First Day of School - Memory Box September 04 2009

Using a Memory Box on the First Day of School is a great way for students to get to know you as well as introduce themselves to their classmates!

What’s It About?

A Memory Box is a simple box big enough to hold symbols that are important to you. If you choose to share your Memory Box with your class, at this point you’ll need to do a mini-lesson on what a symbol is and how symbols represent important ideas or memories. There should be no more than five objects or symbols in your Memory Box for this lesson, and they should all represent something different about you and your life.

What’s In It?

A Memory Box is exactly what it sounds like – a box full of symbols that remind you of what’s important in your life.

My box was one that had Snoopy on it, which immediately tells kids something about who I am. Inside my box, I had a symbol representing my family (usually a picture), an object from another country symbolizing how I like to travel, a small tub of farting goo which symbolizes my need to laugh, and an object to show my love of music.

During my time to share on the First Day of School, I would hold up each object for my students to see and explain how it’s a symbol for something in my life. Then I would take three questions from the class (a good practice for raising your hand to speak).

The Lesson

Homework on the First Day of School was all about the Memory Box. The kids are directed to find five objects that are symbols for something important about their lives. They can use a box of any kind, as long as they can carry them safely, and I usually suggest a shoe box. If there are no boxes available, a paper bag would work for this lesson as well.

For the rest of the week, have a few kids share their Memory Boxes with the class each afternoon. Write a reminder in your plan book for the first couple of days, but after that you won’t need one – this activity is too much fun!