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Posted on September 14, 2012 9:51 pm
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Zafer Unal
Zafer Unal
Reps: 952
Planning and Managing First Day of School
The first day of class involves lots of activities and teachers should plan for it. Planning for the first day is also important because students will learn about you, about their peers, about your class, your rules and procedures.

Preparing Classroom:
• Arrange student desks the way you would like them to be for optimal class instruction? (Rows seating for the first day.). Organize your classroom materials for easy access.
• Have your classroom rules/consequences poster placed on the wall and prepare your classroom procedures to present to your students.
• Prepare student name tags to be placed on their desks, and make sure that they are easily noticeable. Have some blank ones ready for unexpected students.
• Plan for a place for students to put their backpacks and coats.
• Prepare bulletin boards and make sure they are attractive to students.
• Check to make sure that there is a first aid kit in the classroom and emergency exit plan posted in the room.
• Label materials and different areas around the classroom, for ESOL / ESE students.

Preparing for Greetings and Introductions
• Attire: Formal attire communicates expertise and confidence, less formal attire communicates approachability.
• Arrive early: Arriving right on time or even late communicates disorganization, and so on.
• Greet students: Greeting the students as they enter the classroom communicates approachability.
• Introduce yourself: Prepare a brief self introduction to inform students about yourself. What to call you, how you teach, and how you expect students to learn, why the subject is interesting to you. Keep this short, this is not an autobiography. Students do not need to know everything about you. In particular, it is not helpful to say you’ve never taught the before, or that it is your least favorite course to teach, or to disclose any irrelevant personal information that can undermine you in the eyes of your students.
• Plan for get-acquainted activities: For example: asking students to introduce themselves and to name a favorite activity or hobby or tell about something they did during the summer, or pair students to talk about themselves and have one introduce the other. Make sure to keep this activity short. For lower grade students, make sure specify what information you would like to hear from them because they sometimes provide too much information.

Preparing for Instructions:
• Describe the room: Describe the room by pointing out the places and inform students about procedures associated with the room (where to put coats, lunches, pencil sharpening, wastebasket etc.
• Teach your classroom rules and procedures: Show your classroom rules poster, go over rules and have students write-repeat.

Preparing for Administrative Tasks:
• Go over the take-home folders for the students where parents need to read and sign. Give students due dates for returns. Have extra copies ready for unexpected.
• Distribute textbooks. Make sure to record each recipient.

Preparing for a Short Teaching Activity:
• Plan for short teaching: Prepare a brief lecture or a focused discussion that will demonstrate to students at least one of the teaching methods you will use. Another option is to build “a table of contents” for the course coverage and go through the list with some details. Be sure to select activities that are not complicated.
• Plan for Time Filler Activities: In case you need to leave the room for an unexpected event (principal call, emergencies etc), you should plan for time-filling activities such as short book reading, puzzle activity, writing about summer break, or a short topic.

Close the Day:
• Summarize your first day activities (what you covered, students learned).
• Ask students if they have questions, problems etc.

Dealing with First Day Problems
Most Common Problems
• Interruptions by office staff, parents, custodians and others: Invite person in room, face students. If you need to leave the room, give students work
• Late arrivals on the first day: Seat student, catch up what they missed later
• One or more students assigned to your class after the first day: Try to meet with them to catch up what they missed, make sure to provide paperwork they missed – textbook, rules etc.
• A child forgets lunch money or supplies: Learn for school policy first – some schools allow borrowing, emergency fund, keep small change available for emergency – let the parents know
• Large amount of paperwork during the first week of school: Do most important ones on the first day – you have the rest of the year

