Spurred by this tweet:
— Ali Grace (@AGEiland) August 4, 2016
I thought I would share some of my first day materials. (Side note: Ali is starting up her first year teaching! Go give her an encouraging shoutout! She’s going to be awesome!)
Our first day is usually chopped up quite a bit, what with a super-long first period for everyone to find their place, then grade-level assemblies, crazy lunch, etc, so I usually don’t like to plan an activity for the day because it will just get all jumbled. I know, I know, not cool, but sometimes it’s easier to just go with the flow. I always have Four Fours ready if we have extra time at the end of class! We usually start on a Thursday, so I spend Friday doing the “fun” first day stuff then we’re ready to jump in Monday.
All that to say this is my “not fun but necessary” first day stuff.
My syllabus (2 to a page because trees):
File here I also had a different version that had 10 tips for success that just got too wordy and me-talky:
Maybe spread them out and talk about 2 each day as a warm up? Or just copy the genius of Becca Phillips:
“Give one/ get one” success strategies. pic.twitter.com/da48Zc6wiL
— Becca Phillips (@RPhillipsMath) August 3, 2016
For the survey, I usually have directions for the students to start the survey on their phones when they get into class (and yes, I understand a url and QR code are redundant, but I found many students didn’t have a QR reader installed). I also have my phone and my computer available for those that don’t have one. The survey is a google form that starts with last name, first name, preferred name, class period, grade level, then some get-to-know-you questions:
I also need to add birthday so I can do something fun for them!
I also liked Sarah & Kathryn’s idea of having the kids introduce themselves on a padlet–maybe upload a photo too so I can get to know names?
As for the parent survey, most of the teachers have parents sign the syllabus the first day, but I tell my students that they need to take the survey instead (and yes, some students respond pretending to be parents but you can usually sniff them out, and really, didn’t some students sign their parents name when we did it the old fashioned way? I also tell them that they can pick up a paper form on the way out if getting online is a problem.
The “proud of my child because” one? That is teacher-parenting communication gold right there! I do the “terms of service” for anything that I routinely get emails/phone calls about. (For my precal, I have that they do need a graphing calculator and can rent one from the school if needed.)
I also do a fun “getting to know Mrs Craig and man she is really weird and makes really stupid jokes” powerpoint:
I just updated the states page (Thanks, TMC16 for #27!) and the countries visited page (14!). It seems like a cheat to count both Sint Maarten (Dutch side) and Saint Martin (French side), but they are separate countries!
Will have to come up with something different for ACT prep this year…maybe have a goofy multiple choice test? Like Mrs Craig has (a) a cat (b) a pig (c) a gerbil (d) a corgi? Things to think about next week!