Day one, 35 minute class periods:
1. Students get a high five and a copy of "Mrs. Gruen's Life in Numbers" as they walk in the room. I borrowed this idea from Heather Kohn, as recommended at Global Math Department.
2. A seating chart is projected via the document camera and students find their seats. The seating chart is key. I could not have done this without it.
3. I introduce myself, then call out names from the roster while students are working at matching numbers from the answer bank to ten facts about me. I make note of preferred nicknames and pronunciations and such.
4. I show a brief slide show to reveal the answers to the quiz. I share an adorable pic of me with my family last Halloween . . .
And one of my dog Sophie, in big trouble after snitching a few almost-ripe tomatoes from my daughter's tomato plant.
6. Noah's ark problem from Fawn. Also recommended by Heather via Global Math.
7. As I watch students work and listen to their conversations, I have a good ten minutes to silently study the seating chart while looking at their faces. I practice covering the chart and saying their names in my head. We didn't finish the Noah's ark problem today, but that's okay.
8. As students leave the room, I say goodbye to each one individually. Bye Tate, bye Robert, bye Kyanna, bye . . . I overhear someone say "Holy cow, she knows our names already!"
Day two, before students arrive:
9. I go through the stack of number facts. I try to picture each face as I read what they've shared.
And then the final test:
10. As students enter the room on day 2, they get a high five and a "Hello Tate, Hi Robert, Good morning Kyanna . . . ". I only got two names wrong on day 2, and I think that is pretty good.
I also realized that learning names quickly has added another dimension to my daily high-fives. Every student gets to hear me say their name, along with their high five, every day. I definitely feel more connected to my students than I normally would be this early in the year. And the look on their faces when I welcomed them by name on day two? Priceless.
This is going to be a great year!