Special Problems
• A child forgets bus number or misses bus: Rehearse bus procedures, ask students if they know their bus number, and make sure to be available/around (students are not left alone)
• Shortage of textbooks or vital equipment: Check this before school begins, and report to school office
• A disabled student has difficulty understanding or following directions: Seat the student close to you, work individually with this student only after others are busy.
• Crying: Be understanding and try to find out why crying – however, do not reinforce by giving excessive attention. If not disruptive, student can seat until it is over else have someone from the office come and get him/her
• Wetting: Make every effort not to add to child’s discomfort, have paper towels and handle as privately as possible, contact parents for new clothes, and make sure to arrange regular restroom times
• A child becomes very sick or injured: Do not leave the child unattended, contact office immediately.
Votes: +29 / -1 Vote Up This Article Is Useful   Vote Down This Article Is Not Useful  

Comments posted for this article: 41

Charles Owen
Charles Owen
Reps: 49
Thank you, this really is a useful article.
  Posted on: December 30, 2012 5:27 am

erugyn
erugyn
Reps: 100
I found this to be very helpful. I will be taking note of all of these things to have ready/do for the first day of classed. Very helpful tips!
  Posted on: October 14, 2014 6:30 pm

uLyJaj
uLyJaj
Reps: 99
I really enjoyed this article. The step by step format will help me tremendously.
  Posted on: October 26, 2014 1:27 pm

uHugyT
uHugyT
Reps: 100
I found this article to be really helpful and one that I will bookmark to look back on in the future.
  Posted on: February 19, 2015 6:10 pm

araseS
araseS
Reps: 101
This article is really helpful! I believe this is so important to maintain control of to make sure things go more smoothly!
  Posted on: February 24, 2015 2:28 am

BeMyDu
BeMyDu
Reps: 200
This is very helpful and thorough! I like how it was broken down into sub-categories and explained things, including what not to do.
  Posted on: February 24, 2015 6:42 pm

Jen
Jen
Reps: 225
This is a great article.
  Posted on: February 25, 2015 8:08 pm

eQyVuj
eQyVuj
Reps: 200
First day of school can be a very nerve wracking thing for not only students but teachers too. Being well-prepared for the first day of school is very important. Great discussion.
  Posted on: March 1, 2015 12:41 am

Danielle Brock
Danielle Brock
Reps: 100
I enjoyed reading this idea.
I will use this in the future for sure
  Posted on: March 1, 2015 11:11 pm

qaqeHy
qaqeHy
Reps: 101
Great article. I like how it specifically explained the importance of going over rules and procedures for the first day of school. Also, it is certainly imperative to have the classroom and materials ready before the first day.
  Posted on: March 9, 2015 3:59 pm

unuhaj
unuhaj
Reps: 102
I found your post very useful. The first day of school is important and sets the foundation for the rest of the year. It is a critical day that can impact a classroom and teacher's success for the remainder of the year.
  Posted on: March 10, 2015 12:17 pm

Rezaty
Rezaty
Reps: 102
Thanks for sharing
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 3:51 pm

aNuLyB
aNuLyB
Reps: 102
great ideas.
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 11:37 pm

yQadyH
yQadyH
Reps: 128
Great post. Transportation (how the students will be getting home) is also a must in the younger grade levels.
  Posted on: March 12, 2015 1:39 am

ymuTyZ
ymuTyZ
Reps: 102
Worderful ideas!
  Posted on: March 16, 2015 12:01 am

atuTyL
atuTyL
Reps: 121
This is absolutely wonderful. Even though it is pass the first day of school, I will implement your ideas during the upcoming school year! Thanks!
  Posted on: March 16, 2015 12:21 am

neraXe
neraXe
Reps: 133
Thank you for this article. It has a lot of great strategies that I found it very helpful.
  Posted on: September 30, 2015 6:45 pm

