Do you know what your students are passionate about? I’d like to share a First Day of School activity with you that will help you and your class get to know your super talents within.
Two years ago, I looped with my fourth grade class up to fifth grade and wanted a really unique theme for the year. Since my students had made such huge gains during the previous year, I decided to call them SuperKids to encourage them to take their attitude, behavior, and achievement to the next level. In an effort to kick off the school year with the theme, I asked them to create their own SuperKid character.
I adapted this idea from another one I sometimes use at the start of the school year. I start by reading The Important Book by Margaret Wise Brown. The book contains a bunch of poems about different things in our world. It’s pretty simple and written for a younger audience, but I just use it as a model. We then discuss the format the author uses to create each poem.
It generally goes, “The important thing about ___________ is that it is__________.” Then it gives more details about the object. It concludes with, “But, the important thing about ___________ is that it is__________ (repeated from the first line).” I ask the students to create a poem in this format about their talents. For the Superkid edition, I asked them to say, “The important thing about (first name) is that (she or he) is a super ___________.” They then give some details about their super persona. They end with, “But, the important thing about (first name) is that (she or he) is a super ___________(repeated from the first line).”
Now for the fun part, I ask the students to create a model of a superkid using construction paper. This is always an interesting task because some of the students really struggle to make their person proportional. Sometimes, the torso is big and both the arms and legs are small. It’s quite comical at times! For the Superkid edition, I asked the students to create a Superkid. Basically, this meant that their person should look a little more superhero-like than human-like. As an example, I made one for myself too. I called her SuperTeacher.
This turned out to be such an awesome activity! It really gave me a glimpse of what my students were most passionate about! I learned a lot about my students from this activity and I’d already been acquainted with these kids for an entire school year!
To finish, I post all of the student posters in the hallway with a sign that says “Meet the Superkids.” It’s a great display for the start of the year and for Open House.
See the pictures below to meet “Conservationist Chloe” and “Sashay Savvy Savannah.”
As a little bonus, I am also sharing my “Super Kid Recipe.” I used it as a motivational tool and opportunity to instill the Superkid attitude in my students on the first day of school.
It makes for a great first day of school snack because so many students tend to show up without one. Please note: This recipe does contain cashews. Be sure to poll your students before serving nuts. All of the other ingredients should be okay for general nutritional/ dietary needs.
If you want to add a little real world math to the first day of school, set-up large amounts of the ingredients at a station and have the students use measuring cups to measure-out their snack mix into a plastic bag and shake it up. Yea! Fractions on the very first day of school!
Click on the recipe card below for a free download.
Each recipe yields one Superkid!