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    Goody Bags
    By Petunia

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    The first day have a cupcake welcome back to school party. Have your opening. Pass out cupcakes and while they are eating them tell them about yourself, share pictures of your family and etc. During read aloud, read “First Day Jitters”. It’s about a girl who is afraid to go to school and in the end they find out it’s the teacher. Our lower grade read “The Kissing Hand”. At the end of the day, give students “Welcome Back” goody bags. A sack I got mine from the school concession stand ---popcorn sack. Decorate the sack with a curly ribbon bow. Attach a note, on the cover put “Welcome Back”, and inside list the items in the sack and what they stand for.
    Pencil---Sharp pencils to get us all pointed in the right direction.
    “Mrs.______Fourth Grade” “Fourth Graders are Great”
    Cheap pencils come from “Really Good Stuff” and “Oriental Trading”
    Bookmark—We’ll read lots of good books.
    “Welcome to Fourth Grade” written on them. Make them and laminate the bookmarks.
    Cotton ball—is to remind you that this fourth grade classroom is full of kind words and good feelings
    Toothpick—is to remind you to pick out good qualities in your classmates.
    Eraser---is to remind you that we all make mistakes, and it’s O.K! That is one of the ways we learn.
    Band-aid—is to remind you to heal hurt feelings in your classmates and in yourself.
    Roll of Smarties candy---You are all special and I know you will achieve a lot in fourth grade.
    Sticker---to remind you that we must all stick together and help each other.
    A life saver---is to remind you that you can come to me if you need someone to talk to.
    Yellow Yarn or Gold thread----reminds us that friendship ties us all together.
    -----Students leave the pencils and eraser at school. They take the rest home.

    We have open house one evening during the first week of school. Parents come, meet the teacher and look at the room.
    Have an apple for everyone and share this poem. We have several apple trees. I don’t have to buy the apples.
    An Apple for the teacher
    Is really nothing new
    Except when you remember
    Parents are teachers too!
    I put the apple in a popcorn sack with a bit of tissue paper and staple the poem to the sack.
    Another cute idea and poem is:
    M&M Pills for Teachers
    Eat a brown M&M to temporarily calm your carving for chocolate
    Eat a red M&M at the first sign of meeting overload.
    Orange minimizes “Mental Block” during long range planning.
    Eat a Green M&M to calm your frustrations while arranging the room
    If you feel a head ache coming on while doing lesson plans eat a yellow M&M.
    Blue M&M’s reduces Bulletin Board fatigue.
    Directions: Take as needed. If all symptoms occur at the same time eat the whole bag.
    Warning: May cause weight gain.
    Some more goodie bag ideas….
    A penny for always listening to my thoughts, an elastic band for your arms stretching around me to give me a hug, a chocolate kiss for the obvious, a peanut for all the times we are “Nutty” and have fun together, a piece of juicy fruit gum because we stick together no matter what, dice for all the games we play together, a band-aid because you always make me feel better, a lifesaver because, a tooth pick because you always pick out my good points.
    K, first, second, third, and fourth grade have name tag tri-pods on the
    upper corner of their desks. First name is printed on the front and
    back and taped to the desk standing up on the desk. They are three
    inches high and about 9 inches long. These are wonderful for the first
    few weeks of school and when you rearrange desk. Also great for the sub
    teachers (we call them guest teachers) helpers, paras and etc. Good
    everyone can call all the students by name and good self-esteem booster.
    Students are to leave them on their desk all year. Also makes passing
    out papers easier
    These ideas have all been shared with me. I don’t take credit for any of the ideas. I love them all and hope they help you get started on the best year ever.

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