HaLyvy
HaLyvy
Reps: 100
The first day of school should be something that has been thoroughly planned for weeks prior to the students entering into your classroom. By planning ahead, you will have a better opportunity to have a well managed classroom.
  Posted on: October 4, 2015 7:14 pm

meXyHy
meXyHy
Reps: 158
This is so helpful for first year teachers who are a little nervous for the first day.
  Posted on: October 15, 2015 8:29 pm

eSyTyt
eSyTyt
Reps: 101
This is very helpful and I will definitely use some of these ideas in my classroom when I become a teacher.
  Posted on: October 16, 2015 12:47 am

aTeRaz
aTeRaz
Reps: 201
Thank you, this article provides information on procedures that I had not considered.
  Posted on: October 17, 2015 5:02 pm

apazeR
apazeR
Reps: 200
This is very helpful to my future classroom
  Posted on: February 23, 2016 3:37 am

ezyHes
ezyHes
Reps: 101
Thank you
  Posted on: March 5, 2016 4:47 am

PeQyGa
PeQyGa
Reps: 201
This article is very helpful, I will definitely be using these strategies in my future classroom.
  Posted on: October 4, 2016 2:30 am

yDydez
yDydez
Reps: 100
Very useful for the first day.
  Posted on: October 4, 2016 4:53 pm

yZaHuM
yZaHuM
Reps: 100
I will remember to use some of the points from this article when planning for the first day.
  Posted on: October 8, 2016 3:52 pm

ZaBuBy
ZaBuBy
Reps: 200
Very useful and I will take note on the things you suggested
  Posted on: October 10, 2016 6:41 pm

sazaXa
sazaXa
Reps: 200
This is a good outline to prepare for the first day of school
  Posted on: October 12, 2016 7:10 pm

Nicole McVey
Nicole McVey
Reps: 201
This post gives great insight to what the first day can and may involve for me as a teacher in study.
  Posted on: October 13, 2016 11:52 pm

qunumy
qunumy
Reps: 201
This was a great and helpful article. I made a note to look back over this in the future.
  Posted on: October 17, 2016 1:43 am

Lynn Krivoruchka
Lynn Krivoruchka
Reps: 295
These are all great things that all teachers should know for the first day of school, or even the full year Just making sure that they keep into consideration. Making sure the first day runs well, is always the best start to a new year.
  Posted on: February 22, 2017 9:00 pm

nydyra
nydyra
Reps: 202
As we have learned in our classroom management class, the first day of school can make or break the trust a teacher builds with their students. Being prepared when it comes to anything, including the first day of school, can help make lessons, classroom management, and dealing with students, much easier.
  Posted on: February 25, 2017 6:04 pm

eqeJaQ
eqeJaQ
Reps: 100
The first day is so important and being prepared can help take away any of the stress. I really enjoyed reading this article!
  Posted on: March 1, 2017 1:14 am

Jenna Herberson
Jenna Herberson
Reps: 200
There is more to the first day than I thought, thank you for breaking it down for me.
  Posted on: March 5, 2017 8:51 pm

ePeHuG
ePeHuG
Reps: 101
I found this post very informational. As an aspiring teacher the first day of school is something I often think about. I liked the break down of the day and that ESOL and students with disabilities were included. This article is very useful and have a better understand of how to structure the first day of school in my future classroom.
  Posted on: July 7, 2017 2:24 pm

uReZyW
uReZyW
Reps: 101
The article was so informative. Thank you for sharing! It was almost like a checklist for teachers to make sure that they are going to have a successful first day. I like when you give ideas for "time fillers". Usually the first day you get phone calls from parents or parents will try to talk to teachers etc. Also the idea of using labels for things it is important, that help ESE and ESOL students.
  Posted on: July 10, 2017 9:18 pm

aWyVys
aWyVys
Reps: 201
I really enjoyed this post. It is very well organized as teachers could easily pinpoint which section they need assistance in and read on about quick fixes and steps that they can take to try and solve the problems at hand.
  Posted on: October 2, 2017 1:57 pm

yZanaJ
yZanaJ
Reps: 202
This article is like my checklist for the first day of school. It is a wonderful resource. Thank you!
  Posted on: October 8, 2017 1:04 am

azuTen
azuTen
Reps: 217
Great Post!
  Posted on: October 8, 2017 6:11 pm

vugage
vugage
Reps: 201
Thank you for your post, it is very useful.
  Posted on: October 9, 2017 12:56 am

zuMyJe
zuMyJe
Reps: 100
I enjoyed reading this post!
  Posted on: October 16, 2017 3:38 am

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