Now that another new year is upon us, it is time to welcome students back into the classroom and engage them for the last half of the school year. Here is a list of five ways to engage students in the new year.
Growth Mindset Activities
One thing I like to do at the start of a new calendar year is to spend some time setting goals and reflecting on how I can improve. Also, I like to take this into the classroom as well. Students benefit from setting goals and reflecting on previous mistakes. This Growth Mindset Activities resource is the perfect way for students to get engaged in a new semester of learning. I designed this activities pack for older students, and it includes activities, a growth mindset quiz, exit slips, and more!
|Growth Mindset Activities for Middle & High School|
One Word Project
A great first-day back activity is the one-word project. It’s a simple project where students think of one word that they want to embody in their new year. The write their word on a 6×9 inch notecard and decorate the notecard. On the back, students can explain why they chose the word they did. One of my favorite things about the one-word project is that you can then display all of the notecards on the wall as a colorful and motivating display.
Another great way to begin the new year is to dive right into writing and assign a personal statement. The new year is usually a time where students reflect on who they are, so it is the perfect time to assign a personal statement. This personal statement teaching unit includes an instructional slide to help students understand why they need to have a personal statement as well as plenty of brainstorming organizers to help students draft their best personal statement.
|The Personal Statement|
Take an Emotional Intelligence Test
One way to get students thinking about social and emotional learning is to take a free EQ test. This is a quick and simple EQ test that is not only free, but students can also download their results and submit them electronically as proof of completion. Some great extension exercises to this free emotional intelligence test are to have students keep a journal, research more about emotional intelligence, and analyze a story from an emotional intelligence standpoint.
Leadership and Success Bell Ringers
Another great habit to start at the start of the new year is to incorporate these leadership and success bell ringers into your classroom routine. These bell ringers will help students start to think like leaders as they read and analyze quotes about leadership and success. I like to use this free bell ringer recording sheet for students to record their responses.
|Leadership and Success Bell Ringers|
If you are looking for even more ways to engage students in the new year, be sure to check out my blog posts entitled 5 Ways to Engage Students in the New Year and 5 More Ways to Engage Students in the New Year.