When young children encounter large groups of children for the first time, they may be frightened or behave in a timid fashion. Back to school ice breaker games are great to play on the first day of school because they help children ease into a new environment. Preschoolers can have fun and be themselves while learning about their classmates. Here are a few “getting to know you” activities for preschoolers:
Getting to Know You Game:
Gather children in a circle and teach them the following rhyme:
“Biddely diddely bumble bee
Won't you say your name to me?
(Child says name) Ex: Crystal
(All children clap twice and repeat the name) Crystal! (Clap) Crystal! (Clap)”.
Go around the circle three times so that the children get a chance to remember other student’s names.
Stand with the children in a circle. Toss a beanbag toward a child in the circle and ask them an open ended question at the same time, such as "What is your name?" "What do you like to eat?" or "What's the name of your pet?” The person who catches the beanbag answers the question and then throws it to another child asking them a question of their own. Each child will get a turn asking and answering several questions. When playing this icebreaker game with very young children, you may have to prompt them or suggest questions. By the time the game is finished children will know all sorts of facts about their classmates.
All about Me Collage:
Materials: Old magazines, construction paper, writing paper, markers, scissors and glue
Instructions: Ask children to think about their family, things they like and things that they like to do. Next, children can cut out pictures from magazines that represent their favorite activities, aspects of their family, their friends, their home, etc. Show the class how to glue the pictures to create a collage. Allow the collages to dry completely. Encourage children to dictate a few sentences about themselves and/or the collage while you write their narratives on a separates sheet of paper. Attach the paper to the back of the collage. Students can share their collages with the entire class. Collages can also be stored in a notebook and revisited throughout the year.