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Back to School and First Day Activities Second Grade and Jitter Juice



This set of Back to School Activities for Second Grade will not only save you time as you prep for the beginning of the school year, but it will also engage your second graders in meaningful and fun activities.

Teachers love how engaging and simple these activities are to prep, all while getting to know their students and building classroom community. There’s so much going on at the start of a new school year, and this resource will help relieve that burden with TEN fun, back to school activities.

Students love these activities because they help them share about themselves, get to know their classmates, and have fun the first week of school. They also help ease them into the routine and structure of a new classroom.

Jitter Juice is a tried-and-true class favorite that my students continued to talk about and reference as one of their best memories all year. This is an original poem that I wrote to help ease the first day jitters, all while reading along and enjoying a yummy cup of Jitter Juice (recipe included)! Your students are guaranteed to LOVE this activity.

The Second Grade Survey will help you students share about themselves with you and their classmates. Find out how they’re feeling about starting second grade, what they’re good at, and what they’re excited to learn in your classroom. The self-portrait is always fun to draw and look back on at the end of the year, too!

Looking for an easy Ice Breaker? Find-a-friend is the perfect way to encourage your students to get to know one another by moving around the classroom and getting signatures from their friends. The prompts are easy (i.e. “Find a friend who lost a tooth!”) and they get to collect signatures as they move around the room finding new friends!

Create a Class Book that shares all the new faces in your classroom! Students will draw a self-portrait (or you can use the My New Friend Activity) and you’ll combine each one into a class book that you can read and share with your new class so they can get to know one another better. This will make an excellent addition to your reading center or bookshelf, too – the kids love to look at the drawings they made!

Pair students together for a My New Friend activity. Students will interview one another to find out about them, and draw a picture of them. This is a fun way for new friendships to be made.

After a second grade-themed back to school read-aloud of your choice, find out how your students spent The Night Before Second Grade. This is a writing activity where students will briefly draw and describe what they did before the big first day of school!

The following activities go great with any back to school book you read to your second graders:

  • Activity #1: Complete a whole group tree map about second graders
  • Activity #2: Discuss the similarities and differences between first graders and second graders. Complete a whole group double bubble map and then have students complete the individual double bubble map
  • Activity #3: Journal activities using the included prompts

Create a My First Week of Second Grade Book (2 versions included) to share all the fun from the first week of second grade!

Make the What’s In A Second Grader’s Backpack craftivity. This is a super simple craft where you can discuss what second graders need to be successful during the upcoming school year.

Love this activity, but teach a different grade? Find alternatives linked below:

Back to School Activities for Kindergarten

Back to School Activities for First Grade

Back to School Activities for Big Kids (3rd, 4th, or 5th grade)


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