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How To Create a Meet & Greet for Back to School

The first days of school can be rough on teachers and students alike.  Finding strategies to help break the ice can be time-saving in building a positive learning environment and can help you step into your content in a creative and engaging way.  One of the easiest strategies to implement is the Meet & Greet for Back to School.
How to create a Meet and Greet for Back to School

What is a Meet & Greet?
A Meet & Greet is the perfect Back to School activity.  It is a simple strategy where students find one another to match up topics, people or other characteristics, meeting one another and creating a cooperative bond in the process.

While there are many different methods for creating a Meet & Greet, my favorite is using historic figures to help the students find their work mates.  With matching clues to the historic figures, students use varied resources to tack down and meet up with their alias.  In doing so, students not only break the ice on that first school day, but they are also learning cooperative skills that will set the standard in your classroom for the year.

Steps for a Meet & Greet
The steps are quite simple and can be adapted to fit your individual classes or students.
  1. Find a resource with matching cards. These can be vocabulary terms, important people, or other characteristics.
  2. Provide texts or online tools around the room to assist students in solving their clue.  
  3. Once students know the term or person they are looking for, they will navigate their way around the room, interviewing other students to see if they share a common term or person.
  4. In addition to asking about their clue, students should ask a question or make a comment to each student they meet, searching for commonalities in their classmates.
  5. Once all matches are made, students should find seats in pairs where they can create a Facebook or Pinterest profile on the topic or person that they will present to the class as they also present themselves.
    How to create a Meet and Greet for Back to School
For a more exciting Back to School activity, make it a game.  Encourage competition and offer prizes or points for the first teams to meet and greet!  This will set the tone for learning in your class, where students can have fun and learn at the same time.
How to create a Meet and Greet for Back to School

In my history classes, I use historic figures that we will later study.  This activity then serves as a preface to introduce the course syllabus and to discuss the people, places and things that will be studied in the coming year.  And to further set your classroom expectations, wrap up the activity with a writing prompt or simple assessment.  Not only will this conclude the activity, it will also help you to meet and greet your students where they are in terms of academic ability as well.

How to create a Meet and Greet for Back to School in the middle or high school classroom. A fun and engaging activity idea for the first day of school.

Happy Back to School!

For more great Back to School Tips, link through this Blog Hop for posts by some of my TpT Social Studies friends!