Back to School by Zoe Gioja (South Korea ETA) and Kristen O’Brien (South Korea ETA)
This post will focus on a variety of different lesson ideas, games, or activities you can do with your students for the 1st day of school! There are a variety of materials and ideas, so you can pick and choose, or even teach these lessons and activities over a course of a few days. With adjusting, these lessons and materials are appropriate for both elementary and secondary students.
- Self-introduction: Even if not all of your students are new, and even though you may have done this at the beginning of last year, students really don’t remember. It’s good to reintroduce yourself, and even include new things, such as what you did over break. Students would love seeing photos of what you did over break. You can also have conversation, asking what your students did during break.
- Classroom Rules: Go over the classroom rules again. You can rehash what you established last year, or even start over again. It’s a new year, and it’s good to review these rules with the students again.
- Classroom Rewards: Again, you can review, or start fresh because it’s a new year. It’s good to establish what you expect from students, and what the rewards and punishments will be.
- Classroom English: Depending on the level of students, I find this lesson or topic to be especially helpful for low level students. Establish a set list of vocabulary words and commands you will use in English in your classroom. A lot of students may not know these phrases, so it’s good to teach this to the students. Make sure you use the commands and words you teach them during all of your future classes, so they can retain them. [Click here to download]
- For a secondary education lesson plan with more detailed ideas click here
Game and Activity Ideas
- Guessing Game: This is a great warm up to your self-introduction. You could also show your self-introduction PPT, then follow it up with this as a quiz game instead of a guessing game. It can be as short, or as long as you want (depending on how many questions you make). This could be especially fun to see how many things your students remember about you. For example: Where am I from? And give them 4 (A,B,C,D) choices. Divide the class into teams, or by rows, and give points accordingly. [Click here to download]
- 2 Truths and 1 Lie: Another fun way to have the students learn more about you, and for you to learn about them. You can quiz the students on any topic. For example, tell the students “My favorite foods are…” and then show them 3 photos of 3 different foods. 2 photos are of foods you like, but 1 is of a food you dislike (2 truths and 1 lie). You can ask more questions or less questions depending on how long you want the game to last, and can also have students make their own 2 truths and 1 lie if you have more time. You can reward points for the best questions made, and have students present and have their classmates guess the truths and lies. [Click here to download]
- Facebook Activity: Make your own example, then have students copy your template. You can have the students make their own “facebook profiles” about themselves.
- What did you do during vacation activity: A simple activity where you can have students draw pictures and write about their breaks and what they did.
- Speed Quiz: A quiz to play with the Classroom English lesson. This tests the students’ knowledge of the vocabulary and commands you just taught them. [Click here to download]