Copyright

First Day of Kindergarten

Katherine Williams, Derek Hughes
  • Author
    Katherine Williams

    Katherine Williams has an Mth in Theological Ethics and Philosophy from The University of Aberdeen and a BA in Theatre Arts from Oral Roberts University. Katherine has 10+ years of experience teaching literacy, essay composition, philosophy, and world languages. Katherine is also a TEFL-Certified ESL teacher. She has 3 years of experience teaching and developing curriculum for ESL students.

  • Instructor
    Derek Hughes

    Derek has a Masters of Science degree in Teaching, Learning & Curriculum.

Learn about first day of kindergarten activities and the importance of completing these activities. See first day of kindergarten ideas for introductions and rules. Updated: 12/29/2021

The First Day of Kindergarten

There are several structures a teacher can use to introduce kindergarteners to their first day of kindergarten.

A kindergartner's first day starts with an introduction and discussion about their early education and what to expect, such as where they will be going, what they will be doing, and the expectations for behavior.

The teacher may then have the kindergartners take a tour of the school. This can be followed by a discussion of classroom rules, such as compliance with requests from teachers and other students, how to ask for help, appropriate ways to play, handwashing, use of restrooms, etc.

The first day is usually spent teaching the children what they can expect during their time at school. This includes learning how to share, taking turns, waiting for others to finish their work, and how to use appropriate language.

The teacher will also review the rules of the classroom, such as what is allowed and not allowed inside the classroom. They are also taught about appropriate behavior outside of school, including where it is ok to go and who they can talk to.

For some children, it can be a big change from the comfort of home to an unfamiliar place with new rules and people. In order to help them adjust, schools have special activities that they do at the beginning of the year in order to help kids feel more comfortable. It is important to have an activity ready for when the children walk in.

Some teachers may set up stations with different toys and games so students can start interacting with one another right off the bat. Other teachers might choose to do an entire class game to kick off the day and introduce everyone. The first activity is an important activity because it helps set expectations for the students and gives them an opportunity to engage right from the start.

The first day of kindergarten is a day of high emotions for the students and parents. It is important for the teacher to realize, and perhaps even discuss with the kids, that this day will likely have bumps along the way as the students adjust to their new routines and surroundings. Forgiveness, understanding, and working together to problem-solve are essential for building a strong community among the kindergarteners.

The next few days are usually about exploring the classroom and meeting classmates. Finally, there is a celebration at the end of that week for all those who have completed their first week.

The First Day of Kindergarten

The first day of kindergarten is an incredibly important time for both your students and you. This is the time when classroom routines and expectations should be set for students. First-day-of-kindergarten-activities can help your students get acquainted with you, one another, and the classroom rules, expectations, and routines.

This lesson will detail several activities you can use as you move through the first day to help your students adjust to their new classroom. These activities will provide the framework for things you can do in your classroom and can be modified to suit your needs.

First Day of Kindergarten: Activities for Introductions

It is important to use an introduction activity or an icebreaker to start the first day of kindergarten. It has been found that students perform better if they are given an introduction activity or a "getting to know you" activity. This is because it allows the learner to set their mind on the topic, to create bonds with new people, and to feel at ease in their new environment. Keeping all activities short also allows for more room for creativity among students. Students are able to have a better attention span when they are constantly engaged in different activities.

Examples of activities:

  • Singing songs about kindergarten or nursery rhymes

Kindergarten teachers often use songs and games to help their students interact and learn. They can choose from a variety of activities for this day, and each one will help the children to feel comfortable and excited about learning. They can sing songs about school, introduce themselves, and teach them how to count.

  • Simple instruction games

On the first day of kindergarten, teachers often play games with their students. The teacher might call out words or do actions, such as "dance" or "jump," and the children will do the same thing. This is a great way for all of them to get to know each other and learn how to follow basic directions.

  • Get each child's name as you introduce them to your class

Some kindergarten classrooms have a tradition where every child has an opportunity to be recognized during morning meeting time on the first day of school. This can be done by having them stand up and say their name or bring up something that they like or that they're good at doing.

The Yarn Activity

The Yarn Activity is an interactive game that can help introduce students to you and each other. It is a great "getting to know you" activity.

There are a couple of different ways to play the Yarn Activity.

