The Boy Scout moto: “Always be prepared!” is also essential for any catechist or religion education teacher. The infamous question “What should you do?” the first day of classes nags in the back of your mind and you cringe every time just thinking about it. Fear not, there is hope and you can have a great beginning to the start of the year if you utilize the following ideas:
This is what I plan to do the first day of classes with my first grade students:
Welcome- Greet each student and parent. Introduce yourself and welcome them to class. Ask the students to find a seat at the table. While they are doing so give each parent an Introductory Letter to Parents to provide them with information of what is expected in the classroom and what the children will be doing during the year. Tell parents that they are welcome to stay and join our classroom.
Class Contact List- Have the parents fill out a Class Contact List to obtain information that can help aid the catechist to understand their child’s needs and how to contact them.
Names- Have name tags where each student is going to sit and help students find their seats. After all students have found their seats have them introduce themselves to the class. Introduce game: How well do you know everyone in class? Directions: I will stand behind a student’s chair and say, “Who am I?” and the class must name that student. Stand behind a student and say, “Who am I?
Attendance- Fill out the CCD Attendance Sheet and place in classroom tray for DRE. Fill out the classroom attendance sheet that is in my binder.
Classroom Activities- Go over classroom activities with students so they will know what they will be doing for the year.
• We Know Our Prayers- My students are given 5 prayers (Sign of the Cross, Grace Before Meals, Glory Be, Hail Mary, and Our Father) to do by the end of the school year. Each prayer the student completes, they will be able to pick a prize from the prize bag (show prize bag).
• Take Home Sheets- At the end of every class each student will be given a Take Home Sheet for their parents to go over with them to review what we did in class. Parents need to help their child fill this out and bring back to class the following week. Students that complete their homework and bring it back to class will be able to play HOMEWORKOPOLY.
• Take Home Tests- We also have 4 take home tests during the year. Parents will need to help their child study, fill out the test, and return it to class. Students that bring back their completed test will be able to play HOMEWORKOPOLY.
• Homeworkopoly- (Hold up game and show students) In order for a student to play HOMEWORKOPOLY, he or she must complete their homework and hand it in to the teacher on time. This is how the student moves around the game board and win prizes from the prize bag. If the student does not have their homework finished, they do not get their chance to roll the dice and move for the day.
Classroom Behavior Expectations- Go over the Classroom Behavior Expectations and post the classroom rules after we have gone over them in a place where all students can see them.
*Ask students if they have any questions. Then start today's lesson.
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