12+ Back-to-School Classroom Activities That Create a Warm Welcome

12 back to school classroom activities for kids

Back-to-school classroom activities prepped for kids will help with a seamless transition into the new grade level. Use the ideas below to give kids the warm welcome they deserve and make them feel at home daily.

12 back to school classroom activities for kids and teachers

I’m not sure about you, but I always felt most welcome in a classroom where my artwork was displayed and could show off my creativity in my own way. Blank walls and boring lessons didn’t hold my attention. I had a better year when the teachers showed me compassion and helped us make friends.

Give your students the same treatment with some fun classroom activities below!

Make Friendship Bracelets

Use this fun template to create friendship bracelets that students will love. These are perfect for Taylor Swift fans, but all students will love them. Use the letters and decorations to create fun paper bracelets to gift to friends. Use them for fast-finishing, rewards, morning work bin activities, and more.

Fun back to school classroom activities - bracelet
Classroom activities like these bracelets bring students together!

Create a Back-to-School Bulletin Board

Invite students to help you create a fun back-to-school bulletin board using their faces! Students will decorate their craft and paste on their smiling faces. The decor will make them feel right at home from day one.

Fun back to school classroom activities - bulletin board
Use this back-to-school bulletin board as a fun classroom activity to unite kids.

Write Goals with a Craft

Students will enjoy making goals for the year at the start of the year. Use this pencil craft to write about those goals and share them with the class. Keep the craft on hand and re-do it after a few months to reevaluate goals!

Fun back to school classroom activities - pencil craft
Use classroom activities like this pencil craft to make students feel heard.

FREE Back-to-School Bundle – 12 Freebies

Having a handful of fun activities for students to complete in those first days of school is so helpful. I created a little bundle of back-to-school activities that kids will love to complete as they adjust to their new classroom.

All About Me Pennants

Students will use the pennants to share their future goals and aspirations for the year. They can brainstorm the career they want and the goals they would like to set for the school year. Let them color and decorate the triangles and display them on the walls.

All About Me Survey

Students will use this survey to share their favorite things and facts about their family life. Once the papers are filled out, they can share them with the class, or you can display them on the bulletin board.

Time Capsule

The time capsule allows students to record their current favorites and their handprints. At the end of the year, they can fill out the same sheet and see how things have changed in just one year.

Summer News

Kids will use the printable to write about their summer break. They can tell a story or share a fun experience. There’s also a space to draw a picture.

Find a Classmate Who …

This is a fun activity in which students wander the room asking one another questions. When they find a student who matches a square on their card, they write that friend’s name. Let them work until the kids have a BINGO or fill their whole card!

How Well You Know Your Teacher

Let students guess answers about you! They can use what they already know and see in the classroom and their creativity to finish the questions. Review the correct answers once all have been answered and see how many got them right.

Finish the Picture

Use the simple lines and dots on the page to start a conversation. Give each child a print-off and let them use their imagination to join the shapes. It’s always interesting to see what they come up with. After completing them, let them share and talk about what everyone sees.

Back-to-school freebies- classroom expectations - classroom activities
Use these fun classroom activities to warm students up to their new room.

Additional Ideas

  • Birthday Graph: Have each student write their birthday month on a sticky note. Create a large graph with the months written on the x-axis. Ask students to predict which month will have the most sticky notes and compare results afterward.
  • Partner Compare and Contrast: Group students or partner them off and give them a graphic organizer. Have them write things they have in common that are different on the sheet.
  • Life Map: Give each student a large sheet of paper. Model your life map with a curvy road and significant events. Draw pictures to represent the events. They could be graduations, an accident, the birth of a sibling, etc. Then, let them create their maps.
  • About Me Bags: Give each student an empty brown paper bag. Ask them to decorate it any way they like. At home, they should fill it with objects they want to share. They might bring in trophies, pictures, favorite toys, or snacks. This allows them a prop to start conversations instead of pulling things out of thin air.
  • Around the Room: Place large anchor chart papers around the room with questions on them. These questions should help you get to know the class. They can be open-ended questions or prompts to get the kids thinking. Give the students sticky notes to walk around and add their answers. One example of a prompt is “This class should be …”.

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I hope you have a wonderful start to the year and a room full of students with compassion! As always, you’re amazing! Follow me on TikTok and Instagram for more teaching ideas.

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12 back to school classroom activities for kids
Picture of Stephanie Nash

Stephanie Nash

I have been helping teachers organize, develop routines, and create inviting & beautiful classrooms since 2012!

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