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Activities for the First Day of School

Manali Oak
The first day of school can mean the very first day of entering school, or the day the school reopens after a vacation. It is largely used to mean the latter. In any case, it is an important days of school; since it's the first one.
Coming back to school after a few months' gap should be made welcoming for the kids. And it's best done by organizing some fun activities for the first day of school. Here are some that can be used.
The vacation's over and it's time to get back to school. With the different classes all lined up, it's time to get back to the routine and adjust to the newly set schedule. As a teacher, you need to greet the students, make them feel comfortable and help them adjust to the new curriculum.
You might have some new students joining, who need to be introduced to the older ones and made to feel a part of the group. Serious stuff is soon to begin but it can be taken easy on the first day. So, go ahead and plan some interesting activities for your class on their first day of school.
Is That You: For this activity, ask each student to write three things about him/herself on a piece of paper. The papers are collected and put together in a basket. Now, ask each kid to pick one and read out what's written on it. From the three things written, he has to guess who is described in the chit. He makes the guess by asking "is that you?" to the one whose chit he thinks it is. He gets only three chances to guess it right.
Scribble: In this activity, you need to supply paper and crayons or color pencils to the students. Ask them to draw anything they like. Or have them draw something in particular. You could place a play-dough on each student's desk and ask them to make something out of it. Have them work alone or in groups.
At the end of this activity, you will have them focused and while they are busy, you will get time to take care of other things. You could hand them blank papers and ask them to write about anything they like, or about something funny or interesting they did during the vacation.
Or have them write about something they planned to do during the holidays but could not. Activities like these will serve as creative thinking exercises for the students.
Know Us: This involves you telling the students about the school or about yourself. If you are new to the students or if you have some new entrants in your class, you could spend some time describing yourself and the school to them. They love to hear about their teacher.
And if the school is new to some of them, take the chance to introduce it, tell them the story of when and how it started, the students it has, and the facilities it offers. You could have the older students volunteer to narrate their experiences with the school to the new students.
At the end of your talk, have the students ask you questions and share with the class what they feel about the school.
Bulletin Board Decoration: Divide the students into pairs or groups and give them decoration material; chart papers, colored papers, and some drawing and writing material. Have them come together to decorate the class bulletin board with drawings, crafts, and write-ups.
Have them come up with a theme for the class and engage in some art and craft activities to decorate the room. This way, you will be engaging the students in a fun activity, you will have their creativity channeled, and also have the classroom looking all the more beautiful.
Once their creations are pinned on the board, you are sure to have smiling faces around.
Let's make Rules: How's the idea of students coming together to make and enlist the rules for their class? Sounds interesting? Then go ahead and get the kids together to prepare a set of rules for their class. You could have them make a class pledge or a class promise, as a variant to the rule set.
This means, they come together and brainstorm on the rules they wish to set for themselves to be the best class. The promise or pledge can have things like keeping the class clean, behaving properly, coming to school on time, completing the assignments regularly, and the like.
Organize fun activities like these for the first day of school and see your students return home with a smiling face, looking forward to more fun in the year that has just begun.