About two weeks prior to the start of the school I mail my new students and parents a welcome letter and a supply list. This year, I decided to throw in a bit of flare by enclosing the content in a “candy bar wrapper,” which I modeled after the Wonka Bar from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. My wrapper was created in Adobe Illustrator with the help of the Willy Wonka font, which I was able to find and download for free after a quick Google Search. For the sake of authenticity, I tried to make my chocolate bar look as close to the Wonka Bar as possible. Also, the back (not pictured) contains a QR code that connects to my classroom website.
Along with the two papers, the wrapper also included a golden ticket, which invited new students to a classroom technology day, approximately ten days prior to the start of the school year. (Once again, the golden ticket mimics the “real” golden ticket as closely as possible.) Due to the heavy emphasis that is placed on technology in my classroom, I like to get students started with certain tools as soon as possible. Also, I can take this time to proactively establish rapport with my students, which pays off later on when certain learning obstacles may occur.
So, towards the middle of this past August, 20 out of my 28 new students entered into my classroom for the very first time. More or less, the day was split into four parts: