We all know the main reason to attend school is to gain the skills and education needed to live a successful and productive life. But in my opinion, it is not just about reading, writing, and arithmetic; it’s also about creating a fun, safe, and comfortable classroom. The classroom environment means as much to students as it does to teachers, especially these days. One of the silver linings of the pandemic is the focus on self-care, emotional well-being, and social-emotional learning (SEL). Luckily, there are many ways to infuse these three elements into the classroom. I’ve got a few templates and activities to share with you today, and here are a few additional ideas to help everyone bond and have a good time:
- Playing classroom games
- Giving students voice and choice
- Making lessons interactive
- Playing a Kahoot
- Sending students on a Goose Chase
- Solving a breakout
- Taking virtual field trips
Below you will find four fabulous pre-made activities to use as bell ringers, ice breakers, or warm-up activities in your classroom. I had a great time designing these for Zoom, Meet, and Teams virtual meetings. However, you could easily modify the activities for in-person learning.
Make a copy of each linked slide deck and check out the speaker notes for directions.
This is a super easy activity with no planning. All you need to do is “find” an object. And you can also throw in adjectives to spot items by using color, size, or type. I pre-made four different scenes: the park, school supplies, ocean animals, and black/white. Start by checking out the speaker notes for directions.
Three for Speed
Thanks to LEGO Robotics with Mr. Hino, I incorporated a little twist on Mr. Hino’s Three for Speed activity. This outside-the-box-thinking game is centered on a theme which has several topics given out by the instructor, followed by students typing their responses in the chat. Then, points are awarded to the first three students who have three different answers. For example, the theme is food, and the first topic is “pizza toppings.” Responses are entered in the chat feature, and you award points before the next topic is announced. Topics could include utensils, citrus fruit, foods that are green, etc. Four themes with eight topics are found in the slide deck.
Simply put, these are just numbers on a background. Students count the numbers on the slide and enter the answer in the chat. I thought this was an interesting spin on having students count. You can change the activity by having one of the numbers in a different color be subtracted. Also, to switch this up, I would encourage students to find interesting backgrounds through Pixabay or insert images through Google Slides to create their own 1-2-3 Addition slides. I have created eight slides to get you counting.
In or Out
The instructor says a word or a phrase, for example, chopsticks, and then asks, “Are you in or out?” Glitter, are you in or out? Roller coasters, are you in or out? Students type “in” or “out” in the chat. Then, conversations or questions can be a good follow-up. I have included a lengthy list to use with everyone and a teacher-oriented list.
Need More Ideas
Looking for more templates and fun activities? Be sure to take a peek at these:
- Fun Icebreaker Jamboard Templates for Back to School
- Celebrate Each Day with National Celebrations
- Back to School Icebreakers
- More Back to School Icebreakers
Wishing you the best for the 2021-22 school year. If you have any questions on these activities, please feel free to contact me at email@example.com. AND, I am always looking to share ideas with as many educators as possible, so if you have an activity, please share it in the comments below.
*Header image attribution: School vector created by pch.vector – www.freepik.com