You have your kindergarten classroom setup, but now you’re thinking:
- “Now what?”
- What do I teach? What activities do I do?”
- “What procedures should I teach? How should I teach them?”
I know it’s a lot, but not to worry! Today, I am going to share with you the first day of kindergarten lessons that changed my school year. After teaching Kindergarten for 3 years, I’ll show you what works so you don’t have to learn the hard way, like I did. Let’s get to it!
Themed days are a fantastic way to engage children and bring books to life. One of my favorite themed days for the first day of school is centered around the amazing book, “The Kissing Hand.” This heartwarming story is perfect for comforting students who may be scared or nervous about starting their first day of school. Let me show you how you can create an unforgettable first day experience with “The Kissing Hand.”
Reading “The Kissing Hand”:
On the first day, after breakfast and introducing myself, I gather the students on the carpet and read “The Kissing Hand.” This amazing story helps calm their nerves and reassures them that they are loved and cared for. It sets a positive and comforting tone for the rest of the day.
Heart Sticker Activity:
After reading the book, I give each student a heart sticker to put on their hand. This small gesture symbolizes the love and support they have from their families and teachers. It becomes a visual reminder throughout the day that they are safe and cherished in the classroom. Most of all, it helps them build confidence as they move about the school day!
To further engage the students and reinforce the themes of “The Kissing Hand,” I organize a scavenger hunt related to the story. It allows the children to explore the classroom and discover hidden clues that connect to the book. This interactive activity not only makes the day exciting but also helps them feel a sense of belonging in their new environment.
You can download the Scavenger Hunt for FREE by clicking here.
Teaching Rules and Procedures:
Establishing rules and procedures on the first day is essential. I keep it concise, focusing on no more than 5 important rules. During the scavenger hunt, I hide the clues around the classroom and the school. I take the students on a tour of the school, highlighting important areas and explaining procedures. During the tour, we review our numbers or letters as we search for all of the Scavenger Hunt clues.
Adding an element of excitement, I introduce a Kaboom! Game, which reinforces number and letter recognition in a thrilling way. This game not only captures the students’ attention but also allows me to teach procedures while assessing their learning progress.
As the day comes to a close, I like to wrap up with a writing activity that ties back to “The Kissing Hand.” I provide a link to a writing resource that you can use to encourage students to express themselves and reflect on their first day experiences. These engaging activities not only make learning enjoyable but also provide an opportunity to teach procedures effectively.
I hope you found this blog post helpful in preparing for your first day of kindergarten. By confidently implementing this lesson centered around “The Kissing Hand,” you can ensure that your students have a positive and engaging start to their school year. I
As always, remember, “We are stronger together!”
I’ll catch you next time, teacher bestie!
The Present Teacher