SUPER Back to School Unit and Activities

This last week has literally been a whirlwind of excitement and nonstop activity! I am sooooo POOPED! I flew back from St. Louis Thursday and then left Friday morning to go to Wilmington (which is like 5 hours away from me) to go to a baby shower! But, over the weekend, I had a smidgeon of time to put the finishing touches on my new back to school unit! Whooo hooo! <----Insert chair dancing here!

It has 61 pages of printable activities including:

* Four Writing Graphic Organizers and Publishing Pages:
- How to Have a Super Year
- How to Be a SUPER Student
- Knocking Out a New Year
- My Super Summer Vacation
* My Super Traits (All About Me)
* Writing SUPER Goals:
- What are goals?
- Writing realistic and unrealistic goals
- My Super Goals
* SUPER Synonyms About Me
* Create your own superhero (You have students draw a superhero and envision the kind of the student they wish to be)
* ________ to the Rescue (Class Rules)
* Super Survey
* My Super Brain is full of Math Facts:
- Basic addition and subtraction facts
- Two digit addition and subtraction with regrouping
- Two digit addition and subtraction without regrouping
* Teacher To Student Gift Idea
* Compare and Contrast Venn Diagram of your favorite real life and superhero
* What is Onomatopoeia?
- SUPER OnomatoMEa (Students write five sentences about them using onomatopoeia words)

I took some of your ideas and just went with it!

It is available in both shops!

In keeping with my promise of sharing ideas while posting products, I want to share some ideas and activities of things I have done during the first week of school that worked well for me.

1) Have a paper ball fight! WHAT?! I know what you are thinking, but don't worry, it's all organized chaos! HAHA Have the students write one fact and one false thing about themselves on a piece of paper and then ball it up like you're going to throw it in the trash! Or you can even have them write one fact and one opinion about themselves and do the same thing. Then, you have a paper ball fight! Give them some guidelines, like don't throw the paper in anyone's face. Duh! And let em' go at it for two minutes! When you call time, have them pick up the nearest paper ball, read it, and have them try to guess who wrote it! It was so much fun last year!

2) Consensogram Gallery Walk - I have posted about this before, but I didn't think it would hurt to share it again! I take large sheets of chart paper and write questions on each one. For example, "What is your favorite subject?" Give each student 5-6 sticky dots and a couple of sticky notes. Have them go around the room and answer each question, placing their sticky dot under their choice. The sticky notes are for the open ended questions. Set a timer for each question, and rotate around the room until all the questions are complete! Here is an example: 
3) About ME Bag - On the first day each year, I have an artifact placed at each student group that is related to me. Students have to observe each item and discuss what they think it is and why they think it is important to me. This is a great Social Studies discussion about what are artifacts! Anyway, after each group shares and discusses their thoughts, I share how it's related to me and it's importance to me. They love getting a little glimpse into who I am! Last year I used a bull magnet that I got during my trip to Spain, a very old picture of my grandfather, my old YMCA daycamp bag, a piece of artwork I made, and my childhood Precious Moments bible. Then, the kids go home and fill their own brown bags with things that are important to them to share at school. I only let mine share 1 (the most important thing to them) because it would take FOREVER otherwise! 

Anyway, those are some fun things I do in my room during the first few days. I'd love to know what kinds of things you do on the first day!

So, with that being said, if you would like to win a copy of my new unit, I would like for you to share your favorite first day/few days of school activity in the comment section along with your email! Sometime tomorrow, I will use a random number generator to select a winner! Make it good!

I used a random number generator to select the winner!

Congrats Dani!! I emailed your packet!


  1. Glad to see your unit up. I've been waiting to see what you added to your ideas. Looks fantastic!
    I always give each student a puzzle piece template to decorate with their name and interests. Then I make a bulletin board with the pieces titled "We Fit Together"

    Yearn to Learn Blog

  2. Oops forgot my email.

    Yearn to Learn Blog

  3. My favorite activities to do at the beginning of the year are doing a scavenger hunt, having jitter juice, and just getting to know my new students. Your unit looks super cute!

    Swimming into Second

  4. Looks fantastically fun, as always! The first few days of school, I like to have the children work collaboratively to make class books. The first two will be about our rules and procedures and a Who Am I? book.

    Ѽ Lori
    Teaching With Love and Laughter

    1. We always grow pet TickleMe Plants in the classroom to get the year off to a fun start. The TickleMe Plant will close its leaves and even lower its branches when you Tickle It! The kids run to class each day to tickle the plants. I find growing them to be a great learning tool and hopefully it makes them more sensitive to plants and nature.

