Tag Archives: First Day

Ice Breaker — Student Names

Ice Breaker (Student Names)

Shared by Jacque Wilson-Jordan

This activity takes a full 50-minute period, but to me it’s worth it. The classroom geography is decentralized, a welcome change from me standing up and reading the syllabus on day one. The students greet each other and learn about each other. I learn about them; they learn about me. It’s fun to give them a unique quality that may be surprising to them, e.g. that I like to lift weights. The teacher is human! If there’s any awkwardness or weird/unsettling vibe or disruptiveness in the class, this tends to squelch it.

Going through this series of steps and reviewing my sheet when I take attendance on subsquent days helps me learn their names very quickly.

Leave a comment

Filed under Activities

Ice Breaker (Poetry)

Ice Breaker (Poetry)

Shared by Gael Grossman

This ice breaker activity uses poetry to get students to work together early in the semester and offers an opportunity to discuss limerick and haiku.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Writing Ice Breaker

Writing Ice Breaker

Shared by Chuck Guilford

With inspiration from/credit to Ken Macrorie, Peter Elbow, and many others

This is an opening day activity that works both as an ice breaker and an introduction to some practices that will be used throughout the term.

Leave a comment

Filed under Activities

Student Information Sheet

Student Information Sheet

Shared by Stephanie Kratz

With credit to On Course Workshops

This is an information sheet aimed at building rapport and showing instructor interest in students.

Leave a comment

Filed under Activities

Ice Breaker

Ice Breaker

Shared by Karen Henderson

This is an icebreaker that consistently works well with my demographic, which is very nontraditional.

Leave a comment

Filed under Activities

The Smartest Students and Instructors in the Class

Smartest Student and Instructor

Shared by Isabel Quintana Wulf

With inspiration from/credit to Transforming Teaching Through Learning Seminar, Lansing Community College, MI

This activity is a course-starter activity designed to come up with a Student/ Instructor contract setting basic expectations for classroom behavior, preparedness, and interactions for the semester ahead. First, show the instructions to the activity on the board. Ask students to come up with two or three qualities that make good students and two or three qualities that make good instructors. After they have shared and compared with their peers, ask students to share their lists with the class: write down their answers in two columns on the board (Student/ Instructor). Once all the student suggestions are on the board (and you have added some suggestions of your own, like ‘accountable’), discuss the overlaps in the columns. Generally, what makes a good Student also makes a good Instructor (organized, prepared, ready to learn, respectful…). After discussing the qualities on the board, copy the list and post it in the course management site or make it available to your students somehow. Keep the list open so more qualities can be added during the semester as necessary. Consider this list as something to aspire to as the semester develops. Remind students about it periodically so it becomes a strong reference point for classroom management.

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Management

Goals and Questions: An Activity for Synthesizing the Course Syllabus

Goals and Questions

Shared by Susan Naomi Bernstein

With inspiration from/credit to an activity presented at a universal design pedagogy workshop at Landmark College in Putney, Vermont

After perusing the course syllabus and preliminary discussion of the course goals and assignments, draw on this activity to engage communication and understanding between students and professor.

Leave a comment

Filed under Activities