Back to school brings promises of fresh starts, refreshed classroom decor, and a new beginning with students. Not only is it a time to go over classroom rules and set expectations for student behavior, but it’s also an opportunity to foster a positive classroom environment.
The first week of school is an important time to set the foundation for students to feel safe and comfortable with each other and with you. This may sound like a large responsibility to add to your already full plate, but it doesn’t have to be! Simply starting the year off with activities that give your students a chance to share about themselves and get to know their classmates will go a long way toward helping them feel comfortable in your classroom.
These back-to-school activities will help you get to know your students and set the stage for a positive classroom environment — for the first day of school and beyond.
19 Fun First Week of School Activities
Back-to-School Activities for Elementary School
Encourage your elementary students to share about themselves with icebreakers, all about me and getting to know you activities, and a fun escape room.
Grade: Kindergarten | Special Education, Speech Therapy
Speech-language pathologists can use this resource to elicit students’ knowledge of basic concepts, following directions, and more. You can use this resource as a printable flip book or assign it digitally with Easel by TpT.
Grades: K-2nd | English Language Arts
Build community in your classroom with this twist on the all about me activity. Students will interview each other and learn their classmates’ names and favorite things.
Grades: K-6th | Back to School
These 30 back-to-school activities will start the year off right by helping students feel confident and comfortable in your classroom.
Grades: 1st-5th | Music
Use these Would You Rather cards during the first week of music class to get to know your students. Students will choose between two options, and you can extend the activity by having them explain their reasoning for their choice.
Grades: 1st-6th | All Subjects
Students will love this all about me pennant banner about their favorite things. The finished projects are a great addition to your classroom bulletin board.
Grades: 2nd-4th | Writing
These no-prep writing and word work activities are great for the first week of school. This resource is made for Google Apps™ and can be assigned to Google Classroom with Easel by TpT.
Grades: 2nd-5th | Writing
Here are 24 fun questions that you can use as first week of school activities with partners, small groups, or during your morning meetings. Build a positive classroom environment while having students practice speaking and listening.
Grade: 3rd | English Language Arts
Use these oral language sentence editing worksheets for daily bell ringers or morning work to help students master language skills through repetition all year long.
Grades: 3rd-4th | English Language Arts
Collect beginning of the school year writing samples with My Classmates and All About Me worksheets that help students get to know each other. You can assign this resource digitally with Easel by TpT.
Grades: 3rd-6th | Back to School
This getting to know you activity is an escape room that will engage students and help them get to know each other. Similar to a scavenger hunt, students will work together as a team to look for clues around the classroom. This resource is made for Google Apps™
Not Grade Specific | Classroom Management
This free pack will help you build a safe classroom community by giving your students an opportunity to privately share anything they want you to know.
Not Grade Specific | All Subjects
Introduce yourself to your students and parents with this set of Meet the Teacher templates in Spanish.
Back-to-School Activities for Middle and High School
Build a positive classroom environment with creative icebreakers and getting to know you activities for middle school and high school students.
Grades: 5th-8th | English Language Arts
Start off the school year fostering community with this introduction to exploring self-identity journal resource.
Grades: 5th-12th | All Subjects
Get to know your students during the first week of school with these 40 interesting question prompts that will get them talking.
Grades: 6th-8th | All Subjects
This ready-to-go flipbook has activities that will help you get to know your students and their interests during back to school.
Grades: 6th – 10th | English Language Arts
This student survey is a great getting to know you activity for middle school and high school students during the first week of school. Get familiar with students’ personalities and quickly assess their writing skills with these fun questions. This resource is made for Google Apps™
Grades: 6th-12th | English Language Arts
This activity contains creative getting to know you questions that will help your older students learn about each other while they make up some class rules.
Grades: 6th-12th | All Subjects
These unique icebreaker activities include prompts for students to share about themselves and set class goals. Print them for a fun class bulletin board idea, or assign them digitally with Easel by TpT.
Grades: 7th-12th | All Subjects
This free student information sheet is a good way to get to know your middle and high school students on the first day of school.
Discover more first week of school activities on TpT.