Thursday, August 20, 2015

Back to School! (already?!) A freebie letter to students on the first day!

When my kids come in the door on that first day, I want to make sure they have something to do at their desk.  It's always a little crazy with parents, new staff, and the general chaos of the first day so I have to leave good instructions to keep the early arrivers busy.

I like to write a letter to the students to read when they find their desk.  I do this for a couple of reasons:
1) I can see how they follow directions
2) It gives them something quiet to do while other classmates arrive.
3) I don't have to repeat the same directions a million times!

This year, my letter outlined the supplies they have on their desk and where to put them.  I made sure to use simple transition words and directions so all of the students could understand.  I like to linger in the back of the room that first morning, observing the student's behavior, seeing how they interact with their peers, and their behavior.  Some get to work right away and are very quiet.  Others are nervous and run and whisper to their friends who they're sitting next to.  And there's always the couple that make their presence known--we know how those students look, right?!

Here is a copy of my letter that I leave, and there is a blank template for you to use if you so desire!  The fonts I used were Too Much Paper!, Carton Six, and KG Miss Kindergarten.  

I leave a blank name tag on their desk for them to color as morning work (it's interesting to see what designs they come up with!!)  I use PowerPoint and type all of their names in appleberry font, which is my favorite.  Then I make the font huge and make it outlined, so they can color the inside.  These get laminated and then taped on their desks.  Easy, colorful, and cheap!  They are super proud of them when they finish too (some kiddos take a couple days to get it juuuust right.) 

This is an example of how they look before the kids color.  Of course, you can use whatever font you want!

If you'd like your own editable copy of the first day letter, visit my TpT store to download it for FREE!  Make sure you have the fonts listed above if you like the look of what I use.  I have embedded the same letter (different, more simple fonts) below if you'd prefer that too.  Click on Google Slides in the bottom right corner to edit.