The winter break is over, and it’s time for students to return to their classrooms with renewed energy and enthusiasm. As teachers, we understand the importance of creating a positive and engaging environment to help students transition back smoothly into their learning routine. Let’s say “Welcome Back from Winter Break” in style with five fun activities designed to make the first few days back from winter break exciting and productive. From sharing their break experiences to reviewing routines and procedures and setting goals for the rest of the school year, I’ve got you covered!
1. “Share and Connect” Session:
Start the first day by allowing students to share their experiences over their winter break. Allow them to discuss their experiences, travels, and memorable moments with their classmates. As always, encourage active listening and positive feedback, fostering community and reconnecting students after the break. This Welcome Back Activity will help students strengthen social bonds and create a positive classroom culture.
2. Review Routines and Procedures:
After an extended break, it’s crucial to re-establish classroom routines and procedures. Take time to review expectations and rules with your students. Make it interactive by playing a “Routines Race” game, where students work in small groups to complete a checklist of classroom routines and procedures correctly and quickly. This activity will serve as a refresher for students and ensure a smooth transition back into the classroom routine. Add your classroom routines and procedures to your teaching slides to review throughout the day.
3. Goal Setting for the Rest of the School Year:
The start of a new year is an excellent time to set goals and aspirations. Guide your students in reflecting on their academic and personal growth with these goal trackers and mini-lessons. Encourage them to identify goals they want to achieve by the end of the school year. First start by having each student write down their goals on colorful paper. Then create a “Goals Wall” in the classroom and display their aspirations. This visual representation will be a constant reminder and motivator throughout the year.
4. Team-building Activities:
Engage students in team-building activities to foster collaboration, communication, and problem-solving skills. Arrange group challenges or games that require teamwork, such as building a tower using marshmallows and toothpicks or creating a class mural with each student contributing a unique piece. These activities will help students reconnect with their peers, ensuring a positive and supportive classroom environment.
5. Start with a Fun and Interactive Lesson:
Kick off the first academic lesson with a fun and interactive activity related to the curriculum. For example, if you’re teaching fractions, engage students in a hands-on activity where they cut up cookies or pizza slices to understand the concept practically. A favorite way to review previous skills is with Fraction Jenga! This approach grabs their attention and reinforces their understanding of the subject matter. Starting with an enjoyable lesson will set the tone for the rest of the school year and ignite students’ passion for learning.
As we say, “Welcome back from winter break,” let’s make the return to the classroom a memorable and fruitful experience for our students. By incorporating these five activities – sharing and connecting, reviewing routines and procedures, setting goals, team-building, and starting with a fun and interactive lesson – we can create a positive and engaging environment that sets the tone for the rest of the school year.
So, let’s embrace the energy and enthusiasm of our students as they return, and together, let’s make the most of the remaining school year ahead. Welcome back, everyone!