Archive for August 24th, 2009

Back to school tips

What are some of your favorite back to school tips? We’d love to have you post them to share with others and get some chatter going.

I surveyed the girls that work at Debbie Diller & Associates to bring you a few of our favorites:

From Christe Cantu:  In the K-2 classroom, I like to take quick pictures of the kids as they come in on the first day of school. That way, we’re ready to sort the names in the pocket chart in order to get the Names Station up and running as quickly as possible.  Plus the pictures can go home later in the year as keepsakes of the first day.         

In the first day go-home packet, I also ask parents to write a letter telling me something special about their child.  I received some really touching letters and learned things about my students I might have never known.  It’s wonderful to see children through the eyes of their parents!

From Gretchen Childs: One thing I did in my kindergarten class was that as soon as I received my class list, I sent a postcard to each student saying “Welcome to kindergarten and I can’t wait to meet you!” 

From Pam Pierce: I used to take my kids on a scavenger hunt around the school to get them familiar with the office, library, cafeteria, nurse’s office, gym, etc…  I had little clues at each location and we would solve the clue and then go to the next spot. It was fun!!

From Debbie Diller: On the first day of school, I’d write a letter to my 3rd graders introducing myself to them. I’d include things about my family and what we liked to do, as well as what kinds of books I liked to read. Then I asked students to write a letter back to me. What a quick, easy assessment this was! I got to know my kids and quickly learned quite a bit about their reading, writing, spelling, and even handwriting! I still have some of their letters. These were special keepsakes.

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Jon cooking my belated birthday dinner

Jon cooking my belated birthday dinner

Today is the first day of school for most of the kids around here. I worked with several teacher friends this weekend to look at lesson plans and IEPS for next week. Can’t wait to hear how everyone’s first day of school goes. Even though I no longer have my own class, there are several local classrooms I work in whenever I’m home. Looking forward to going back to see the kids next Monday. Even bought a new “back to school” dress at Anthropologie, one of my favorite stores. Bet you’re busy shopping, planning, and getting ready, too!

Hope you plan something fun for the day before you start with your students. Our son, Jon, came over Sunday night and cooked dinner for my belated birthday celebration. Chicken cordon bleu… delicious! Take good care of you and yours as you prepare for school to start. Let us know how your first day of school went!

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