bit about myself and second grade. I introduce my very basic rules...when we are in group time we take turns, don't interupt, keep hands to ourselves. I make sure they know about bathroom rules.

Then I send them back to their seats to work on a page about themselves. Usually it has a place to draw a picture of themselves, list their favorite things...favorite color, favorite food etc..

Then we come back to group...or stay in seats and share a little about themselves.

Then I give a review math sheet....basic addition and subtraction facts. I walk around to see who zips through and who struggles. If they finish...I take it up...if they don't...that clues me in too!

I usually read a "beginning of school" type book. Then I have them do a short writing assignment to get a baseline writing sample...something quick and easy....what I am looking forward to in second grade....what I did over the summer...

I usually have another short group time to do a little more about rules and procedures ( I try to break these introduction lessons in short stints so they can digest the new information a bit at a time...all through the first few weeks).

Our reading series has small decodable take home we usually read one of these together and they take it home to practice read for homework the first night.

Second graders are pretty they enjoy working on things right from the start. Some group activities are fine for the first day....but I find second graders like taking their time getting to know each other. I usually have a few "sharing" type things the first week...but generally they get to know each other at their own pace as we do regular work.

I like to do a graphing your name....use graph paper...they write their first name over and over until they fill the paper ( I use 1/2page one inch squares). Then they choose color for each letter and color in the pattern.

First week activities....making graphs is a great way to do math and get kids acquainted...who has a dog, cat, fish, birdFavorite food....favorite special you get to school.

I find mixing short (20-30minutes) group times....with independent work times where they work on worksheets or reading/writing activities works well.

Hope this helps you....Posted by Tallytchr on 7/23/02

First Week of School Schedule

? Explain this is the same table that we will eat at each day
? Pass out nametags to students to wear all day

Bathroom Break
? Sit in lines; Boys on red, girls on blue
? Two at a time in the bathroom
? When one person comes out, the next in line goes in
? Get drinks BEFORE you sit down
? Line up
? Talk about walking quietly in the hallway

Transition to Classroom
? Practice walking quietly in the hallway
? Stop at the blue line, four people at a time put items in
their lockers
? When one person leaves, the next in line goes in
? Go to circle time and sit on the carpet

Opening Circle
? “Good Morning” song
? Introduce self, go around the circle and have each child
tell their name
? “Introduce yourself” song
? Daily agenda

Morning Message
? “Today is the first day of school.”
? Echo read
? Count words in the sentence
? Find longest/ shortest words

(Movement activity:

Writer’s Workshop
? Introduce writing center and materials
? Show where materials are located and how to clean up
? Explain four steps: draw a picture, write words, write
their name, and stamp the paper
? Show examples of writing
? Writing can be scribbles, random letters, or words
? Explain that we use these steps ANYTIME we write at school,
whether it is in Writing Workshop or during centers
? Call students to get a paper and find a chair at a table
? Practice writing
? Help students follow four steps
? Children put their work in the sharing basket
? When finished children take a book back to their seat

(Movement Activity

Shared Reading

Book ___________________________________________

Follow-up activity

Literacy Centers
? Pass around a mirror and have each child say one positive statement while looking in the mirror (I can
? Self-portraits
? When finished children take a book back to their seat


? Discuss and role play safety rules for the playground
? Listen for “line up signal” when you hear the signal, time to line up
? Popcorn song

Prepare for Lunch
? Practice bathroom procedure
? Take bathroom break, wash hands, get drink, sit on the
? Get lunch card

? Introduce children to lunch buddy

? Introduce children to specials teacher OR

Community Meeting

? Book: ______________________________________________
? Discuss and role play class procedures and guidelines
Work hard, play fair, respect one another
? Introduce “give me five” and practice

Math Workshop
? Model and demonstrate use of math materials
? Free explorations with math tubs
? Listen for clean-up signal
? Practice putting tubs back on the shelf
? Go to carpet

Learning Centers
? Introduce basic center management
? Listen for the “clean up signal” when you hear it, it is
time to start cleaning up the center you are working at
? When you are finished cleaning up your center, go and help
someone else clean up theirs
? Take a walking tour of the centers
? Practice taking name tags to the centers
? Pass out name tags for transition to centers
? Play at centers
? Practice clean-up signal

Closing Circle
? Brainstorm things that we did that day
? Daily news: list some of the things that we did
? Call walkers to get backpacks and check mail boxes
? Call car riders to get backpacks and check mailboxes
? Call bus riders to get backpacks and check mailboxes
Students come to the carpet when they are finished
? End of the day book

? End of the day song

? Dismissal (walk students to rooms they need to go to) Kinder Friends
Posted by
Jillybean/K/OK on 7/28/02

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