  5. My favorite first day activity last year...was making Jitter Juice..the kids loved it!

    This unit looks...SUPER! I'm keeping my fingers crossed! ;)


  6. I do that snowball fight (paper ball fight), too. On the FIRST day...they leave thinking I'm the bomb-diggity. Ha! I also complete a getting to know you scavenger hunt where the students have to find someone like the clue. My favorite thing to do is to just take the time to listen to each and every one of them. So much gets lost on "the first day"...but I'm trying to remind myself to slow down....rules/procedures will come. Being a good listener needs to be established right off the bat.

    Welcome back, by the way :)


    Fun in Room 4B

  7. Love those ideas! Especially the paper fight. Seems like the kids would get really excited about writing for that one.

    For the first day of school we do a classroom alphabet book to get to know each others names and a school scavenger hunt to figure out where all the important rooms are.

  8. I love your paper ball fight idea! I played 2 truths and a lie with my students (which the loved) but throwing paper makes it even better. Another one of my favorite beginning of school activities is a scavenger hunt for classmates. It's amazing how much everyone learns about each other from something so simple!

    Your beginning of school packet looks wonderful!

    A Place to Thrive

  9. This year, I am using the Chrysanthemum book not only to introduce the concept of names (like many of us do), or being proud of who you are, but also to illustrate how kind words hurt and leave scars. I saw this great idea on The First Grade Parade, and am so excited to put this beloved book to new, fresh use!
    BTW, my school is doing a HEROES theme this year and I am sooooo excited about this unit from you!!

  10. I NEED your unit!! I'm a new teacher and would love to have your FABULOUS activities to begin our new year with a bang!!!

  11. Awesome Unit!!!!! You are soooooooooo creative!!!!!
    One of my favorite first day of school activities is to group students together (especially if they don't know each other)and give each group a 100 piece puzzle. Then students have to work together to get the puzzles done. The kids love this activity.
    Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies

  12. I do something similar to the artifacts. But instead I use pictures, photos or pictures cut out from magazines. I show the students my writer's notebook, covered in pictures of things, people or places that are important to me. Then they bring in pictures to decorate their writer's notebooks with. It's a great way to get them writing!

    Teachin' Little Texans

  13. Ooops forgot to post about my favorite first day activities! I like to have the kids do an All About Me craft/writing activity, as well as, a scavenger hunt to find out about their classmates! Eeeek! I hope I win!

  14. This unit look awesome. It's on my wishlist.I'd love to win.

    ✣ Miss Nelson✣
    Miss Nelson’s Blog

  15. My favorite activity is sharing our procedures binder ;) and activities about our names.

  16. I have the students write me a letter. They can ask me questions in it, but they also have to tell me some things about themselves. It gives me a lot of information about them quickly!
    Third Grade All Stars

  17. I usually do the two truths and a fib idea but I definitely plan on taking it up a notch with your paper fight idea. I love how it will be dinner table conversation after the first day! Also on the first day I have a word search on top of each students' desk with each chid's name within it. They work on that first thing as they walk into class and find their desk. I also have a get to know your classmates scavenger hunt. For homework on the first day, the kids are to bring in a summer souvenir (much like your Me Bag acitivity). I set aside about 15 mins each day for a few students to share their souvenir and take a few questions from their classmates over the course of the first week until all of the kids have had an opportunity to share. Hoping I'll be a winner!!

  18. I love to read Sam's Sandwich...and also Kissing Hand -we create handprints to along with poems for the first day. The kids also track and draw about how they got to school =)
    First Grade Blue Skies

  19. You are so clever!

    I like to do a 'Find Someone Who...' activity to get the kids interacting with one another and asking questions.

    Keeping my fingers crossed for this one!

    tokyoshoes (at) hotmail (dot) com

  20. I love your idea of sharing and posting products! I cannot believe you had time to work on that unit. It's huge! Loving the paper ball fight. I am definitely incorporating that! in fourth grade I had the kids tear off sheets of TP. I did not give them any guidelines. After everyone tore off what they wanted, they had to tell the class that many things about them. So those smartie pants who took 40 sheets had a tough time!

    1. HAHA Rachel, I do that activity with Skittles! Once they pick their skittles, I show a flipchart with each color and they have to read the flipchart to see what to tell about themselves! =)

  21. I love taking pictures of my kids and getting to know them. I also like to read back to school poems and completing all about me activities.

