Don’t Break the Ice. Build Community.
We all do an icebreaker on day one of class. Then how often do we forget about our keeping strong rapport with students and between students? Until there’s a problem? Classroom community builders are more than empty icebreakers; they’re a way of ensuring your classroom is a place where students work hard and treat each other with respect.
Classroom Community Builders: Activities for the First Day & Beyond is a collection of activities that build community in the classroom while students learn. The heart of the book is activities that have students working together toward meaningful, and mutually beneficial goals, activities that meet the four conditions for building classroom community.
- Plane Crash Survival: Students decide which items are most useful to them after their plane crashes
- Create a Country: Students choose a new country, draw a map, give it a government, and devise new laws
- Tell Me About Me: Students try to figure out how much they know or can guess about the teacher. Turn the tables on the typical icebreaker by having them get to know you instead.
- Settlement: Given a map, students figure out the best place to build a new settlement where they can access food, water, shelter, and stay away from wild animals.
- Follow Directions: Give each student one part of the directions to communicate to the rest of the class. You can have them build Legos or do a tangram or even origami.
Clear instructions, ideas for varying or adapting the activities, and links to free printable downloads make this a must-have book, whether you are a new or experienced teacher.