1) The game is played by hiding the ball of yarn under one of the objects and then asking the students to close their eyes. The instructor will then tell them how many seconds it will take to find their object and count down from ten. When the instructor finishes counting, the students open their eyes and search for their objects among all of them. The first student who finds it gets to hide it. But first, he/she has to yell, "I have the ball!" Then the teacher will shout, "Who has the ball?" Then the class responds, "(Name) has the ball!" If one student keeps finding it over and over again, the teacher can have that student give the ball to another student to hide.

2) Another way to do the yarn activity is to put each student's name on a piece of yarn and then hang them up on the wall in the classroom. Each student has an opportunity to tell their classmates something about themselves by answering any questions, and they also have an opportunity to ask any questions they might have of other students.

All About Me Book

The All About Me Book is a book that students create with their parents at home or teachers at school. It has facts about their interests, favorite foods, family members, pets, and so on - all the facts they want to share with their classmates on the first day of kindergarten. It allows students to show their personality and what they enjoy by including pictures, words, and drawings.

The process of creating this book gives children a way to remember their thoughts and feelings from that time in their lives. It also provides a great opportunity for children to learn how to express themselves through words and pictures. Additionally, it gives the teacher insight into each student's ability level.

There are standard All About Me Books that can be purchased. There are also customizable or free downloads available online. Some teachers like to create their own sets of questions to get to know specific things about their students.

It is important on the first day of school for all of the children to interact with one another and their environment.

first day of kindergarten ideas, getting to know you activities for kindergarten

Some questions that can be found in an All About Me Book are:

  • How old are you?
  • What is your favorite color?
  • What kind of home do you live in?
  • Where were you born?
  • If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
  • What is your favorite animal? Why?
  • Draw a picture of your favorite food.

Writing the Classroom Rules

It is always better to use short sentences that are easy to understand rather than long paragraphs with complicated words. Kids don't have patience for it.

In order for the students to know what is expected of them in this new environment, it's important for the teacher to communicate these expectations on the first day of school through a group discussion with their students. It's also important for them to know how their classmates expect them to behave as well as how they expect their classmates to behave towards them.

It is essential that they set clear-cut rules from the beginning, but these rules should be created as a class in order to facilitate a learning environment that everyone can agree on. However, before beginning the discussion, the teacher needs to think through what rules they want in their classroom in order to facilitate discussion. What kind of standards should be maintained? The first day of school is the perfect time to establish those standards.

Every classroom has different needs and expectations, but there are some universal items that every teacher should include on their list of rules:

1) Be respectful.

2) Always raise your hand before you speak.

3) Listen quietly when other people are talking or reading aloud.

4) Keep your hands and feet to yourself at all times.

One way to facilitate a discussion about classroom rules is to have the students share their ideas about what they think are appropriate rules for the classroom. The teacher can also have students come up with different consequences for when someone breaks a rule in the classroom.

Introduction Activity

After your students have entered the classroom, put their belongings where they should go, and settled into seats, the first thing you can (and should do) is engage the class in an ice breaker/introduction activity. It's important for your students to get to know and be comfortable with each other, and this activity will help them to do so.

All you need for this activity is a ball of yarn and your students sitting in a circle. Start by explaining to your student that they are going to do something to help them get to know you and each other.

You will start the activity by grabbing the yarn at its end, introducing yourself, and telling one fun fact about yourself to the class. Then, roll the ball of yarn to another student, ask them to grab the yarn, repeat what you just said, and add their name and a fun fact. This process will continue as each student rolls the ball of yarn to another, and the new student should recall the previous student's name and fun fact, then add their own.

By the end of this activity, you will have a complicated web of yarn with you and your students each holding a point around the outside. Ask your students to carefully stand up so that everyone is helping to hold your web of yarn. Finally, explain to your students that this activity helped them get to know each other and also showed them how they are all going to work together to learn in the upcoming year.

Writing the Classroom Rules

After you are done with the introduction activity, ask your students to remain sitting in the group while you go to get a large notepad. You can also use a classroom whiteboard or chalkboard, so long as you can write big enough for the students to see. For this activity, you and your students are going to spend some time writing the rules for your classroom.