  22. Oh Ginger! I NEED THIS!! I just did my back to school display tonight and it is Snyder's Super Students. I NEED THIS PACKET.
    I always read Recess Queen before our first recess to discuss rules, I always read First Day Jitters of course too! This year we are making get to know ya' cootie catchers. I love a good scavenger hunt and I made one of things in our room to get them aquainted with where everything is located.

  23. So glad you finished your "Back To School" packet! You put so much work into it. It looks great!


  24. Your packet is super and I'd love to add it to my BOY activities!! I did the paper fight last year in 5th! They LOVE, LOVE, LOVED IT! They asked to do that over and over again! I'm back in second this year and one of the things we always do in second is play ME-ngo (instead of Bingo). The board is filled with topics and you try to be the first to fill a row by finding classmates that have done what is in that space. Ex. I went to the beach this summer, read 3 books over the summer, has a brother and a sister etc. When a row is filled they should Me-ngo! They really enjoy it!

    A Passion For Primary

  25. darnit! i could not wait...just bought it. :)

  26. Your unit looks incredible! This will be my first year teaching, so I don't have any favorite first day activities yet -- however I plan to create one this year! As I'm doing an Oz theme, we're going to kick off with a book study of the Wizard of Oz to set the tone in our room with our vision for our class, characteristics, etc. I'm working on some fun things, like glyphs, to go with it, too.

    There's No Place Like Second Grade

  27. My favorite first day activity is a scavenger hunt and drinking jitter juice to calm our nerves : ) I hope I win this looks super cute !

    Lindsey -

  28. I make a friendship salad with all sorts of fruit - kiwi to represent the prickly on the outside but sweet in the inside, tart apples to represent kids who put spunk into the day. Just as we are about to finish, I pull out a juicy rotten banana and attempt to add it to the salad. Kids freak and we discuss rotten banana behavior and how it messes up a great class. To finish it all mix it with yogurt, the respect that holds us all together.

  29. One of my favorite activities is reading Rainbow Fish to my students, discussing the importance of being a friend, and then making a cool Rainbow fish with aluminum foil scales! We hang the fish from the ceiling to make our "sea" of friends.
    I love your "snowball fight" idea! They would love that!
    I would love to win your super cool package! :O)

  30. What a wonderful packet!!!
    On the first day of school, I usually spend most of the time just getting to know my students, and let them get to know each other. I usually read books such as Chrysanthemum (it's my favorite!) and Rainbow Fish to discuss how we should treat each other.
    I really hope I win!

  31. I also do the snowball fight. They do a classroom scavenger hunt. On meet the teacher night I give them them a get to know me paper that also has my favorites. I also have a PowerPoint going that is about me. They will have their first quiz all about me. Of course they freak out, I throw some questions in that I haven't told them yet. Then when we are done I tell them it is extra credit.

    I forgot

  33. I love the consensogram idea! Can't wait to try it on the first day of school. It is a great way to see what is important to the kids.

  34. This all looks so amazing, as always!! :) On the first day of school I love to take pictures of all the kids! We tell about ourselves, our hopes and dreams, and then I snap pictures of them. I use those pictures for everything throughout the year. :)

  35. I have many favorites that I do. Last year I added Jitter Juice activities & it was a big hit! I also like to do a quick assessment by playing a game. We go around the circle and say our name and what we like which starts with the same beginning sound. For example... my name is Delighted & and love dogs! At the end of the game I try to go around the circle and see if I can remember all their names and what they like/love. For for them, and an easy way for me to learn their names.

  36. One of my favorite first day activities is All About Me Glogs using Glogster. I get to introduce the kids to technology and learn about them at the same time!


  37. On the first day, I like to do think, pair, share, where they have to introduce a partner to everyone else using 3 facts. I also like to do a move around the room activity, where they have to find someone who has certain things in common with them (grid stye). Things like birth month, eye colour, pets etc.

  38. LOVE the Gallery Walk idea! Pinning it!
    ☼ Kate
    To The Square Inch

  39. LOVE the snowball fight idea! Definitely borrowing that idea... Great super hero back to school unit. I had a super hero theme last year and started the year off by reading Stuart Goes To School by Sara Pennypacker. My students LOVED the book! It's a quick read chapter book. Then they colored in Super Heroes and wrote 3 ways that they were going to be Super Kids.
    Glad I found your blog... I'm your newest follower
    :0) Melissa
    More Time 2 Teach

  40. This packet looks awesome! My favorite things to do in the first week are taking pictures of the kiddos on the first day (we make scrapbooks throughout the year) and reading Robert Munsch books. Robert Munsch is my favorite picture book author, so I always start the year with an author study on him --- the kiddos love his books, so we all get excited about reading!



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