Posted in Classroom Guidance Lessons

First Day of School – What Do School Counselors Do & Student Icebreaker

The first day of each SEL class is always used to get to know the students and for the students to get to know you. This is the perfect time for school counselors to inform students of exactly what they do (all the things!) and to advocate for the counseling program at your school. This is a great lesson for the students to connect with you and learn more about you. I attached my PowerPoint at the bottom of this lesson so that you can see what I included in mine this year.

Lesson Title: Introductions – 1st Day of School PPT and Icebreaker Bingo

Grade(s): K-5

ASCA Standards:

  • A:A3.2 Demonstrate the ability to work independently, as well as the ability to work cooperatively with other students
  • PS:A2.7 Know that communication involves speaking, listening and nonverbal behavior

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will be able to introduce themselves to others.
  • Students will be able to work together to complete their game.



  1. Begin by introducing yourself as the counselor. Use a PowerPoint to introduce who you are, your job (individual counseling, group counseling, social-emotional learning classes, other roles, etc.), the rules and procedures of your classroom or office (if needed), how students can be referred to you, and anything else that is important for students to know.
  2. Develop Classroom Values together as a class. Write these down. Explain that when you develop these classroom values together that we all must follow these as a team.
  3. Ask students if they have any questions, concerns, etc.
  4. Follow up with students on how their first few days/week has been going at school. Engage with students by asking the following questions: What have you been most excited about? What has been the scariest part of school? What is different about this year/grade than last year/grade? What do they most look forward to learning in SEL?
  5. Explain that students are now going to play a game called Find someone who… To win this game, they must complete all the boxes and have a friend write their name in the boxes that are true for them. Model for students how they can shake hands with each student that they meet, to introduce themselves by sharing their name (they may have forgotten), and to then say the other students name back in a sentence (this helps them to remember their name). Ask students what other things they should be doing when they are talking to someone or getting to know them, such as having their body face them with adequate space between each person, to look into the persons eyes when talking, and to smile when appropriate. Model for students how to play this game and how they might ask another student several questions to find what is true for them.  For example: “Hi! My name is Hannah. What’s your name? It’s nice to meet you Tom! Do you have an older brother or sister? How about your favorite color> What’s your favorite school subject? Math is my favorite too! Can you write your name in this box that says we share the same favorite subject? I can sign yours too if yours is still empty!”.
  6. Summarize what you have learned today and the skills that students have practiced. Express your excitement for the upcoming year and all that you will learn together!

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