5 Ice Breaker Activities That Teachers Can Use at the Start of the New School Year

Teacher talking with her class on their first day of school


If you’re searching for an intriguing way to capture your students’ attention at the start of the school year, look no further! YMI Classroom has compiled a list of innovative ideas to help you start the year on the right foot. While some may require more prep time than others, they’re all guaranteed to grab and hold onto your students’ interest. Explore our other free Lesson Plans to use in the classroom today!

Send a Welcoming E-Mail

Before school even begins, reach out to students and families with a warm and welcoming e-mail. Include a photo of yourself and a brief description of your favorite things. This will help put families at ease and let them know you’re looking forward to getting to know their child.

Make a Fun Presentation

First impressions do make an impact! So, on the first day of school, make a presentation about yourself using photos, slideshows, or even videos. This will help you personally connect with your students and ensure they remember who you are.

Build a Word Cloud

Get to know your students’ interests, personalities, and hobbies by having them create a word cloud. Ask them to list their favorite things and use those words to create a visually appealing display. This is a great way to break the ice and get to know your students better as they see what attributes make them distinct, further supporting individualized learning and discovery each day in and out of the classroom.

Design a T-shirt

You can never go wrong with invoking positive encouragement for creative endeavors from all of your students. If you’re looking for a creative way to engage your students, ask them to design a t-shirt that represents themselves. This is an excellent opportunity to show off their personality and interests. Once they’ve completed their designs, have the class do a quick show and tell while consistently promoting positive feelings for each student.

Make Them Feel Valued

A student that feels valued from the beginning will be encouraged to carry that feeling throughout the school year. The perfect way to do this is through group contribution projects. Having each student make a puzzle piece representing them is a great way to make them feel like they’re an essential part of the class. Not only will this project help students get to know each other, but it’ll also give you a chance to assess their strengths and weaknesses.

These are just a few icebreaker activities you can use to start the new school year. No matter your choice, your students will surely enjoy getting to know you better. For more lesson plans and resources, visit YMI Classroom today! We offer a wide variety of options for every grade level and subject. Also, check out our wide array of digital lesson plans for teachers and educator resources online today!

Educator Resources