I will be teaching 6th grade Math in a few weeks. I have some great ideas for icebreakers, introducing myself, the students introducing themselves, going through classroom rules, materials and the syllabus, but I feel like there’s so much I want to do in the first day. How do I make sure it all fits in one 50 minute period? What order should I do it all in?

This is my first post on here, but I wanted to reply as I am in the exact same situation. I will also be teaching a 6th grade math class and figuring out the first day seems to be difficult. Being it's their first year in Middle School and they won't know all their classmates, I feel some sort of "ice-breaker" is important. I don't know the order to go about it either . . . any advice would be awesome! Sorry :sorry: I can't help you, but you're not alone!

I will be starting my third year of teaching in a little over a month. Even though I teach at the elementary level, I do have one piece of advice-don't panic if you don't get everything you planned done on that first day. It will be okay! Good Luck--everything will go fine!

so let me get this straight, you want to get middleschoolers to know each other? DOn't worry, they will do that very quickly and they don't need any help in socializing. I assigne seats, hand out a syllabus, I tell a story about an old ESE class I taught my first year (as an example that nothing they can do will 'get me', get me angry, or will compare with the innercity kids and their shenanigans), then we do an assignment the last 30 minutes of class, then I assign a homework. I tell them they are mine for 55 minutes a day, for 200 days and that I would be stealing my salary from their parents if I didn't use all 200 days.

Check this one out. I found it on teachers.net, one of Harry Wong's columns. Here is the link for the full article > http://teachers.net/gazette/JUN00/covera.html

Don't feel like you have to fit "the first day items" into just the first day. Take a few days to go over things and discuss the rules. Taking the time at the start of the yr will make the rest of the yr that much better. Good Luck

Probably not what you're looking for, but I'll say it anyway. I teach math as well-- last year was my first with kids as young as 7th grade. I do a 15 minute spiel about my expectations, then teach a lesson and assign homework. We always have short periods that first day: 29 minutes. So I find something short and sweet to teach, but squeeze in a 15 or 20 minute lesson (say, easy Order of Operations problems.) They have homework on it that night, and a quiz 2 days later. That, more than almost anything I say, tells them about my expectations.

Based on what you have listed, I would go through your material like this: Day 1 -Introduce yourself -Ice breaker where the students introduce themselves -Classroom Rules -Procedures (the most important ones that they will need to know for tomorrow) Day 2 -Review classroom rules -Procedures (the rest of the rules that they will need to know for your class) -Ice breaker -Review your syllabus -Pre-test (if there is time)

I wanted to say *thanks* also! I appreciate it. I was talking to one of our Secretaries yesterday and she was explaining the first day to me. Sixth grade is the only grade that comes to school the first day - 7th and 8th come the next day. Our first day is spent in the gym doing a lot of team building and learning "Bobcat" rules. We only see the students in our class for 15-20 minute periods. So, that'll be enough time to quickly go over basic expectations - how to enter the classroom, take a seat, problem on the board, etc. and to hand out text books (or lockers if Advisor period). So, the second day of school will be more of a first day of school - and we're expected to give a test to work on placements for regular/advanced/recovery math class. I've been told my class rosters will change the first few weeks. I'm getting more and more excited - as well as nervous!

I agree with aliceacc about the homework the first day. Sounds crazy, but most of the kids are relieved to be back at a routine, and doing a little intro., then a little "real" teaching/learning helps to set up the year's expectations well.