Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Second Day of School

In an earlier post  I talked about some activities I wanted to include as part of my getting to know you routine when the year starts.  In this post I'd like to get into the second day of school.

First to clarify:  Our first day of school is on the stupid activity schedule.  This means one of my classes is a full 50 minutes and the rest are 23 minutes.  AWESOME.  I get double awkward time with one group and have to over plan for that class.  Thankfully it's Biology and I have plenty to use do in there.

Earth Science is a different matter.  Here's a recap of what day one will really look like:

Class always starts the same the first day.  I assign seats, show the kids where they sit and hand out the first day of school pamphlets: Syllabus, Lab Safety, Expectations, etc.  This usually takes me about 20 minutes.  I to end class and for homework I'll have to assign a Learning Styles Survey.  Here's some examples:

I have one on paper that I like to use, but you get the idea.

Day 2:

When day 2 starts I want to stall out curriculum usually - kids are still transferring in and out.

To start out the day I'll go over their learning styles and what it means to be a different type of learner.  I'll have to throw together a powerpoint of these that correlates with their homework.  I want the kids to really focus on their strengths this year.

From here I'll transition into something fairly simple.   I'll hand out a blank 8"x11" sheet to each student and tell them to draw me the world and label as many things as they can.  I'm still debating what other rules to throw in there.  Here's what I've been brainstorming:

  • You must fit the entire globe on the sheet (as it if were a map)
  • Things to label:  Oceans, Seas, Rivers, Lakes, Continents, Countries, Cities, etc.
  • Time limit: 25 minutes.
I want to have the students save this as part of an ongoing portfolio.  My hope is they get a little better at drawing and understanding different parts of maps, geography and topography throughout my course.

I'll do a quick show and tell or make everyone hold up their maps to share really quick.  I'll explain what the maps are for and we'll move into...

Directions Quiz Time!

I think I'm going to take one of these  Origami Foldables and write out some instructions that go with the pictures and challenge my kids to follow the directions as best they can.  I'll turn it into a timed race and have 2 categories - best made and fastest made origami animals.  If any time is left over I'll let them work on additional origami.

That should wrap up my 2nd day of school.  That means day 3 planning is on the horizon!


  1. ugh, i hate the getting-to-know-you routines. So mundane and embarrassing

  2. Great routine, I bet your students really enjoy it.

  3. You assign seats??? :o I'm a high school student so that bums me out :P
    But overall you seem like you'd be a pretty chill teacher so kudos to you sir

  4. About to start school in a few weeks, godspeed.

  5. hah, you sound like an interactive type of educator. Me like! +follow

  6. Great routine. ++Follow to hear from an educator's perspective, fascinating for a student.

  7. It's interesting, now that I;m a few years out of school, to see things from the teacher's point of view. Keep up the posts!

  8. wow, great plot of your adventure! :)
    I hope my next teacher will do the same on a blog :D

  9. I feel sorry for your students