How to Get to Know Students as Workers and Partners

back to school get to know you activity

As teachers we know that nothing motivates students more than working with a partner or within a small group. This is true for all subject areas. When a partnership or small group works well together there are so many benefits. Some include students engaging in meaningful discourse, taking ownership of their own learning, taking risks and sharing ideas, learning from others, and of course strengthening their collaboration and teamwork skills. And these are just a few! We also know that when a partnership or small group does not work well together no learning takes place, arguments develop, and student relationships become strained.

getting to know you back to school activity
That is why I love to spend some time at the beginning of the year getting to know how each of my students like to work, their learning style, and what type of partner they want to work with during project time and cooperative group learning. By discussing this with students and getting them to discuss it with each other, students quickly learn these important lessons:

  • Friends do not always make the best working partner
  • Everyone has their own learning and working style
  • The stronger a group is, the better they can work and learn

The classroom discussions that take place during the first week of school about individual learning and working styles are my favorite. They not only help me get to know students and better plan partnerships and groups, but it also helps the students to better know each other and their learning styles', and build classroom community too!

Grab this easy to use and engaging partner activity that I use during the first week of school to help you get to know your students AND to help your students get to know each other at the bottom of this post. (See more back to school getting to know you activities HERE.)



back to school getting to know you activity


Click through to find more Back-to-School activities and freebies to help build relationships from the first day of school!







Get to Know Your Students with the 4 C's of Engineering // Kerry Tracy




back to school activities upper elementary













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