August 27, 2013

Beginning of the Year Games...Success!!!!

The first two days of school are a success! I tried all my new games and the kids LOVED them was awesome! I swear...usually there's someone that doesn't care...they ALL had fun and tried! I know, shocker to me, too!

Yesterday the kids only had class for 15 minutes as an intro to their schedule and stuff, so we just did some outside team-building games. I had the kids stand in a circle and hold hands different ways and have them untangle and all that fun stuff. There's always the hula-hoop game too that's fun.

Today I implemented three games, and had time to review the syllabus [I have 80 minute classes].

I handed each student a piece of paper and had them do an acronym of their name. Their first word/letter became a part of their name. I now have: Robust Robert, Joyful Joy-anne, Magnificent Maggie, etc. It's fun. Then I let kids try to repeat everyone's name for candy. Several tried, but only a few succeeded! lol

We did my new Get to Know You Blackout Bingo. Took a little longer than I thought....about 15 min when all was said and done. That freebie is up on my TPT Store if you want to grab it! The kids had a lot of fun, but we did have to clarify a few things--someone can only sign your sheet once; one kid can't fill out 5 of your boxes :) And then I verified with the signee to make sure everything was kosher. Here's a pic of the kids running around.

Then we got to my awesome team-building game: Marshmallow Towers!!! This turned out to be a great team-building activity. It's pretty basic, and I made a FREEBIE directions handout/poster for you so you can do this with your kids too. It doesn't have to be the first day or week of school...mix it up and do it half way through to build community again. :) 

So each team gets 50 mini marshmallows and 50 toothpicks:

And they have to follow the directions: Here's the link to the free poster of directions.

Then I gave them a 1 minute planning time, followed by 10 minutes to build. My honors classes used all 10 minutes, and my college prep classes used about 8-9.The goal of this activity was not height, but strength, so I clarified that a few times.

Then I went around and judged. First I used a ruler as the weight...that way everyone's would work :) We're all winners ;) Then I used those big eraser...the 6" ones. A few held one, so then as a tie breaker, we stacked two. It was awesome. 

And the winning table received.....

Rice Krispie Treats! Duh...'cus they're made with marshmallows...get it? I'm a nerd :)

Anyway, it was a great first and second day! I'll definitely do these activities again.

Hope you can use these in your room!!


  1. That sounds like so much fun! :)

  2. I love these activities. I'm all about taking the pressure off of me and letting students work together. Otherwise, I lose my voice every year during the first week!

    1. I know...I did dive into "real" school today, but just introduced the project they worked on today and will continue to work on tomorrow. I like saving my voice! :)


  3. Thanks for sharing... I had heard of this exercise elsewhere, so now I can see how it's done.

    Have you seen the activities on Tons of ice-breakers, team-building and group games on there, many of them for free. Worth a look too.

    cheers, Mark

  4. Thank you so much for your comments Miss Lifesaver! I hope your days back went well! We had our party today! It was so nice and the kids were so happy! Team building games.