Tag Archives: ice breaker

2018 First Day of School Scavenger Hunt

Viral videos and big moves in the NBA have led me to change up my scavenger hunt for the first day of school.  Click the link: 2018 Classmate Scavenger Hunt for the PDF.  See the links below for other versions of this activity.

Screenshot 2018-07-28 at 1.35.57 PM

2016 Classmate Scavenger Hunt

With the same students as last year….and so many exciting things happening this summer, I decided to update my Scavenger Hunt.

2016 Scavenger Hunt

2016 Classmate Scavenger Hunt

Here are links to previous posts about this first day activity:

Updated: First Day of School Scavenger Hunts (Contains three variations for different age levels)

First Day of School Scavenger Hunt (Contains the rules, description of the activity)


Summertime Favorites

Lemon Shake-Ups.

Caramel Apples.

Cotton Candy.



Funnel Cakes.

Banana  Splits.

Strawberry Milkshakes.

Which is your favorite summertime favorite?

Hopefully you’ve had a great summer and done plenty of your favorite things and eaten plenty of your favorite goodies. (Lemon Shake-Up for me!)

August arrived almost 72 hours ago. Along with it, band practice, golf practice, back-to-school posts, and an earlier wake-up time (probably the most shocking of all.)

As I get back into the routine, I feel mixed emotions. My daughter is a junior and a squad leader in the marching band this year.  On the first day of practice, I heard her come downstairs.  I hopped out of bed, quickly got dressed, and started my coffee as I rubbed the sleep from my eyes. She looked at me – water bottle, trumpet, music, and keys in hand – and I realized she doesn’t need a ride this year.  She has her own car.  (Imagine both our faces – and my heart – at this moment.)

My son, finally a teenager, is an 8th grader and is on the golf team.  He’s worked hard all summer on his swinging, chipping, and putting.  My parents bought him a giant net that he can set up in the yard. It’s been nice because I don’t have to pay for the driving range, or make his sister drive him to the golf course.   But when I look at my hacked-up lawn…. I think I should put up a sign that says, “A spoiled rotten golfer lives here.”

I’ve started a little of my back-to-school work, but considering this is Year 21, I feel pretty comfortable and have learned to use every second of this precious time for relaxing, refreshing, and re-energizing.

However, during a quick stop at the store this morning, I found the perfect ice breaker activity for my students.

Limited Edition Dum-Dums!

Limited Edition Dum-Dums!  How fun!  I bought two 10.4 oz bags for $4.00 at Discount Drugmart.

After brief introductions of myself and my student teacher, I will bring out the basket.


This is a good time for me to remind them of the rule of saying “Thank You” immediately after receiving a treat, and a warning that candy wrappers left anywhere but the trash can will not work in my classroom.

Now comes the fun:

Screenshot 2016-08-03 at 6.40.59 PM

I’m excited to have my first day activity planned and ready to go. I had most of these students last year in 7th grade, so I have to get creative each year. Plus, this lets us hold onto sweet summer just a little bit longer….

What is your go-to ice breaker?

Do you have something new planned for this year? 

I’d love for you to share your ideas in the comments!

First Day of School Scavenger Hunt

On the first day of school, there is always the awkward silence during the extended homeroom period. As an ice-breaker, I use a scavenger hunt that gets students interacting and moving around. Each student gets a copy of the scavenger hunt and we mingle around the room for 10-20 minutes to complete it.


Here are the rules I give them first:

  1. You must get every block signed.
  2. You must ask the person in the form of a question, “Jack, do you like to skateboard?”
  3. The person must sign his or her own name.
  4. You can only have a person sign two blocks on the paper.

Here is the unspoken rule that it takes them awhile to figure out:

  1. You can ask the teacher questions too.

I also do this activity in my resource room, which has pretty low numbers. Last year, I only had five students so I put this up on the SMARTBoard and we took turns signing our names to different blocks.

This activity is fun and it is informative. I can see who is shy and who is out-going. I can learn a little about the students and they learn a little about me. I make mental notes so I can strike up conversations later and make connections with kids. “So you are the oldest, huh? I am too. Are you the most responsible one in your family? Do you feel like your parents are more lenient with your younger siblings?”

Here is a Word version of this Scavenger Hunt so you could modify it to fit your class.

What ice-breakers do you do on the first day of school?

How do you get to know your students?

What is the most important thing you want to know about your students?

%d bloggers like this: