One of my teammates came up with this great idea for the first day that we now have been doing for years! On each child's desk, we have a puzzle waiting. But not just any puzzle, a puzzle that uses their very own name. Just imagine being a nervous first grade entering the classroom for the first time and finding a puzzle on your desk. You put the puzzle together and it spells your name. What fun!
Each puzzle takes a half piece of card stock (or you can cut up manila folders) about 8 1/2" by 5 1/2". Write a child's name on the card stock - make it really fancy : ). Add fancy squiggles and swirls using a variety of colored markers. Stamp a few stamps using different colors of ink pads. Once you have the paper fancy enough, cut it into about six pieces (the number of pieces depends on the age of your students). Then place the puzzle pieces in an envelope with the child's name on it. (Yes, you can make the name on the envelope fancy, also - we first grade teachers LOVE cute!!!) Prior to day one, place the envelopes on each child's desk. This can be their first activity.
Special thanks to my teammate Marlene for this great idea!