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Even More Classroom Icebreakers for Back to School

icebreakers
Written by Diana Benner

Try these fun back-to-school icebreakers with your new students and be amazed at how quickly you learn who they are and what they like.

Last year, I wrote a blog about classroom icebreakers that could help students and teachers break the ice the first day or the first week of school. Find even more icebreaker activities below to try with your students in order to start the year off right.

Two Truths and a Lie Flipgrid

If you haven’t caught the Flipgrid Fever (#FlipgridFever), you should! Flipgrid is a video discussion board service that will allow your students to respond to a question you ask. Teachers can create a grid for free just by signing up for an account. It’s a great way to capture your student’s voices and ideas.

A fantastic icebreaker would be to create a Two Truths and a Lie Flipgrid. Give students the URL to your Flipgrid or they can scan the QR code to access it. Your students would then click on the green plus sign and record themselves telling two truths and one lie about themselves. You could even pair students up and have them record each other. After all the students have finished, you can pull the Flipgrid up on the screen and the class can take turns guessing which statement is a lie. It’s a great way for the class to get to know one another. Want to try it? Test it out on this sample Flipgrid I created.

icebreakers

Create Your Own Emoji

Emojis are so popular these days that students are using them all the time. So why not have your students create their own Emoji and then write a paragraph about themselves as an icebreaker activity? Try it out for yourself by following the steps below:

Step 1:

Step 2:icebreakers

  • Read the directions on Slide #1 and pick a slide that doesn’t already have an emoji created on it.
  • Create your emoji by dragging and dropping the images on the side of the slide or by inserting new images.

Step 3:

  • Write a paragraph about yourself and/or why you created your emoji the way you did.

Once again, after all your students have created their emoji, you could display them on the projector and let the students talk about their emoji. Get your own copy of the About Me Emoji template here: “About Me Emoji Google Slide” Template – Google Slide link.

Green Screen LEGO Puppets

Another idea for an icebreaker is to have students use green screen technology while recording a video introduction of themselves.

First, have your students design a LEGO mini figure of themselves. You can give your students this template to use as a starting point.

Next, purchase a green tablecloth at the Dollar store, which you will then tape up on the wall. Then download a green screen app, such as the Doink app. It only costs $2.99 and is very easy to use. For a free option, you can try Touchcast (iPad) or Free Photo Green Screen Tool (iOS). Use your iPad to take a picture that you will use as a background for the green screen. You could take pictures of the front of the school, the playground, or a spot in your classroom. Upload the picture to the app.

Then attach the LEGO puppet to either a green ruler or a green straw (usually available at Starbucks) and place it in front of the green tablecloth. Use the app to record a short video introduction with groups of students. See the example video below:

icebreakers

Animated Fidget Spinner

Fidget spinners are especially popular with our students today. Therefore, why not try using them as an instructional tool in the classroom?

For the icebreaker below, I used animations in Microsoft PowerPoint to allow the spinner to spin and land on different parts of the color wheel. For this particular icebreaker, you can pull the spinner up on the screen and group students into teams in order for them to discuss the topic the spinner lands on. This is great way to connect with students while allowing them to get to know one another.

Get your own copy of the Fidget Spinner Icebreaker template here: “Fidget Spinner Icebreaker” Template – Microsoft PowerPoint Template.

Try one of these icebreakers during the first week of school and give your students and you a chance to get to know one another. Leave a comment below with some of the icebreakers that have worked well for your students.

 

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About the author

Diana Benner

Director of Professional Development at TCEA
Diana specializes in leadership development and all things Google. She has served as an instructional technologist, instructional designer, and an online learning specialist, supporting districts all over Texas and in state government.
Diana earned Masters of Education in Educational Technology from Texas State University – San Marcos. She also holds two bachelor’s degrees, one in Spanish and the other in Political Science, from Texas State.

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