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I like to do a scavenger hunt sheet on the first day. This sheet has things
like, "Find someone that enjoys the same favorite movie._____________ The
movie is________." or "__________________ has an exotic pet. The pet is
The students have to get to know each other by asking questions and finding
similar interests. I explain at the end that it is important to build a
community of learners in the class. Everyone must feel safe to create. The
comfort of knowing that we are all friends and no one will make fun of another
persons artwork is important for growth to take place. I end the class by
everyone taking the oath of friendship within the class. Defuse the anxiety
and fear from the get-go. Besides that it is much more fun to get to know them
than it is to dictate rules. I ask my own son what he did on the first day of
school and he said he heard rules for each class all day. That made me realize
that they probably don't hear any of that stuff after 3 rd period. Look at
those glazed over expressions folks.....