Explain to your students that you all need classroom rules to help everyone have fun safely and learn better. Then, start a group discussion asking students what they think some classroom rules should be. It might take some time to get your brand new students to volunteer, but they will eventually offer some great ideas.

Hopefully, students will offer some suggestions such as 'raise your hand,' 'listen while others are talking,' 'stay in your seat,' etc. If there are some rules you think should be written down but aren't being offered, lead your students with some questions. For example, if no one has mentioned 'listen while others are talking,' ask them what they think everyone should do while the teacher is talking.

In the end, you should have a student-created list of classroom rules. These rules should stay posted in a visible spot all year so that students will see them often. The benefit of having students help write the rules is that they feel more ownership and responsibility for the rules and will be more likely to follow them and enforce them with other classmates.

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Additional Info

The First Day of Kindergarten

The first day of kindergarten is an incredibly important time for both your students and you. This is the time when classroom routines and expectations should be set for students. First-day-of-kindergarten-activities can help your students get acquainted with you, one another, and the classroom rules, expectations, and routines.

This lesson will detail several activities you can use as you move through the first day to help your students adjust to their new classroom. These activities will provide the framework for things you can do in your classroom and can be modified to suit your needs.

Introduction Activity

After your students have entered the classroom, put their belongings where they should go, and settled into seats, the first thing you can (and should do) is engage the class in an ice breaker/introduction activity. It's important for your students to get to know and be comfortable with each other, and this activity will help them to do so.

All you need for this activity is a ball of yarn and your students sitting in a circle. Start by explaining to your student that they are going to do something to help them get to know you and each other.

You will start the activity by grabbing the yarn at its end, introducing yourself, and telling one fun fact about yourself to the class. Then, roll the ball of yarn to another student, ask them to grab the yarn, repeat what you just said, and add their name and a fun fact. This process will continue as each student rolls the ball of yarn to another, and the new student should recall the previous student's name and fun fact, then add their own.

By the end of this activity, you will have a complicated web of yarn with you and your students each holding a point around the outside. Ask your students to carefully stand up so that everyone is helping to hold your web of yarn. Finally, explain to your students that this activity helped them get to know each other and also showed them how they are all going to work together to learn in the upcoming year.

Writing the Classroom Rules

After you are done with the introduction activity, ask your students to remain sitting in the group while you go to get a large notepad. You can also use a classroom whiteboard or chalkboard, so long as you can write big enough for the students to see. For this activity, you and your students are going to spend some time writing the rules for your classroom.

Explain to your students that you all need classroom rules to help everyone have fun safely and learn better. Then, start a group discussion asking students what they think some classroom rules should be. It might take some time to get your brand new students to volunteer, but they will eventually offer some great ideas.

Hopefully, students will offer some suggestions such as 'raise your hand,' 'listen while others are talking,' 'stay in your seat,' etc. If there are some rules you think should be written down but aren't being offered, lead your students with some questions. For example, if no one has mentioned 'listen while others are talking,' ask them what they think everyone should do while the teacher is talking.

In the end, you should have a student-created list of classroom rules. These rules should stay posted in a visible spot all year so that students will see them often. The benefit of having students help write the rules is that they feel more ownership and responsibility for the rules and will be more likely to follow them and enforce them with other classmates.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make the first day of kindergarten special?

A teacher can make the first day of kindergarten special by creating a memorable experience for the children.

- The first activity that teachers should have is a storytelling session with a book.

- Teachers can have an art project where they can paint pictures, do markers, or just play with building blocks. This will help the kids to relax and understand that their new environment is fun and been designed for them.

- Teachers also need to make sure that they prepare snacks for their students on day one. They need to be healthy but tasty at the same time so it's not too boring - like fruits or cereal bars. (Check with school policies to see what foods are allowed in the classroom, or if students can bring snacks from home to share).

What should teachers do on the first day of kindergarten?

The first day of kindergarten should be a time for teachers to make their students feel comfortable and happy. The first day of school should also be a time for teachers to introduce themselves and the rules and policies of the classroom.

What should a kindergartener do on the first day of school?

On the first day of school, the kindergarteners should be introduced to the rules and expectations of the classroom and the school as a whole. They should be engaged in many activities which help them develop their social skills. They can also go on a tour of the school to make sure they know their new environment.

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