The First Week

It’s starting to hit me like a ton of bricks that I won’t have my own class this year.  I didn’t get a class list like the rest of the teachers. I’m not printing name tags for cubbies or stuffing Open House packets. Don’t get me wrong, with all we have going on this is a blessing, but it feels REALLY odd. I almost don’t know what to do with myself.  I do know once school starts I’ll be busy testing kiddos and pulling intervention groups, so I’m going to enjoy this time right now.  For those of you who go back to a classroom of sweet little faces and a meet the teacher night shortly, I have some items you might want.  I’ve had this “First Week Teacher Toolkit” for a long time and thought you all might like to have it, now that I’ve made the pages editable.
It’s my belief that even before school begins, we need to start building relationships with parents and students. I also like to give them a little information about our classroom, even before Meet the Teacher Open House.  We bombard parents with packets of paper and forms to fill out that evening and I like to give them a little something, before the craziness begins.  So each year I send home a letter to my students and parents.  It gives them a overview of the happenings in our room. It also tells them to bring their supplies to Open House and prepares them for the first day.
Speaking of Open House/Meet the Teacher, we have them bring their supplies.  When I first started, this wasn’t common practice and the first day was a HOT MESS!!! Collecting supplies is a nightmare.  Having them bring them the night before makes life so much easier. I just label buckets and boxes with the supplies and students drop their supplies in the proper bucket.  Anything that needs to stay at their table is communicated in their Meet The Teacher/Open House handout on their desks that night when they enter.
I also make sure that parents fill out a Student Info. form that evening and a transportation information sheet as well.  My fifth year of teaching, my building caught on fire the first day of school. No lie, y’all.  Picture a school full of kiddos on the front lawn of the school and none of us had our cell phones or any student info. Now, I know better.  I have student info all ready and bundled in a nice little folder. The night of Meet the Teacher I laminate their transportation cards and put them on a ring. I use it for the first few weeks until I’m comfortable and then hang the ring by my door for subs.  I also create a transportation sheet with everyone’s info that goes in a sub folder using this info.  In addition, that evening parents take home an envelope full of papers to complete and return. Some of those are included in this pack in case you need them. I get lots of requests for my party and volunteer forms.  All papers go in this envelope with this sweet poem written by Jamie Solley.
In addition, I always leave a little treat on my students desks to take with them when they leave.  The past few years I’ve done Swedish Fish with the “Your O’Fishally a….” tag.  I’ve included those in this download, as well as, a cute little sign for your students to hold for their first day photo.
 So I hope these resources help you get organized and ready for the first week. I wish you all the best of luck. If you download this pack, I just ask that you do not share it on your own website or blog. Even, if you are a blogger, I also included a Photo Release I use for images in my classroom.

If you need some cute activities for the first week, I have some fun activities that teach students about proper behavior. I love these books and activities.

Here are our cute owls! Precious!
I also wanted to thank you all for your support and encouragement with my new shop. I am completely sold out of our black Neat Seats. More will be available in October.  We are still stocked with red Neat Seats. You can check them out by clicking the picture below.

I also recently bundled all of my centers into one pack.  This pack includes over 120 centers, all themed to last you the entire year. It’s on SALE for 50% off through tomorrow.
Picture of Michelle Oakes

Michelle Oakes

Wife, mom of 2 boys and a bulldog, reading specialist, Target frequenting lover of fashion, home decorating, Cincinnati girl.

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